20 Activities to do While Social Distancing During Covid-19

by | Mar 20, 2020 | 0 comments

Couple riding airplane during Coronavirus outbreak.

It’s been about 2 months now since the first reports of Covid-19 broke the news. So much has changed for us in that time. To make a long story short, Tom and I were in China during the beginning of the outbreak. After watching the country slowly close down around us, we decided to end our trip early and head home. Arriving back in the States, we went into self-isolation for two weeks to ensure we weren’t infected, before heading over to see family. It feels like we only had a moment of freedom though, because shortly after giving ourselves the all clear, the virus broke out across Washington State. Now we find ourselves cooped us once more as everyone self-isolates to try and curb the outbreak. Needless to say, we’ve spent 80% of the past couple months indoors and have gained loads of experience in fending off cabin fever! Here are our top activities to do while social distancing during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Note: All photos with us wearing masks were taken during our time in China and shortly after returning to the US. This occurred before the current shortage of medical supplies.

Cat napping with mask. Naps are great to do while self isolating during covid-19.

1. Take a Nap

Yes, I’m starting this list with taking a cat nap. As someone who doesn’t typically take naps (mostly because I feel it wastes the day), I will also admit that it’s a wonderful guilty pleasure. Social distancing frees up your schedule quite a bit, so take the opportunity to enjoy a guilt free nap while you can.

2. Binge Your Favorite Show

Whether you subscribe to Netflix, Crunchyroll or channels such as HBO, now’s a great time to catch up on that favorite series you’ve been watching.

If you’re tired of the services you already have, then consider trying a new one. Many streaming companies offer trial memberships. You’ll be able to take full advantage of the free content with this extra time on your hands. Or head over to our YouTube channel and watch some of the quests we’ve taken around the world.

Pro Tip: An article by Time says the American Psychological Association found that consuming the news causes stress and anxiety in people. You can of course watch anything you’d like, but we recommend reducing the amount of news you intake. Yes it’s important to stay informed during this outbreak, but in moderation.

Gloomhaven campaign during covid-19
Getting ready to tackle another dungeon in Gloomhaven.

3. Delve into a Board Game

Board games are a great activity to do with others and a perfect alternative to staring at another screen. Dig deep into your closet and pull out that old favorite (or if you’re a gamer, then it’s probably on display in your living room). It’s time to challenge your roomie to a round.

Looking for a new game? Here are a few of our favorites.

4. Play Online Games

If digital is more your speed, and you’re not screened out yet, then play a video or computer game (our friends recently introduced us to BeatSaber and now I’m hooked!). Online games provide a nice escape from reality and are perfect for staying connected while social distancing. Not to mention new content is easily purchased with just the click of a button.

Woman reading indoors during covid-19
I always keep my Kindle nearby, loaded with my latest read.

5. Read a Book

When was the last time you read a book instead of just articles? Give your brain (and imagination!) a boost by reading something new.

Responsible Tip: Avoid visiting the public library or bookstore by using an e-reader. You can find many books (both paid and free) through online services like the library, Amazon Prime or sharing with friends.

6. Do your Taxes

Okay, this one isn’t fun, but sometimes adulting comes first. You’ve got to do your taxes anyway, and being stuck indoors because of Covid-19 seems like a good enough reason to stop procrastinating. Plus, it’ll feel good to have it checked off the to do list.

Pro Tip: Scrap doing your taxes by hand and get the help of a professional service. We personally love TurboTax. They take all the headache and confusion out of the process. All you have to do is enter your data, answer some questions, and they’ll calculate the rest. New customers can even receive up to 20% off your first purchase.

7. Make Babies

If you need to ask what this means, then it’s not for you. If you know what it means, just make sure to play it safe (unless, of course, you are trying to make a baby).

Man making noodles in China
Tom making Chinese noodles.

8. Clean the Fridge and Pantry

If you’re like many people, you stocked up on food and supplies when heading into self-isolation. Finding space for all of that stuff may now pose a problem. Make room by cleaning out your fridge and pantry. Shelf stable foods can still go bad, so it’s important to rotate inventory regularly. Throw out the old and swap in the new.

Pro Tip: Keep your momentum going by cleaning the rest of your house too. It’s called ‘spring cleaning’ for a reason.

