Things you can do whilst in isolation

A couple of weeks ago, when you thought about what you would be doing at the beginning of April, it probably was not dealing with a global pandemic. Personally, I thought I would have been over half way to finishing my Barrister at Law degree qualification but instead I am back to work, on a remote basis and haven’t even began any of my formative assessments. They have been postponed until after April… at least. There has been no communication of a contingency plan and to be honest I am slightly losing motivation to keep going with it. Scratch that, I have lost all momentum and have not picked up a book/manual/anything to do with Inns in a couple of weeks. Instead I have spent my day to day navigating this new reality I have found myself in – living back at home in my parent’s house and working on a remote basis. It’s good to be back at home but as with every adult child who has lived away from home for the last ten years…..cabin fever tends to set in. Especially when you’ve no where else to go or can’t see anyone outside of your household. Furthermore, the Irish government recently implemented much more stringent measures to curb the spread of virus. In Hoping that these measures, in the longer term, will help our health care system deal with capacity issues and cope with the number of cases presenting.  

With the media being completely consumed with COVID-19, there’s a lot to comprehend, as well as a lot of ignore so be sure to pay attention to the source of your information. It’s so important at this time to slow down, take a breath, and remain calm. To assist with this and distract you I thought I would put together a list of 60+ things that you can do from the safety of your own home

That stuff you have been putting off forever…

  1. Update your CV or get around to creating versions of your CV suitable for different job applications
  2. Update or start a LinkedIn Account
  3. Unsubscribe from every email you don’t need and do a clear out. After this is done, implement a filing system using folders and labels to keep your email inbox under control.
  4. Declutter your phone and all other electronics – those 100+ photos you have on your phone do not need to be kept there forever, many of which you don’t even want anymore so upload them to your drive, dropbox or desktop and delete them from your phone.
  5. Marie Kondo your wardrobe and get all your old clothes ready for the charity shop when they reopen.
  6. In the process of doing the above, throw out all your old socks and rights, meaning the ones with holds on them that you seem to hold on to for some reason.
  7. Clean those nasty make up brushes.
  8. Throw out empty and out of date beauty products.
  9. Clean your room but not just a surface clean but a deep clean – really get in there, move your bed/other pieces of furniture and clear out underneath.
  10. Do you taxes, for those of you in Ireland who are not self-employed, do you have any student fees or medical bills which you can claim tax back on?
  11. Suss your sleep schedule and actually become that morning person you’ve always told yourself you would be. Although for this one I have to say quarantine has slightly ruined my sleep schedule.

Socialise…

  1. Call a family member or close friend.
  2. Organise a get together with your friends/family on the Houseparty app. Why not enjoy a glass of your chosen drink, catch up with some friends and maybe even have a table quiz or play some games from the comfort of your own home.
  3. Reconnect with that person you’ve been meaning to catch up with!
  4. Begin a remote book club to encourage you to read.
  5. Watch a movie with the rest of the country – Comedian Alison Spittle has created a nightly #CovideoParty whereby she and other Twitter users watch an agreed-upon movie at 9 o’clock. Everyone tweets along, making jokes and sharing their favourite parts.
  6. Watch a movie with friends – the chrome extension Netflix Party allows friends to watch a movie at the same time and use a group chat.
  7. Have a family/housemate board game night.

Get your Culture on…

  1. Step inside some of the worlds must see museums, sports grounds or iconic monuments from the comfort of your own couch using Google Arts & Culture.
  2. Explore some of America’s must see parks.
  3. Pick up a book in a genre you would never usually read or alternatively source a book online in a different language which you’ve always said you would learn and take your time each day going through a page and studying the language, keeping track of the new words as you go along.  
  4. Learn all about a new culture – this includes the history, the language and the food. Even more fun – why not learn about your own countries culture in depth.

Learn something new…

  1. Sign up for two free months of Skillshare – personally I have spent this past week trying to improve my design, photography and editing skills as well as brushing up on my excel skills! Skillshare has tonnes of videos about practically everything which will allow you to thrive in your life, create and learn new things and build yourself or your next empire!
  2. Look up that recipe for a dish you have always wanted to make and actually make it. For me, this is sourdough bread…
  3. Bake – and not just anything, learn how to bake/make a signature desert. Pick up a piping bag/or a sandwich bag and learn some new decorating skills.
  4. Sign up for Duolingo, an amazing platform for learning a new language
  5. Research your houseplants and learn how to actually be a good plant parent.
  6. Learn how to code.
  7. Learn to French plait.
  8. Learn about everything nutrition – check out The Food Medic – both her Instagram, You Tube, Podcast and website are full of incredible resources and yummy recipes.
  9. Catch up on everything going on in current affairs at the moment outside of the pandemic or why not brush up on a time in history that you’ve always had a vague interest in or intrigue.
  10. Practice those cult beauty looks that you’ve just never been able to master – winged eye liner, smokey eye etc. and become your own MUA.

