Crazy times we live in.
2020 was supposed to be amazing! Everyone had big hopes and dreams that this year will be the year of their lives. Ok, maybe it’s a bit of an exaggeration, but 20-20…can it get more OCD perfect than that?
Meanwhile…we need to occupy ourselves with the things to do at home.
Who would imagine just a few weeks ago, that basically the whole world will be on lockdown. Borders being closed, all the public events being cancelled, restaurants, bars and cafes being shut, people queuing 5 meters apart from each other to enter the supermarkets, toilet paper being sold out…it all sounds like something from a bad disaster movie.
But I guess the worst thing is that we – humans – social creatures are being forced to stay at home. No meet-ups, no parties, no Sunday afternoon teas with Grandma.
For some of us, it’s not that big of a deal, for others it’s not that big of a difference, but for those who are extremely active and treat home only as a place to sleep, this quarantine could be a real challenge. Well, it is how it is and now the most important thing is to keep you and the people close to you safe.
The only thing you don’t have to worry about is your FOMO, because you know what…we’re all in the same situation.
If you’re already 1, 2 or even 3 weeks in and you don’t know what to do with yourself, you’re in the right place. From “classic” ideas to hopefully a bit more inventive stuff, here are the 29 coolest and productive things to do at home in 2020, and most importantly, things that will help keep you sane.
1. Make a list of things you can do during “quarantine”.
As silly as planning your quarantine sounds, especially when you don’t know how long it might last, having a list of the tasks or goals you want to achieve surely won’t hurt. Lists increase productivity and give you a little rush of satisfaction when you can check something off.
2. Plan your day and stick to it.
Perhaps you heard about those crazy people who get up at 5 am and just get their stuff done. And you thought… ”Wow, I’d like to be like that too!”. But when your alarm goes off at 5 am the next morning, the only thing you can get done is rolling to the other side of the bed. Well, now you have the perfect opportunity to change that. Open your Google calendar and plan your day. From designating time for sleeping, working, and exercising, to scheduling breakfast, lunch, dinner or even a coffee break. It might sound a little bit over the top, but when you’re at home it’s so easy to just stay on the sofa and in the end… you’ll achieve nothing. A good idea is to break down time for particular working tasks during the day. And most importantly, don’t forget to make time for leisure and pleasure. If you need help and inspiration, check out this video from Amy Landino .
3. Keep a quarantine journal.
I feel kind of optimistic about those days I have to spend at home. I will finally find the time to do the stuff I’ve always wanted to.
It turned out that I didn’t have that many things I’ve always wanted to do, so I’m on the 20th season of Grey’s Anatomy.
Today I discovered something…I discovered that my snacks are disappearing…
I found out who was stealing my snacks…it’s him!
The visions of hurting my boyfriend have become more and more vivid…I don’t know long I’ll last.
I now have all the snacks just for me!
4. Make a vlog.
If you’re not into writing, capture it on camera. Well, just maybe without revealing how you dealt with the snack thief.
But in all seriousness, either a journal or a vlog can be a good “souvenir” for you, your children and future generations to look back on. This is how history books are made.
5. Clean your flat.
I know, it’s boring and you probably saw it in every “things to do at home” guide. But you can’t argue with the fact that the timing is perfect. Your oven is crying out for a deep clean, your sink is leaking, or you just discovered a big pile of dust behind your wardrobe…well, it’s now or never. Who knows, maybe you’ll be qualified for the next season of “Perfect housewife”. Is that even still on…? No idea. Just don’t confuse it with “The real housewives of Beverly Hills”…I don’t think they clean a lot there…
6. Go through your wardrobe.
Another “things to do at home” classic, but hey, there’s no better time to clean your wardrobe than the beginning of Spring. Plus, there are so many things you can do with your unwanted clothes. Sell them on Ebay, donate them to charity, give to someone who needs them more. Or turn them into a dust cloth. Just be ruthless. To anything that doesn’t “spark joy” and you haven’t worn in 2 years say: “bye bye”. But don’t forget to say “thank you” first. This way you’ll make room for all the new pieces that will be able to show off when you’re finally free to leave!
7. Organize your laptop/phone.
Ooh exciting! Actually, for me and other neat freaks who like having everything in order, it is exciting. But probably most of you always put stuff like that off. Well, now with lots of time on your hands you can finally organize you documents and pictures into files and folders, back up the old stuff and delete everything you won’t need. How satisfying!
8. Do some yoga.
I know…”do yoga”, how original! But first of all, it’s can really shape your body, increase flexibility, strengthen and shape you muscles. Not to mention it can help you manage stress and calm you down. And if you’re already a yoga master, maybe you have this one position that you have to work on or you want to practise how it would be to teach others. Well, you know what to do: practice yoga.
There are plenty of yoga apps or You Tube videos there. Since I’ve been attending yoga classes, I’ve never really had a chance to fully try them out, but I heard Boho Beautiful on You Tube and Down Dog app are worth recommending.
