Whether it’s a good movie, a crafternoon activity, keeping your body moving or simply a breathing exercise, there’s a plethora of things you can do to keep busy and calm while you’re in isolation, quarantine or lockdown. If that’s you, then we’ve compiled a neat little list of boredom crushers, and keep calmers, with a few of the Erstwilder HQ teams recommendations peppered in too.
1. Colouring in and Mediation
What could be more fun than getting to relive your childhood, colourful pencils, paints or big crayons in hand? Colouring is all of that AS WELL AS it being a great tool for meditation and mindfulness! Just as meditation asks you to switch off your mind and experience the present moment, so does colouring in. Requiring you to focus on colour, shape and precise movements, let your greater focus move from your stresses and worries, and focus on the actions you are taking part in, in that moment. If you don’t have a colouring book Erstwilder’s got you covered with downloadable sheets featuring designs from our newest collection. There are also a myriad of apps and tutorials online featuring meditation techniques from professionals to help you keep calm and carry on. Download the Erstwilder colouring in sheets below!
Want more characters to colour in? Check out this blog which we'll be adding to each week!
2. Movies, books and podcasts, oh my!
This one might be a little bit of a no brainer but media has been helping to distract us for centuries! Whether you like reading, watching an entire season of strangers things in a day, or listening to podcasts, there really is something about escaping into another world that can help make ours feel a little easier to deal with. Take this time to revisit your favourite movie, maybe give that TV show a go, you know the one everyone says you’ll love! If you’re into the nerdier side of life, like Erstwilder HQ’s James and Missy, you might enjoy the podcast Binge Mode. Taking you through the world of Star Wars, Harry Potter and Game of Thrones, the hosts give detailed recaps and discuss the themes of your fave fantasy world. There’s no shame in wanting to watch a movie, read a book, or just disappear into a podcast when times get stressful, we’re allowed to indulge in the harmless things that make us happy, especially if they help to keep our stress levels down.
3. Did someone say get creative?
Is your weapon of choice a paintbrush? Is scrapbooking your one true love? Writing your next novel? Do you make music? Whatever your love there’s no doubt that getting creative is a great outlet to help you have some fun and focus when times are tough. HQ’s resident arts and crafts expert Sally suggests cross stitch as a fun and easy activity, you can alter traditional designs and tailor it to your interests so ‘Home sweet home’ could become ‘Brooch sweet brooch’! Being creative is all about having fun, and we could all use a little bit of fun in our lives at the moment. Why not use this time to craft for others, make a card for someone you love, draw them a picture, send them a poem, and let them know you’re thinking of them, which brings us to #4.
4. Get in touch.
Self-isolation, while an important step in helping to flatten the curve can be a little, well, isolating. Regardless of if you’re an introvert an extrovert or a combination of the two, there are going to be some people doing it tough when it comes to being alone. Reach out to your loved ones, give your nan a call, text your grandpa, have a chat with your mum or dad and check in on how your siblings are doing, phone a friend or get a group skype going. Things are tough out there, job losses, illness and fear, so it’s more important than ever to let the people you love know how much they mean to you and make sure they’re doing okay. If you aren’t doing okay yourself there’s also no shame in reaching out to others, asking for a chat, getting help from those around you and professionals, it can be really scary and there’s nothing wrong acknowledging that. By ourselves, things can get overwhelming but together we can get through anything if we look after each other things will seem a little less isolated, no matter the distance.
5. Clean my room? Who are you, my mother?
Yeah, yeah, we know but it can’t all be fun and games (see #6). With all this uncertainty and confusion now is a great time to keep your surroundings clean and organised. Not everyone finds cleaning fun, but it’s an important step in keeping us healthy in times of illness. Washing your hands thoroughly, wiping down surfaces, and following proper food safety guidelines are all important steps to staying on the right side of germs. Beyond just basic hygiene, having a tidy surrounding can help you keep a calm mind. Not everyone can do a huge, day-long clean, we understand, but every little bit counts! A quick vacuum is enough for today, you can attempt the dishes tomorrow and the day after we’ll put away the laundry. And hey, while you’re cleaning you might find that thing you’ve been searching for, for ages, a fun blast from the past or even a cute top you forgot you bought, isolation fashion show anyone?
