TL;DR – who says you can’t learn anything online?
Since I haven’t been able to attend offline classes, I’ve taken to online talks to beef up my knowledge.
Over the past few weeks, I signed up for a variety of talks to hear from experts and fellow Singaporeans, in a quest to learn how to survive Covid-19 and beyond.
I wrote this to share with skeptics of online learning that it is possible to gain useful information even if there is no physical interaction.
Here’s what I learnt.
1. There are jobs and support available
This is the time when skills are not the only thing that will get us a job. Being in the right network receiving the right opportunities at the right time also helps.
Subscribe to job channels and mailing lists that are relevant to what you are looking for.
What I liked about this series of talks below by Labour MP Patrick Tay (he’s also the Chairman of West Coast Town Council and MP for West Coast GRC), is that he makes his talk accessible for the deaf via live sign interpretation and also live notetaking, in collaboration with Adrenalin and Equal Dreams.
There is one more talk on 29 May, Friday, 3-4 pm on Employment Rights (register at bit.ly/2yODvJt by 28 May 2359).
There were also useful tips shared on how to work-from-home, such as:
- Get the right equipment
- Designate a space for work
- Set yourself working hours
- Get some structure in place
- Communicate like never before
- Use flexibility wisely
- Track your progress
- Avoid distractions
- Take accountability
- Take breaks
2. Find your tribe(s)
There are so many online talks out there, which one should you choose?
For starters, hang out with people who welcome you as you are. As an introvert, I joined a zoom meeting with Introverts Network Asia to hear from fellow introverts and professional psychologist Joy Hou from Empathyworks how to cope mentally and emotionally during a crisis.
Among a lot of things we discussed, I learnt how the following ingredients help us cope:
- Structure (e.g. comforting routines, a daily schedule)
- Support (from family, friends)
- Short (don’t burden yourself by doing something for too long, e.g. try short-duration exercises)
- Small (no need to reach for the sky, just try new things in small, simple ways)
- Reach out to five people to connect
3. Setting up a routine and boundaries for WFH-life balance
Working from home (WFH) is a breeze, until you realise you’re not alone to focus on work.
Having to deal with Home-Based Learning, and then full-time caregiving, cleaning and cooking on top of WFH is tough. This is why I tuned into Dr Lim Hong Huay’s talk on Superherome Facebook page.
Dr Lim has three children, two of whom have autism and ADHD. She led the development of ECHO (Early Childhood Holistic Outcomes) Framework for early intervention in Singapore and spearheaded the inaugural Care Carnival, an initiative by parents for parents of children with special needs.
Here are some tips I learnt:
- Prioritise which routines to keep. Ask why, who, what, where, when and how to craft out a new norm in routines.
- Build buffers in routines and be flexible.
- Take it one step at a time.
- Don’t freak out if things deviate, just laugh!
- Respect and accept that everyone is different
- Try to predict and respond to what may happen, instead of expecting and reacting
The world has dramatically changed since Covid-19 slammed into our lives.
We will continue to telecommute, have teleconferences and start doing a lot of our communications and transactions online instead of offline.
It is time that you also try taking the first step to learn something online. Read the following article to get started.