50 Things you can do in quarantine

a student studying during the quarantine with a mask on

Written by Charaf Mrah

Salut! I'm a college student majoring in Software Engineering. I created this website to share whatever I'm learning with you.

July 2, 2020

Staying home for long periods of time can be very boring and stressful sometimes. In this blog, I tried to come up with things that you and I can do during this quarantine. I chose to pick 50 different ideas because at times it feels like there’s nothing to do at home. So here are a few 50 ideas that you can do if you’re bored at home during this pandemic:

1 – learn to code

Learning how to code is easier than ever (especially now during the quarantine). 9-year-olds are able to do it with the help of new techniques and free resources online. Learning how to code isn’t just helpful to get a job or to work on a project, it’s rather about the logical process of thoughts and programs. Coding is an art in my opinion and learning it will definitely help you in one way or another. Some free resources are:

2 – pick a free course online

Sometimes learning through a book is so boring that I just quit. Courses on the other hand are usually lighter and have many interacting components to them that they’re usually much more fun. There are many different free courses online from different subjects that you can choose from. I randomly choose the field and just follow a course to get more perspective about the field. Some of the best free websites in my opinion are:

3 – watch documentaries during the quarantine

Documentaries can be as interesting and fun as movies if produced well. Sometimes they’re even more intriguing than movies because of the reality factor. The genre and source will depend on you for this one, for each of their taste and interests.

4 – learn how to cook

Learning how to cook is a must during the quarantine. Making sushi by yourself is possible today because of the internet… especially YouTube. There’s nothing to explain here you simply look for a video and follow the instruction and Bon appetite.

5 – make a website

Making websites today is almost as easy as making a social media account. You can go the harder path of learning how to make it from scratch by yourself using HTML, CSS, and javascript or you can simply use paid services that will do the programming for you and all you have to do is choose the theme and edit the look and feel of it. There are many service providers of this kind on the internet and it will depend on the type of website you’re trying to make. But here are some of my picks:

6 – start a blog

You can start a blog during this quarantine on the website you create using the service providers I mentioned in the previous idea, or you can use even easier platforms such as blogger.

7 – start an online store

Starting an online store doesn’t only depend on the website you create. It depends obviously on the products more. You now have time to think about what to sell and you can think about how to market it…etc.

8 – paint something

Painting isn’t my strong suit since a young age I hated painting and coloring. But whenever I do it right I feel I’ve achieved something. With the time in our hands now it’s probably a good time to get better at it (or maybe not idk).

9 – make an app

Making an app isn’t as easy as making a website of course, but if you have the right idea of an app that you can monetize or just want to have fun with, then there’s nothing impossible. If you learned any programming language before then it won’t be a hard thing for you to get new skills in either Android or iOS development. Learning your second programming language is going to be much faster and easier than your first. You’ll need to learn Java or Kotlin for Android or Swift for iOS. After learning the programming language you can then move on to learn how to apply them for each platform with the help of the internet. You can simply google Android/iOS app development for beginners.

10 – workout (yes during the quarantine)

Again, because of the internet I was able to find many many many in home exercises on YouTube that are easy to follow and have great results. In order to do it efficiently and consistently I would advice you to set a certain time for workouts and workouts only. You can certainly lose a lot of weight or gain muscles from your bedroom. I’m saying this because I did it myself in the past three months I lost about 8 kgs and built a fairly good amount of muscle from just working out in my bedroom.

11 – clean your digital life

The mess you create with your files and apps will one day come and haunt you. The quarantine is a good time to spend on organizing your files and deleting the extra junk. That also goes for your social media accounts, we all follow many different accounts that inactive or just irrelevant to what we are looking for. As a bonus, you’ll get a better experience then next time you log in to your device or social media account.

12 – organize your real life

That goes on to anything from the closet to the bedroom to travel plans…etc. You can get the extra junk out and enjoy the new free space.

13 – learn about typography

This will depend on your interest in art in general. But if you’re doing any work that includes typing and presenting them to people then this will help you in making it look better. Most typefaces on the internet are in fact horrible because they’re made by random unskilled people. Learning about typography will make your font choices much better.

14 – start a YouTube channel

Starting a YouTube channel might look easy from the outside looking in. All you have to do is create a google account and boom: you have a channel. That was true in the early days of YouTube where there were no standards. All you had to do is a film with any type of camera and do anything and that’s it. Today however the quality bar is higher and the competition is tighter. There are many different skills that you need to learn in order to produce a good quality YouTube video. But you can always just make it for the fun of course and not worry about views at all. So starting a channel during this quarantine might be a good idea.

