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57 activities to do at home when isolation boredom seizes you

Mary Grace Garis

Mary Grace GarisApril 3, 2020

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Photo: Getty Images / Vladimir Vladimirov

When the outside is off limits, you run out of of fun and fresh activities to do at home. Like once you’re down readjusting your schedule in between fits of power sobbing, you just get bored by the monotony of your scenery. I remember when I first realized this would be a problem, when my roommate told me, “I feel like we need to download TikTok.” “No, we’re 29, Amber,” I said. “Not even in an apocalypse.”

This was three weeks ago; you’ll understand that it was a different world back then.

1. Tie-dye your old T-shirts

Getting in touch with tie-dye will (literally) add some color to your drab existence. Time to give your saddest quarantine hoodie a makeover.

2. Make friendship bracelets

Keeping on that summer camp train, friendship bracelets can ease you in a state of flow (and make for celebratory “We made it!” gifts for when you reunite with your buds).

3. Learn a new card game

Blackjack? Poker? Go Fish? You probably have a deck lying around somewhere in your home, time to dust it off.

4. Play a new virtual game with friends online

America is under Animal Crossing’s soothing lure right now, but we’re also very partial to these games you can play remotely with the whole damn gang.

5. Host a cocktail making competition

It could be virtual or it could be in your own home, but let’s see who gets the most creative with the ingredients left on their bar cart!

6. Put together outfits with the clothes you never wear

If there comes a day when you’ve exhausted black sweatpants—and I respect that some of you live there now—test out some of the lesser-used garments from your closet. You might find some hidden gems!

7. Learn how to French braid

Fishtail is fine, too, but this slumber party hairstyle is great for when you need to remember a simpler time.

8. Remove your split ends

Don’t cut your own bangs, we’re not that deep into quarantine for that kind of judgement call, but you can fix split ends safely without going hack-happy.

9. Become a ballerina

Has it always been your secret dream? Break the tights and tutu out, because there are about a gazillion online ballet classes that can make you feel like a regular Swan Queen.

10. Sew face masks

Even if homemade faces masks won’t directly protect from the coronavirus, they’re a kindness with a practical, ultimately prosocial use: they can stop you from touching your face.

11. Take a crash course in positivity

Hell, get an Ivy League joy degree with Yale University or University of Pennsylvania.

12. Get in touch with your birth chart

Learn how to read your natal chart and decrypt the nitty gritty of your star-sanctioned personality.

13. Do some purge-writing about something that’s frustrating you

Chances are you have some grievances right now. Get out a piece of paper and some wacky colored pens and blergh out all of your negative emotions. Look at a few days later and then put it through the shredder!

14. Take a virtual tour of a museum

Even if you’re not going to Paris in the spring like you planned (le sigh) you can still take a stroll through the Louvre or any number of venues to get a culture fix.

15. Redecorate your house with witchcraft

I actually gave my apartment home makeover with witchcraft last year and would highly recommend! I mean, there’s bad juju all around us and you might as well make your space a sanctuary while you’re stuck there.

16. Have a romantic solo date

I was pioneering enjoying being alone way way before it was…mandated by the government, so here’s my night-in take on my solo date idea: pour some wine, make your favorite (cauliflower) pasta, light some candles, and crank up the Frank Sinatra. You can decide if you want to take yourself home (lol) later.

17. Have a kitchen dance party

Do dance parties as much as possible! Do it with your partner! Do it with your long distance friends! Do it with yourself if you need to! Just do it!

18. Upgrade your daily stretch with laughter yoga

Head to YouTube to give yourself some lols, no downward dog required.

19. Watch the adorable penguins at the Bronx Zoo grow up

Wildly specific but there are two baby blue penguin chicks at the Bronx Zoo right now and your girl is following their every MOVE. Incidentally you can also take a virtual tour of the zoo, and heads up, there’s snow leopards!

20. Hula hoop for exercise

As the office’s resident Mrs. Maisel, hula hooping is the best form of exercise in the world, and we all should be doing it.

21. Make a gratitude jar

Write three things you’re grateful for every day and put it in the jar—highly beneficial if you’re quarantining with family and trying to not be at each other’s throats.

22. Interview yourself

Just sent my roommate a bunch of soul-searching questions, really get to know who you are and what you love about yourself.

23. Take your self-pleasure to the next level

We know times are tight, so we have some affordable sex toys, and household items you can use in a pinch.

24. Dye your hair a cotton candy color

If you’ve ever felt self-conscious or like you couldn’t pull it off, you know… f–k it. I’m rocking Manic Panic hot pink as part of my go-to isolation aesthetic.

25. Write letters to pen pals

Make a new senior friend in a nursing home or pen love letters to your long distance (read: housebound a few miles away) sweetie. Just because we can access everyone through technology doesn’t mean people don’t want written words to hold onto (don’t worry, mail is most likely safe).

