In these three days alone I’ve seen the word “bored” at least 30 times appearing on my social media. Many are playing their part by staying at home during this time to prevent the further spread of COVID-19, but admittedly for most, the sudden change from spending little to all their time at home can be exhausting, demotivating and even downright depressing.
I admit that I am lucky and privileged even, to be a professional freelancer who can work from home and have been for years. I’m also extra lucky because I’m a natural introverted homebody which means that this hasn’t disrupted my usual routine of staying at home most of my time.
That’s why, fret not! Today, my homebody self is here to share with you 10 productive things that I love to do within the comforts of my own home.
#1 Cook a new recipe.
Or learn how to cook. I know this may be too much trouble for some, but hey, learning the skill to properly feed yourself should be a top priority, no? And daily takeouts three times a day can only stretch so far.
Since I spend most of my time at home, I absolutely love cooking. It’s a great way for me to switch off from work and I find it to be an amazing creative outlet. I usually search up a new recipe from Pinterest, turn on some music on Spotify, then grease up the pan.
Lately I have been loving THESE RECIPES!
“Now you want us to read?!”
Hear me out.
Reading is one of the best activities you can do to invest in yourself, and I go on and on about its benefits but I’ll only list the main 5 below:
❀ Proven to improve cognitive function and mental stimulation which boosts brain function and slows (or even prevents) the onset of Alzheimer’s and Dementia.
❀ Increases your knowledge and skills on a particular subject. Or numerous subjects. Hello, next cocktail convo aficionado!
❀ Reduces stress. Very useful especially during this time.
❀ Sharpens your analytical skills and critical thinking. Bye bye, sheep mentality.
❀ Stretches and grows your creativity and imagination. A technicolour imagination? Who wouldn’t want that?
#3 If reading is not for you, try audiobooks.
If reading a book is not for you, try listening to one instead. Audible is incredible because not only is it easy to use and download audiobooks, you can try out the free 30-day trial and decide later on if you want to take up a paid subscription.
I love Audible because it’s great for improving my pronunciation and fluency when I’m learning a foreign language. Listening to audiobooks can also harness your listening skills and at the same time train your comprehension skills as well. Besides, I love having a soothing voice narrate an entire story to me whilst I cook dinner.
#4 Pamper your skin with some DIY face masks
What’s a girl (and boy) to do when she’s stuck at home? Treat herself to a nice TLC session of course!
One of my favourite pamper routine includes creating my own homemade face masks. Turn off your phone, turn up some jazz, pour yourself some wine and treat your skin to your own DIY face mask! The ingredients are probably hiding in your own pantry.
Click HERE if you want to see my post on 6 DIY face masks that you can easily make at home.
#5 Learn something new
Invest in yourself. If you’re stuck at home and you have nowhere to be, then you have time on your hands. Exchange that time with some knowledge and skills that you can use to improve yourself.
Where do you start? The good news is with internet, the possibilities are endless. There are so many amazing resources online that teach new skills and share knowledge and this pool of resources are mostly free! Some of my favourite skills to learn are:
❀ Cooking and plating
❀ Coffee making
❀ Graphic design
❀ Media production
❀ Finance and investment
❀ Music composition
❀ Interior design
You can learn most of these skills on Youtube. If you have the means, you can also invest in subscriptions for skill-learning platforms such as Teachable and Skillshare. Or, learn some new moves on TikTok.
#6 Pick up bullet journaling
Or journaling in general. I love bullet journaling and I do it on the daily #bujo. You can either use it as a gratitude journal or you can use it as a way to plan and organise your time as I do. There are so many tutorial videos and templates that you can find on Youtube and Pinterest to help get you started.
Journaling is a great exercise for your creativity and it’s equally amazing in honing your motor and visual skills. Start slowly, then progressively add illustrations, stickers, photographs, and even items taped with washi tape if you wish.
Personally, I prefer my Moleskine journal because I have been using it for nearly 10 years and they have never failed me. I usually choose plain or dotted pages because I love making my journals visual. I use THIS ONE.
#7 Play video games
I love, love, love video games! Maybe it’s because I’m a millennial, or maybe because video games are seriously genuinely awesome.
Before you start giving me the stereotypical boomer speech on the dangers and violence of video games, let me share with you some of the positive effects video games can bring into your life.
BENEFITS OF VIDEO GAMES:
❀ Improves physical, visual and audio coordination
❀ Harness critical thinking, decision-making and problem-solving skills
❀ Trains your short-term and long-term memory
❀ An incredibly rich learning source. New vocabulary, hello!
❀ Amazing way to destress
#8 Create and organise your Spotify playlist
Or your Youtube music playlist, or whichever you use to listen to music. I like having music playing in the background when I work, clean or read, and I like having different playlists to suit the different moods I am in.
For this purpose, I got myself a Spotify subscription because I love listening to music without ad interruptions and I have more freedom in creating my playlists and listening to music offline. You don’t need a subscription at all to start creating and organising your own music library.
I don’t need to list out the benefits of listening to music since most people are aware, but at times like these, listening to music can provide stress relief and you can share your playlists with your loved ones as a great bonding activity.
#9 Sort out your finances
“I thought you said this list doesn’t suck?”
Sorting our your finances and getting your money in order doesn’t have to suck. In light of recent happenings, many are faced with economic and financial stress. I have friends and family member who were told to not come into work permanently, and others who are facing financial issues in their businesses. More than ever, it’s important to take a good look at your finances and get them in order. You don’t have to go overboard with the Excel spreadsheets and piecharts—just start small. If a finance noob like myself can do it, so can you.
Start by reviewing your finances, meaning your income, expenditures, debit and credit cards, debts, savings, and everywhere else. Brainstorm ways to improve areas that need improvement, track your spending, create a budget and make cuts where needed. Recently, I have been researching methods to diversify and increase my income streams through potential investment possibilities. That could maybe be something that you could look into too if you’re interested, or just getting started on a spending diary is enough for you now. If that’s the case, then I would recommend using free apps to simplify your life. Some of my favourites are Monefy and 1Money.
#10 Do what you enjoy and love
Spend some guilt-free time immersing yourself in doing things that you love. Want to read some fashion magazines? Get that wardrobe inspiration! Want to call your bestie for a rant fest? Get that frustration relief and bonding! Want to order takeout and just eat in front of Netflix? Hey, what a good way to discover new movies whilst going on a culinary journey!
Whatever it may be, I’m a firm believer in doing what you love. Do what you love, and may that love set you free! Unless what you love is harmful to yourself and others, then don’t.