So, what productive but fun activities have we been engaging in during the lockdown, in order to occupy ourselves and remain as positive as we can? I know that for sure my life-style has changed compleatly. Instead of aimlessly rushing off from place A to place B about 110 times each day, I am actually having to find other mind stimulating activities to enage in during this. Especially in the last two weeks, which have been the “Easter holidays”, where usually I would be going out rather a lot, and I expect I would have been spending a higher number of hours at work…
So instead I have been practising the guitar more where previously time was very scarce, reading more- especially before bed, and have even played a few games of cards and have had a go at painting… Last night, I even managed to clamber on top of my bed, to get a little glimpse of the sunset peeking through the houses outside my flat. Though I cannot recall otherwise, at least in recent years, when I have made considerable effort, only to see what is outside my own window…
And I know this sounds fake happy, and oh my God it is! Desite the fact that I do genuinely aapprecriate engagement in these creative pass times, an even bigger reason for doing so, is to give me something else to do. Which I am sure is the case for the masses of us. Whilst although I have aspired to read last thing at night for a long time, cause apperiently it is a good habit to be in, a lagre reason for it is also to reduce my chance of experiencing these squiffy dreams which have become all a sudden more prominent this pandemic… But maybe the concept of “Fake happiness” is not QUITE as toxic as we may think. Although it is super important for us to open up about our feelings, and address them ourselves, I also feel that sometimes using distractions is also vital to keep us afloat. Even if we are sstill terrified beneath the surface. I’m sure that whenever we are going through a difficult time which is personal to us, we try our best to keep our minds busy, to mix with the clouds stuck inside. And usually, even if we are surrounded by caring people, we may still very alone regarding what we are having to push ourselves through. Nevertheless, this pandemic is effecting every one of us in some way. And I feel that many of us are turning to hobbies and activities we may otherwise engage in far less frequently, in order to remain occupied and to remain positive, however shit we may feel underneath all of this!
Resulting from these following reasons, I have noticed many people are putting together blog posts, videos or simply stating what they are doing to keep themselves busy during these, well crazy times! So I thought it would be an idea to put forth what I have been doing, maybe to possibly inspire, to make a statement or.. Gosh, I don’t even know anymore. But it is really an account of what I am trying to do to make things feel a little more at ease, when realistically everything is immensely insane…
1. Attending more often to my plants
I dread to think how many times I have ventured into a plant shop, gotten overly excited about the extensive variety of plants on hand, then brought one or two pots; with very little knowledge on what to actually do with them. Or more specifically how to take care of them. However now with more time on my hands, plus having panic brought a few pots, I have been able to grasp the fundamentals of basic care. Moreover this has even got me actually using the soil and pots that I brought, having realised that these things do actually grow, therefore it is actually necessary to repot them every couple of years or so…
2. Spending more time reading
Who else has previously wished that they devoted more time to reading, or had specific books in mind, yet never got the chance or found the time to read them? Yeah… It’s kind of a shame really. Many of us may have dismissed the activity as “boring” as children, now realising that once you find what you are into, it can actually be so rewarding. Enabling us to expand both our knowledge and vocabulary, whilst it is a pretty good distraction- like mentioned earlier. I am personally reading both books related to what I am studying as wider reading, as well as fiction. The books I am currently reading, are pictured below 🙂
3. Gemstones and Spirit animals
So you are probably thinking this sounds rather arty-farty. But surely I am not the only one of whom to have about a dozen or more gem-stones aimlessly lying around the household, having spotted them in a shop, reading their meaning at the time, and then come a week later, we have completely forgotten about the meaning. Regardless of whether you have any faith behind whether these crystals may work or not, I think it is still desirable to have some background to the meaning of these stones. And as for spirit animals, I did take 2 quizzes the other day, and although I got two different results, I still found it quite intriguing.
And in case you are curious, I think there is no harm in looking toward the implications behind these stones or “Spirit animals” as a positive guideline.
