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A lack of motivation?

In light of mental health awareness week here in the UK, I thought it was fitting to talk about the term ‘motivation’. My friends and I have been using this word a lot recently as we’ve had a lack of it. Stress and grief may be two of the consequences of lockdown for many of us and as we’re all incredibly individual – it means we all have our own ways of coping. With still no real end date to this confined madness this makes it difficult to find motivation during this period as there is no significant change happening.

Why are we losing motivation in Lockdown?

Anxiety – The impact of the lockdown on businesses has been immense as even with the business interruption loans announced at the beginning of lockdown by Rishi Sunak – millions of people are still now unemployed. This has driven anxiety up as people are fearful of being laid off or furloughed with a minimum of a 20% pay cut. This provokes the fight or flight mode in people as some may work harder as there’s a lot at risk however for some of us it may have a negative affect – anxiety can be the biggest killer for motivation so workers fears should be eased where possible.

Environment – Whilst there are a lot of people that are used to working from home as one of its traditional advantages is increased productivity – for those who thrive in office environments this can have the opposite effects. There has been talks not just In the UK but worldwide of there being a permanent shift to remote working, which is beneficial for the company saving money but the employees well being should be put to the forefront of any long term business strategy.

Distractions – During this time stranded indoors, the temptation to be distracted increases. When motivation levels are already low, we are more likely to turn our attention to non-urgent tasks such as housework, errands, and odd jobs: the psychological trick of still feeling fulfilled by keeping busy in order to avoid tackling the issues at hand.

Lack of ‘reward’ – While we thrive on routine, we are used to rewarding ourselves with trips to the cinema, meals, nights out and holidays. The great aspect of Great Britain is our freedom, the ability to plan holidays, take the afternoon to go shopping, enjoy a treatment at a spa. All those things that we work hard all year for so we have the ability to treat ourselves have been taken away and the urgency to carry out tasks have become tedious.

How we battle through

Plan for the future- Working, living and sleeping in the same space can trigger feelings of resentment. If you’re noticing a lack of interest towards your work it might be a good idea to question why you chose the career path you’re on, or even consider going to places you’ve never been before to travel – this pandemic has highlighted life is short so we should live it to the fullest.

Discuss goals- Even when we don’t know how the next twelve months will pan out, it’s crucial to maintain a sense of hope and create plans to stick on the near/distant future. These can be short term plans like reducing your screen time by the following week, or long- term plans for example just like Logical you can plan company parties/ trips once restrictions are lifted. Share goals with each other, whether it’s buying a property, running a marathon, or developing a new skill. This crisis is prohibiting a lot of things at the moment, so sharing our hopes and ambitions will inspire people to look beyond the present time and towards a brighter future.

Be strict with sleep – A letter addressed to UK residents written by an Italian resident at the end of March stated “You will not sleep well” .. and they were correct. However, when the days are all we’ve got having enough sleep really is paramount as whilst we’re at home we have the tendency to indulge in box sets and eat and drink into late hours. Approach sleep like you would a normal working say and preparing uncluttered space, switching off screens (get off Tik Tok), read a few pages of your book and stick to a ‘lights out’ time. Sticking to a consistent sleeping pattern will help you feel more energised and hopefully make time pass quicker.

We’re all human and it’s normal to have periods of time where there is a lack of motivation, however this isn’t permanent so don’t be too hard on yourself. Take this time to reflect and come out of lockdown with your priorities in check.


Written by Sophia Ghahramani

Not all hero’s wear capes

One in ten nursing jobs in the UK are unfilled, two obvious solutions to the staffing crisis for nursing would be to train more nurses and retain more staff but how can we expect people to want to join the profession if they’re working long hours to get underpaid?

This week is international nursing week, and in the current circumstances the efforts of nurses globally who risk their lives daily have shown how truly selfless you have to be. It is not breaking news here in the UK that there is a nursing crisis due to nurses getting vastly underpaid in comparison to how much patients lives rely on them and how many hours they work. Nursing is not just a job it is a vocation as what you do day to day transforms people’s lives. One of the reasons children may not aspire to be a nurse is because of how the role can tug on your emotional heart strings, however this doesn’t take away from the fact the job is highly rewarding and a challenging career in which you can really thrive. The under staffing crisis has really been highlighted during COVID-19 as students have been sent to work early on the front line with some not even getting paid and retired nurses coming back to work because of the high demand.

