Taking off-screen breaks By natalia betancur

March of last year sparked a season of change that has lasted longer than we all anticipated. Within a year, our entire lives have changed drastically from the way we learn to the way we connect with people in our community. In an effort to replace almost every aspect of our normal lives, video call platforms such as Google Meet or Zoom have been used to make up for hobbies and activities students and citizens would normally engage in. As you can imagine, being in front of a screen for multiple hours a day can have a big impact on people’s routines and mental/physical health.

Dora Palacios, a senior in high school, has had a difficult time paying attention during her classes.

“Online school has been a struggle to work with. At first I thought it was going to be great, but when you're sitting at the computer screen for 6 plus hours, it's tiring. Not only that, I take medication for my ADHD so I can focus and it's been really tough.” - Dora Palacios.

Palacios has been finding new ways to take care of her wellness during these difficult times. Some of the activities she enjoys the most are writing poetry, journaling, and hiking.

Picture by Natalia Betancur

Another senior, Diana Madden, suggests some of the ways she takes time away from screens.

“I will stretch or do yoga, go to the beach or on a hike with friends, or make myself fun meals”-Diana Madden

Taking breaks is important to Madden because it breaks up her day and changes the routine that seems to always stay the same.

Pictures by Diana Madden

Senior Madison Emery enjoys going on walks, swimming, and going to the beach.

“I personally believe that off-screen activities, whatever they might be, are definitely beneficial to anyone. Practicing wellness is increasingly important as it can help improve mental health!” -Madison Emery

Taking breaks can add more balance to our routines and allow for our minds to rest. Many have found the importance of taking a step into nature and letting their minds wander. Whether the activity is outside or within the comfort of our homes, taking a step away from screens can give us a sense of normalcy even in the midst of the continuous chaos that surrounds us.

Picture by Natalia Betancur

Students did not expect the changes and the adaptations they would have to deal with during the COVID-19 pandemic. Just like Palacios, Madden, and Emery have stated, people are trying to find stability in the new world they are facing. It is important that during these uncertain times we take care of ourselves by taking off-screen breaks and learning what works best for each individual.

picture by Natalia Betancur
Created By
Natalia Betancur