15 – create content for different social media platforms

Getting bored of Instagram? try TikTok! trying new platforms is a great thing in my opinion. Don’t judge a platform by the content in it, judge it by the tools and algorithms available. You can certainly make educational content on any platform but by changing the format and style.

16 – learn more about art

You can never learn enough about art and art history, now with the internet, it’s impossible. By art, I mean any kind of art you want, from paintings to hand made crafts. Learning about the history of something or the science behind it will make you appreciate more in the future.

17 – learn the basics of graphic design

Graphic design is at the stage where I think it should be taught in schools. The tools are very easy to use and the basics of graphic design are easy to understand. You can look for any beginners’ course about graphic design and get miles better at making posters or your project slides.

18 – discover cosmology and astronomy

I picked this in particular because it’s something you look at every time you look at the sky. This one might be biased towards my interests but I think that it’ll make looking at the sky much more fun. Learning about how marvelous and unbelievably huge space is will broaden your perspective about life in general.

19 – learn how to type faster

I talked about this in my previous blog. But just to emphasize this again: it’s one of the best ways to save time if you type on a keyboard frequently. And especially that there’s a lot of free time during this quarantine, I think that it’s the perfect time for it.

20 – read more about how to protect your online privacy

Protecting your privacy online is as important as doing it in real life. There are many different practices and things you can do to protect your privacy but the one thing that you should forever keep in your mind is anything that touches the internet is on the internet forever. You can do your research about this, anything you share whether you deleted it or not will forever be flowing in some wire somewhere. One of the best websites that talks about privacy and how to protect yourself is PrivacyTools.

21 – read books in different subjects than you usually do

Trying out new territories can feel weird at the beginning but after time it becomes more enjoyable and interesting. If you’re a math major maybe pick a book about medicine?

22 – do nothing

This is probably the hardest idea to apply, even for me. I don’t like just sitting there doing nothing for long periods of time. But the truth is when I do my brain gets to rest and starts thinking in a new creative way about problems or just about things to do. You can do this by meditation but I just do nothing for some time until my brain gets so bored that it creates something new.

23 – play new games

If you’re game a lot you sometimes get sucked into a game for so long that you forget to try out new things. You can easily forget how fun indie games until you try them out again.

24 – start a journal

I’m not a big fan of journaling nor writing things on paper. But the truth is many people find this helpful and makes their minds clearer and thus more productive. Try it out and see what works best for you.

25 – learn how to make music

Just like video production, making music isn’t only for professionals now. You can make a beat and record vocals using the little computer in your pockets in a matter of minutes. As in most tips, you can easily find free courses online (and even free software) to make music.

26 – learn how to use Photoshop

There are many easy to use photo editing apps available today, but the fact is: nothing is close to Photoshop. By learning how to use Photoshop you’ll be able to do ANYTHING that involves pictures. From poster to websites templates to logos…etc

27 – learn how to edit videos

You can learn how to edit videos using free easy to use software available on your phone or you can dive deeper and learn how to use more powerful and robust software on your computer. Best ones so far are:

  • Adobe premiere
  • Final Cut (Only Mac users)
  • Sony vegas
  • DaVinci Resolve (There’s a good free version)

28 – discover the basics of interior design

You can always hire someone to do your interior design or you can just ignore the design and mix up everything. Another alternative is to learn the basics of interior design and decorate your place based on both good art practices and your personal taste.

29 – grow an Instagram account

Maybe you love a certain sport or a certain type of cupcakes, you can always make an account about that hobby and grow an Instagram following that you can either monetize later and turn it into a business or you can just have the fun adventure of meeting people that are interested in your hobby as well. Quarantine is the perfect time for this imo.

30 – learn about the stock market

I remember thinking that in order to understand the stock market and stocks I had to attend university classes or spend a long time reading a lot of books. But it turns out, just as everything we talked about, you can learn it easily through the internet. Although you won’t become an expert in a few days, you can certainly understand how it works and the different terminologies in it by just watching YouTube videos about it and reading on google. Then maybe if you want to dive deeper you can read a book.

31 – read about the history of your field

If you’re programmer how about learning about the history of computers and programming? that goes on to any field or specialty. It won’t just make you better at your field, it will change your perspective about it as well.

32 – start a podcast

If you love talking a lot about anything really, you can record it and call it a podcast. Of course it would be helpful to have a theme and meaning, but no matter what you’re talking about there are usually people interested in it.

