If you’re stuck at home as a result of the coronavirus outbreak, then chances are you’re probably on the lookout for something to do.
While jigsaw puzzles and video games can be a fun way to get through a few hours of the day, there are several other ways to pass your time in lockdown more effectively.
Whether it be a new skill you have always wanted to learn or an old hobby you’ve been meaning to pick back up again, now is the perfect time to busy yourself and make your time in self-isolation worthwhile.
Here are a few ideas to help you get started.
1. New Language.
Learning a new language is something many of us say we wish we could do, but never get around to actually doing. So, why not break the mould and learn one for yourself?
Whichever language you choose – whether it be French, Spanish, Mandarin or Swahili – it could make a big difference to your life once we finally get through the coronavirus outbreak.
Say you’re a keen traveller, for instance. By being able to speak the language of a certain country, you will not only be able to engage in more meaningful conversations with the locals, but you’ll make yourself more employable at the same time.
2. First Aid.
Let’s set the scene.
Your partner is doing a few odd jobs around the house to pass the time when you suddenly hear an almighty crash. You rush to see if they are OK, and you find them clutching their shoulder in pain on the floor. You help them as much as you can but are not really sure what to do. If only you had taken that course in first aid you’d been meaning to.
Knowing how to administer first aid can be the difference between life and death.
While in-person courses from accredited trainers provide you with a more detailed level of knowledge, there are a number of ways to learn how to administer first aid at home – whether it be for a sports-related injury, post-operative pain, a cut, scrape, burn, or sprain.
From soufflés to trifles, and coq au vin to pizzas, knowing how to cook properly is vital.
While many of us will understand how to shove something in the oven and leave it for 20 minutes, there is a big difference between knowing how to cook and knowing how to cook.
With so much free time available on your hands, now is the ideal time to don the apron and get creative in the kitchen.
If you’ve got a sweet tooth, why not try your hand at baking some cookies or brownies. Or, if you fancy yourself as a bit of a kitchen whizz, test your skills by cooking recipes and ingredients you’ve not tried before.
While on the subject of food, why not try your hand at growing some of your own?
Gardening can not only be a highly therapeutic way of passing the time, but it can also feel incredibly rewarding when enjoying the literal fruits of your labour – whether it be tomatoes, carrots, chillis, peas, oranges, or whichever fruit or veg takes your fancy.
Growing your own beautiful flowers and plants can also feel equally rewarding, truly bringing a touch of class and beauty to your home’s interior and garden. If you’ve not got the greatest green fingers already, perhaps now is the ideal time to learn how to care for plants effectively.
If you’re always finding holes in your clothes, or love the idea of creating your own clothes, learning how to sew, knit or crochet could be a useful way to spend your time during the lockdown.
After all, there’s nothing quite like wearing a nice, warm woollen scarf or blanket you’ve created by hand yourself or repairing a coat back to its former glory.
Just like gardening, knowing your way around textiles can be an incredibly rewarding and useful skill to know.
While the thought of learning about finances may fill you with dread, keeping on top of your money effectively could make a huge difference to your life.
After all, money is what makes the world go around – if you’re spending beyond your means, are paying too much tax, or are saving money in all the wrong places, only you can do something about it.
If you don’t know your P45 from your P60, or your credit card from your debit card, now is the perfect time to get clued up.
Whether you’d rather do a quick online course in the basics of accounting, or simply read some useful guides from websites like MoneySavingExpert.com, knowing your way around your finances could free up funds to pay for some of the other life skill ideas featured on this list.
7. New Hobby.
While learning a hobby may not necessarily count as a life skill per se, having our own interests is what makes us as humans unique.
It’s also been shown that learning a hobby helps keep our mental health in check, which has a drastic impact on our life choices and our ability to maintain social contacts.
Whether you’d rather learn how to do something creative, like playing a musical instrument or becoming an artist, or something more exercise-focused, like how to do yoga or play table tennis, there are a ton of hobbies and activities out there to choose from.
Pick your favourite and strive to improve your ability at it during your time in lockdown. You never know, it could go on to shape your life and career once the pandemic is over.
The coronavirus outbreak may have caused worry and uncertainty throughout the globe, but there’s no point driving yourself stir crazy while locked away at home.
By choosing to teach yourself a new skill, your time in self-isolation could not only be over before you know it, but you could also significantly benefit your life and career as well.