We are clearly going to be home for quite some time, probably months! If you’ve been inside for days amid the COVID-19 pandemic, you might be getting a little stir-crazy — or at the very least, feeling bored not able to go and do the things you were used to.
It’s important to not provide coronavirus “a ride” to its next vacation destination. If you’re not in self-quarantine or isolation, you should seriously consider it. Now is the time to relax, but when you’ve been cooped up for weeks, and still can’t hit the malls, how can you spend your time?
Self-quarantine wasn’t on your bucket list. But here are activities you can try.
Connect with friends virtually
Call, text, email or video chat with your friends and family. Just because you’re socially distancing doesn’t mean that you can’t connect. Research has shown that social support can make you more resilient to stress. We use virtual meeting apps for work all the time, but why not use platforms like Zoom and Skype to hold a virtual party or a virtual happy hour?
Listen to (or play) music
Singing has been shown to improve people’s mental health and sense of belonging. Not much of a musician? Listening to music can help people in the face of a scary and stressful experience; you’ve seen the viral videos of people singing while quarantined, and it turns out that music reduced anxiety and pain, while bolstering people’s moods.
Work out at home
Can’t go to the gym? We know gyms are closed, but you can work out from home. A lot of exercises don’t need special equipment. Cycle, and do calf extensions on the steps, and pushups and planks like there’s no tomorrow. If you are interested in staying really fit and healthy, a serious work out is a must do.
Youtube is your ready friend, you can find a lot of good exercises to do at home. A skipping rope will come in handy, and some dumbbells if you fancy. Running is cardio that will never be outdated. Consider doing some yoga, not only does it count as physical activity, but it can boost your mood, lower stress and anxiety and boost your self-esteem.
Go for a walk
Walking not only counts as physical activity, but also provides some mental health benefits. You can walk around your neighborhood if you live in the suburbs, go to a park, go hiking or go jogging. Studies have shown that a brisk walk can make you feel more creative, make you happier and reduce feelings of boredom and dread, even if you’re just walking indoors. However ensure it is in a safe zone where you don’t get in close contact with people. Staying at least six feet from other people is safe, just make sure you know where and when you can go when it comes to the state laws and COVID-19 restrictions
Binge-watch a series
Want to find out why everyone’s talking about Nairobi, but you haven’t sat down to watch “Money Heist”? Now is your chance.
There’s a bunch of shows that are perfect for binge-watching while you’re still home.
Find substitute TV programming now that all sports are suspended until further notice. Catch up on three, four, or more great shows that your friends have highly recommended.
Get Creative in the kitchen
What a better time to try out new recipes! Research that recipe you’ve always wanted to try and create a meal to be proud of. Use that oven to bake something nice for you and your loved ones now you have some time to. It’s a good idea to stock up on pasta, rice, canned vegetables, and spices so that more recipes are within reach.
Aim to get seven to eight hours of sleep, because when you’re sleep-deprived your body has a harder time fighting infectious diseases. If you’re going to take a nap, stick to 10 to 20 minutes to avoid feeling groggy or messing with your sleep-wake cycle. Just keep in mind that sleeping too little or too much can be a symptom of depression.
Read a book
Read books that you’ve intended to but just didn’t have time. There’s enough time now. Just don’t break your reading glasses, unless you have a backup pair.
Tap your muse. If you always wanted to write, start writing! Write a poem, a blog post, journal or a great Novel. The COVID-19 pandemic has a lot of people saying we’re living in an unprecedented time. Write about it.
Play board, card games
There are alot of games you can play at home, whether indoors or outdoors with your family.
Turn off the Switch, XBox, PS4, iPads and dig out one of the board games that are stashed in the hall closet. See if you can beat your family at crosswords puzzle, or how about an epic game of Monopoly, scrabble or Risk. There’s no need to play the short versions since we all have hours to kill. Play some poker or Uno too. All this will help you bond with your children, as a couple or with family- If you’re living together.
Camp in the backyard
If you’re legally able to do so, either make or buy a fire pit and sit around the fire. Share family stories or find a sheet, get a projector and let the movie light up the night after the sun goes down.
You can even keep the gas grill off and cook over an open fire making foil pack meals, s’mores or toasted marshmallows. If the weather cooperates, and you have the gear, string up a hammock, put up a tent and “rough it” from the safety of your own backyard.
Learn a new craft or hobby
A lot of things are borne out of crisis. New hobbies too with the change of lifestyle.
Pick up a new instrument, learn to draw, try out painting, colouring and doodling, knitting, or any special gift you don’t utilise often like making artworks or jewellery
Can you get your hands dirty? Did you know that gardening is therapeutic and is a recommended practice for earthing and grounding? Not only can you grow your vegetables , fruits and have some beautiful plants and flowers, gardening is a recommended practice to reduce anxiety, stress and mental conditions. It is known to bring healing and wholeness. This is a practice you can take up in your free time. The results are rewarding.
As much as we’ve recommended outdoor games, running and exercises, please remember to take precautions as you step outside. Avoid touching your face, wash or sanitize hands oftenly,
avoid touching surfaces or fixturess outside and wear masks when you need to.
Stay safe, healthy and enjoy your time at home.