The To Do List: Things to do during lockdown.

You’re at home, or in quarantine, and need to keep yourself active and constructive. Here are a few activities that you’ll be glad you did when it all gets back to normal. For many, this lockdown period has given us more time on our hands than we’ve ever had. Time which we never thought we would have.This free time presents us with opportunities to do things which we’ve always wanted to do or like to do more of depending on our individual circumstances. I think it makes sense for us to be productive with this time and do things that are meaningful to us.

1. READ THAT BOOK (SERIES) YOU’VE BEEN PUTTING OFF

First on the list, is very much where you should be starting. I like nothing more than immersing myself in a book, concentrating fully on the book, its characters and its story line without distractions. We have that opportunity now. Books exercise the brain, build our vocabularies, lowers stress and also enhances the imagination. Whether you go for fiction or non-fiction, buy yourself some books and start reading more this week.

2. WATCH A DOCUMENTARY SERIES ON NETFLIX

This activity is a potential trap. Whilst watching a stimulating TV series on Netflix passes time, it can do so in an unproductive manner and you might find yourself binge-watching programmes that won’t really help you in any way, other than fritter away the free time you have. I’d suggest that, alongside your normal TV watching habits, invest time in watching documentaries and learn about your favorite subjects. You may choose to watch a documentary series on Netflix which you have never taken an inquisitiveness in before, which is great.

3. KEEP A BLOG/JOURNAL

Keeping track of your thoughts, activities and learning is always a good idea – and a highly productive one at that. You might look back at this time and process your memories or even process your thoughts for the day or the week that has passed. You can do this privately on your computer, mobile or even better in a notebook. Consider going a step further and set up a personal blog that takes those daily experiences and turns them into weekly or monthly posts for others to read and learn from. Either way, putting pen to paper once a day could be 15 minutes spent well.

4. ENROL ON A FREE COURSE

Enrolling on a course and successfully passing tests and assignments will help build up your knowledge-base as well as your CV.

5. LEARN A NEW SKILL

Building up your qualifications by enrolling in courses can also be accompanied by learning new skills. This could be learning the rules of a game (Chess is a good example from my own list) or how to play an instrument… or anything at all that takes time to get to grips with. Practicing an instrument I think can be good fun, and it’s also an inventive way to keep yourself entertained and constantly learning.

6. SET UP A WORKOUT ROUTINE

How long have we all been looking to begin this activity? If you work out regularly, you will know that the key to a successful and consistent workout regime is routine. And I don’t need to tell you about the benefits of working out and keeping fit. Can you get your hands on some basic gym accessories? You actually don’t even need such equipment if you follow some of the workout videos available on YouTube.

7. MEDITATE

It’s important to be mindful of your surroundings as well as your well-being whilst in quarantine, and meditation might help you get a bit of peace of mind in times of uncertainty. Find a quiet space, light some candles and clear your mind with some therapeutic meditation music.

8. GET ARTISTIC

Art and crafts is a great way to express yourself, learn a new skill, that’ll help you see ordinary things in a whole new way and channel your creativity. You can paint canvasses, doodle in a sketchpad or draw in adult coloring books. Go a step further in this respect and engage yourself in knitting, candle-making and jewellery-making. Check out the various websites that offer starter kits and ideas on arts and crafts activities you can undertake during this period of increased downtime.

9. LEARN A NEW LANGUAGE

How many times have you said that you’d like to learn a new language? I’m sure you have many times over the years. Well, now you have time to do so. With apps like Memrise and Duolingo, you can do so easily and at no cost.