9. Learn a New Recipe

What better time to release your inner chef than when you have people trapped inside with you taste testers excited to try your concoctions? Look up a new recipe, order the ingredients online, and then get cooking!

Get $10 off your first Instacart order using our link!

Looking for inspiration? I enjoy Geeks Who Eat and Cookie + Kate whenever looking for new ideas.

Pro Tip: If you’ve cleaned out the fridge and pantry, try a recipe that’ll work with some of your extra or about-to-expire ingredients.

10. Day Drink

You know it’s always 5 o’clock somewhere, and if you’re off the clock, why not treat yourself to a glass or two? You’ve got no where else to be.

Disclaimer: We do not promote underage or irresponsible drinking. Be safe, know your local laws, and imbibe at your own risk.

11. Get Creative

This category is very broad and includes everything from writing to painting, music, LEGOs, cosplay or even that home reno project you’ve been putting off. Really, the goal is to just get your creative juices flowing and stop sitting idle.

Woman talking into rotary phone.
Dover, UK

12. Catch Up With Friends

Since you can’t get together with your closest friends, reconnect with some of your long-distance ones. Send a friendly DM to the people you’ve lost contact with, call your cousin to chat, or stalk those you’d rather keep at arm’s length. Either way, now’s the time to see how their pre and post pandemic life has been.

13. Workout

Just because the gym is closed doesn’t mean you can’t stay in shape while social distancing. There are tons of free videos online that will get your heart pumping. Just clear some rug space and hit play.

Woman in bath watching sunset
Waldor Astoria Trianon Palace in Versailles.

14. Take a Bath

When was the last time you had a good soak? If you’ve got the bathtub, perhaps take an hour to relax and ease your muscles and mind. You could even go all Pretty Woman by adding bubbles and some music to the mix. #pamperyourself

15. Listen to Podcasts or an Audio Book

When you start conversing with your pet, you know it’s time to mix things up. Listening to a podcast or audio book is a great way to engage the brain. Sometimes it’s also just nice to have someone else’s voice in the background.

Woman taking photo in garden
Working on my photography skills in Chiang Mai, Thailand.

16. Learn a New Skill

Have you heard of services such as LinkedIn Learning and Skillshare? They offer online courses in hundreds of topics to help you learn a new skill. Spend some of your extra hours exploring that hobby you’ve always been interested in, or leveling up your career.

17. Garden

One thing Covid-19 can’t stop is the beginning of Spring. Do some gardening when it’s sunny outside and get a much needed dose of vitamin D.

If you have a smaller living space, can’t handle the sun, or just don’t like yard work, then consider getting a few potted plants or succulents. Then throw open the windows and breath that fresh air.

Woman petting cat with face mask
Hostel cat love in Shanghai, China.

18. Care for Your Pets

Animals like stimulation too. If you have pets, make sure to take time to play and pamper them, especially if they aren’t getting outside as often as they’re used to.

The CDC says pets help lower stress, loneliness and depression, so spending extra time with them will also be good for your health.

Hiking in Singapore
Reveling at the summit of the Bukit Timah hike in Singapore.

19. Take a Hike

Okay, this activity isn’t indoors, but does provide a great way to stretch your legs without being near crowds. Generally speaking, people don’t congregate and chit chat while on the trail, so even if you run into other hikers, it’s likely they’ll pass quickly. Additionally, the further afield you go, the better chance of having the trail all to yourself.

Pro Tip: The National Park Service is modifying its operations to promote social distancing. Although some parks are closing completely because of this, those that remain open will be free to enter. It’s unknown how long this free entry will last, so go visit while you can! Just make sure to check the latest updates before driving over.

20. Have a Picnic

Another way to get outdoors while still social distancing is by having a picnic. When the weather is nice, pack up a sack lunch, grab a blanket to sit on, and head to your nearest patch of grass. Sure, if you decide to visit a public park then there may be other people around, but you can easily avoid them when choosing where to sit.

Are there any other activities you’d recommend while stuck inside during Covid-19? Leave us your ideas in the comments below.

Fend off cabin fever by saving these activities for later!

This article contains affiliate links for items we know and love. Every time a product or service is purchased through one of these links, we receive a small commission, at no additional cost to you. This helps us keep the site running. Thanks in advance for any and all support! - L&T

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We’re Laura & Tom, two geeks with a passion for travel.

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