4. Guitar Practise
I am pretty sure that anyone who plays a musical instrument, of whatever ability, has often felt they don’t get round to practising it enough. For those taking it most seriously maybe we regret not putting in enough hours a day, while some of you may just wish to get it out every couple of weeks or so, whilst I often find I have only practised two or three times between each of my lessons. And that is not good aha. So it has been nice to be able to actually manage to devote myself to daily practise, and it makes the day seem that bit more productive 🙂
Now that the option of “getting food out” isn’t really available to us, unless we opt for a delivery, and that most of us are home all day anyhow, there is less of an excuse to bypass the task of cooking. As well, there are so many good online recipes out there to try, many of these being fairly simple, which anyone could achieve. However it is also totally acceptable to have a look in your fridge or local supermarket depending, then put together what you think will taste good. It works for me, and saves me from spending additional time traipsing down the supermarket aisles for something they may not even have!
6. Craft activities
To be honest, I haven’t done too much of this, however I do intend to do a little more in the next few weeks. If I am capable to spare a bit of time from procrastinating…
However I did ATTEMPT to paint a flower vase. Don’t ask why, it was a little spontaneous and it was Easter so I suppose there was nothing really to lose.
Talk of procrastination. Haven’t done much of this either if I am honest. Being brutally honest, I have allocated more time to making a mess. It is just so difficult, what with having to do school work at home, with the temptation of just leaving folder after folder on the nearest sofa, rather than putting it “away”, back into the school folder box. Yeah, life sucks… There’s always tomorrow…
8. Do at home workouts
To some, regardless on whether you love or loathe exercise, I am sure that the idea of an “at home” workout sounds like a bit of a nightmare. For a start, there are so many obstacles, and it can get boiling hot. But look on the bright side, you can wear your pyjamas or underwear and no one needs to know! Personally I enjoy it, as it seems to release good amounts of nervous energy, although I tend to only do it once or twice a week.
On that note- don’t get too bogged down with it. You are entitled to want a healthy and fit body, however with all this time it is all too easy to become too engaged with all this “fitness” and “healthy eating”, without even realising that a point can be reached when you may be treating your body unkindly. Exercise should be used as a part of looking after ourselves well, not to hurt and exert extra pressure on our bodies or minds. Just feel we don’t read or hear this more down to earth stance on exercise enough…
Ha, a blog post about things to do to keep busy during quarantine, cannot be complete without latching onto journaling or blogging. Yet I have been able to assign FAR MORE time to this blog now compared to before. I think that journaling for anyone has the potential to be rewarding especially during times like these, regardless of future career prospects. For me it is obviously good practise and rewarding anyhow- but it also can let off steam, and it is something to show to children and grandchildren in the future, whenever they are complaining that they’re bored. Thus I hope that the climate they’d be experiencing will be a far calmer in comparison to what we are experiencing now.
So as grim as what this situation currently is, we might as well make take advantage of what we can. And without the morning journey to work/school/uni, we might as well devote that time to sleep!
So finally I just want to stress that these are just ideas, and personal to myself. We all have different interests, and contrasting needs and situations. So really I will stress how important it is to find and do what you fee comfortable with. This is a global pandemic, not a productivity competition, or a game to see how many of us aren’t actually capable of running 5K! (raises hand) Remember to take care of yourself! Seriously, what with everything going on, you are still just as worthy if not more so of efficient self care. If you feel worn out even by not doing much during this, you have EVERY RIGHT to take more rest than what you may do so usually. It is completely normal to feel emotionally exhausted and drained at the moment. Most importantly, beyond finding things to do to keep you sane in this moment in time, is to remember that times will not remain this dark forever.
And I was lying about the free “Positiv-TEA”, that I promised to hand out resulting from you doing something. I think it is more off a long term mindset, and there is no perfect solution, to completely turn things around (though tea, like my other listed activities can help!) In fact, the other day I read that remaining positive actually means recognising that better times will lie ahead (So sorry, I can’t remember the source). So keep strong, and remember to distract yourself (I have the grim prospect of “internet school” returning to my laptop on Monday…) but hey! But also look at the bigger picture, remembering that we have every right allowed to feel worn out and even vulnerable, regardless of what we may be doing or not doing. And I will stress again, when there is a deep tunnel, it unlikely that anyone will find huge amounts of light. But if we remain strong, together we will eventually pull ourselves through enough of it, that we will begin to see rays of sunlight peeking through once again. And this may appear brighter to us than ever before, and will give us a fresh resemblance of what can be done with it.