Get Crafty…

  1. Learn something crafty such as knitting, crochet or cross-stitch.
  2. Learn how to draw or paint.  
  3. If you have access to some sandpaper and paint – why not upcycle a piece of furniture in your house that could do with some TLC.
  4. After you declutter your bedroom, why not do a spot of redecorating:
    1. Start with something as simple as taking account for the furniture you have in your room and consider changing it around. This can really liven up a room!
    1. Access to paint, why  not freshen your walls
    1. Access to a printer why not print off those photos you’ve been meaning to, as well as some quotes and inspiration and make an accent wall.
    1. Scavenge around the house and see if there are some preloved items that others are not using and would go well with the vibe of your room
    1. Repurpose a decorative bathmat (new), tea towels, placemats, old jumper, hand towel, fabric scraps, rugs and bedsheets and make a tapestry. If you happen to have access to some dies or gel food coloring, why not go the extra mile and tie die your own sheet.
    1. Come across some old frames? Repurpose some fancy wrapping paper, postcards you love, patterns from magazines you may have lying around in your room or even print some items from online and make some accent wall pieces.
    1. Pick out some accent pieces from what you have already such as hardback books, tins and glass jars and style your room.
    1. Upcycle some old clothes you can’t donate to charity and create some new cushion covers to jazz up your bed space.
  5. Make a photo album – either virtually or physically.
  6. Plant some flowers and do some long overdue gardening.
  7. Start a blog or a podcast.
  8. Get around to that DIY project you’ve been meaning to get to for a while be that painting, upholstering old furniture or simply rearranging any room in the house. I know within my first week home I had driven my mother crazy by deep cleaning sections of the house.

Disconnect and Chill…

  1. Binge watch shows on your list on Netflix, Amazon Prime, Now TV or Disney Plus or why not dive deep into a TV show that everyone has seen but you never got around such as – Stranger Things; The Witcher; Love is Blind; Black Mirror; Better Call Saul; Breaking Bad; How to get away with Murder; Orange is the new Black, The US Office, Peep Show, Friends, or Ozark. Honestly the list is endless.   
  2. Watch all Tik Tok videos of this blessed woman. You do not need the app to do so (I’m living in denial and refusing to download it).
  3. Watch a couch concert.
  4. Send an email to your future self.
  5. Listen to a podcast.
  6. Have a phone/tech free day.
  7. Journal and spend each day reflecting on three things you are grateful for.
  8. Find your Zen – I say this rather than meditate because meditation is not for everyone but I would encourage someone to find their preferred method of ‘self-care’ and what really works for them, for you it might be listening to a podcast, reading a book or soaking in a bath.
  9. Do a jigsaw
  10. Read a book – my reading list at this time is a mix of books which I want to learn something from and books which I can switch my brain off to and completely enter a new world. On my isolation TBR is:
    1. Animal Farm – George Orwell
    1. The Devils Advocate – Iain Morley QC
    1. Girl, Woman, Other – Bernardine Evaristo.  I am just about finished this book and would HIGHLY recommend
    1. Invisible Women – Caroline Criado Perez
    1. Endure: Mind, Body and The Curiosity, Elastic Limits of the Human Body – Alex Hutchinson
    1. Born to Run – Christopher McDougall
    1. The Mind Gut Connection – Emeran Mayer MD
    1. In Your Defence – Sarah Langford
    1. My Dark Vanessa – Kate Elizabeth Russell
    2. Half of a Yellow Sun – Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

Get Moving…

  1. There are tons of free workout videos online from yoga to more intense Hitt workouts. Some of my fave youtubers who put up no equipment needed content are: Sarah’s Day, Natalie Oceane, Yoga with Adrienne, and Yoga with Kassandra. This may be a very hard thing to do and something that I have struggled with over the past week in particular. It is so tempting every day to opt to stay in our beds with fluffy socks and comfy PJs but it is super important that we keep both our bodies and our minds healthy during this time. If you’re completely new to exercise, check out this step by step guide to at home workouts.  
  2. Get out in nature, at an acceptable social distance, and go for a walk, run or a cycle if you have a bike.
  3. Why not push yourself and start a Couch to 5km programme and progress your running and overall fitness during this time.
  4. Learn a dance.

Most importantly atthis time, take care. If you have the mentality of – I won’t get COVID-19, I’ll be fine – think of it from the perspective that you are not doing this for you but rather to protect your nearest and dearest who may be much more vulnerable/susceptible to the virus. What items do you have on your pandemic bucket list?

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