How to Stay Focused When Studying Your MBA at Home |

How to Stay Focused When Studying Your MBA at Home

By Linda Mohamed

Updated Updated

Let’s be honest, it’s pretty difficult to sit down and study while a global pandemic is going on.

Business schools have had to react promptly to the outbreak, finding ways to safely continue lectures and seminars and foster student collaboration virtually.

Video conferencing platforms like Zoom and Microsoft Teams have already helped educators shift to online teaching, but some students might be struggling to adjust to such sudden changes.

Whatever the circumstance it’s perfectly reasonable that you might be having trouble focusing, especially if you’re used to studying on campus.

For this reason, here at TopMBA we’ve put together a few tips that might help you keep your morale up and get plenty of work done from home.

Set up your home office

You’ve probably heard this before, but we thought it worth mentioning again: don’t study in bed. As comfortable as it might be, separating your work and rest spaces is key to be productive, especially while staying indoors to practice social distancing.

Make sure to create a study-friendly office space in your home where you can get work done undisturbed. Here are our best tips on lighting, set-up and equipment.

Plan your days

Now more than ever, it’s important to have a healthy work-life routine. Not only will this help you stay more focused on your studies, it’ll also give structure to your day and help you use time efficiently.

Set an early alarm every day during the regular work week as if you were going to campus and kick-start your day with a to-do list of work and household chores that you can tick off as you go. This will help you create a sense of normality and adjust more easily to the ongoing changes in your daily life.

Take plenty of breaks

It’s easy to get carried away when studying, especially at home, but this doesn’t mean you’re not allowed downtime. If anything, stepping back from your duties and giving yourself time to breathe will help diminish stress and anxiety in the long run.

Take a close look at your schedule and add some productive breaks here and there. It can be as simple as giving yourself 10 minutes to drink a cup of coffee or put on a load of laundry – as long as you’re resting, you’ll benefit from it.

Find new ways to socialize

We’re sure you’re missing being on campus and socializing with your b-school peers – who wouldn’t?

In these trying times, staying connected with your friends is key to feeling like you’re still part of a community. Social media is a great way to interact, but make sure to organize catch-up video calls at least once a week as well. Connecting screen-to-screen will make you feel a lot less lonely.

Reach out for help if you need to

Despite the distance, your teachers will always be there to help you, so don’t be scared to contact them if you need advice or clarification on your work. Student forums are also a great place to ask important questions about exams, projects and networking, as well as to further interact with your peers. No point wasting time and focus trying to figure things out by yourself!

Exercise, even just a little bit

Believe it or not, studies show that exercise can boost cognitive function, memory recall and brain function. In short, working out isn’t only good for your body, it’s also beneficial for your mind.

No one is expecting you to become a triathlon champion overnight, especially if exercise isn’t normally your thing. Instead, opt for a walk outside (even 30 minutes will do) or an at-home workout.

We recommend a high-intensity interval training (HIIT) if you enjoy a quick, full-body experience and a yoga session if you want something that is low-impact and ultimately relaxing. You can find plenty of videos for free on YouTube!

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