During the COVID-19 pandemic, many of us are spending much more time at home than before.
While much of what previously filled up our days may be off limits for now, know that there are still an abundance of activities to keep you engaged—all in the vicinity of your home.
Of course, not everyone’s situation is identical—some have kids to take care of, some are essential workers that still have to go into work and others are out of work and in lockdown. Whatever your situation is, anyone can take at least one or two things from this list to help them cope until we’re on the other side of this.
1.) Keep a Workout Routine
I’ll just get the most obvious item on the list out of the way now. While your gym is most likely closed, there are still plenty of options to stay active during this time. Body weight exercises, yoga or even going out for a run around the block (keeping your distance from other wanderers, of course) are just a few ways to keep moving. Maybe you even have your own gym at home where you can make gains while flattening the curve.
Video games offer an array of worlds to explore while our own is shut down. There are even services out there that offer FREE video games to veterans. Playing online with a group of friends is also a great way to keep in touch and stay social—from a distance.
3.) Spring Cleaning
Would it take anything less than a pandemic to get you to finally clean out your basement? Since you’re spending so much time at home these days, you might as well clean it up a bit. Put together a playlist, open up some windows and attack the clutter!
4.) Watch a Movie
You know that movie you’ve been meaning to watch? The one your buddies keep telling you about, but you just haven’t gotten around to it yet? Well, you can go watch it now. As a matter of fact, here’s a list of pandemic-inspired movies to keep your eyes glued to the screen (you’re welcome).
5.) Get Some Sleep
At this point it’s safe to assume that most people are aware that getting a full night’s sleep is vital to your health, wellbeing and productivity; there are plenty of studies out there. The CDC reported that one in three adults don’t get the recommended minimum of seven hours of sleep per night. If you’re one of those that are now working from home, why not replace your morning commute with the extra sleep your body and mind needs?
6.) Take an Online Course
Did you know that Harvard University has a catalog of courses you can take online for FREE? Literally free; you don’t even have to use your GI BIll. Other sites that offer free or affordable courses in just about any subject include Udemy, LinkedIn Learning and Alison. Not to mention the array of other sites for those interested in learning to code. Now’s the time to educate yourself.
7.) Bond with Your Pets
Your pets miss you when you’re away. Make sure you spend some time with them while you’re stuck in the house.
8.) Discover a New Podcast
These days you can find a podcast on just about any topic, and it seems like everybody has one (even some awesome vets!). If you’ve never listened to podcasts before, I highly encourage you to give them a shot. They’re typically free and easy to access, and they are great company during chores, driving or other menial tasks. Or better yet—make your own podcast!
9.) Read a Book
This is another one that should be pretty obvious. Reading is one of those things that so many claim they don’t “have time” to do. I think Mad Dog Mattis said it best:
“The problem with being ‘too busy to read’ is that you learn by experience (or by your men’s experience), i.e. the hard way. By reading, you learn through others’ experiences, generally a better way to do business.” – James “Mad Dog” Mattis, USMC (Ret.)
10.) Update Your Résumé
Whether you’re out of work or just haven’t visited your résumé in a while, now is a good time to update it. Also, make sure your LinkedIn is up to date as well. Be sure to search GIJobs.com for an abundance of tips for polishing your résumé whether you’re still in the military or out in the civilian world.
11.) Get Outside
Despite being in quarantine, we’re still able to go outside for some fresh air. Make sure to get out daily; cut your grass, walk your dog or go for a run. Just make sure to stay safe.
Mike Asper is a United States Marine veteran who served in Iraq during Operation Iraqi Freedom. He currently is the Art Director for G.I. Jobs and is thoroughly enjoying his quarantine.