Many of us have suddenly found ourselves with much more time on our hands than we usually have. This extra time is leading many to feel stressed out and overwhelmed. Our social supports and usual structure have been ripped away which has led everyone I have talked with to some restless nights. One trick to alleviating this anxiety is to stay busy. In this time of social distancing, however, this can prove tricky. Here are some ideas for keeping yourself occupied.
- Challenge your brain: Read a book. Do a puzzle. Start sudoku or a crossword. Help your kid with their homework. Any activity that challenges you to think will work. Keeping your brain engaged during this time is important to combat stress.
- Learn a new skill: Have you been wanting to learn something new? Now is the time to dive into YouTube or some other online resource to gain those skills you have been seeking.
- Start a meditation or yoga practice: In this time of stress slowing down and focusing on breath can be a very effective way to decrease stress.
- Stay active: Many of our gyms are closed right now but most of them are offering some type of online classes. (Checkout The Refinery’s online offerings.) If you are not a member of a gym, take a walk or ride your bike. Just remember to practice social distancing.
- Try a new recipe: Most of us are usually so busy when we get off work, we are just happy to get some sort of nutritious dinner on the table. Now is good time to explore the new recipe you have earmarked but never had time to create.
- Play a game. Now is a great time to pull out one of your old board games or play some cards. Games offer us social interaction while providing a needed distraction.
- Home improvement projects: If you are a homeowner, you probably have some project in your house that you have been unable to tackle. Now is a great time to do it!
- Get extra sleep: With our go, go, go lifestyles on hold, think about devoting a few extra hours to sleep. Many of us usually operate in a sleep deficit. Take a nap or stay in bed a little longer each morning.
- Reach out to an old friend. Social interaction continues to be important for our mental health. Use this time to reconnect with someone you have been missing.
These are just a few ideas to help pass your newfound abundance of time.
Photo from flickr.