25 Things to Do While Social Distancing


photo courtesy of Gabrielle Krieger

Keeping your mind and body active while stuck at home will in turn boost your happiness due to the endorphins released into your body.

Julia Henning, Online Editor

During the COVID-19 outbreak, it can be difficult to stay occupied while distancing yourself from others. Here are 25 ideas to keep the time at home interesting:

1. Read

There is nothing better than a good book to pass the time. Consider re-reading one from a while back that you’ve forgotten about or download a new one to your phone if you’ve gone through all of your current collection.

2. Sing

Singing releases endorphins which will reduce stress and increase your happiness levels. It doesn’t matter if it’s in the shower or while you’re dancing around your kitchen; your mind and body will thank you. 

3. Dance

You don’t have to be a professional or a TikTok star to enjoy the joy that dancing can bring. Any style of dance, any genre of song, by yourself or with your family; it’s all your preference! You could even teach yourself a new skill such as the splits or a cartwheel.

4. Practice some self care

This can take any form. Being alone is a good time to check in with your body and think about what it needs during this break. This can include just 10 minutes of being mindful and checking in everyday or recording and journaling it down.

5. Meditate

This goes hand in hand with self care because it is another opportunity to be mindful. It doesn’t have to be all breathing practices, eyes closed, and trying to clear your mind. Try the apps Headspace and Calm on your phone for new and innovative ideas.

6. Redecorate

Now is the time to change up your room or other living space. You don’t have to leave your house either; rearranging or hanging up some new decorations you’ve stored away can give a space a totally new feel. The same goes for cleaning!

7. Play an instrument

Is your instrument still sitting in the corner just waiting to be played? Now’s the chance to pick it up and give it some love!

8. Create a piece of art

Even if you’re unsure about your artistic abilities, this is a good chance to pick up a sketchbook and pencil and try something new! Follow a fun and easy YouTube video here to get started. Or expand into the world of origami, calligraphy, or painting!

9. Cook/bake

Have you always wanted a day to just try out a new recipe? Now you have that opportunity! Choose any level of difficulty and any type of food and get started. Just make sure you wash your hands for 20 seconds before 🙂

10. Start learning a new language

Any and all! Try Duolingo or Busuu to begin. 

11. Have a spa day!

Face masks, bubble baths, and painting your nails – enjoy a day of just treating yourself in the comfort of your own home. Or try some new makeup products, hairstyles, and outfits to get creative with it!

12. Try new music or create a new playlist

Hop on Spotify or Apple Music and put together a new “social distancing” playlist to enjoy. Or ask for recommendations from friends and family to add in. Check out Inkwell on Spotify while you’re over there too!

13. Exercise

Working out releases endorphins that keep you happy. You don’t need a gym to have a successful session. Cardio, strength training, or a yoga flow can happen right in your living room. You can try classes on YouTube as well as free yoga classes through SourceYoga in Tacoma through Zoom!

14. Learn a new skill

Have you always wanted to learn to juggle, whistle with your fingers, or be able to moonwalk? Choose the skill and start with a tutorial on YouTube. Or even better, have a sibling or family member teach it to you!

15. Get some work done

It may be the last thing you want to do with some free time, but keeping your brain refreshed with content from classes will help you come back to school stronger. ACT or SAT postponed? Study up for that for when it does come around!

16. Play board games

At home with other people? Pull out a game and foster some healthy competition! You can even have a whole game night or come up with a new game together.

17. Head to your favorite streaming service

For many that is probably Netflix, but Hulu, Disney +, HBO, and Amazon Prime are also great choices for places to start a new show or have a movie marathon. Add the Netflix Party extension to your laptop to share a movie with your friends!

18. Play with your pets

Pets can sense stress in these times; they can also release your stress with cuddles and play time. They also need their exercise too, so make sure you’re letting them out consistently!

19. Try some mind puzzles

Keep your mind sharp by trying out some brain games such as sudoku or cross words. There are also apps for this such as Lumosity or Word Cookies.

20. Do a virtual tour of new places

Museums all across the world have offered up tours online of their galleries. Find the links here where you can get realistic tours of The Anne Frank House, The Guggenheim Museum, and The Louvre.

21. FaceTime a friend

Social distancing unfortunately means staying away from many people you care a lot about. We are fortunate to have technology such as FaceTime and Zoom to keep us connected to the friends and family outside of our own homes. Give those people a call this week!

22. Find a virtual concert or live stream from your favorite celebrity

Your favorite singer or actor is probably stuck at home just like you and wanting to connect. Many celebrities have been going on instagram or other social media platforms to spend time live with fans. Look out for those announcements from the people you follow!

23. Get outside

It is still perfectly safe to get out and enjoy the sunshine on a walk or hike just as long as you’re keeping your distance from other people. Getting out, whether it be in your neighborhood or on a local hiking trail, is a great way to clear your mind and enjoy some fresh air. Try listening to that new playlist or an audiobook while you’re at it!

24. Volunteer

Offer to buy groceries for the elderly people in your life, donate some groceries to food banks, offer virtual tutoring lessons to people who need help with school work, or call up a local hospital or fire station and offer to drop off food to the people that are working around the clock.

25. Come up with a bucket list

Form your own list of goals or big things you want to achieve. When you write your goals down, you’re more likely to follow through with them. Think both short term and long term and get creative with it!