Life

What I’ve Been Doing This Quarantine + Tips To Stay Productive

Hello everyone and welcome to my blog! Finally, I missed writing posts about life. All my recent posts were about self-hosting and it’s actually kind of draining because I really need to research for each post. But I think it’s really worth it as I’ve received a lot of good feedback from you especially those who want to go self-hosted as well!

Before we start, I’d like to emphasize that this quarantine is not a productivity contest. We are all affected by the pandemic and some might be going through a hard time because of it, so I am not in any way, pushing my beliefs into yours nor I am saying that you should work, because you’ll never get more free time than this. NO. I totally get that it’s actually really hard to work, study, or even do things when most of the things you hear in the news are bad. We all have different coping mechanisms and this post is just to share what I’ve been doing and probably some tips on how I stay productive in this trying time.

What I’ve Been Doing This Quarantine

  • Creating digital art on Procreate.

Here’s a fun story behind how I started: In the early days of March 2020, I had so many academic readings, my laptop wasn’t working well and my phone is too small for me to read- plus, I can’t really read on my phone as there are a lot of distractions. After a lot of convincing, my parents finally decided to buy me a budget iPad and I’m completely in love with it. I was supposed to buy a keyboard for it as I was really looking for a substitute when my laptop doesn’t work, but they decided to just get me an Apple Pencil and that’s where the magic began.

I first downloaded Autodesk Sketchbook which also has a lot of pens and brushes and I love its blend brushes. Then I went on Youtube to watch tutorials and most of the tutorials are for Procreate, so I decided to just buy it as well… and it’s definitely worth it. As much as I want to create digital art everyday, there are some days that I don’t feel the want and the need to, and I just let it pass. When I’m feeling alright again, I continue doing so and I’m so happy to see my progress.

You can see my artworks in this category page: My Artworks (May 2020 Artworks coming soon!)

  • Philosophy readings and note taking!

Since I’m a philosophy major and my program can be really too difficult at times, I need to read. I am currently reading everything about Soren Kierkegaard (a Christian existentialist philosopher) whose works are really important for the later existentialists like Nietzsche and Camus.

So far, I really like how Kierkegaard, despite being a Christian himself, attacked Christendom or Christianity as a political and social entity. He emphasized that a genuine Christian must be really Christ-like, really following the teachings of Jesus than just being a member of Christendom wherein you follow established set of norms and rules that the “Christians in Christendom” just made. If ever you want to read Kierkegaard and his philosophy, I recommend reading Kierkegaard: An Introduction by Stephen Evans. For starters, it really helped me a lot.

I’m not used to digital note taking but since almost all of my notebooks are left in Manila and all I have is my Apple iPad and Pencil, I thought to use it in the best way that I can. I use OneNote as it’s free and here’s an example of how I take notes:

  • Blog writing and reading

I noticed that I’m really focusing more on my blog this quarantine. Ever since I started my new self-hosted blog, I wrote and published every other day. Of course, I can’t keep this up when university starts again, so I’m really writing as much as I could now.

And anyway, thank you all so much for 1900 followers!!! I reached it the other day and I’m really really happy! I love meeting new people here, so thank you so much! Of all the good and quality content blogs here in WordPress, you chose me to be one of your following! I’m so glad and I deeply appreciate it! πŸ™‚

Don’t forget that you are invited to a blog party on May 30, 2020! For more information, check this post: You Are Invited!

  • A little bit of house improvement

Since this quarantine started, one of the thoughts I always have is how to improve my room, how to make it look good and so on. My mom and I decided to purchase wallpapers from Lazada so that we’d have something new in our house and yesterday, I started painting the walls of our house white. I’m actually super happy with how it’s turning out! And to think that I’m responsible for painting, it makes me so happy!

And aside from sleeping, video calls with my Kuyas (brothers) abroad, bonding with family and keeping up with my best friend, I think that’s all that I have been constantly doing this quarantine.

Tips To Stay Productive

And now, for the tips! Again, we all have different coping mechanisms and if you’re finding it hard to work this pandemic, it’s totally okay and acceptable!

  1. Fix your bed. As soon as you wake up, fix your bed and get out of it! I swear it really works. Eat your breakfast, have coffee or drink water and just don’t stay in your room. Your bed is a huge magnet so don’t be tempted, unless you really want to sleep more! I noticed that I could do a lot of artworks when I stay in the living room.
  2. Have a guide or plan it out. Hey, what are those planners doing there? Use it! You can list the things you want to accomplish for the day. Start writing after your morning breakfast or coffee so that you will have a guide for the whole day. When you feel like you’re not doing anything anymore, look at your planner again and do something that you have listed!
  3. Wash your face, hands or take a bath. Water is just really refreshing. There are times when I feel completely unmotivated but after washing my face, hands or taking a bath, I feel that I need to do something that leads me to productivity.
  4. Don’t stay too much on your phone. Phones and social media, are always one of the distractions. You can practice disciplining yourself by not using your phone even though you can see it. Surprisingly, it really works for me. Just check your phone a little bit from time to time because there might be something important happening and of course, you need to know.
  5. Drink water. It is super important to stay hydrated, so always keep a glass or a bottle of water by your side! Especially now that it’s summer and it’s really hot, always remember to drink water! It can also, magically, boost your motivation.

