Top tips for working from home and looking after yourself

Hello! My name’s Sophie and I’m currently on a placement year with the Careers and Placements department. Like many of you will be next term, I’m working from home, so wanted to share some top tips for studying at home effectively and looking after your wellbeing whilst doing so.

Studying from home

Have a dedicated desk space

Usually if you need to focus you’d maybe head to the library or your favourite study spot on campus to get your head in the books. So, try and recreate that kind of study space at home. This might be easier said than done if you live with other people, but if you can, try to have a desk, or even a spot on the sofa that you mark as your designated study space. Make sure it’s somewhere with lots of natural light and where you’re unlikely to be distracted, so you can focus on your work. Try not to sit there when you’ve finished working for the day, so you associate that spot with studying. 

Stick to a routine

When working from home, it’s easy to work late into the night, which makes it harder to switch off at bedtime. Try to have a routine where you start and finish at the same time each day and when you finish, that’s it. The studying gets put away and you have some time to do something you enjoy. Having a routine like this will help you maintain work life harmony when you’re mostly at home. 

Take regular breaks

The same as if you were studying on campus, take regular breaks to avoid burnout and keep you motivated. The pomodoro method is a great way to keep track of how much time you’ve spent on a task and will remind you to take regular breaks. Use your breaks to drink some water, message a friend – anything to relax you before you get back into your studies. 

Taking care of yourself 

Stay social

Public Health England has advised people to avoid public gatherings. However, you can still keep in touch with friends and family through video calling, texting or social media. It will make staying at home much less isolating and allow you to maintain your social life during these difficult times. However, it’s important to note that, although social media can be great for connecting with people, it’s important not to spend too much time looking at negative or scary news articles/hashtags, as there’s lots of inaccurate information circulating, spreading uncertainty. If you’re looking for up to date advice please refer to the University’s Covid-19 webpages.

Look after your wellbeing

We are living through some pretty scary times and it’s normal to feel anxious or unsure of what’s going to happen. Now more than ever, it’s important to look after your wellbeing. With this in mind, be sure to factor self care into your daily routine. This could be getting some fresh air (if it’s safe for you to do so), meditating, eating regular healthy meals or keeping yourself busy with activities you enjoy, such as or painting or reading.

I hope some of these tips will help you to adjust to studying away from university. All of us here at Careers and Placements and the University are committed to supporting you the best we can. Look after yourselves and we hope to welcome you back to campus soon. 

*Sophie is a current University of York student and is currently undertaking a placement year with the Careers and Placements department.* 

If you’d like to get in touch, email