Social distancing.. exam cancellations and lockdown.
Not really what we expected for the first quarter of 2020 is it?
Never did we imagine that we would be witnessing a global pandemic right before our eyes and never did we imagine that it would change the course of our lives so drastically. Ever since Boris Johnson announced that the UK was going in lockdown, the streets of London have been silent and have left many people, especially us youth, wondering what to do with our lives.
Although we may be stuck at home for a while, this article will give you 12 suggestions as to how you can spend your time in quarantine, whether it be by yourself, with friends or with family members.
Ways to make your time in quarantine worthwhile:
1. Learn a new language
Now is a perfect time to brush up on your French and Spanish. There are so many benefits with learning a language, including connecting with other people worldwide, discovering new cultures and also sharpening your mind. There are many apps out there that can help you with learning many different languages, the most popular being Babbel and Duolingo. These are available on both Android and iPhone.
2. Learn and try out new cooking recipes
Many restaurants are closed, we really have limited options. You can use this time to brush up your chef skills and experiment with what’s in your cupboards. A lot of people think that cooking requires loads of time and effort. Well, since you now have that time, maybe it could be used to head over to YouTube cooking channels like Tasty or Twisted, where there are recipes that consist of three ingredients up to many more.
Who knows, you may leave this quarantine with a new skill in cooking!
3. Revisit your old hobbies
When was the last time you played that keyboard that’s chilling underneath your bed? Have you finished that painting that you started earlier on in the year? When did you last update your online blog? One thing that I’ve realised during this period of lockdown, is how easy it is to be so consumed with work or education and completely neglect the things that actually make us happy. Now is the time to revisit your passions and keep working at them, we may not have another opportunity to do this with this much time.
4. Watch your favourite shows
We can now Netflix and chill without shame or guilt. All the series, documentaries and films that you wanted to watch after exams can now be watched anytime in the comfort of your own home! Whilst there’s the standard television or Netflix to access this, Disney + recently dropped in the UK. YouTube also has some really good documentaries to keep you entertained and if you’re looking for something more on the educational side, Ted Talks are brilliant for filling your mind up with new knowledge.
5. Try home workouts
The key word here is try. We know it can be hard to be active when your stuck in the house for this long. Maybe you’re used to going to the gym and you don’t have the right equipment at home. Whilst this is understandable, it is possible to bring the gym to your home, even with items in your house. There are many home workout videos up on YouTube and many fitness instructors using Instagram Live to run morning workouts. Also, if you are part of a gym like Puregym, they’ve uploaded many home workouts on their apps that are family friendly. Don’t forget, while Boris Johnson did say that we should stay at home, He has said that you can go outside for one form of exercise a day, which could be a 10 minute walk with your dog or by yourself.
6. Stay connected with your friends
Just because you can’t link up with your friends in person, doesn’t mean you can’t stay connected to them virtually. With many social media services like Houseparty, Zoom and even video applications like FaceTime, connecting with your friends via video has become even more accessible during this quarantine.
7. Start reading for your upcoming academic year
Whatever stage you may be at academically, there’s now an opportunity to get yourself ahead of the game, by doing some extra reading on your subjects. For the Year 13s for example, despite the fact that exams have been cancelled, try to do some pre university reading for your course! Many universities have sent out reading lists to students for the Summer, to have a bit more knowledge on what their course will entail. This is a great opportunity to gain a bigger insight into what you’re going to be investing your time in for your years at university.
8. Manage your finances
Budgeting and managing your money is key during this quarantine period. Many believe that these aspects only come into play when you have a large sum in your bank account when in reality, it’s not about the money itself, it’s more about the process of managing it. This is a brilliant time to work on your savings and your expenses and make decisions on how you want to manage your bank account.
9. Tidy up or declutter your bedroom
It sounds so simple, but tidying up your room will give you a sense of accomplishment once completed. Tidying up your room not only increases your productivity, but it’s also relaxing and good for your mental wellbeing. Changing up the arrangement of your bedroom also brings out your creativity and organisation skills!
10. Make a list of things you would like to do after lockdown
Even though we may be limited to what we can do at home, we can still look forward to the things we may want to potentially do after lockdown. Yes it may seem far away, but have you thought of what places you would like to visit once we’re allowed access to them? Start thinking of how you might want to spend your time once we’ve come out of quarantine, so you can have something to look forward to in the long term.
11. Finds ways in which you can help those most vulnerable to the pandemic
Whilst the corona virus has impacted all of our lives, there are many people who are at even more risk, such as the elderly. One way you can help is by offering to do their shopping for them, so that they don’t have to step out into an environment that is more harmful to them than to us. If you know anyone who is at risk, reach out and ask how you can help them, this is a time to not only look after ourselves but to also look out for our communities.
Whilst there are many things that could be done from the comfort of our homes, let us not neglect arguably the most important thing to do which is to rest. Coming from someone who was in their last year of A level and preparing for exams that would’ve taken place a month from now, being in education was very tiring and sleeping and even relaxing were nowhere to be found in my priority list. Whether you’re in education, or full time work, use this lockdown as an opportunity to let your body rest and rebuild, before we get back into the working world.
So now that you’ve got some ideas on how to spend your time in lockdown, what can you take away from this?
- Don’t make your time in lockdown boring.
- Try and make everyday worthwhile.
- Stay positive – Yes it is difficult, however take this opportunity to work on yourself, build connections with those around you and rest.
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