There you go, thank you so much for reading! It feels so long already since I last written a lifestyle post that I’ve missed writing it, lol.

What are you up to this quarantine? How do you manage to stay productive?

Share it in the comments below! πŸ™‚


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36 Comments

  1. Don’t forget, you are invited to a blog party! Check it out here: https://writingsbyjm.com/you-are-invited-to-a-blog-party/

  2. this is super helpful for me. i have become so lazy during this quarantine :/ your tips are super helpful!

    Also i want to try procreate so bad!! it hasn’t been the first time i saw someone mention it.

    1. I’m so glad this helped you in some way!! πŸ’• Thank you so much for reading!

      Procreate is really good. I really love that I can download a lot of free brushes from art websites which makes everything easier! ✨

  3. Love the art work JM.
    I’ve split my time between decorating the house and finishing the final editing on my debut novel. Now I need to find something new to stay productive during the month of June.

    1. Thank you so much! πŸ’•
      Decorating/renovating our own homes is just therapeutic. 😍 Oh wow, I’d love to hear about your novel! Best of luck with finishing it! ✨ I’m sure you can find something new to put your time into this coming month. I wish you again, the best of luck! πŸ’—

      1. Thanks

  4. Thanks for the helpful tips! I’m kinda neglecting my blog since I’ve been binge watching a TV series hehe

    1. You’re welcome! I’m so glad this helped you in any way. Oh, I totally get it! When I start a series, I really have to finish it in one sitting or else I have no motivation to do other things at all! πŸ˜… I really try to limit myself to start series as it consumes too much of my time.

  5. My anxiety kicked a notch when quarantine started and until now, all I can do is read. And read…I did a lot. Hehe. But I’m glad you’re more productive than I am.

    1. Ack, I can totally relate! ☹️ I hope you manage to overcome it somehow! I actually think that it is because of my anxiety that I try to stay productive. I don’t really want to overthink things so I just tend to focus on other thingsβ€” which is actually turning out great, to my surprise.
      Thank you so much for reading! ✨

      1. I want to stay productive as well. Usually, I busy myself with crafting. That calms me more than reading do but my activities are limited. I was visiting my aunt when ecq was enforced so I’ve been stuck here for almost three mos. 😟

        But at least, I can go home soon. 😊

  6. Thanks for sharing!🍁
    These tips are so simple yet so helpful. I will surely get better after reading and executing these!πŸ™‚

    P. S: ZOOM PARTY-2 on 31st, please check your inbox for details. πŸ™‚

    Stay safe and blessed!πŸ˜ŠπŸ’›
    -theinkwarrior

    1. You’re welcome, TIW!
      Thank you so much for reading! I’m so glad this can help you in any way! πŸ’•

      Oh yes, I’ve just read your email! I am so delighted to be a part of it again. I’m so excited! Thank you for inviting me! πŸ’—
      Stay safe too! ✨

  7. Those tips are going to come in handy! ✨ Your study notes look so neat 😍 I’m really interested in learning about Philosophy at the moment amongst other things and so I’ve been looking around for resources and online courses throughout isolation as well as spending my time knitting. Recently I’ve found that since I’ve been writing to-do lists on the notes app on my phone (even if I go the whole day without looking at my list I somehow still manage to cross off each thing) I will get more stuff done as opposed to writing them down as I never usually finish them that way πŸ’« Great post! πŸ’•

    1. Thank you so much for reading, Elsie! I hope these tips can somehow help you! πŸ’— And thank you so much!! 😭 I’m still getting used to writing in my iPad that’s why I think my notes look messy… I really appreciate it! ✨ If you really want to dive in philosophy or study it in-depth, I suggest reading the ancient philosophers first. Almost all ideas in the medieval, modern and postmodern world came from a predecessor which are the Greek philosophers. 😊
      Oh, sometimes I think that really works for me too! When I plan things using my Notes in phone, I just get it all done without me noticing it. 🀣 Thanks for letting me know!

