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15 Things to do While in Coronavirus Lockdown

We’re living in unusual times; here are some ideas to help you stop drifting and keep moving forward

Jeffrey Bates
Mar 24 · 10 min read
Photo by Lauren Peng on Unsplash

Start With a Daily Schedule

We started by planning out each day. In the evening, our family sits down and creates a schedule for the following day. We take it one day at a time and keep it simple.

With the new day comes new strength and new thoughts. — Eleanor Roosevelt

The items on this list are in no particular order. Some are fun, and some are tedious, but all of them will help to give you a renewed sense of purpose and control.

1. Writing or Journaling

Photo by Angelina Litvin on Unsplash

2. Meditation

If you’ve never meditated, starting now might be the most beneficial step you can take to bringing a renewed sense of clarity to your life. I practice a simple style of mindfulness meditation. Find a place in your space that’s quiet and calm with good natural light or soft (non-florescent) lighting. Usually, I prefer using a cushion to prop myself up, but it’s not a big deal. You can sit in a chair or lie on the floor. Laying down if you’re still sleepy might not be the best idea. I think 15 minutes is the right amount of time to meditate. The first five minutes my mind is all over, the next five I’m a bit back and forth, and the last five I’m experiencing stillness. It’s always surprising to me that by clearing my mind, I’m able to then refocus on the essential things.

3. The Magic Art of Tidying Up

A few years ago, we read and followed Marie Kondo’s book The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up. Her process is genuinely life-changing. Now that you’re in your space 24 hours a day turning it into a place that brings you joy is more important than ever.

Photo by Naomi Hébert on Unsplash

4. Practice Essentialism

Greg McKeown wrote an excellent book titled Essentialism. Its premise is not about getting less done; it’s about getting only the right things done. What that means is beginning to examine everything you do and start making decisions on what is truly important to your life.

5. Bodyweight Workouts

If you haven’t already run out and purchased your Peloton, you should try a bodyweight workout. I sit at a desk all day, and I’ve introduced stretching and a simple exercise routine that I do every couple of hours.

Photo by Dane Wetton on Unsplash

6. Reconnect With Family and Friends

I’m a bit of an introvert, and laying low is not such a terrible thing. But consider how your older relatives in self-quarantine are feeling. I’ve been trying to get in touch with my parents every day. We’ve been using FaceTime, and I know getting to see their grandkids every day is something they appreciate. I also spoke with my college roommate and a few old friends. A great place to start is just sending them a note, “Hey, I was thinking about you. I hope you’re doing OK.”

Photo by Vladislav Klapin on Unsplash

7. Read Both Fiction and Non-fiction Books

I’ve always been a reader, but lately, the non-fiction books I’ve been reading are focused on business, marketing, and personal growth. I’ve gotten away from reading for pleasure.

Photo by Clem Onojeghuo on Unsplash

8. Start a Side Hustle

It’s probably not the time to start driving for Lyft or reselling items on Craigslist. What you can be doing is selling things online. Create an online course, start a podcast, write and publish an ebook or write for an excellent platform like Medium! Find ways to monetize your existing knowledge and experience. If you try something different right now, you’ll be gaining valuable new expertise to use in the future as well.

9. Wake the Zombies

I’ve worked at SaaS (software as a service) companies for the past five years. There’s a saying at these businesses, never wake the zombies. Zombies are people who’ve signed up for their monthly service and never use it, and the companies keep charging them every month for it.

10. Create a Will

Not because you’re going to die from COVID-19, everyone needs to have a will. It would be an incredible pain in the ass for your family to deal with your estate if you do not have a will. You will get to decide who gets your property instead of your State’s Laws.

11. Financial Health Check

We are entering into scary times. The stock market is in a freefall, and there will be significant disruptions to every industry, including job losses. It’s going to be a long time before we know how much damage has been done to the economy. As painful as it might be to look at your 401k or other investment accounts, you need to know where you stand financially. Go through every account and write out a list of every asset. Next, write down every liability, credit card debt, mortgage, car payments, etc. Whether your current situation feels good or bad, knowing exactly where you stand financially brings a tremendous amount of relief.

12. Call your internet/cable/mobile providers

Now is a good time to call these services and negotiate lower rates. I decided to cancel cable TV and only keep Netflix and internet. I called my provider and was forwarded to someone from the customer retention team. We went over my plan to see how to lower my monthly charges. In the end, they knocked $50 off, and I kept everything the same minus sports channels. They understand what’s coming, and fortunately, companies have been empowering their support teams to work with clients.

13. Homeschooling Your Kids and Also Yourself

Do you have a newfound appreciation for your kid’s teachers yet? I always thought homeschooling was a bit odd, but now every parent gets to be a teacher. We’re technically on spring break and slowly coming up with a plan. It’s a good thing that all those “odd” people have it all figured out. Here’s a good article from Parents magazine on where to get started.

Photo by Jerry Wang on Unsplash

14. Organize Passwords

I’ve been using a Lastpass free account for a while, 1Password is another good option. It’s embarrassing, but before I switched, I used the same password on almost every account. Then I would change one or two characters, but it became so confusing I would need to continually input three variations before I’d find the correct password. It was easy to set up, but a bit time consuming to try and identify every account I used. After I finished and added the Lastpass app on my phone, it’s been amazing.

15. Baking

Good for you if you managed to grab a bag of flour and some yeast before they sold out. If you haven’t tried no-knead bread, it is as amazing as everyone says it is. I’ve used this recipe from Jo Cooks many times, and I’m always floored when it turns out amazing.

Photo by Kate Remmer on Unsplash

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Jeffrey Bates

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Creative director, designer, and athlete writing on topics of design, sport, and life. Founding member of

The Startup

Medium's largest active publication, followed by +607K people. Follow to join our community.

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