So you’re stuck at home and self-isolating during the coronavirus pandemic. What is there to do?
There are plenty of ways to pass the time — and many of them are free or cost-effective.
*Click links for direct access to each recommendation*
- Puzzles – Not only are jigsaw puzzles fun to do, but they are excellent for brain training too. Working a puzzle helps develop your abilities to sequence, reason, analyze, deduce, logical thought processes and problem solving skills. It’s a great way to engage with others, while engaging your brain!
- Reading (create a virtual book club) – Reading is another great way to keep your brain active while at home. Numerous studies have shown the many ways reading benefits your brain, including mental stimulation, stress reduction, enhanced social skills, vocabulary expansion, memory improvement, improved brain connectivity and function, and better sleep. Thanks to technology, book clubs can be held virtually through multiple platforms, including threads, online groups, and video chat. Pick a book for you and your family or friends to read and discuss it for even further engagement. Click here for 6 books written by Austin authors.
- Solitary Walks/Runs/Bike Rides (with dogs) – It is important to stay physically active. Even with the Stay-at-Home order, you are still allowed to be outdoors for individual activity. A 30-minute walk outside has many benefits, including burning calories, strengthening your heart, lowering your blood sugar, easing joint pain, boosting your immune function and energy. It can also improve your mood and it may help clear your head and help you think creatively. Other exercises can also include resistance bands and dumbbells, or stretching to work on your flexibility.
- Fostering animals– Austin Pets Alive really needs fosters right now for dogs and cats! If you are not currently looking to adopt a pet, you can still help by taking in an animal and help to care for them until they find a permanent home. There are many health benefits of interacting with pets. Pets can increase opportunities to exercise, get outside, and socialize (even at 6 feet apart). Regular walking or playing with pets can decrease blood pressure, cholesterol levels, and triglyceride levels. Pets can help manage loneliness and depression by giving us companionship. Teaching a dog or cat new tricks is also another great way to past the time.
It doesn’t stop there, there are so many other things you can do to keep yourself and your brain active during this time. Check out these options and challenge yourself!
- Video Games
- Painting by Numbers
- Blog or journal
- Spring Clean and organize (Watch Marie Kondo‘s Tidying Tips on Netflix)
- Streaming TV (You can watch with your friends online with Netflix’s new Netflix Party feature)
- Meditation (HeadSpace App)
- Create To-Do Lists
- Cook new recipes
- Learn an instrument
- Create a Duolingo account and learn a new language
- Board Games
- Crosswords, Sudoku, Word Search or other games on your phone
- Knit or Crochet
- Create a fort inside your home – a great option for kids!
- Learn Origami
- Create a scavenger hunt – another great option for kids!
- Pray or watch church online
- Learn how to macrame
- Catch up on sleep
- Call your family and friends!
Taking care of yourself, your friends, and your family can help you cope with stress. Helping others cope with their stress can also make your community stronger.