      Thanks again for reading, Elsie! I appreciate it so much! ❀️✨

      1. Thanks for the philosophy tips! πŸ™Œβœ¨ You’re very welcome, it was a great post. Hope you had a lovely day! πŸ’•

  8. your study notes are so cute! I’ve been doing loads of crafting…I find that making things keeps my brain engaged xx

    1. Thank you so much, Mia! I’m so glad that you found it cute. I really think it’s messy! πŸ˜… That’s good to know, I really love your DIYs! ❀️✨

      Thank you for reading! Keep safe! πŸ’•

  9. Those notes are so pretty! Great tipsπŸ’«πŸ’•

    1. Thank you so much, Meghan! I really appreciate it! πŸ’•βœ¨

  10. Loved this post – it is so important to acknowledge that you dont have to be super productive during quarantine πŸ™‚ Which ipad did you purchase.? I currently have the 2nd generation ipad and am thinking of upgrading ! Can’t wait for your content in the works. Stay safe babe πŸ™‚
    – XOXO chana (www.justmyselfa.org)

    1. Thank you so much, Chana! And yes, I agree with that! All of us are having a hard time with the uncertainty. I purchased the iPad 7th gen, they released it last year and called it the budget iPad. Apple Pencil 1st gen is compatible with it. 😊 Thank you so much, I appreciate that! Stay safe! ✨

  11. This was a lovely post, Jirah! <3 I've gone back and forth between feeling really productive during the pandemic, then having days when I do nothing. (Well, I guess YouTube is something, but not much. lol) I'm learning about how to take the emotional highs and lows in stride and not be so hard on myself. πŸ™‚
    I have seen different digital artists creating gorgeous artwork on Procreate and it sparked me to get a similar app on my Kindle Fire, haha! I love creating digital art that way πŸ™‚ I'm going to go look at your work… OH MY GOSH. Girl, they are all beautiful! and I just love your signature gah it's perfect <3
    Your note-taking looks really cool! That's an interesting app πŸ™‚
    Congrats on 1900 followers! *throws confetti and gives you a hug* A lot of time and work went into getting you there. I'm really happy for you!
    Your tips are much appreciated! <3 My mood COMPLETELY changes when I just make my bed, it's crazy, haha! And yes, separating myself from my phone makes me feel crazy at first, then I realize how much I needed that break. My eyes, hands, and brain appreciate it!
    I've been setting a lot of short-term goals for myself to reach all quarantine long, which has been the reason why I've been able to reach them! I've also been tweaking my morning and night routines to incorporate new habits and break old bad ones. It's been really good.
    Wow! This comment. I'm sorry for its length xD

    1. Thank you so much, Maggie! ❀️ I really think we should assess how we’re feeling at the moment and just let ourselves feel it for a while. We’re all scared of what awaits for us and the uncertainty of the pandemic. So we really need to assess ourselves. When we feel okay already, then it’ll be a good time to be productive. 😊
      Thank YOU so much!!! 😭❀️ That really means a lot to me! I’m so happy you love it!! ❀️✨
      Thanks again! I really think my notes are messy so it means a lot to me!
      THANK YOU!!!!!!! 😭❀️ It’s really been a long journey! I still remember the time I reached 100 and now I’m here at 1900. πŸ₯Ίβ€οΈ
      I’m so glad you appreciated my tips!! πŸ’• And oh, come to think of it, I also set short term goals that’s why I’m able to achieve it too! Thank you for sharing! ❀️

      Thank you for your comment, Maggie!!! I really missed you in here! I am SO happy you are back!! ❀️✨

      1. You’re welcome! And agreed – we have no idea what’s to come. We have to take it a day at a time and do the best we can πŸ™‚ Yes definitely!
        You’re very welcome!! <3
        Short term goals are amazing! They build our confidence and make it possible to reach our long term goals! πŸ˜€
        Thank you Jirah! That means so so so much!!! <3

  12. I also missed reading your posts about life. Don’t get me wrong, I love your posts about self-hosting but these posts about life are on another level. It’s very helpful and you know you will always learn something from it! Btw, your handwriting is so cute!!! 😍

    Congratulations on 1900 followers! I wish you the best always! πŸ’–

    1. Naaaaath! 😭❀️ Thank you so much!! I really appreciate everything from you. I’m so happy to have met you here! Anyway, I’m going to send you an email in a bit. Check it out. πŸ’•βœ¨

      Thank you so much!!!!! ❀️✨

      1. Aw! πŸ₯° I’m also happy to have met you! You’re the first one who welcomed me and made me feel at home when I started blogging a month ago πŸ’– I’m excited! I’ll check it out now.

        1. Aw you’re so sweet!!! πŸ˜­πŸ’• Thank you so much! ❀️

  13. Shallom! Thank you for sharing your experience in this ‘new normal’ and how you cope up with all of these. You are indeed an inspiration! Congratulations for being productive and finding your own passion. You really have the talent so pls continue and don’t lose hope. Whenever you feel tired and don’t have the guts to move or do something, just take your time and have a rest. I’m sure that your fire will come back again. Take care of yourself my love. We are all here to support you πŸ˜˜πŸ’•

    1. Congrats for having 1900 followers! πŸ’―β€

      1. Thank you so much. I appreciate it a lot! ❀️ Take care my love! πŸ’•βœ¨

  14. OMG drinking water is so important!!

    1. Yeeeees! ❀️✨ Thank you so much for reading my blog! πŸ’•

  15. […] you’ve read my quarantine life update, then you probably know that I’ve painted the walls of our house white. It looked super clean […]

  16. […] you’ve read my quarantine life update, then you probably know that I’ve painted the walls of our house white. It looked super clean […]

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