How to Manage Your Free Time During the Coronavirus Lockdown

Staying Sane During the Quarantine

CORONAVIRUS. The second round of a global crisis.

A lot of people are suffering; a lot of people are dying. This is a very sad moment for humanity. A very tough moment to experience.

This pandemic crisis, is now forcing people to stay home in order to protect them, keep them safe and healthy. That´s a good thing, but there are consequences to a home quarantine. A lot of people experience a lot of stress, boredom, feeling overwhelmed by the amount of time you spend with others (even if those others are your kids or other loved ones).

Some will find it very pleasant, and are very comfortable in this situation, but for some others this is a very challenging experience.

This is for everyone, but especially for those who cannot work from home and are suddenly finding themselves with what seems like an endless amount of free time!

Here are some ideas about what to do with all this time so you don´t lose your sanity. There are lots more for sure, but this is a good start!

Ideas on how to use your free time:

  1. Read a book. Read that book you´ve neglecting for a while, or if you have no new or unfinished books, choose your favourite one or the one you remember the least and read it again!
  2. Catch up with friends and family. This is the best time to have Skype calls, make sure your loved ones are safe and healthy, and also to know how their lives have been recently.
  3. Cook or bake. We often don´t make more elaborate recipes because we either don´t have time or we´re too tired. Well, now you have all the time in the world, to both rest and cook! Make something you like, try something new, surprise your partner or family!
  4. Get creative! Being creative often requires patience and time. Giving ourselves the space to think of ideas and get inspired. This can be anything. Cooking is creative too. You could also draw or paint, make a craft, make a collage, make music…Free your mind.
  5. Do an online course. Whether it´s work-related or whether it´s something that interests you, you have time! Take this opportunity to finally do it, and also, you learn something new!
  6. Self-reflect. With the hectic lifestyle and pace we have on a daily basis, there´s barely any time for us to actually sit and think. To check in with ourselves, see what we´re feeling, what we´re thinking. Catch up with what has been happening the last few days/weeks/months. Take it in. Actually live our life instead of watch it go by like a spectator. Live our experience. Take this time to do that. Write your thoughts down, it can be very helpful.
  7. Listen to music. Literally, listen well. It´s not about having the music in the background whilst you do other things. It´s actually the only thing your doing. Sitting down and listening to music. Pay attention to the lyrics, to the different instruments, to the emotions that come up for you, to the memories…
  8. Dance around! You can also use the music to just relax and move your body. Just dance around, like no one is looking (maybe no one is in a lot of cases), and give yourself this amazing gift of freeing yourself, allowing yourself to feel the rhythm and move as it pleases! Whatever those movements are, let them be. Don´t try to dance like you do at a club…just move, and let your body lead the way.
  9. Clean the house. Take the time to carry out a deep clearance, getting rid of things you don´t want or no longer need, organising your space and cleaning afterwards. It´s cathartic!
  10. Watch movies and relax. You can actually do that and not have to feel guilty. The matter is out of your hands, so lay back and relax.
  11. Exercise! The gyms and everything is closed, which can be the best excuse to not exercise. However, we all know that´s not true (even if we don´t want to admit it!). You can find an endless amount of videos online, whether that´s more aerobic kind of exercise, yoga, pilates etc. It´s not compulsory of course, but it´s an option!
  12. Again, what mostly comes in the way of meditating, is finding the time for it. Having so much to do that taking 10 minutes to ¨sit and do nothing¨ as many people perceive it as, isn´t an option, there isn´t enough time to waste it. Well, now there is! So why not take advantage and meditate a little everyday, even if it´s 3-5 minutes. It makes a difference.
  13. Enjoy spending time with your family/partner. Because of work we often don´t get to spend much time together. Take advantage of this gift. Have some deeper conversations with your partner. Talk to your kids, ask them about school and how it is, ask them to tell you stories that happened to them. Teach them, whether that´s math, or life lessons! Tell them stories. Ask your partner things, share experiences. Do something together, like cooking together or creating something together.
  14. Make changes in the decoration of your house. This is always time consuming and never really necessary. It´s nice though, to make changes every now and then, it feels like new again! Maybe you could just change the location of some things, put up new pictures or swap paintings.

How to Manage Your Free Time During the Coronavirus Lockdown

I believe that there is so much to learn from a time like this.

This is a time of growth. It is incredibly sad how some people are going through an illness, some are dying and some are losing loved ones.

However, this is also a blessing in disguise.

We are ´forced´ to pause.

We are ´forced´ to take time for ourselves.

We are ´forced´ to spend more time with the people we love.

We are ´forced´ to see what we normally take for granted. Our health. The time we have. The people around us that support us. The love that we have for people.

We are ´forced´ to unite. Not as a country, not as a nation…but as humans. Humans of different colour, different religion, different culture, different age…All HUMANS.

It is actually quite magical, that the grand majority of the whole Earth is undergoing the Same experience right now. When does this happen?

We share an understanding, like never before, experiencing the same pain, the same worry, the same consequences.

Let us embrace that. Let us learn from this. Let us stay united, even when this crisis brushes over, which hopefully it will.

Let us bring forward the things we normally take for granted, and be thankful and appreciative of them.


Daphne Christofide

Photography: Rebecca Pericleous

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