I think we all collectively agree that this has been an incredibly long year. While we’re all dealing with varying degrees of social distancing guidelines, I thought now would be a great opportunity to highlight a few at-home activities to occupy your time. Even if your state or country has a better handle on the pandemic, we could all benefit from practicing a little self-care at home.
As a result of everything going on, I’m working from home and attending grad school online for the rest of the year. Admittedly, there are a few areas I’m still working on, but for the most part, I have hit my groove and found a happy medium between productive and relaxation time. Even as things improve over time, I still hope this post serves as a reference point for those days when you’re stuck in the house and need something to do. Whatever your mood, there are at-home activities for you! Keep reading to find out what things I’m incorporating into my new pockets of free time.
At-Home Activities: What to do When You’re Stuck in the House
I intentionally listed this first (and my last tip last) because I notice that we tend to have this need to be busy. Why is it so hard for us to do absolutely nothing and not feel bad about it? Part of it is the simple act of comparison, but a lot of it has to do with our hustle culture.
This at-home activity recommendation is your friendly reminder that you cannot operate at your optimum levels if you do not rest. With everything going on, take advantage of any added free time you may have and just relax for however long you need. This is particularly great advice if the state of the world is creating added stress on your mental health.
Instead of adding more to your plate and reaching burnout, do nothing.
Watch Netflix, stay in bed, eat ice cream…you get the idea. Don’t let #riseandgrind Twitter make you feel like you aren’t doing enough. You can be productive tomorrow. Today, feel free to rest.
Read More | Why It’s Necessary to Take a Mental Health Break
Rediscover Your Old Hobbies
I took an extended break from Instagram, and during that time, I realized that I don’t have any real hobbies anymore. In an older newsletter, I touched on how millennials tend to have side-hustles instead of hobbies. The lines get blurred because, yes, we enjoy the side-hustle, but that doesn’t make it a hobby. Not every hobby needs to be monetized, yet we grew up in a time where that felt almost necessary to get by. At-home activities are bringing back the traditional hobby.
After my first round of midterms were over and I began Spring Break, I was mentally done and desperately needed to dive deep into something that didn’t require a lot of brainpower. Thus, I bought a PS4 and played video games for the first time in nearly 20 years. (Seriously, the last console I owned was a PS2, which literally came out 20 years ago.) At the start of the pandemic, the world seemed to have the same sentiment because it was nearly impossible to find a Nintendo Switch. Animal Crossing quickly swept the world by storm because who doesn’t love a relaxing design game with cute animals?
Of course, you don’t have to buy something quite as expensive to pick up an old hobby. I’ve also rediscovered a free hobby I used to do when I was in undergrad: fashion sketching.
I say all that to say this: Think back to when you didn’t have the lovely responsibilities of adulthood. What were some of your hobbies? If you’re anything like me, you’ll realize that they all drifted away over time. Now is the perfect opportunity to bring them back! Crochet, draw, color, cook, play games, take pictures, do whatever it is that you used to love as a child. Rediscover a few at-home activities and I promise you’ll still enjoy them today.
Journal and Read a Book
It’s trendy right now to tell everyone to journal, and it took several failed attempts for me to get it finally. I always loved the idea of bullet journaling and frequently watch cute YouTube videos sharing fun themes each month. With my super limited time, I accepted the fact that I needed something quick and practical for a planner. Now that I have more free time, I saw two videos that inspired me to bullet journal for March and April.
From there, I also included journal entries at the end of each week just talking about whatever came to mind. It was really therapeutic, and I ultimately see the value in journaling. If you’re looking for an outlet during these uncertain times, try journaling your thoughts! There’s no right or wrong way to journal, it’s all about finding something that works for you.
If you aren’t quite ready to write, you can still nurture your mind by reading! A commonality I find among adults is our desire to read more and lack of time to do so. Days at home are made for reading! Carve out a little nook in your space, cozy up with a soft blanket and a warm beverage, and read one of the books that you have in your house because you convinced yourself on a random Target run several months ago that you would make time to read that book.
Virtually Hang Out with Friends
Okay, extroverts, this one is for you! As an introvert, I haven’t struggled too much with my increased home presence. I definitely miss festivals, movies, and brunch, but the day-to-day socializing isn’t a huge struggle. The hard part for me is being told that I have to stay at home. For some reason, that makes me want to go out and socialize. If you’re feeling the same way, I still encourage you to stay home if at all possible for the greater good; however, you can compromise and schedule social time with friends and family through the wonderful world of technology!
I have really enjoyed using FaceTime to connect with my family and see what they’re up to since we don’t live together. I’ve had FaceTime coffee dates to catch up with friends as well. If you miss hanging out with your people, create virtual hangouts on Zoom, Facetime, or even the Netflix Party extension. Nothing is as great as the in-person hangouts, but seeing everyone on camera is certainly the next best thing.
Work on a Side-Hustle
The last activity you can do while you’re at home is work on a side-hustle! What’s a passion project that you want to monetize? If you’re already monetizing it, how can you grow it over the next few months? As a full-time worker with this fashion site as my passion project, I’d feel weird not mentioning something productive to fill your time.
I want to stress that this is not me saying you have to use free time at home to create a business.
In fact, I listed this one last because, as I talked about earlier in the post, our hustle culture can be draining. This activity is simply a recommendation for those of you who may wake up with productive energy but have nowhere to direct that energy. Work on a side-hustle with low overhead like creating content, and who knows how far you’ll go!
TL;DR? These are the five at-home activities to occupy your time:
- Intentionally Do Nothing Without Feeling Guilty
- Rediscover Old Hobbies that Adulting Canceled
- Nurture Your Mind with Journaling and Reading
- Schedule Virtual Dates for Social Connection
- Channel Your Productive Energy into a Monetary Passion