Is this an odd title? Yes. Do I love it regardless? Yes. We have all heard about Codiv-19 for quite sometime now, and I hate to say it, but it is going to get worse before it gets better. Some of us have to remain home due to either the government, our age, or underlying health issues (i.e. me). I am no stranger to having to be home for extended periods of time because of health concerns and/or problems, so I thought I would share some tips of how I stay mentally stimulated and active during these times. Also, yes I would consider myself an expert in fighting off boredom and depression in situations like this so you should DEFINITELY take my advise 😉 Just kidding. Regardless here’s my list on how to fight off boredom:
Make Your Space feel Good. Before you do anything involving entertainment, make your space feel good and homey. If your space is adding to your depression and boredom, none of the other tips will work.
- Get dressed. I mean it. Do NOT stay in your PJs. I am not saying you have to do the whole nine yards, but dear goodness take a shower at least every other day and do not wear the same thing for more than two days in a row. I used to do this all the time when I did not feel well and every time I FULLY regretted it. I felt greasy, gross, and in general depressed at my situation. Get dressed; It will make all the difference in the word.
- It’s “Spring Cleaning”. If you are feeling up to it, whether it be your room, your house, your yard, etc, clean up your space. And when I say clean, I mean DEEP CLEAN. Wipe them baseboards, shampoo that carpet, go through that shelf in the pantry you haven’t cleaned out in years and will find stuff with expiration dates from 2016. You have the time. Clean up your messes and trust me you will feel a whole lot better about the place you have to live in for the next few weeks.
- It’s “THE PURGE”. Get rid of your excess stuff. It’s cluttering your home. And I mean really purge your house. Go through those boxes you haven’t seen or touched FOR YEARS in the basement or attic. Look in every nook and cranny for things that just do not bring you joy. Make a space in a closet, a corner of the basement, that spare bathroom no one uses. Throw all the things you plan to donate in that spot and COMMIT to going to your local thrifting place after this “quarantine” ends.
Be Creative. Now that your space is feeling good let’s talk about the fun ways you can be creative while you are at home.
- New Recipes. We all have to eat. One of the best pieces of advise I ever got before getting married was from my best friend’s mom (Shout out to you Mama Quinn!). She said the best way to get creative with meals is to open your fridge, trust your taste buds and just start throwing things together. PURE GENIUS. You may have some fails, you might have some successes, but you are guaranteed to have fun. Also, if you do not fully trust your cooking abilities like me, Pinterest is a good place to get a base for a recipe!
- Bake Brownies. Really I mean just bake anything. It’s a ton of fun and you get a sweet treat. Today, I made brownies and they are delicious!
- Journal. Writing down your experiences and feelings can be very therapeutic. I prefer to draw my feelings in either word art or images so my bullet journal has been a God sent.
- Music. Music is a wonderful form of escapism. Whether you are listening to music, playing an instrument, or creating a piece, you will love a minute to just sway with the music. Classical Radio is my favorite right now. I highly recommend if you wish to broaden your music horizon.
Mental Stimulation. Work your brain everyday or you may go stir crazy. Just because the world has shut down, does not mean you have to.
- Reading is therapy. I love to read, but I definitely have a collection of books I have not touched and need to get too. Reading whether fiction, nonfiction, educational, or just for fun, is a great way to stimulate the mind and engross yourself in a task that can take all day.
- Study a Language or Culture. Become a little more cultured by studying a language or culture. Right now I am fascinated by the Greeks, Spartans, and Romans and how they have affected our western culture. Also I hate languages but Latin is fascinating. Take a crack at.
- Documentaries Man. Zack will be the first to tell you I am not a science person. I struggle to even flex that muscle of my brain, but here’s what to do. Watch a documentary because they often dumb it down for you. Don’t know anything about the planets like me? There’s a documentary for that! Zack and I use Curiosity. Tis cheap and has plenty of documentaries to choose from. If you want to spend a little more PBS also has some great options!
- Meditate. Practice some mindfulness through meditation. I love the Meditation Minis Podcast on Stitch(they’re free!). Chel Hamilton’s night time meditations are particularly helpful for allowing me to fall asleep.
Stay Active. You don’t use it, you lose it. If you are feeling up to it stay active by doing some of the following things:
- Take Walks. Social Isolation does not mean being fully cut off. If you have the ability to get outside and walk around a safe distance from others, do so. Make sure to smile at people who pass by. We all need a little encouragement right now.
- Yoga/ Pilates. Youtube has some great people to follow in order to get some exercise without having to go to a gym or have equipment at home. Yoga with Adriene is great, especially her 30 day challenge. I also love Blogilates. Cassie does a great job of keeping you energized while working out.
