If you are reading this, you are probably already quarantined or will be soon. The world as we know it is gradually being canceled until further notice and there is nothing we can do to stop it. If you’re still skeptical about the necessity of quarantines, read this article. There are lots of ways to stay connected to your friends and family. You could also use the time to work on yourself by meditating, reading, exercising and learning new things. There are many safe things you can do from home! Check out these quarantine activities.
1. Virtual Museum Tours
You can experience new things without leaving your home. There are currently 12 famous museums around the world offering amazing virtual tours. You can read more about the details here. This has been shared a lot on social media and it’s great that something fun yet educational can be an option for quarantine activities. The list of museums that are doing this are:
- British Museum, London
- Guggenheim Museum, New York
- National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.
- Musée d’Orsay, Paris
- National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, Seoul
- Pergamon Museum, Berlin
- Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam
- Van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam
- The J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles
- Uffizi Gallery, Florence
- MASP, São Paulo
- National Museum of Anthropology, Mexico City
2. Discover New Games to Play
I know a lot of gamers that aren’t concerned with how to pass their time in quarantine. Personally, I’m not a big gamer but even I ordered an original Play Station to fire up my childhood games. I also ordered puzzles cause I’m a nerd like that. For those who like to play on their own and want new inspiration, check out these fun games. However, there are so many fun games that you can play with your friends no matter where they are.
Did you know that there’s a game that involves a bomb that will explode if people stop talking? Yup, sounds just up my alley cause I rarely shut up. This game costs $10 per person and can be played on most devices from any phone, computer and PS4, Switch and Xbox 1. It can also be played in VR!
Another great place to discover various different games is Roll20. This platform has more complex games that you can play with people anywhere in the world. You can all talk to each other while playing and there are so many games to chose from. The account is free and doesn’t require any downloads, you play in your browser.
Finally, there’s Jackbox, a paid service that allows up to eight people to play games and up to 10,000 viewers to watch you play. These games are all simple and easy to play. Perfect for families, friends and just about anyone. All games cost money but you can buy them in packs and they often have games on sale. Check the different games and party packs here.
“Available on just about every platform except the smart fridge, the Jackbox Party Packs are ready to take your get-together to the next level.”Jackbox
3. Watch Movies Together
We have all watched movies with people far away and it is one of the easiest quarantine activities to organize. In the good old days it would take a phone call or a scheduled time to click play. Today, we have better technology where you can actually watch the same movie at the same time without one of you having to yell “pause, I have an add cause I use the cheaper version of Hulu.” (P.S. this was me until I realized that the food ads made me overeat so I paid the extra $3.)
Anyway, the best way to do this is have a Facebook watch party. This is all free and you can do it with all your Facebook friends, groups that allow it and you can create a specific group if you want to only watch it with certain people. Here’s what you can and can’t watch:
“Facebook Watch features a variety of content from creators who use the platform in the same way creators use YouTube and Instagram TV. If you follow creators from those platforms, there’s a chance you’ll also find them on Facebook Watch. In addition to user-generated content, the service also finances Facebook Originals in the same vein as Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon Prime. This exclusive content includes original comedy and drama programming, game shows, talk shows, and news programs. Facebook Watch also includes live streaming sports content from the MLB, WWE, PGA, college football, and other sources.”Lifewire
4. Create Chats with Friends and Family
I’m writing this while seeing the news say that we may all be in quarantine for eight weeks. This is an incredibly long time to be at home alone. I should know as I have been working form home since June 2019. I am finally used to it, but it was hard and there was some depression. I’d like to give you all some tips at the end of this article that may help. But for now, let’s get back to chatting with friends and family.
