By Boluwatife Ajayi, contributing writer
The COVID-19 pandemic will affect the worldwide economy for years to come.
With that said, after a sudden and disorienting national shutdown, many of us are unemployed or working from home. In fact, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the unemployment rate rose to 14.7 percent in April 2020, and the number of unemployed persons jumped from 15.9 million to 23.1 million.
In the midst of this stressful time, the temptation to binge on Netflix is enticing. However, it’s more important to prioritize your self-care during this pandemic. You can also engage in plenty of other at-home activities to stay grounded.
Here are 5 top ways to spend your time when you’re stuck at home.
1. Learn a new skill/take an online course
There’s no better time than right now to dive deep into a hobby that has always intrigued you. Or, perhaps you can consider starting a new side hustle to earn extra income at home. To start, try taking an online course that could turn into a source of income. For example, now is a great time to become a kids yoga teacher by getting certified to teach children’s yoga online. Just think: Not only will you be doing something that you love, but you’ll also be getting paid to teach kids yoga!
2. Organize a dedicated workspace area
For so many of us, working at home is the new normal. With the uncertainty surrounding the current situation, it may be time to designate an area in your home for your office space.
A dedicated space allows you to focus on your work without a lot of distractions. As a blogger, for instance, I have space in a separate room with a to-do-list on my desk along with other work-related materials. This helps me stay productive.
3. Create a to-do-list
A to-do list helps you organize your thoughts and get things done. Your list might specify times the tasks need to be accomplished, or it might not. While you’re at home, this may really help you stay on task, especially as days run into each other. The American Management Association recommends using your to-do-list as the guiding document for how you spend your time. Plus, with the kids at home spending more time on screens, a to-do-list might just save the day and help the whole family.
Here are some key benefits of a to-do-list:
- It helps you prioritize tasks: You can do this based on the level of importance of your tasks and deadlines. Creating various priority colors or labels also helps you become more organized and stay mentally focused.
- A list increases productivity: Your attention is easily diverted by many distractions. Yet, a to-do list will help you focus your attention on the most important task of the moment.
- Your memory can improve: Without some sort of external memory aid, you’re likely to forget things due to the nature of our short-term memories. The average person’s short-term memory can only hold seven pieces of information for about 30 seconds. So, using a to-do-list reinforces information and helps you stay on track.
- It’ll keep you motivated: Completing a task or project increases your confidence and keeps you motivated.
4. Pick up journaling
“It’s incredibly useful both for us personally and on a historical level to keep a daily record of what goes on around us during difficult times,” said Ruth Franklin, author of “Shirley Jackson: A Rather Haunted Life,”
Something is comforting about ink on paper. It gives you an unspoken peace that allows you to freely express yourself and relieve stress. And, journaling is also often used as a means of pursuing mental health and wellbeing.
As an important method of self-care, journaling helps you organize your thoughts, especially during difficult times.
You do not have to be a novelist or a screenwriter to begin journaling. I got a journal when I was getting overwhelmed with my thoughts and it was beginning to wear me out. This helped me express myself freely.
So grab a notebook, a pen, and begin to jot down your thoughts!
5. Start a simple bodyweight exercise routine
Staying at home to minimize the spread of coronavirus does not mean giving up a fitness routine.
Despite gym closures due to the COVID-19 pandemic, you can still exercise at home. For example, you can start an easy bodyweight exercise routine. In addition, you can also try stretching it out with yoga, which is also effective in helping you and the kids deal with anxiety during this pandemic.
At a time like this with immense stress and uncertainty, practicing mindfulness and yoga can ease physical tension. You can start by trying out these three simple summertime yoga poses with your kids or take it one step further by learning to teach kids yoga with the Pretzel Kids yoga online course!
Here are some fun traditional yoga poses to try with kids:
Remember: Yoga is not just for adults. Parents and caregivers can teach yoga to toddlers, young children and teens!
Become productive during stay at home advisories
Instead of watching movies all day, try doing things that are beneficial to your mental and physical well-being. Our top suggestions: Take an online kids yoga teacher training course, create a to-do-list, start writing in a journal, exercise, practice yoga, and create a dedicated workspace area.
About Boluwatife Ajayi: Boluwatife is a communications expert and freelance writer with interest in social media and blog writing. With work experience in radio, television and newspapers agencies, she brings in fresh ideas and perspectives with research to back up her work. You can connect with Boluwatife here.