9. Learn how to meditate.
And what goes better with yoga than meditation! Meditation helps to control anxiety, reduces stress, promotes emotional health, can generate kindness and it might help fight additions (you…yes you addicted to chocolate, it’s about you)…there are so many benefits. But what’s most important for me – it lengthens attention span. Because at the moment all my attempts to meditate end like… pictured below. As much as I’d like to think about nothing and attain a Nirvana state, my stupid brain just won’t shut up. Oops, that’s not very meditatey. So if you’re like me, schedule time for daily meditation, download one of the apps (Calm, Headspace, Insight Timer, they really do help) and simply meditate!
10. Have a relaxing home spa day.
Now when you’re all beautiful on the inside, you can take care of your outside. So what that no one will compliment you on how much you’re glowing – we don’t need no man! Or woman! Face masks, hair masks, scrubs, nails, waxing…ouch. Or even a relaxing bath (if you’re lucky to have a bathtub). The possibilities are endless. You also don’t to need to run to the drugstore to buy all the supplies. Coconut oil and brown sugar make a prefect scrub, ground coffee with some salt creates a great anti-cellulite treatment and let’s not forget about the infamous cucumber for those puffy eyes. You can find more ideas here.
11. Read classic books.
If you’re anything like Joey Tribbiani you probably read “The Shining” a few times and now keep it well hidden in your freezer. But there are also other classics out there for you to try. How about “1984”, “Pride and Prejudice”, “Crime and punishment”, “Frankenstein” or “The Little Prince”? The list is endless! But let’s start with 30 books everyone should read. Yes, Harry Potter is included, so one for me to tick off.
12. Watch all the classic movies you always wanted to see.
“Breakfast at Tiffany’s”, “Casablanca”, “The Birds”… or if you really want to kill time – “Solaris” (the old one). We all face those awkward moments when someone asks us, if we saw one of the classic movies and we have to come up with the answer that says “yes”, but secretly means “no”. Now it’s the perfect time to catch up and make other people uncomfortable with our review of the movie they’ve never seen. Here’s a list of 100 movies you must see in your lifetime.
13. Play board games.
As much as computer games are easy to play and can definitely kill time, think of something that would also be good for your brain. Enter board games. Ok, or online board games. Not everyone keeps a pile of board games at home. But no matter if online or physical, choose something that will make you think. I know, it might hurt. Check the best online board games here. And if somehow you can’t play either, you know you can always do Battleships on paper, right?
14. Learn a new skill.
Sit down and think…what is that you always wanted to learn. To talk backwards, to bark like a dog convincingly, to lick your elbow (I bet you’re trying to do that right now, aren’t you). As cool as those skills are, you can take this time to learn something more productive. Maybe you want to change your career path, learn a new language or master this awful SEO to attract more traffic to your blog. Take advantage of multiple online learning platforms, like Skillshare, blogs and YouTube videos to broaden your skill set. I’ll definitely be improving my guitar playing. Good luck neighbours.
15. Do an online happiness course.
Or any other course! But Yale University introduced “The science of well-being” course. It’s a series of challenges designed to increase your own happiness and build more productive habits. Sounds cool, right? Who doesn’t want to be happy?! And it makes a good addition to “things you can do during quarantine” list. But be quick, the course has already started. Coursera, the course provider, offers an endless list of courses, including Ivy League lectures, you can take completely for free.
Check Coursera now and smarten up.
16. Do a mood wall.
Or as I call it: a Tezza wall. If you’re on Instagram and you don’t know Tezza, you must quickly fix this mistake. She’s incredibly talented and creative and her Tezza Collage Kit inspired my mood wall. It’s not quite the same…but oh well.
I’m sure you have some magazines that you can cut inspirational pictures out, or print some quotes from Internet. Or if you don’t have a printer, a piece of paper and a few markers will do the trick as well. Get creative.
17. Organize and edit photos.
Either those are actual or virtual photographs, we all have lots of them. And organising them into files, folders and albums sounds like a lot of work, which we never have time for. Well, now you do. Who knows, maybe you’ll end up with a perfect gift idea for your parents – an album with photos of you being sweet and innocent. Or after mastering editing apps you’ll have this perfect cohesive Instagram feed everyone desires.
18. Learn a dance choreography from You Tube tutorials.
“Single ladies”, “Party rock Anthem” “Thriller”…don’t tell me you never wanted to feel like you were the star of a music video. No matter you’re into their music or not, you have to admit that Sharika, Justin or Beyonce know how to shake their booty. Yes, Justin as well. Timberlake naturally. Or maybe you’re into Zumba or you want to learn how to dance Waltz or Salsa. Luckily You Tube is a source of all kinds of knowledge, including dance tutorials. So let your sofa rest and start dancing. It’s also a great way to get rid of stress and bad emotions. And the biggest perk of doing it at home, you can dance like no one is watching. I used this video once to learn the “Party rock Anthem” choreography. Good luck.
19. Join group live workouts.
Exercising by yourself can be boring. No one to show you what to do, no good energy from the crowd, no one to scream at you to push harder. There are many apps, You Tube and Instagram accounts that are doing online workouts that everyone can join. Sometimes even for free.
Check out the list of the gyms offering live-stream workouts here.
