In our collective effort to prevent the spread of Covid-19 and to help “flatten the curve” of daily new cases that puts pressure on our healthcare system, most of us find ourselves stuck in our homes. Some of you have written me that you’re going stir crazy or may even be bored. Others are overwhelmed with the financial impact of lost wages and business. It helps to see sunshine outside to lift our spirits, but we know we can’t count on this to continue in the NW. Here are 20 suggestions for productive and fun things to do while confined to home to take you mind off all the negative news. Please comment and add your ideas for others to benefit.
1. Teach yourself a foreign language by downloading Duolingo.com or similar application.
2. Binge watch the shows you’ve wanted to see and never had time to watch with continuity.
3. Complete a challenging puzzle by yourself or family members while listening to music genre you love. Do a little more of the puzzle every day. Happy hour puzzles with a “Quarantini” drink?
4. Revive that old musical instrument and start practicing. You never know what undiscovered talents may emerge at this moment in time. You might want to give fair warning to others in the house or nearby😊.
5. Find that skin care mask sitting in your bathroom drawer and take 15 minutes to apply it now, if it hasn’t expired.
6. Seek out all the food storage containers in your kitchen, find matching tops, and toss out those missing. Organize them neatly by size, stack in one place. You’ll likely to feel virtuous.
7. Purge your clothing closet by applying Marie Kondo’s advice (https://shop.konmari.com/pages/about), if it doesn’t “spark joy” when you put an item on or hold it, it’s time to give it away or throw out.
8. One drawer at a time, sort out the junk and supply shelves letting go of items you haven’t used or needed in the last few years.
9. Host a video exchange with friends close or far away using FaceTime, Marco Polo, Skype, GotoMeeting, Zoom or Google Hangouts. Start the e-chat meeting with everyone having to say what has been two positive things they’ve experienced since the Corona virus hit. If the e-chat is later in the day, suggest everyone have a glass of libation to toast each other at the start of the e-gathering.
10. Go through bathroom cabinets and throw out old products and make-up taking up space. Check out expiration dates. Most products are only good for 6-12 months.
11. Clean up your computer email box a little bit every day.
12. Sort out your online photos by deleting those poorly taken photos or the ones you no longer will want. You can also find those stored boxes of old camera photos and scan them electronically before they fade, or risk being destroyed. Pick your favorite photos of friends of family, make an e-book on Shutterfly.com or an equivalent service for yourself or to give as a gift.
13. Become your own author by writing a book with your family, partner or good friends. Create a character and each person is invited to compose a chapter about the character’s adventures. At the next e-gathering (see number 9), the author of the chapter must read it out loud.
14. Tackle that sock drawer and finally toss the singles stolen from “the dryer thief”. Organize the white socks from darker colors. Throw out the socks that have thinned on heels or toes or have holes. Companies like Ridwell.com will take away these remnants to reuse in a productive, sustainable way.
15. Make a bucket list of the top ten things you want to see or do in the next ten years. We will get through this limiting time! Dream big and developing a vision of the things you want to accomplish to create the future life you want to live.
16. Organize your personal affairs. This recommendation isn’t to be morbid. Regardless of the Covid-19 situation, having your end of life wishes and preferences thought through, documented and stored is a gift to yourself and those you want to handle your affairs if you are unable. Let’s face it. %^&*^ can happen to any of us in a blink, not just elderly. It can save those closest to you time, stress and trauma by giving clarity to how you define “quality of life” for yourself and what you would want under different circumstances. FinalRoadmap.com is a one-time membership to a personalize toolkit that guides you through all the considerations you want for before, during and after death. If you don’t have a will, healthcare directive, or power of attorney, this type of resource will be valuable to think through the options you need to include in these legal documents. If you have these legal documents up to date, this online toolkit and others similar ones offer far more details than you can imagine on your own to not leave your loved ones guessing. You can store all important information, documents, audios, videos and personalized letters in a secure, encrypted e-vault to provide access to only those designees you wish.
17. Need new spectacles? You can virtually try on new eyeglass frames on sites like GlassesUSA.com.
18. Many of us are hunched over a computer while at home most of the day. Stretch with yoga apps such as Downdog.com or any hundreds of homemade YouTubes.
19. Try to shut off the noise in our head. Meditate and take long, slow deep breaths from your belly in through your nose and out through your mouth for ten minutes every day.
20. Cook up a new soup or dish recipe in larger quantity and bring it to neighbor (elderly, single or busy parent(s) balancing career and parenthood at home. They will love the gesture of kindness and breaking bread, metaphorically speaking, is important to maintain our community connection while still practicing social distancing.
Shoot me additional ideas you have to include in my next blog. Let’s all pass it forward.