6. Take to the catwalk.
If you have a passion for fashion you know that no amount of lockdown/isolation/quarantine can quash the catwalks call inside you. Working from home means you can wear anything rules be damned! That bright blue faux fur jacket you love, with tracksuit pants, frilly socks and a hoodie? We call that quarantine couture. Why not put on a fashion show for your housemates or partner. Send us your fashion looks and tag us in your Erstwilder pictures, we want to see how fresh you can be when there are no rules! You could take some time to organise your brooch collection and find some new combinations you didn’t know you loved until now! Why not have a go at a new makeup look, see what works and what doesn’t and most importantly have a little bit of fun while you do it. Don’t let yourself feel like just because you’re stuck inside that it makes you any less fabulous, or any less you. Your style can withstand anything!
7. Checkmate, you sunk our battleship.
It’s all fun and games ‘til someone suggests monopoly (we do not recommend ruining your family while locked away with them!). While some games can get a tad competitive, board games and puzzles are a great way to pass the time, use cognitive skills and yes, bring people together. Erstwilder HQ’s Tess is a board game fanatic, and if you live in a share house or have big family games like Spy Fall, Dixit and Monikers are great fun and good for a laugh. There’s also a myriad of games you can play with a simple deck of cards. If you’re in lockdown alone or with a partner, HQ’s Kelly recommends the humble jigsaw puzzle, she’s gotten hers out of storage for the times ahead. It’s important to keep your brain challenged, crossword puzzles, and Sudoku can be done on paper or in-app form. If you’re more into video games the possibilities are endless from online multiplayer to keep social, or just relaxing on your desert island in the new Animal Crossing.
8. Go back to school.
No, not literally, what we mean is isolation is a great time to learn a new skill or educate yourself on something you didn’t know about before. The internet is full of courses, tutorials, apps, and papers to help you learn new things, from cooking, to juggling, to dinosaurs of the cretaceous period! There’s so much knowledge out there, and it’s all at your fingers tips. Learning is a great and fun way to pass the time and make you feel like you’ve accomplished something if that’s a worry of yours about self-isolation. Maybe brush up on that language you started to learn but didn’t have the time to commit to, perché no?
9. And now we’ll move into downward dog.
For some people staying physically active is a very important part of their lives, and if that’s you, being isolated doesn’t mean you can’t still achieve that. If you live in a house with stairs, find reasons to go up and down and back up again. Squats, lunges, push-ups, sit-ups, are all things you can do around the house to keep yourself active. YouTube is full of yoga routines, starting your morning with even just 15 minutes of yoga will benefit not just your body but your mind as well. And if you really want to feel the burn, Aussie heartthrob Chris Hemsworth has said that his fitness app will be free for a limited time, if the Norse god look’s your thing.
10. Give a little back.
In times like this, there are no shortages of people in need. Giving money is great but there are so many things to do that won’t cost you a penny. Reaching out to people you know who might be alone and just having a chat can be so beneficial to someone’s mental health (see #4). Do you have an elderly neighbour or family member who might not be able to grocery shop? Reach out and see if there’s anything you can do to help, set them up with an online order or grab them something the next time you’re at the supermarket (make sure to wipe stuff down and keep your hands clean if you do). If you have surplus supplies you can donate them to people in need, or people that may have missed out. Most of all and free of charge you can be kind wherever you go. People are scared and acting in ways we wouldn’t expect, it’s understandable and as long as we’re kind to the people around us who need a little kindness right now, things will turn out okay.
So that’s our little list here at HQ, will you be doing any of these things to bust your boredom? Was there something you’re doing that you’d like to share that wasn’t on our list? Leave a comment and let us know or head over to our socials and share your snaps with us and the Erstwilder community. Isolation doesn’t need to be isolating!
Want to know what we're doing in response to COVID-19, you can read more here.