18 interests to develop while staying home
We’ve compiled a list of 18 creative ways to use your time at home in a productive and entertaining way.
Are your home’s four walls closing in on you a little more day by day? Don’t worry - you’re not alone. The COVID-19 epidemic means billions across the world are currently staying inside most of the time - and it's expected that this can become pretty testing whether you live alone or with others.
There’s no requirement to do anything at all with this time if you don’t feel up to it - it’s completely normal to feel zapped of energy and overwhelmed.
However, developing a hobby or skill will keep your mind sharp and your mental health strong.
We’ve compiled a list of 18 creative ways to use this indoor time to your advantage, and maybe come out the other side with a newfound passion or skill.
1. Become a podcaster
Podcasts are all the rage nowadays, and with thousands out there on every topic under the sun, why not get your voice out there too? Podcast listening apps like Podbean and Anchor also double as easy to use podcast creation software. So start talking!
2. Kickstart that dream online business
Haven’t had the time to start that online business you’ve thought about for years, but now found yourself with a little more time on your hands? Whether its physical products like handcrafted wares and gourmet cookies or digital products like e-courses and stock music production, there’s a space for your business out there on the world wide web. Sell through third party platforms like Etsy or set up your own e-commerce website - the options are endless.
3. Develop your green thumb
No matter if you live in a house with a yard or garden, or in an apartment with no outdoor area, it’s possible to create a leafy oasis indoors or outdoors. Get out in the garden and start that long-planned veggie garden, or have some house plants delivered by an online retailer and transform your home into a tranquil, green escape. Gardening is good for the mind and soul, and can be a handy little workout as well!
4. Journal for your mental health
Journaling is a cheap and effective way to get your thoughts out of your brain and onto paper, and starting off your day with a set journaling time has been proven to be extremely beneficial to mental health. Invest in a good quality notebook and pour your thoughts out over a coffee each morning. Now’s as good a time as any.
5. The great Aussie bake off
Since lockdown laws came into place across the world, there’s been an incredible explosion of home cooks showing off their quarantine culinary skills across social media. From delicious banana bread to mouth watering paella, we are loving what we are seeing! Get involved and show off your cooking skills!
6. Finally finish that scrapbook
Has it been five years since your European trip and you still haven’t made the scrapbook of souvenirs and holiday snaps? No matter the occasion, now's the time to spend some quality arts and crafts time creating a beautiful scrapbook you will treasure for years to come.
7. Start a niche blog
Have some wisdom to share on a certain topic? A blog is a fun way to showcase your own interests to the masses, and long-term can turn into a profitable little side business if you stick with it. Narrow down a niche you’re obsessed with - be it Spanish food, home organisation hacks or current events - and start writing and posting some great content for the world to enjoy.
8. Set yourself a daily fitness goal
You may not be able to visit your gym at the moment or go for long walks along the beach, but that doesn’t mean your fitness has to suffer. YouTube has an endless treasure trove of fitness videos to follow along with at home - many that you don’t require any equipment for at all. In addition, many fitness experts are offering up online classes - some free of charge - to keep people active while staying at home. Do some research, make a YouTube fitness playlist and get your sweat on. And hey - at least the shower is only a few steps away!
9. Do a free online course
With many of us losing our jobs and struggling during the COVID-19 epidemic, a number of training institutions have stepped up to the mark, offering a range of their paid courses for free for those that meet requirements. TAFE NSW is one such institution that is offering those in the state of New South Wales a plethora of free online courses, and hopefully others will follow suit.
10. Rediscover the joy of reading
Remember when we read books - before the internet consumed so much of our downtime? Now’s the perfect opportunity to rediscover the boundless benefits of reading. Pick up some new books from a retailer that delivers across Australia - like Booktopia - or scour your bookshelf for books you haven’t read yet or to enjoy all over again. Make yourself a cup of coffee, tea or hot chocolate, curl up with a blanket on the couch as the temperatures cool down and transport yourself somewhere else for a little while.
