Staying focused is one of the biggest challenges we face when working from home. It's tough enough to manage your own schedule and can be difficult to stay productive without others working around you. Creating a dedicated working area where you can get away from distractions is important.
When you do lose focus, however, it can go one of two ways. You may be able to refocus quickly (the goal) and stay productive, or it can spiral into procrastination. In this blog post I'll talk about 4 ways you can refocus your mind to stay productive.
Some people can't imagine a life without travel. The breathtaking views, the variety of people, the tasty and maybe strange foods - it's the experiences you can't live without. If you're forever struck with wanderlust and can't imagine your life without globetrotting, a future where travel and work are balanced can seem impossible.
A job that has you traveling often may or may not satisfy your travel desires, so today I'll be talking about other ways to start with your passion - travel - and develop it into a career where you are truly doing what you love.
You don't have to choose between travelling and a career. Thanks to the internet and to jobs that leverage your expertise and love of travel, you can do both.
Whether you've joined the land of freelancing as a side gig, as a way to have more freedom in your career, or you're just looking for a way to revitalize your online presence, it's important to take a strategic approach to marketing yourself as a freelance professional.
With the COVID-19 pandemic, many of us have transitioned to working remotely or have even lost our jobs. Family commitments may have increased, and you may be looking for a source of income that is flexible. Advantages of freelance work include independence, the ability to control your workload and your exposure. Freelance work can open up posiibilities not possible when you are working for someone else.
On the other hand, you don't have a dedicated marketing department or social media coordinator to market your work and abilities. The burden is on you to find clients and convince them you are the person to hire. Just as freelance work is attractive to you, its attractive to mnany others, making freelance bids competative.
Your freelance marketing approach should focus on 2 things: publicity and visibility. Let's dive in.
Photo by Retha Ferguson from Pexels
Your mind is like a muscle, and benefits from regular training and exercise. Your brain has plasticity, which means it can improve in function as you age - mental decline is not inevitable. If you're overwhelmed by the number of apps available, you can start with these 5 simple strategies.
For those of us already in school or working, the COVID-19 pandemic has changed how we learn and work - now we do it from home.
But what if you were planning on making a career change when COVID-19 hit? You wanted to develop your current skillset or take courses to jump fields.
With the increase in online learning as we continue to stay at home, it's the perfect opportunity for you to conquer some of those tasks you've set out for yourself through online learning. You can engage on your town terms, find low cost alternatives, and learn to manage yourself.
working from home during COVID-19
It's not the strongest or the smartest who survive, but those willing to adapt.
The past few weeks with the COVID-19 pandemic have been stressful in nearly every area of our lives - work, home, physical health, and mental health. Social distancing may make you feel isolated. You may feel less productive when working from home. You may be worried about your own health, or those of your loved ones.
Today, I'll share some tips on adapting your day-to-day work style from the office to working from home. I'll guide you through how to create a routine, how to avoid distractions, and provide an overview of useful communication tools to keep you connected and productive.
Photo by Christopher Gower on Unsplash
WFH productivity round-up
With the major changes occurring in every part of life during the COVID-19 pandemic, most if not all of us have transitioned to working remotely (or working from home, #WFH).
I've put all my productivity posts, especially those focused on working from home, here in a single post for your convenience.
Avoid distractions when working from home
Finding your groove
3 best (free) e-books for productivity
Re-evaluating your priorities
3 tips to optimize your evenings for productivity
Setting SMART goals
Scheduling time and making space
Keep the momentum going
Creating your study space
What do you find most helpful when adapting to new situations?
If you're like me and have started a small business in line with your passion, accounting probably isn't your forte (or passion, for that matter!) So how can you make sure that this key financial part of your business is not only efficient but done correctly?
Minimizing the effort it takes to manage your finances - as a small business owner or as an individual - is key. Why? So that you spend time on your passion and not the logistics.
Infographic: University of Alabama Birmingham
Read on to learn about 3 ways to manage your finances in your small business
As we launch headfirst into a new semester, take advantage of the slow first week of classes to make a strategic plan for this term. Think about how you studied for your exams last semester - what worked, what didn't?
Today I share 3 tips to consider when revamping your study strategy.
Having an idea of what you want to do after college is key in making sure you graduate with the necessary knowledge and skills.
Some careers require a 2-year degree, others a 4-year degree, others post-graduate education like a masters, doctorate, or professional degree.
It's common for students to change majors partway through school, or go back to school to complete necessary requirements - full time, part time, or through online courses. With this need has flourished a new industry aimed at helping adults of all ages acquire the skills they need for the career they want.
Graduate school is often a time of both professional and personal challenges, namely because you're now in adulthood. But why am I writing about end-of-life planning on a grad school lifestyle blog? Because you may have a sick parent, and experience the importance of having an advance directive, power of attorney, and updated will on hand.
Tragedies, like unexpected illness and accidents, can strike any time. Having your documents ready and documented means you get to decide the details of your health journey, while also saving your family from extra stress and arguments.
The infographic below guides you through end-of-life planning and advanced directives.
Infographic: Bradley University
getting your tonsils out as an adult
Happy New Year! If you're like me, you spent your winter holidays on a soft and cold diet after getting your tonsils out.
Chances are, you're not like me in this department, but maybe you've clicked to this page because you're thinking about getting a tonsillectomy.
Your doctor, the Internet, or friends and family may have told you that getting your tonsils out as an adult is a harder recovery than having them removed as a child. Many of us grew up with friends or siblings who had their tonsils out. It used to be routine to remove children's tonsils, however recent research revealed that children who get their tonsils removed before the age of 9 or 10 may be at increased risk of upper respiratory issues as an adult, like asthma.
