Quarantine should not be a time to put more pressure than necessary on yourself. After all, with everything going on in the world at the moment, the last thing that anyone wants or needs is something else to worry about.
Ignore social media and all the beautiful pictures on Instagram of people with plans to write great novels, following unattainable fitness programs and redecorating their house like something out of an interiors magazine. Times are tough enough as it is.
However, if you are bored and have exhausted your Netflix watchlist and are all Zoomed out, a new hobby, or rekindling one that had been long pushed aside can be a good idea. There are plenty of things that you can try in the comfort of your own home. They are even better there sometimes because those rookie errors can be made without embarrassment or fear of judgment! Many of them can be therapeutic, especially if you are anxious, and are good for relieving stress and taking your mind off things.
Here, we have put together a list of manageable hobbies and activities that you could try your hand during a quarantine period, from arts and crafts to cooking.
Take an online art class
We all have an artist locked inside us – it is just which one, which is the answer. Whether you are the next Vincent Van Gogh, or your style is more Pigasso (not a typo – the pig who became an artist!) is the question, and the only way to find out is by giving art a whirl. There are art classes online for everyone, whether in real-time via a platform such as Zoom or step by step tutorials that you can follow at your own speed on YouTube. All you need is a computer, access to the internet, and a few basic art supplies to get you started.
Learn a new language
It is a cliche one, but many people find that quarantine is the perfect opportunity to learn a new skill, such as a new language. There are less distractions and more chances to immerse yourself in it. Again, there are multiple ways of doing this. There are online classes, apps, audiobooks, tapes, or good old fashioned books to help you quickly and accurately pick up the lingo.
Learn an instrument
It is never too late to learn an instrument, and again, this is the perfect time to do it. There are plenty of benefits to picking a new one up. For example, the Ukele – a very underrated instrument – can really help with hand and eye coordination. If you need more persuading, here are 25 Reasons to Play Ukulele (#8 is backed by Science). Grab that instrument, download a tutorial video, and before you know it, you will be the next big thing. Maybe.
Find a pen pal
While we are all living very separate lives at the moment physically, the world feels like it has come together more, so what perfect way to celebrate this by making new friends and communicating via mail? Perhaps you could talk to someone in your local community with a view to meeting up ‘in real life’ when the COVID-19 pandemic is over, or perhaps you could email someone in a different state, country or even continent to find out more about a different culture and way of life.
The art of beautiful penmanship is circling back into fashion now, with it being a huge thing on Instagram. It is one of the most simple things to start – you literally need a pen and a piece of paper. Look online for some simple how-to guides to get you started.
Learn to cook
Or, if you already know how to cook, use this time to expand on your repertoire. Recipes are readily available on the web or, if you are feeling creative, see what you can concoct from the ingredients that you have available. Once you are out of your isolation period, invite some friends round for a post-pandemic dinner party to show off your new skills and recipes.
Isolation can be stressful. It can be anxiety-inducing too – no one quite knows what to expect when the world goes back to normal, if it ever does, but by using the time to do something new and exciting, you can make the most of a bad situation and have some new skills at the end of this all.