girl next to the window

10 Choices When the World Gives You None

Coronavirus has created all the possible limitations to the outside world and made people go insane in their own four walls. You are banned from going anywhere for fun and even if you go, there’s a constant fear in the back of your head that you’ll get infected.

Obviously, the best solution is to stay at home. You’re the safest here. I hope that you feel comfortable in your space and the people you live with. If not… Well, it is a good task to write on your quarantine to-do list!

Because this post is exactly that. Something to jog your imagination to figure out what to do in this strange time. Creating some sort of a to-do list with possibilities. I am aware that right now the Internet is flooded with such articles. I still hope my insight will help you figure out the situation or at least give you some ideas to try at home.

1. Discipline and Planning

notebook with highlighter
Estee Janssens @ Unsplash.com

People are dealing with the situation very differently. This is why this won’t work for everybody but it may be a nice tool to learn now. It can be a worthy asset in the future. Planning is sort of my thing. I very much enjoy to plan my days, organize workflows, figure things out (and solve puzzles). And even when I use it more to procrastinate than to be productive, I find it a great tool to get things done.

If you want to anyhow change your life, you need to find some way to discipline yourself. The less time you spend on some pointless acts (scrolling Facebook), the more you have for more valuable tasks (productive or not). One way to do it is to track your time and your distractions during the day. And then try to understand your actions and what could be changed. Other is applying some sort of a system that will help you determine where to put your time. I can suggest bullet journaling or time blocking as things that actually helped me. I usually list my tasks and create a weekly schedule when I should do them. This way I know how much time I have left every week and what will be done but also I don’t feel guilty that I didn’t do enough. After all, we all only have so many hours in a day.

2. Organize Meetings and Parties

colourful balloons
Adi Goldstein @ Unsplash.com

I bet we all had an event we were looking forward to that got cancelled. There’s no possibility that the world will let us gather in one place any time soon so we have to deal with it another way. Organize your own social distance party – with your friends, wherever they are. You can invite all your friends from college even if they live on the other end of the world now. They’ll have to present a very good excuse not to meet you now. Or make a surprise party for people who have a birthday at this time. Celebrating on our own can get really depressing.

It doesn’t have to be huge, though. You can invite your best pal to watch a show on Netflix together. There’s an extension in Google Chrome that lets you chat while watching something (plus pauses and starts the video at the same time for everybody). Or you can call a friend on any possible application so you can talk and see one another while binging. Or maybe find a game you can play online with your mates – it can be as simple as Uno or any other card game, you don’t have to buy Overwatch (etc) straight away.

3. Learn

A woman writing, table, notebooks, mug
Green Chameleon @ Unsplash.com

If you’re guilty of not starting it yet – it’s high time. Or maybe not, I don’t judge. But from my experience, doing something that makes you proud of yourself can help you stay sane. Learning is something we should be doing our whole lives. This way we become better as human beings. It can give you a new perspective, new skill, some new friends who want to do the same thing and so on. The Internet is your friend here. It’s a great time to find your new goal in life. It can be a hobby-learning such as playing an instrument or painting. But also you could learn something to be better at your job or change it. Maybe you can start programming? Or how to properly use Microsoft Excel? If you have no idea what to do with yourself (or how) you may find something here. If not, scroll the Internet or call your friends. Maybe you can start learning something with them and discuss your results? It’s the best motivation!

4. Exercise

Stairs, running shoes
Bruno Nascimento @ Unsplash.com

The only thing we exercise nowadays is our buttocks so give it a break for 30 minutes per day. There’s an enormous library of exercises on the web (and applications) to do anything you’d want. Maybe even some tai-chi?

I admit. I’m guilty of sticking my ass to a chair for too long. My work requires sitting, most of my hobbies and projects require it, too. And there’s no external motivation to do that at home whatsoever.

But I still want to start! It may take me some figuring out but I do hope that once the quarantine ends, I’ll be motivated enough to hit the gym. My goal here is being persistent in exercises and stick them into my routine. That’s it. No biggie. Just one exercise per day. And yes, cleaning counts as one.