Tonsils are part of your immune system, and your immune system isn't fully developed until late adolescence or early adulthood. Researchers think that children having their tonsils removed at an early age can impact their immune system, affecting future disease risk.
However, when adults get their tonsils removed (typically for chronic sore throats, less so for sleeping issues), research shows that the benefit of reduced sick days and better quality of life means the 2 weeks of recovery is worth the pain.
Read on to learn about my experience getting my tonsils removed at age 28, on grad school holiday break.
self-care tips for the winter months
With an arctic blast dropping temps to 100-year record lows across the US, it truly feels like winter is here!
When we think about our winter health we often think of cold, flu, and mental health. Being indoors more often means we're more likely to catch a bug from our cubicle neighbor, and less time spent outdoors and/or less sun exposure can contribute to feelings of isolation and depression.
Photo by Brigitte Tohm from Pexels
College is a unique life experience - independence from family members and high school teachers comes with new responsibility over your time and self-care.
Peer pressure to socialize at the expense of your school work can lead to you falling behind, or the abrupt change in classroom style may lead you to struggle with your material. Being away from home can be lonely, and the added stress of school can make you shy away from meeting new people.
Some quick tips? Pay attention at orientation to what resources your school has available for you, from tutoring to counseling, to interest groups to help meet new friends. Tutoring can help you learn how you learn, overcoming difficulties in new coursework, while counseling can help you identify negative thoughts and replace them with positive ones. You can also learn positive self-care coping strategies. Finally, develop your time management skills by utilizing assignment and quiz dates to stay up on your materials, blocking your time around classes to be efficient while on campus.
Read on for more tips.
Writing a literature review is daunting (hey, writing a dissertation is daunting!)
While dissertation formats vary between universities and disciplines, most (if not all) require a literature review.
In this post I'll walk you through my process in developing an organization system that helped me write my dissertation literature review. It's a long post, but I wanted it all to be in one place for you so it's not broken up into different articles.
First, I'll walk you through my back story in the dissertation literature review process, and describe my overall system of organization.
Then, I'll describe 2 methods to take you from reading articles to taking notes to organizing your notes into themes.
Lastly, I'll wrap up with thoughts on how to continue your literature review in a cohesive and transparent way.
All external links open in a new window.
Background photo by freddie marriage on Unsplash
the best way to learn something new
Last week I talked about whether online courses are the right choice for you and I've written before about how to balance work and hobbies, and even how to leverage your hobbies.
Whether you're a naturally curious individual, always eager to learn something new in your downtime, or whether you want to bring more meaning to your life by learning something new, it's never too late to start.
are online courses right for you?
Whether you're looking for a new career, want to learn a new skill for fun, or want to increase your value at work, online courses (also called online training) are one way to achieve that.
Some examples of what completing online courses could achieve for you? Not only is there a variety of courses offered online, from animal care courses distance learning to foundation healthcare courses to basic data science and programming, no matter what you're looking for, you can find it through online course websites or online schools.
Before you jump in, decide if online courses are the right choice for you.
visme vs canva
If you're like me and enjoy good visual design but have no formal training, you're probably always on the hunt for a new platform to design. While PowerPoint can achieve a lot, online programs like Canva and Visme offer something more.
I've been using Canva for quite a while, and find that while it suits some purposes it has downfalls. On the hunt, I discovered Visme and want to share my experience.
achieving work-life balance
Having work-life balance isn't just something to think about, but something you should take steps to achieve. Breaking the constant cycle of working with hobbies, vacation, and any other activities or experiences that you're passionate about will help you be happier, healthier, and productive at work. When your entire identity isn't wrapped up in a single job, you build both your confidence and your resiliency.
You don't have to go through bootcamp or boast a 20 year military career to learn lessons from our Armed Forces. These 4 pieces of advice can help you turn around your current work situation or go down a different road with your career.
say goodbye to imposter syndrome
Did you know that 70% of Millennials experience imposter syndrome?
Imposter syndrome affects high-achieving individuals who fear they aren't as intelligent as others perceive them to be.
Do you worry that you'll be "exposed" in your workplace? That you don't belong?
Successful professionals are most likely to struggle with imposter syndrome, particularly if they have trouble internalizing success. Do colleague's compliments roll off your shoulders, but criticism reverberates for weeks? Being modest about your success is healthy as long as you own your accomplishments - don't poke holes in your success! You deserve the recognition that you crave.
Impostor syndrome from J. Emilio Flores on Vimeo.
It's important to have a life outside of school, and that life might consist of family, friends, and hobbies. Whether you engage in your hobbies for joy or for cash or for both, you can take some steps to leverage that hobby for some side hustle cash while in graduate school.
If you're musically inclined, today's post is for you. Let's talk about leveraging your love of music.
If you're fed up with your current job or just looking for something different, know that there are many ways to make a career change. Don't get overwhelmed by the idea of more training - it's easier than ever to learn skills that you need from home, by accessing courses online! You can travel, earn money, and train for the career that you want.
Photo by rawpixel.com from Pexels
Do you feel like something's been missing in your life? Are you tired of wasting time in the rat race? As a graduate student, it's easy to get bogged down in minutiae of your tasks, feel overwhelmed by never-ending projects, or with unrealistic deadlines. Balancing work and life is important - but what are you going to do during that "life" part?
Image by lisa runnels from Pixabay
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