33 – visit old failing projects and see what went wrong

During this quarantine, we have enough time to reevaluate failures, and looking at what went wrong in detail is going to help anyone moving forward.

34 – Start using a password manager

One thing that kept me off from using password managers is the time that I had to spend understanding how the software worked exactly in order to trust is and then moving all my passwords an changing them all over again. Although it might be tiring, but it’s 100% worth it. There are many different free and paid passwords available online.

35 – learn a new language (you might want to travel after the quarantine is over)

Learning a new language needs one thing: consistency. If you’re consistent enough there’s no other result than learning the language. With the available free time now there’s plenty to pick a new language and start learning it for free from the internet. But in order to be consistent you’ll need to have a good motivational reason to do so, that one is on you.

36 – Solve a Rubik’s cube

I don’t know about you but I personally enjoy solving a Rubik’s cube. I remember as a kid not knowing how to do it at all, and nobody that I knew did. But I had the privilege to be born in the internet world and I found how to solve it after one google search.

37 – build your own personal computer

If your computer is slowing down and you think it’s time to upgrade, then maybe it’s a good time to learn about the different parts of a computer and maybe making one (unless you want to use a Mac). Even just learning about the different parts of the computer will give you the ability to choose your next computer more wisely according your personal needs.

38 – organize your financial life

Personal finance is unfortunately untaught in schools. Many people are struggling financially not because they’re not making money, but because they’re not managing it at all. It’s not that hard to learn about how to do so using (again) the help of uncle google this quarantine.

39 – find new artists to listen to

I think it’s a good time to look for either new upcoming artists or just artists you never listened to before. With the amount of free time available you can probably waste some time doing the search process.

40 – create your goals for the next few years

Setting goals without acting on them is not only useless but can be harmful. Set your goals reasonably and set the steps of how to act on them.

41 – learn about A.I and how to use it

A.I is taking over the world without us noticing it. We might think that it’s something getting developed in labs for the next 50 years. But the fact is, we’re using it on day to day basis: from google search to YouTube recommendations to maps navigation to autopilot cars. Learning about how to use A.I might help you implement it in your field or maybe something that you think about.

42 – freelancing to work

If you’re not enjoying your current jobs then maybe try freelancing during the quarantine period. Freelancing takes a lot of unpaid time in the beginning in order to get used to it and also to get reviews to get more work in the future. This might be a good time for you to figure out if freelancing is a good choice for you or not.

43 – connect with people you missed

Check your contacts list and you’ll maybe find someone that you missed and didn’t talk to for some time now. Contact them and catch up on life maybe.

44 – get more knowledge about nutrition and health

What annoys me the most about the “nutrition industry” are the inconsistencies in it. You’ll find two articles next to each other, one talking about how you’ll die if you eat meat and the other about how you might die if you don’t. Learning about nutrition in a more scientific way will serve you when you see the next click bait article you see.

45 – implement healthy practices

Healthy practices usually need self control and discipline. Don’t leave this for tomorrow and try acting on it today during quarantine.

46 – get a pet

This will heavily depend on your situation and your location. If you’re able to do it both financially and also not going against the health practices then that’s a good idea. A pet will take at least 15 minutes of your day and if you play them they can occupy 2 hours of your day bonding with them and having a good time.

47 – understand mental health better

There are many myths and misconceptions about mental health in our societies. Reading more about mental health will both help you take care of yours and also take care of others.

48 – Learn photography

If you have a phone purchased in recent years then you probably have a very powerful and capable camera. You don’t need a DSLR camera in order to get good looking pictures anymore. But having a powerful camera means nothing when you don’t have the necessary skills and knowledge. You can take your photography skills to the next level just by taking a few tutorials. This will be helpful to you in your own pictures or you can even turn it into a source of income.

49 – learn about subjects that you hated because of school

One of the subjects that I hated the most in school was physics because of all the terrible physics teachers that I had. I tried a physics course and read a physics book online just to have another judgment about it and it turned out to be amazing to the point that I considered changing my field of studies. I don’t think that there are bad studying fields, especially in science, so if you hated one because of school then maybe have a second look at it and you might change your perspective.

50 – start a side hustle

You can turn your hobby into your side hustle and eventually your full-time job if you want to with the help of the internet during the quarantine. That can be by either making YouTube videos about it or writing about it or anything really. And if you don’t have a hobby then it’s time to look for one.

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