We are a few weeks into what I believe is a mixture of being in the Big Brother house, living Groundhog day and an apocalypse movie all rolled into one. It can really get to you when you look ahead and wonder how long we will be stuck here for. But, it is important to stay positive. I’ve decided to come up with a list of ideas of things you can do in isolation.
Binge on some boxsets.
I never usually have time to watch too much Netflix. Often, my list gets too full I can’t add any more on. Now is the time to indulge in the TV and get through my list. Have you got an endless list of films and shows that you’ve not yet had a chance to watch? Now’s the time.
Some great ones that I have viewed have been;
- Love is Blind. This is so cringe-worthy but also hard not to watch. I got so hooked on it last weekend and watched it all within a matter of days.
- The Tiger King. This is a new Netflix documentary. It’s less about tigers, more about complex lifestyle choices mixed with enemies.
- Dark Tourist. This is also a documentary, but each episode is based on a dark tourist spot. My favourite episode has to be where they explore Japan where the Tsunami hit a few years ago.
- Friday Night Dinners. This is the perfect thing to watch for some light comic relief. I’m so happy they have released a new series.
Read some books.
How many times have you wished to sit down and curl up with a book? Now you can. Challenge yourself to see how many you can get through during this time. Post your recommendations below.
By exercising, you are keeping yourself healthy and fit. Exercise also helps to boost your mental health as well as your physical health. If you are allowed, then take a walk or run outside. If not, try finding some YouTube videos to give you guidance for a work out.
Whether you have children or not, Joe Wicks is hosting free live PE sessions for the nation each morning at 9 am that you could join in with. Or search his YouTube channel and you will find more inspiration and videos.
Have you got an exercise bike that usually collects dust? Drag it out and start using it. You will thank yourself in months to come that you stayed active.
Get Baking or Cooking.
Now is the perfect time to start cooking using different ingredients. Rather than just popping something in the oven, why not look online for some new recipes and take the time and care of preparing a meal from scratch? This can be such a nice activity to do each day.
You can also get into baking. Bake yourself some nice tasty treats to enjoy throughout your week. You never know, you may even become the next star baker.
Here are a few things that we have cooked and baked recently:
- A chicken pie from scratch.
- Chocolate chip cookies.
- Chocolate chip flapjacks.
- McDonald’s inspired egg Mcmuffins.
Take Up A Creative Hobby.
Have you always wanted to do something for yourself that gets you in touch with your creative side? Maybe you’ve always loved drawing, or playing a musical instrument but you never usually get the time to do so. Now is the perfect time. Here are some of the creative hobbies I have enjoyed over the time:
- Colouring In. Colouring in can be a very mindful activity. It helps you to drown your endless worries and thoughts, instead focusing on the beautiful colours in front of you. And not forgetting to try and keep within the lines!
- Sewing. I was gifted a unicorn sock pack for Christmas from my brother and his wife. I started it weeks ago but it remained unfinished. But now I finally have time to finish sewing and completing it.
- Cross stitch. I have always loved cross stitch. It calms me like no other hobby and I always love seeing my finished pieces. I have been making some time for this peaceful craft again.
Be Youthful and Play Video Games.
I have to say this has been one of my favourite past times of isolation. I have loved getting the Nintendo Switch out and letting my inner child free. I never usually can justify spending hours engrossed in a game when I usually have so much to do. But this has been the ultimate escapism for me. The games I’ve enjoyed are;
- Pokemon Sword on the Nintendo Switch. I love the storyline to this game and now I am making it my mission to fill and complete my Pokedex. My boys love watching my play too so that’s been a bonus.
- Mario Kart. A bit of harmless fun, I have spent hours whizzing around the race tracks and escaping from the real world for a while.
- Two Point Hospital. Who can remember Theme Hospital? This game is essentially the same and I am hooked.
- Plague Inc. I used to have this on my phone, but I decided to download it again. It’s very apt for the current situation, and it is a bit addictive too.
Have a Clear Out.
Now is the perfect time to go through your house and have a clear out. You can choose a room a week, gut it and then decide what you need to do. Does it need a deep clean? A paint? Or maybe it could do with some new home touches- like a new storage solution, or a new wall canvas. Now is the best time to get your home up to scratch.
Think of those jobs that you never usually have time to do in the home- NOW is that time.
Reflect on life.
This isn’t time to dwell, but it is a great time to reflect. How was life going for you? Was there something that you’d love to change now? Now is a great time to reflect on where you’re at in your life and where you want to go.
Perhaps your job has been getting you down, you could always use this time to job hunt, or broaden your skills and knowledge. Is there an online course you could take up? This is a great time to get studying and learn something new, then you can use this for a job hunt further down the line.
Or maybe you had toxic relationships or friendships? There is nothing more cleansing than having to distance yourself from everyone. It is now that you can really reflect on who is important in your life and who is not. Then when we are able to get back to ‘normal’ life, you will find it easier to stay away from those that bring you down.
Whatever was bringing you down and affecting you negatively in life, this is the best time to distance yourself from it and never go back. However, if you equally feel like something is lacking in life, now is the best time to consider how to get that in your life.
Touch base with loved ones.
Calls and FaceTime is what has been getting me through these past two weeks. I have tried to call or video call friends each day, if not a couple of times a day and it has made the world of difference. Every time I get to talk to a friend, or family member, it helps me to feel more connected to them and it really boosts my spirits.
I really miss seeing my friends in person, but this time has given me a chance to really reflect on what amazing people I have in my life and I know we are going to have the best time on the other side of this. In the mean time, I am thoroughly enjoying every phone and video call we have. Try scheduling some calls into your days.
Plan for your future.
As mentioned above, this is a great time to plan for the future. Is there a skill you want to take up? A holiday destination you want to go to? Plan for what you want life to look like when we get out of this.
Do you want to be more or less social? Take up a new hobby? Find a new job or career?
What do you want to do to treat yourself and your family after this? Where is the first place you will go?
Although we can’t put a date in our diaries for anything, we can still write a list of plans that we want to do.
Catch up with life whilst practising self care.
How many times in the past year have you wished for life to slow down? Before this, I was always so busy and I kept saying to myself, “Next week life will slow down and I can spend time on myself”. Only that never happened.
Until all of a sudden, life was forced to slow down.
Although I am now juggling work and children, I have still got a little extra time on my hands and I am still able to begin practising self care more regularly. I have started going on a daily run. This is something I would never have had the time or chance to do.
What self care can you partake in? Start today. You will soon feel a huge difference and hopefully going forward, it will soon become routine so that when life does resume, we still prioritise it.
There is something quite magical about being still and observing life as it is. Or just being still outside in the garden and noticing nature around us. Nature is healing. Earth is healing.
It is deeply heartbreaking that so many people are suffering or losing their lives in these upsetting and turbulent times. It is time to be still, to acknowledge everything we should be thankful and grateful for. To take a big breath. This is life, this is history we are living. We are brave, we can get through this.
I hope that this blog post has given you some ideas on what to do during this time of isolation. I seem to have a few good days, followed by a few very down days. It’s only natural for our feelings to be turbulent and all over the place, just like life is. Ever since I have suffered with anxiety, I really struggle to adapt to change. The only thing I can do is take one day at a time and focus on what I can control; and that’s all of the above.