Be informed, stay sane: Digital wellness in the era of COVID-19

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Photo by Markus Spiske on Unsplash

What’s hoarding toilet papers got to do a fatal flu virus outbreak? Good ol’ media.

Imagine this.

The year is 2020. A flu virus, the deadliest in history, by the name of coronavirus (COVID-19) has infected and wiped out 99.9 percent of the world population.

At the same time, aliens decide to pay our planet a visit. At arrival, they find the streets strangely quiet, shops, restaurants, cafes, and stores shut down. As they make their way from one house to the next, the aliens discover bodies after bodies. What’s more strange is the piles of items, labeled toilet paper, they discover in every house. Continue reading “Be informed, stay sane: Digital wellness in the era of COVID-19”

Cultivating high-quality alternatives to digital distractions

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Photo by Toa Heftiba on Unsplash

Once upon a time, a high school student tells a group of her peers and adults that she has deleted all her social media accounts for an unspecified period of time. She explains that she is spending too much time on social media, comparing herself to people online.

Everyone nods in agreement relating to the side-effects she listed for her decision.

‘What do you do instead?!’ one peer asks, ludicrously.

We all laugh.

.   .   .

Most of us turn to our digital devices often because the alternative sucks.

Continue reading “Cultivating high-quality alternatives to digital distractions”

A minimalist approach to studying sociology

A picture I took while studying at a cafe.

Sociology is a complex, fascinating and immensely rewarding subject. However, like most other things in life, being good at it requires passion, discipline, and focus.

Below are three tips I have found to be useful in increasing my productivity and focus as I complete my graduate studies.

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Passion

There is not much to say here.

The dictionary defines passion as, “a strong and barely controllable emotion, an intense desire or enthusiasm for something, a thing arousing enthusiasm.

I have cried legit tears from enthusiasm when I wrote my paper on poverty and residential segregation in Toronto applying Foucault’s concept of biopower. My friend has made fun of me because when I take notes of an article I’m reading, I add “BOOM!” “YAAAAASSSSS!” and other equally enthusiastic words next to a point an author made that I really liked.

It is a bit embarrassing. I don’t care— I love sociology.

Are you passionate about sociology?

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Avoid Distractions

I quit social media.

In my previous post, is the Internet killing qualitative research, I discussed how constant consumption of information is undermining our ability to be creative.

Sociology is a creative process.

Quitting social media has worked wonders for me. It has given me the chance to be bored and exercise my sociological imagination. I got really good at thinking,  specifically thinking about our social world.

What’s your distraction? You need to cut it.

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Focus

There are countless resources available out there on how to maintain focus and be productive, including blog posts, videos, and books.

I did a lot of research until I found what worked for me— the Pomodoro technique. I use this Pomodoro app that has done wonders for my productivity.

I try to commit about four hours a day on my craft; I work for 25-minutes for eight counts with five minutes break in between.

.    .    .

I also have failed a lot.

A lot.

However, when I followed those three simple tips, be passionate, avoid distractions and focus, I have managed to become good at studying sociology, really good.