- If you have weights, use them. Zack and I have various small weights at home. Sometimes when I am feeling particularly motivated, I will do some squats, lungs, bicep curls, tricep dips, etc.
Just have fun. You can have fun while being home. Here are some of the things I do for sheer fun with and without Zack:
- Board Games. Zack and I love board games. We often have game days where we spend an entire afternoon just playing games. There are some games we can play solitary too, like Jenga and Boggle. I play Boggle a lot.
- Binge Watch. Zack is not much of a Binge watcher, but I am! Here are my top favorite shows I am watching right now and what platforms they are on:
- Brooklyn Nine-Nine: Comedy. Beyond worth your time.
- Survivor: Reality TV. Any Season is worth a binge, but Game Changers in my favorite.
- The Office (U.S): Mockumentary. Absolutely cringey and hilarious. Get passed the first season (six episodes) and it is SO worth it.
- The Black List: Drama. Great show. I never know what is up and what is down. If you like Criminal Minds or something along those lines, you will love this.
- CBS All Access: I’m a Trekkie. Don’t hate.
- Star Trek: Discovery: I am OBSESSED with Star Trek. This new series following the Klingon War and more, is amazing. Love. Love. Love.
- Picard: There will never be a better Captain Than Jean-Luc Picard. This dramatic take on his life after his Starfleet career is a must watch.
- Star Trek: Next Generation: Where we are first introduced to Picard. Don’t shoot me, but I like it better than the original series. THERE! I SAID IT.
- Star Trek: Original Series: If you can look past the horrible graphics and 1960’s attitude, its pretty decent. Truly an amazing piece for it’s time.
- Survivor: Again. Survivor is great. Catch up on the newest series, Winners at War!
- Video Games. I love strategic gaming. Zack loves to blow things up (and strategic gaming). My favorite games are the Sims 4 and CIV VI. Sims 4 is currently on sale for $4.99. THAT IS A STEAL. It is normally $40.00! GO PEOPLE GO! I also like some smaller games like Plague Inc., Ticket to Ride, and Game of Life on my phone. You can even add me as a friend and play against me on Ticket to Ride if you would like!
- Card Games. Solitaire, War, Rummy, Uker, B.S., etc. all great games. The first three you only need two people OR you can play Solitaire alone (hence the name). Here is a site that lists a ton of card games you can play by yourself if you do not have anyone willing to play: 13 Best Single Player Card Games
- Youtube. I love a good YouTube video. Here are my current obsessions:
- Korean Englishman. I love learning about cultures. Right now Korean Englishmen is doing a series with one of the creator’s (Ollie Kendall) two-year-old daughter (Juno) visiting Korea for the first time! Too cute.
- Jolly. The less serious Korean Englishman off shoot named Jolly features some funny adventures and try videos from the two channel creators Josh Carrott and Ollie Kendall.
- Living Big In A Tiny House. I could never live in a tiny home but find it fascinating how people do! Check out some amazing builds.
- Wadi Sab-E. Hannah and Elliot have been fixing up their home for YEARS and the videos they have created from it are gorgeous. Love watching their home’s transformation.
- English Heritage. What can I say? I love culture, especially English culture. Their History Inspired Make Up Tutorials and The Victorian Way are my two favorite playlists.
- The Try Guys. It is hilarious to watch all of the Try Guys’ personalities and reactions to the different things they try. If you are looking for a good laugh, they are the group to check out.
- Coding. Let’s be clear. I don’t code, but Zack does and he loves it. I have no idea how to help you get into coding BUT this article seemed useful: How to Start Coding
- Podcasts. I have posted about podcasts before so go check out my post, but a podcast for all you Office lovers, The Office Ladies is a new favorite of mine! You can find them on Stitch or through Earwolf!
- Call Family and Friends. You are not the only one feeling bored and lonely, trust me. Call your friends and family and find someone to connect with; It will always help. Show love, kindness, and understanding during these times.
Pray. Last but not least, pray during this time. Turning towards God and growing deeper in our relationship with God is a wonderful thing to do right now. As a Catholic, here are some of the prayers I love:
- Rosary (20 Minutes)
- Divine Mercy Chaplet (10 Minutes)
- Padre Pio (5 Minutes)
- Ignatius Examen (End of Day 20 Minutes)
I hope this helps you fight boredom and find a little bit of peace during these times!
Peace, love and my prayers for you,
The Soaring Magpie
“Boredom, anger, sadness, or fear are not ‘yours,’ not personal. They are conditions of the human mind. They come and go. Nothing that comes and goes is you”– Eckhart Tolle