The COVID-19 pandemic has created a whole new world, at least for the next few months. While isolating at home is nothing new to me, a self-employed writer, it still has an effect. My pup and I can no longer find hiking and running trails free of people because they’re now… filled with people. Grocery shopping has just become…. weirder.
But truly, it could be much worse. I try to stay focused on how blessed we are, and keep myself occupied with creative projects. However, even that is becoming a bit of a challenge. I constantly worry about my loved ones in assisted living homes who are not allowed any visitors. It all seems so cruel.
Indeed, even reading has become a challenge for my brain. So, if you’re like me and trying to stay positive and keep your creativity flow flowing, here’s a list of activities I’ve taken on to keep my overactive marbles intact.
- Take an online art tour of a famous art gallery. So far, I’ve been inspired by the Seattle Art Museum (SAM), the Art Gallery of Ottawa (AGO), and the Museum of Modern Art (MOMA).
- My husband and I have had plenty of time to prune debris from our landscaping, plant a garden, plant my herb garden, pressure wash the deck, clean off all the outdoor furniture and decor, sand and re-stain a used hammock stand, build a fence, and many other outdoor projects that will make our enjoyment of outdoor living that much more… enjoyable.
- I’m guilty of online shopping for items I needed for our home (such as the new zero gravity loungers from Costco). I have to say, with the free 2-day shipping right to outside my door, it was worth it. Much better than going to a crowded store full of irritated people attempting to physically distance from one another.
- Head out to where the flowers and trees are blooming with your iPhone and go on relaxing photo escapade in the fresh air. I’ve taken some lovely close-ups that are my newest screensavers.
- Grow new sprouts in your kitchen window or balcony–good for your immune system!
- Sew hair scrunchies with that beautiful old fabric you’ve been hanging onto. YouTube is full of excellent tutorials from everything under the sun. All I needed was a needle, thread, floral print fabric, scissors, and basic black hair ties.
- Mount new art. I painted these tiles around two years ago and have been forced, out of boredom, to finally mount them. Voila! I’m glad I did.
- Bake for a family member or friends. I baked my Dad, who lives in a care home, Neiman Marcus cookies. This was a viral email that went out when email first came out (yes, I am ancient). Check it out. Although I found out no one is allowed to bring anything in, I know my they’ll keep, since they’re vacuum packed in the freezer, until the rules change.
- Take many rejuvenating nap/meditations. I love relaxation techniques because I have a lot of nervous energy that requires constant channeling. It’s good to relax and let go. There are endless free guided sleep meditations on YouTube and they make me feel blissful.
- Practice shooting videos with your iPhone. I don’t know about you, but I’m super shy about having my face and voice recorded online. This will hopefully help me get over it, along with all the FaceTime chats with family in other provinces.
- Transplant your plants that have outgrown their pots. I gave my one giant jade plant several new pots for added greenery inside my sanctuary.
- Grab a fresh blank notebook for sketching and drawing. You never know what will inspire you next.
- Rearrange art displays throughout your home, even in the bathroom. Why not make your home into your own art gallery?
- Dance with your pet to YouTube music videos and burn off some COVID snacks. I dance and throw my doggo her abundance of toys all over while she chases them and kills them. Very entertaining. Good dog!
- Practice one pot cooking to get away from the drudgery of cleaning and cooking. Comforting Vegetarian Chili is ideal.
- Watch an engrossing foreign film. I find reading subtitles to draw me even deeper into the plot line. Almost like a vacation. Almost.
- Schedule a spa day and give yourself a facial, tweeze, wax, mani, pedi, and whatever else makes you feel your best, beautiful self. Life gets drab in PJs every day. I also discovered an excellent YouTube tutorial and can now cut my own hair. This is incredibly satisfying and FREE.
- Practice songs on an old instrument. I’d almost forgotten many tunes to play on my Ukelele.
- Go for a cool bike ride now that the weather has warmed. Nothing like a fresh spring breeze on your face.
- Phone or learn how to FaceTime or Zoom (it’s surprisingly easy) family members I’ve lost touch with and laugh at the insanity of life. It was so lovely to see my 85 year old Dad’s face–he said it was all very ‘Star Wars’ which made us laugh and laugh.
No doubt about it, boredom breeds creativity. I would still be putting off many of these projects if I had other options. Procrastination has become too easy with technology in the way.
Although it’s challenging to feel motivated to do ANYTHING when times get tough, I have an excellent book to recommend. Many successful individuals use this to keep on keeping on. Creative Visualization by Shakti Gawain helps to create the kind of future you want.
Stay strong and keep on keeping on–
Tara Panrucker, Copyright 2020
All rights reserved.