20. Try out new recipes.
Cooking can be fun! For some people. My cooking would probably end up like…pictured below. Plus, I belong to this group who stand over prepared food losing their patience. Like, cmon, how long can you wait for risotto to be ready. But I love to eat and trying out new things. Luckily the Universe sent my boyfriend into my life – he loves cooking and he gets very creative with it. The best advice: Pinterest is your friend. From the weirdest to most simple recipes…you’ll find everything there. It can be useful especially now, when being stuck at home you have to make something out of nothing.
21. Brew your own fizzy drink.
Any kombucha lovers over here?
Me me me! But unfortunately brewing your own kombucha is not easy, takes super long and you need some of a store bought kombucha to begin with. However if you want to give it a go, it can be an additional item to our: “things to do at home” list. You can find the recipe here.
You can brew tepache instead. What is tepache? Originating in Mexico, tepache is a fermented beverage made from pineapples. Apart from a pineapple and water you just need 3-4 other ingredients to make it and then you have to give a few days to ferment. Served with ice cubes it makes a perfect spring-summer drink that you can enjoy on your balcony and pretend you’re in a bar.
Find out how to brew tepache here.
22. Have a date night.
Even if only with you. Being under lockdown doesn’t have to mean that you can’t dress up and pretend you’re in a fancy restaurant. On your next supermarket adventure, buy some flowers, a few candles and perhaps a bottle of champagne. Then prepare something delicious, set the table, wear fancy clothes and enjoy your time. The only question is… Who’s going to wash up?
23. Catch up with (old) friends.
Self-isolation can be hard on us. Especially when we’re really doing it by ourselves. So check up on those who are in the same situation (almost everyone now). Write them, call them or even organize a group video call. It will be also good for you to have some, even if only virtual, human interaction.
Going through pictures reminded you of childhood friends or someone close who you lost touch with? Look them up, message them, ask how they are. You can always reminisce on “good old times” together.
24. Plant some seeds.
Did you know that you can grow a pepper from the leftover seeds, ginger from a spare piece of the ginger root you already have at home or an avocado from the stone? Well, now you know and as you can see you don’t have to go to the garden centre for super special seeds from an exotic country. You can simply use what you already bought as groceries and watch it grow. It will probably have grown before you can leave the house again.
25. Don’t forget to breathe in the fresh air.
Quarantine or not, we all need fresh air for our brains to work. Find the time to sit on your balcony or be like an old lady and look out the window. Just, you know, don’t spend the whole day shouting to your neighbours about the latest episode of Bold and Beautiful. Or do! Whatever. It’s your time. Plus, I know it’s not on the air anymore.
26. Make a list of life goals.
Situations like this put your life in perspective. We start feeling grateful for what we have, start appreciating what we’ve achieved so far, but also start thinking of what we still want to do. We really shouldn’t be put under quarantine to feel all those things, but unfortunately, simple as we are, we tend to think and act better under pressure. Maybe you always wanted to have a food truck, be a theatrical makeup artist or visit every country in the world. As much as this last one can take a little bit of time, it’s all doable. Write down your short term and lifelong goals, create a plan on how to achieve them and start living your life to the fullest.
27. Think of places you want to visit when you’re finally free.
I know, the list would probably consist of one word: everywhere. At least in my case. But I didn’t really need a quarantine to realize that. Perhaps you always wanted to visit the Arctic, get lost (metaphorically) in the Amazon or visit the Maldives before they sink. Or hike in the Himalayas. I could go on and on. Decide on what will be your dream come true trip, do the precise research on how to get there, where to stay and what to do, save some money and voilà! After it’s all back to normal you’re ready to go.
If one of the places you want to visit is for example Malaysia, check out my “Everything you need to know before visiting Malaysia” blog post.
28. Decide you want to write: “things to do at home in 2020” blog post and spend the whole day (or even 2) rearranging your apartment to take good pictures for it.
Not to mention writing the article itself takes quite bit of a time. And cleaning before and after every shot…don’t even get me started on that.
What I really want to say here is that with a little bit of desire and creativity you can do a whole host of things in your house/flat/apartment (like creating content for a TRAVEL BLOG) and this limited space shouldn’t limit your possibilities. Just get creative with what you already have.
29. And last but not least…
Help your fellow bloggers and Instagrammers. This forced isolation we found ourselves in 2020 impacts many branches of business including the small businesses and freelancers. Help them out by following them on Instagram, liking their pictures, reading their blog posts or even buying their online and physical products. I’m sure everyone will appreciate it. Because as easy as it looks, running a blog or Instagram takes a lot of effort. Plus, you might learn something useful or discover a place you never knew existed.
So please have a look at my previous post about a road trip in Puglia, Italy, or if you think we won’t leave our flats before winter (hope NOT!) find out why you should visit Poland in winter.
Oh man! It looks like it’s going to be a busy quarantine. Who would already prefer to go back to work?
As you see, there are plenty of things you can do at home. All you really need is a little bit of will power and creativity. Free time is abundant. And who knows, maybe when it’s all over you’ll be this glowing, incredibly fit woman/man with a clarified set of life goals, who speaks 3 new languages and is ready to embark on another adventure! Good luck!
And if you’re really bored, you can always hit me up on Instagram.