Life in lockdown is changing what we do and how we feel. This could be our reality for a while and it’s important that we begin to adapt and accept our new way of life.
I have recently begun to find a rhythm to my days, making my lockdown experience feel almost normal. I wanted to share my lockdown activities with you all, in the hope that it can give you some ideas on how to fill your days whilst ‘staying alert’.
1. Daily walks
Getting out of the house for some fresh air and movement is a non-negotiable part of my day. I use the time to explore areas of my local town that I haven’t had the chance to visit, catch-up on my favourite podcasts, and give various members of my family a call.
2. Keeping active and building on my fitness
Whether I’m competing for GBR or just keeping fit, I have always had a huge passion for fitness. During lockdown I have been incorporating running, cycling, weightlifting, yoga, and barre into my daily regimen. I never thought that I would enjoy home workouts but there is something agreeable about not having to travel to a gym to train. If you’re struggling to know how to get fit at home, read my April blog post for home workouts that require no equipment.
3. Rediscovering my love for art and craft
Being creative is one of my earliest passions and over the past few weeks I have been reunited with my sketch book and craft box. So far I’ve; created pieces of art for my home, started an embroidery book, crocheted a llama, used my weaving loom to create wall hangings, experimented with quilling, handcrafted greetings cards, started to make my own jewellery, tie-dyed a pair of old jeans, and learnt the art of needle felting.
4. Household DIY jobs
The additional free time has been instrumental in allowing me to get the house in order. I’ve been busy repainting the skirting boards, hanging up artwork, clearing and organising rooms, constructing furniture, and choosing new soft furnishing and home décor. I love a house that oozes style and personality and so I’m not stopping until every room is full of colours, prints, and furnishings.
5. Setting up virtual clubs
I really miss the dynamics of a social gathering. I thought that creating virtual spaces whereby individuals can meet up and partake in a common interest would be an acceptable replacement. Every Thursday I host a virtual baking club with members of my family, and we have all thoroughly enjoyed the successes (and failures) of our kitchen meet-ups. Additionally, I am currently working on curating a book club whereby a group of individuals will have weekly virtual meet-ups to discuss a book chosen for that month.
6. Engaging in extracurricular webinars
It is a rare occasion that my University work isn’t overwhelming my life and so I am utilising the free time to expand my knowledge of dentistry. I have been attending extra-curricular webinars by leading dental professionals which have filled a void that was left when the University closed.
I’ve always envied people with gardens filled with colour and freshly grown vegetables. During lockdown I have dedicated the time to making my garden a haven of plants and vegetation. I have already created a herb garden that will soon be filled with delicious herbs ready to be used in the kitchen.
8. Participating and leading virtual family quizzes
Quizzes are the perfect way to stimulate conversation and keep things interesting during a virtual hangout. Every week I have two different family quizzes to keep me occupied. My favourite rounds so far have been; a mastermind round, whereby each participant answers questions on their specialist subject; a picture round that comprises an amalgamation of family members faces, whereby each participant must guess who the facial feature belongs to; and a sound round using famous voice clips, whereby participants must guess who is speaking. For more ideas on how to make the most out of virtual hangouts, read my April blog post.
9. Getting organised
It’s very comforting to have the time to spend getting my admin in order. A study revealed that more than half the country struggle to keep up with household ‘paperwork’, and tend to fail to complete important tasks by the required date. I have utilised my lockdown-induced free time to clear my inbox, organise files, update my CV, apply for a summer job, clear out my wardrobe, and get my finances in order.
10. Experimenting in the kitchen
Following a vegan diet can seem very restrictive to many and I often get asked how I manage to live without consuming animal produce. I have honestly never found it particularly challenging, but it is good to have the time to spend creating new recipes in order to keep my meals and snacks exciting and nutritious. My most recent creations have been; homemade healthy pot noodles, overnight blueberry breakfast oat cakes, and various different vegetable crisps.
11. Starting up an online business
It’s always a struggle trying to find a job that fits around my studies and the current economic halt has only made the task more difficult. With no luck in my job hunt, I’ve decided to utilise my skills in art and craft to produce handmade goods for sale. I have set up an Instagram page which is currently featuring the initial start-up of my new business, ‘Odd One Owt’. I endeavour to produce ethical and sustainable items which will include; greetings cards, jewellery, wall hangings, and pieces of artwork.
Getting immersed in my passions and keeping busy during lockdown has been integral to keeping my sanity and reducing my anxiety. I hope that you can take some inspiration from my blog to limit the inevitable boredom of lockdown.
It’s important to note that learning new skills and flexing your creative muscles should be a choice. The activities that you engage in should bring about joy and not add to this already stressful situation. For more information on the importance of looking after yourself during lockdown please my blog on ‘taking the pressure off during lockdown’.
Have fun filling your days and keep studenting (even in lockdown)!