Obviously, there are many ways to get in touch with people or groups of people via chat, calls, audio, video, even VR at this point, right? However, I’d like to recommend two platforms that were built to do this. Wirecutter has good things to say about them:
“Slack and Discord are both popular and free (or free enough), and they let you set up channels, so people can talk about specific topics without everything devolving into a head-spinning tornado of GIFs and chatter. That way, if you want to keep politics and COVID-19 talk sequestered to a certain channel, you can, and then have another one for pictures of pets and kids, another for sharing what you’re listening to, and so on.”Wirecutter
5. Stay Physically Active
Speaking from experience, being home for a long period of time can change you. I started wearing PJs more, showering less and my fitness deteriorated at an incredible rate. Staying active is absolutely essential to both mental and physical health. I recommend using a smart/fitness watch, app or even just your phone to set hourly or in my case bi-hourly alarms to remind me to get off my butt and move. The alarm rings and I get up. Sometimes I just pace around a bit, other times I also use this alarm to drink a glass of water. If I’m feeling extra motivated, I’ll do sit ups or another exercise.
If you are working from home, I also recommend buying a desk bike. I bought one for $30 on Amazon and it is amazing. It helps relieve stress and keeps me moving. I also sit on a ball chair that keeps my muscles working even when I’m not actively moving. Despite all this, I have still gained weight. It was only going to the gym that got me out of this rut. Now I can’t do it and I’m worried. I am hoping to find motivation to get on my treadmill or stationary bicycle soon. However, there are also apps that help you exercise and give you a routine to follow.
7-minute-workout is a great free app that does as it promises. It gives you easy-to-follow workouts that take just 7 minutes. You can do this once a day, twice or even more! It’s a great way to stay in shape, work those muscles and get you in better shape (or back in shape in my case.) You can read more about this great app here.
Obviously, if you want to do something specific you can also just look it up on YouTube. But from my experience, it helps to have the motivation coming from one place that is consistent. I also recommend joining MyFitnessPal or similar apps that let you connect with friends and keep you accountable. MyFitnessPal lets you share your meals, exercises, weight updates and more with your friends. They also have a forum where you can chat about fitness with others around the world.
Exercise is definitely a must when it comes to quarantine activities. It can help you stay in shape and feel happier as well as healthier. Consider getting a Wii Fit or other games that incorporate movement into your fun activities instead of simply moving to exercise.
By the way, check out my article on apps that help you work on yourself. They are a great thing to explore and incorporate into your quarantine activities. They are also all free.
Final quarantine activities and tips from a long-term work-at-home survivor:
Try to maintain your usual routine. When you stop showering or wear the same PJs for a week, things deteriorate quickly. Also, try to get some fresh air and sunlight. This may not be easy depending on how intense the quarantine gets. If you have a yard, go out and spend time in it. Same goes for a balcony. Order some seeds and start a garden if that’s what it takes to get you out. Humans literally need sunlight to be healthy and happy. If you live in a dark house like I do, get a Happy Light.
Happy Lights are lamps that simulate the sun and they are a type of therapy lamp. I have a Verilux myself and I have felt a difference since getting it. It was well worth the $80 although I didn’t shop around much. There are various other companies and price ranges that could be more your speed. My lamp has different settings including two colors of light and three intensity setting. I usually choose a cold light on low intensity and I have it on during my entire eight-hour work day.
Also, if you live alone, I recommend that you get plants or maybe even a low-maintenance pet to keep you company. Before I worked from home here in the USA, I did it in China. I had a lot less options to go outside and interact with people other than my husband. The day I got a fish, my world got a little brighter. Just seeing a living being around is enough to brighten anyone’s spirits. I recommend goldfish as they are pretty low maintenance in my experience. Just make sure to do your research before taking on a living creature. You may not think it, but even losing a fish can be really tough especially when you’re isolated.
Finally, don’t be afraid to reach out to others. Asking for help can make all the difference. I used to stick to myself and keep my issues private. I recently opened up about depression and shared the thoughts that I thought were so dumb and irrational with others. Turns out, everyone has these issues. We all struggle with one thing or another and we can all relate to other people’s problems on some level. Don’t be afraid to ask for help. You may even make stronger bonds or new friends and enjoy some quarantine activities together.
Feature image borrowed from Wilx.com.