Time for change

I recently read a quote stating “If doctors are the rock stars then the nurses are the crew”- apart from the difference in pay this could not be more incorrect. At the beginning of this year a study conducted by the royal college of nursing, found the old-fashioned view that caring for others is a ‘feminine characteristic’ continues to be apparent in our British society even today – which has led to the restraining of nurses’ wages and working conditions for many generations.

Researchers warned the nursing shortage will continue to get worse if pay for nurses is not improved. While one in nine nursing jobs are left empty, a third of the profession are due to retire by 2026 – i.e. we are in need of a next generation of nurses. The report, discovered nurses routinely have to turn their hand to responsibilities which would have previously been the role of doctors, despite earning an average of £15.42 per hour – less than a third of the amount earned by doctors and dentists. Although nine out of ten nurses in the UK are women, they take home on average 17 per cent less than men in similar roles every week. Female nurses also hold less than a third of senior positions.

It is the year of 2020 and there is still a gender bias and pay gap with nurses being underpaid whilst risking their lives on a daily basis and even more so during Covid-19. Over 100 NHS workers have sadly died on the front line due to the virus. The country should see this as a lesson and provide nurses with the pay and support that they deserve. Thank you to our Nurses and NHS workers on the frontline- you are our superhero’s.


Written by Sophia Ghahramani


Go ahead, I’m listening…..

In a weird way we’ve all come to terms with the fact our phones can track our whereabouts, what we’re searching and even what we’re texting and verbally speaking to our friends and family. The reason I think this article is so relevant is because I have personally found in the past month in self-isolation my phone has tailored my news feed on all platforms but specifically Tik Tok, I have started intermittent fasting and on my news feed this then came up with video’s of girls that are posting content to do with ‘what I eat in a day’ of which is far below the amount of calories a healthy 21 year old should be eating. Luckily for me, I know to ignore content like this and not let it influence my lifestyle choices however what about a 14 year old girl recovering from an eating disorder?

The tech generation

I’m 21 years old and there’s even a massive difference between me and someone below the age of 16 as technology has developed immense amounts in the past 10 years. I was 9 years old when I got my first phone which was a Nokia brick with the soul function of playing snake as I had no numbers in my phone to call. Now devices have become a fundamental part of teenagers’ lives, according to a study the majority of children in the UK own a mobile phone by the age of 7, by the age of 11 90% of the children that were surveyed had their own device and phone ownership was ‘almost universal’, 39% of children said they couldn’t live without their phone, 44% of children said they would uncomfortable if they didn’t have phone signal they would feel uncomfortable. A report by Childwise found children spend about three hours 20 minutes a day messaging, playing games and being online per day – are the days of ‘playing out’ over? The moment a child owns a phone it’s hard to constantly monitor what is being exposed to them on the internet because it becomes a very private piece of technology – so how can we protect people of a vulnerable age getting influenced by content posted that’s tailored through behavioural tracking?

It starts with education

How to deal with online bullying does get touched on in our education system however what about the indirect forms of mental abuse that advertising can cause? Kids in this day and age are surrounded by AI technology as algorithms determine what information they see, help select the video’s they watch and shape how they learn and talk. Technology that can dictate what you see to this extent opens dangerous doors for pre-teens that are easily influenced, therefore it’s best for them to understand how these technologies work so they can navigate and consume them in the safest way possible.

Why educate our children about AI?

There are three reasons why we need to educate children around AI technology; economic, societal and vulnerability reasons. Studies have shown that exposing children to technical concepts stimulates problem solving and critical skills which in turn could result in them learning computational skills in the future which could also close the gender gap in technology ie. the male dominance. As we’ve all experienced the pre-teen/teen years of our lives are critical for creating our identity and development, therefore teaching girls about technology could make them more likely to want to pursue a career in the subject later on in life which could diminish the male ‘nerdy’ stereotype in the industry created by pioneers such as Steve Jobs and Mark Zuckerberg ie. broadening the tech industry.

Finally, there’s the vulnerability argument. Young people are more impressionable so the ethical risks that come with tracking behaviour and using it to design more addictive experiences are heightened for them which could harm their privacy and long- term development.  Therefore, our education system should teach children of all ages how to become resilient to tailored messages, video’s and advertisements through breaking down how AI technology works. AI is only going to develop even further so the sooner it’s embedded into education the more resilient the next generation of pre-teens/teens will be towards the mental problems that could arise through behavioural tracking.


Written By Sophia Ghahramani