With the current situation of COVID - 19 and the imposed quarantine, most of us have been stranded at home with ALOT of time on our hands. For some, it is a yey and for others, it is a ney.
Human nature is contradictory, when we are busy, we crave free time, but just after 2 days of being on quarantine, boredom sets in and we miss being busy.
I was thinking about the extra time most of us currently have and I decided to put together a list of ‘constructive’ ways to use this extra time.
1. If you are an entrepreneur / or you are thinking about starting a business: I had to start by this one because I am business owner and the extra time I have (mommy of 2 little monsters, I can NEVER have much extra time!) has made me rethink my businesses in terms of what I am doing right and wrong.
I realized that for my clothing brand Mila Christina, I never put together a business plan out of laziness. Everything is in my head and I always feel like I got it. But the truth is that being a small business owner, I am and do everything at the same time; I am ALL OVER THE PLACE. Therefore, I decided to start working on my business plan last week and more ideas and clarity were coming in while I was writing. I know doing a business plan is not sexy but, it does give a road map for your business, plus it will be great to come back to it a year later and see how your business has involved or not.
One more thing, this is a good time to start reorganizing your business documents as well. Go through the paperwork and organize and reorganize! If you are like me and filed for an extension, no excuse, use this time to get your sh**t together…
For aspiring entrepreneurs or those of you that have a project in mind especially if you have a full time job, just know that you will never have an opportunity like this to focus on your stuff. Use your time wisely.
Start the right way by doing the boring and annoying part of starting a business: Work on your business plan and do your homework! Get the permits and/ or licenses etc. if your future business will require those documents. Use your extra time to start building a solid foundation for your business and start manifesting your idea into a reality.
2. Work out: Working out is part of my life and I need it. It brings me to a place of serenity; it helps me cope with stress and anxiety. I need to work out to keep my sanity and lift my spirit.
My local gym just closed for safety reasons therefore, I had to find other ways to work out. I cannot run outside on concrete because it hurts my knees. As much as I am not a huge fan of online workout videos because I am not used to using them, I didn’t have much of a choice so, I gave it a try. It was annoying at the beginning but you get used to them and I am actually starting to enjoy online workouts because there is such a variety ranging from yoga to core to kickboxing and YouTube especially has free videos. Do not give up on your workouts if that is something that you enjoy.
3. Watch TV: This one is a definite ney for me. I AM NOT a huge fan of TV. I have a few favorite shows that I occasional watch but that is it! Every time I stay too long in front of the TV:
1/ I feel like I am wasting my time/ life
2/ It gives me a massive headache
On the other hand, my significant other is addicted to TV. He can watch that TV for 48 hours straight nonstop (including playing video games). It drives me crazy. If you are addicted to watching TV or playing video games, lucky you… This is a good time to re-watch your favorite shows and/or get addicted to a new one.
These days, there are many platforms to watch a variety of shows, movies, documentaries etc: Hulu, Amazon prime, Netflix etc. If you don’t already have them, know that most of them give you a 1month free trail so subscribe 1-month and just cancel after that month is over so you do not have to pay!
4. For us mommies! What can I say…more time with the kids! Yeah! I know, this is terrible! But guess what, on the bright side if you have your husband / significant other around, he gets to take them off from you for a couple of hours it is still better than nothing.
This is a good time to rearrange, yes I know it sucks but you have to do it anyways because no one else will! end of the story.
My daughter Helena just turned 1 year old, and I was going through her clothes the other day and realized that I still had 6 months old onesies lingering in her closet. Yes, I am guilty. I rearrange her closet, put away the clothes that were too small for her plus her heavy winter jackets and I even had time to go through the cloths that friends have given me for her. I am an over achiever!
Overall, is a good time to give your attention to your kids, and I mean your UNDIVIDED attention! No multi tasking and all phones away!
My kids love running and screaming around the house, guess what, I am learning how to love to run and scream all over the house with them, it only lasts 15 min and I am out because I CANNOT MATCH their energy level. Their 10 min bath time has become a 1hour long bath. I let them take their sweet time and play together in the bath.
There are a lot of things you can do especially with little kids. They do not need much. If you have older kids I don’t know what they like doing my girls are 1 year old and 5 years old but I am sure the older ones can handle heir boredom by themselves pretty well. May be try the Tik Tok app with them? Looks like fun!
5. Cook more: I enjoying cooking and even more so, I love eating. Cooking and eating together as a family is a great bonding moment. I tend to cook the same dishes so for a change, I take recipes from cook books or online cooking blogs.
I have 2 Cravings cook books from Chrissy Teigen (this is not a paid ad) I do enjoy her recipes. Simple and tasty. Get your kids involved, Mila my 5 years old is always trying to help me when I am cooking and honestly it is annoying, because she makes a mess and the process goes slower. I am breathing through it, I am not in a hurry anymore and yes I have to clean up the extra mess and so what? I have ALL the time to do it.
6.Family bonding time: This is my mom’s favorite; she loves long walks in the park. So we all go together to breath fresh air like she says! I do not enjoy it as much as she does because my head is always working and thinking but I am learning how to slow down my monkey mind and just relax! + The kids burn the excess energy by running all over the place.
It is also the time to dust up all those board games you bought and never opened! They are fun and a great way to spend time together unless you have a kid like Mila my 5 years old that hates losing then it is a recipe for disaster.
7. Read or write: Another one of my mom’s favorite. If you enjoy reading good for you, this is a good time to spend reading books from your favorite authors and/or discovering new ones and perhaps joining an online book club.
The only books I enjoy reading are self-development or business oriented books. I discovered pod casts and I like listening to them as well especially around the house while I am cleaning. There are a variety of them out there I am sure you can find one that suits your taste.
Writing is a good way to make good use of your time, especially If you have blog on your business page and like me your also are also “ Zee blogger” (small business owner baby!) Then you have to write because you have to post on your blog, unless you have money to pay someone to do it for you. Funny enough I do not enjoy writing but I am always proud of my self when I re read my articles.
8. Call your friends and family members; In my mind, I am always calling my grand mother, she lives far away and the honest truth is that I do not call her as much as I should especially knowing that she impatiently waits for those calls. She wants to know what is going on with her great gran kids and all that small talk. When I finally call her, I rush it, busy body. I called her 2 days ago, it lasted over 1 hour and I know it made her happy and it made me happy too
I have lived in various countries and most of my good friends are all over the world. Yesterday, I had a 30 min video chat on whats app with 4 of them simultaneously. I didn’t know that was possible to video chat with 4 people at a time! Man, it was great I haven’t had a good laugh like that in a while.
Use your time to connect/ reconnect with family members and dear friends.
9. Start a new hobby: Aspiring collector or have you always wanted to learn an instrument or dance? Your time has come my friend!
10. Sleep: Memo to myself. Unfortunately it is a hopeless dream for me at this time with my kids, not happening. If you can, then do SLEEP and get some well deserved rest, you don’t know it is a luxury until you are sleep deprived!
Your turn, please add in the comments section other things people can do with the extra time on hand or just share with us what you are doing. I look forward to reading from you! and share this article. XOXO