5. Side Project

man with paintbrushes in hands
Alice Dietrich @ Unsplash.com

This is what I’m doing now – taking care of my long-forgotten blog that used to be my creative outlet but became something of a shame. I had always other things to do and suddenly taking care of the blog felt overwhelming. Now I started building it back up again. I try doing one small thing at a time so it brings me closer to do what I enjoy.

A side project is something big that got all the dust and guilt layers on and that you’re ashamed to do. Take it out and start slow. Write down what you want to do, prioritise and make yourself do just one simple thing per day. Something that will take 30 minutes in total. And then just go with it. If you don’t feel good after a few days – motivated, accomplished or proud even – then rethink the project itself. Maybe it’s not worth the time after all?

6. Spring Clean

Cleaning kitchen with spray
The Honest Company @ Unsplash.com

It’s probably the lamest thing to read, isn’t it? But instead of cleaning windows and vacuuming, make it bigger. Think about organising all your old shoes, high school notebooks or photos on your computer (or phone). I assure you, however boring it sounds, one way or another you’ll dive in the memories and it’ll take you plenty of time. The quarantine will end faster than you think!

7. Help!

hands with gloves bumping
Branimir Balogovic @ Unsplash.com

If you have an altruistic soul, maybe you could help the world in the current situation? It can be a granny living next door or shelters and clinics. You don’t have to make the sacrifice of your own health to help. Maybe you could do so by cooking a meal or sewing some masks. You say you don’t know how? LEARN. It was a point on this list, wasn’t it? And after that step, go back to the main idea. You may enjoy it more than expected.

8. Try Something New

trace with knife and vegetables
Katie Smith @ Unsplash.com

My friend once told me that if I feel completely clueless about life, I should push myself in a completely new direction. Not to find a new interest (although it may happen, that’s good), but also to find yourself and what you actually enjoy. Let’s take painting for instance. You play with brushes and colours and the only thing you feel is frustration and complete urge to wash dishes or clean the toilet? Think of what would satisfy you more? Figure it out and try it. At least you’ll know where you stand. And maybe it’ll turn out completely different and you’ll find this new thing that speaks volumes to you.

9. Do Something You’ve Been Postponing Forever

playing the piano with notes
Anton Darius @ Unsplash.com

I am guilty of not seeing all the classic films because I am constantly drawn to the newest ones in the cinema. Now I try to check at least a few oldies off my list. If you’re cinephile as I am and you struggle with it, too, maybe my list of shame will help you. I also made a post about some great series to watch when you think there’re none worth watching anymore.

It doesn’t have to be that, though. Books and comics are other great examples. Or maybe something completely different? An item that gathers dust in the corner? A game that you’ve always wanted to play but never actually started? I’m pretty sure everyone has something at home that haunts them at night even though it was supposed to be a fun thing.

10. Develop a New Habit

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Adam Tinworth @ Unsplash.com

It takes 90 days to apply a habit to your life. Now since you have fewer distractions, maybe change your life for the better? It can be something super simple like flossing your teeth, eating a fruit or reading every day. Don’t go big straight away, give yourself time to adjust and test how much you can do. It will take three months if you start now. I hope at that time you’ll have a new habit and the quarantine will be over.

But Most Importantly

Remember to stay safe and healthy. Remember not to overdo anything. In too large quantities, everything is bad for you. I hope this post will help and your quarantine won’t feel so dull.

Tell me what you’ve been doing at home. Maybe you’ll give me some suggestions too!

2 Replies to “10 Choices When the World Gives You None”

  1. I’ve been delaying my goal to learn cooking from my nanny. I finally got time to do that during the lockdown I actually completed so many goals during this period. I redesigned my workspace, forming new habits, learned editing skill … There are so many to do! Thanks for your side project tip, that gives me an idea to start a new thing in my daily basis.

  2. Thanks for sharing this post – this is great information as we all spend more time at home. Lockdown has given me more time to focus on learning Spanish and smashing out blog posts 🙂

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