11. Organise and declutter
Is that linen closet looking a little worse for wear? The kitchen cupboards overflowing with jars, containers and odds and ends you don’t use or need? Free up some space while you’re at home and free up your mind at the same time. Be ruthless, and either throw out or donate items you don’t want. A quarantine spring clean is a great way to pass the time, and while you’re at it, do a deep clean of the house. Our recent coronavirus cleanup blog lists many overlooked household items that need to be kept clean.
12. Hone your armchair detective skills
We’ve all got that unsolved crime that fascinates us, and while armchair detective work is a popular pastime for many already - as seen with forums like Websleuths - lockdown is the ideal time to dive into some research for yourself. It goes without saying that you shouldn’t contact family or friends of the victim, but who knows - rereading old articles and information could lead to you spotting something others haven’t!
13. Pamper your pets
Our pets deserve extra love any day of the year, but if you’re currently spending more time at home they deserve even more. After all, they are so glad you’re at home more and are keeping you company free of charge! Do some research into cool DIY pet projects and get creative making something fun for your furry friends! Be it a crafty cat tree made out of boxes or whipping up a homemade tasty treat for your pooch, it’s a great way to say “thanks” to our pets that do so much for us. Over summer we shared a range of pet treat recipes on our Instagram, so head over there and scroll through for ideas!
14. Sew like a pro
If you’re able to sew and have the right materials at your disposal, many wonderful people across the world right now are sewing masks for healthcare workers. To get involved, do some research into who is accepting masks and what the requirements are. If there is nowhere in your local area for you to get involved with helping, why not dust off the old Singer and make some new threads for yourself and your family? Many fabric stores deliver right to your door, and there’s something about the possibilities that a new stack of fabric presents that is simply magical.
15. Learn a language
Being proficient in a second language can serve you well when it comes to travel or business, and it’s also a fun way to challenge yourself and feel accomplished at the same time. Thankfully, learning a language at home is easy with iconic language programs like Rosetta Stone. But with many foreign language teachers now out of in-person work and taking their offerings online, you should be able to find a top notch tutor in your area that offers online classes. May we suggest Spanish?
16. Create a vision board
We’re all living for the day that COVID-19 is a thing of the past, and we can all resume our normal lives. This period has given many people unhappy with certain aspects of their life time to re-evaluate and think about what they truly want out of life. Making a vision board - either physically or online - is a great way to narrow down what’s important to you. If you want to get hands-on, use magazine clipping and photo printouts to create a poster board of things that you hope for or that inspire you. If you’re more of an online aficionado, Pinterest is the holy grail of vision board creation.
17. Make your own natural beauty products
Many of us are keeping a strict eye on our spending at the moment, and beauty staples are one item that isn’t an essential for a lot of us. But when times are tough, your skin and hair can still shine - just look to the pantry. Its brimming with natural food products that make terrific beauty ingredients, including our favourite - olive oil! Whip up a batch of the best body scrub you’ve even used with some olive oil, coconut oil, brown sugar and oats. Your skin will be nourished and soft as a baby’s. Antioxidant rich olive oil is also a brilliant answer to dry skin and hair, broken cuticles, a dry scalp and even as a wax residue remover. Pick up your bottle of the best Spanish olive oil, La Española, at Coles nationwide.
18. Practise meditation and mindfulness
It’s completely normal to feel uncertain, anxious and scared at the moment. Remember that millions - even billions - across the planet are going through the same thing and sleepless nights and lack of appetite is common. Be kind to yourself and to others, and try to keep your stress levels in check for your health. The principles of meditation and mindfulness have been used for thousands of years, and mental health professionals still swear by the benefits of a daily practise for overall vitality. Read about, watch YouTube videos on it and start your own meditation and mindfulness practices that will serve you well, not just now, but long-term.
Lastly, are you struggling to keep the kids entertained at home? We have created cute downloadable graphics for them to get creative colouring in. You can find them at our Stay At Home With La Española website.