26. Upcycle your old clothes

If you’re not really into a modern day hippie aesthetic, there are other ways to reinvent and repair your old threads.

27. Make some whipped coffee

I can’t lie, it looks delicious and worthy of all the Instagram love.

28. Declutter your entire home

You’re already disinfecting like crazy, go full Marie Kondo while you’re at it.

29. Dust off your grandparents’ old recipes and give them a whirl

Pull out the index cards and even Zoom them in while you’re cooking them (unless they’re like, gone, which is still a good reason to recreate YiaYia’s avgolemono soup.

30. Ask your parents to tell you a story about their childhood

I don’t know, even after a full year of “Ok Boomer,” we do feel very protective and loving towards our parents during this crisis.

31. Explore some of the most beautiful National Parks in America

Until you can explore them in person, go for a virtual nature walk.

32. Fill every inch of your house with daffodils

Or whatever flower you find fitting, bring the outdoors indoors! Build a whole damn garden based on your zodiac sign, if you want.

33. Read the entire Baby-Sitters Club series

During Zoom happy hour we played a trivia game, and you know who crushed the Baby-Sitters Club series? Your girl. There are 131 books total, so either check back in with Kristy and the gang for the nostalgia factor, or literally read this ridiculous YA series as a bizarro adult project.

34. Do absolutely nothing

Lol, I mean, that’s going to be a first for some of you! Enjoy the moment of sitting there and being idle!

35. Do an online workout with pop icon Cher

I mean, you can definitely do a more dignified online workout, but I’m going to start my morning with Cher’s 1980s hot dance.

36. Try out a new kind of meditation

Maybe a grounding root chakra meditation or a compassion meditation.

37. Take a bath with all the trimmings

Bath bombs, bubbles, salts, if you’ve upgraded from your garbage apartment to somewhere nice, indulge yourself. Hell, you can even go hard with some candles

38. Watch a movie remotely with your crush

Want to channel When Harry Met Sally? It’s way easier to watch movies together while social distancing than it was in 1989…and you have plenty of options!

39. Redecorate your desk space

I mean, you might as well jazz up your home office while living that WFH life.

40. If you’re partnered, have an hour long make-out sesh

I’m sure your boinking like crazy, but why not kick it old school and simply enjoy kissing?

41. Spend about a trillion hours on Pinterest

Fill your feed with literally everything you love! I have an entire board called “Sweet Friends” that’s just like, baby pigs eating ice cream or whatever.

42. Practice a new language

There are plenty of language apps available to train you for when we can travel again.

43. Start teletherapy

It might feel weird at first, but transitioning to virtual therapy could be really worth it in this high stress time.

44. Make a playlist of absolutely flawless jams

Or check out this masterpiece editor Jessie Van Amburg blessed us with. Cherish every guilty pleasure, every throwback gem.

45. Bake banana bread

Sure, why not, everyone else is doing it. And we even have tips on what to do with those peels after the fact.

46. Give tarot card readings, regardless of whether you know how to read tarot

I find it’s kind of funner to wing it, but here’s some simple tarot tips if you really want to learn.

47. Finally get into Podcasts

Hell, even make one if you want to, it’s the end of the world, babe. Here are a few must-listen wellness pods that we’re obsessed with, if you don’t know where to start.

48. Do some living room miles

Get your steps in with meditative walking. Your non-quarantine amount may be ambitious, but luckily 10,000 steps is fake news anyway.

49. Make a “Me Altar”

This is basically just a collection of items that worships the awesomeness of you, whether that’s a polaroid from a day you looked amaze to some rose quartz crystals

50. Have a Zoom brunch date with your best friend and be extra petty

Just like back in the good old days when you were overpaying for avo toast. Leggings and top knots are more than welcome (and apparently, the only thing we’ll ever have to wear now).

51. And a coffee date with all your work wives

Because the Zoom Happy Hours don’t really give you quality catch up time. Recreate your favorite latte, and go to town.

52. Get yourself a new toy

This $20 vibrator will serve you well in isolation. Oh, and we got you covered if you need some whisper quiet sex toys.

53. DIY your usual manicure

If you were a former salon queen, we have some tips on how to do it the right way. Go ahead, it might make you feel a bit more human.

54. Organize your old photos in a photo album

To remember the good old days. Like, the days when you bought a $60 pastel polaroid camera with the hopes of using it at parties. Both feel passé now, but at least you have the memories.

55. Watch all of Buffy the Vampire Slayer

It’s a show that features nothing but how to survive apocalypses, so now is the time to start if you haven’t already. Head to Hulu on the immediate.

56. Order and install a bidet seat

Toilet paper is over. You might as well have a back-up plan for your backside.

57. Download TikTok

Ew. I mean, if you want.

This all being said, it’s okay if you’re not feeling your most productive right now. And if you’re social distancing alone, this is how to recreate human touch

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