We’ve been told not to panic, but it’s hard not to. Especially when we are surrounded by media outlets constantly reporting on it and people are panic buying items. (TP shortage – I’m looking at you.) So I’ve created a list of 50 things you can do to keep your mind busy if you have anxiety and can’t stop thinking about the Coronavirus.
1. Read a Book
Pick up an old favorite or a new one. Whether it’s paperback, hardback or an ebook, just submerse yourself in a story. It’s sure to stop your coronavirus fears in their tracks as you focus on that old romance story you loved so much or the latest best-selling fantasy novel.
2. Listen to an Audiobook
Maybe you don’t like to read. Maybe reading gives you a headache or you just can’t focus on reading. Listening to an audiobook is just as good as reading a physical or ebook. You can do a few of the other activities on this list while you listen to your book. Two birds, one stone. In this kind of scenario your brain will be extra busy and you’ll limit the amount of times your mind wanders to the CV subject.
3. Paint a Picture
I’m not the world’s best painter, but I do really enjoy painting. You don’t have to create a masterpiece that might one day be hung in the Louvre. You just have to have fun doing it. There are so many different techniques and paints out there that it could be fun to mix them around and see what’s your favorite. This is an activity you could include your kids in and make it a family activity. Not only will you be having fun, but you’ll be bonding as well.
4. Color in an Adult Coloring Book
Adult coloring books have been around for quite a while now and while the fad might have fizzled out some, it’s still fun and very therapeutic. You can immerse yourself in the page you’re working on and let any of your (enter word here) worries slip away. You can order a book (or two, or three!) and some markers or colored pencils right on Amazon and have it shipped to your door. So if your biggest fear right now is public places you can still pick up some items to be delivered. If you don’t want to wait or spend the money, you can download and print pages for free!
5. Write in Your Journal
Maybe you couldn’t resist the sale last year or you just had to have that Italian leather rose journal the moment you saw it in the store, now is the perfect time to take it out and start writing in it. You don’t have to get technical. You don’t even have to write down anything important. But writing in a journal can be totally therapeutic. Especially if you use it to write down your fears and rants. Even if you feel crazy, just go ahead and do it because you’ll feel much better afterwards. You could even use your journal as a memory keeper to keep track of the silly things your kids do. Or that award you won at work today. No matter what you do, it’s a good way to keep your mind busy at least for a few minutes!
6. Write a Story
Calling all aspiring writers that dream to write a book one day. Why not start it now? Pick up that computer or notebook and get writing. Just get it all out. Don’t hesitate or go back to edit it. Just get that first draft out. It’s the perfect way to busy your mind in a way that can bring a serious sense of accomplishment and who knows even land you a contract with a publishing house.
7. Edit a Story
Maybe you have already written your story, but it’s just been sitting there. The fear of editing settled into your mind and you’ve shoved your manuscript into a box somewhere so you don’t have to think about the sometimes daunting task of editing. Here’s the perfect opportunity to pull it out and start making those edits and rewrites.
8. Start a Blog
I find blogging so much fun which is probably why I’ve had at least 10 + blogs since I was 14. It’s a great way to put your ideas out on the internet. Maybe it’s just for you. A digital diary. Or maybe you’ve got experience in a field you’d like more people to learn about. Start that blog today. Fill your time with brainstorming, writing, and editing blog posts. Take your time with the design and don’t forget to head over to Canva to get yourself some great graphics for your blog or socials.
*The Canva link is my personal referral code! If you sign up using it, we both receive one credit towards premium images!*
9. Watch a Youtuber’s Entire Collection of Videos
You probably have at least one favorite YouTuber. Have you watched every single one of their videos? If not, this activity could be perfect. Go back to their first video and start from there. Watch every single one of their videos and notice how they’ve grown and changed over the years. Not only will it provide some relief from the stress it can also provide you an insight into how your favorite YouTuber(s) have changed over the course of their channel.
10. Watch Multiple Videos on the Same Subject (NOT Coronavirus Related!)
Go to YouTube and search for one of your favorite topics or something you’re interested in. You can spend hours watching videos related to just that first one you picked. Sometimes it switches and you end up way off topic from the first one you started with, but that can be part of the fun. Just please don’t YouTube the Coronavirus as this would defeat the purpose!
11. Draw a Detailed Picture
Why not take your shot at drawing a very detailed picture? Even if you don’t think you have the skills, there’s plenty of tutorials for drawing on the internet that you can follow to draw a great picture. Drawing takes a lot of time and patience meaning it can keep your mind busy for quite a while. If you already draw well, why not challenge yourself to draw something you never have before. Maybe something with more details or just a completely different subject than you’ve drawn before.
12. Learn a New Skill
There’s a great website called Skill Share where you can go and learn a new skill. Skill Share is the perfect way to do this. The classes are lead by every day people and professionals in whatever it is you are interested in. They have classes that are business related, there’s creative related classes and there’s even classes for lifestyle and productivity. You can get two months free right now and start learning right away. Why not do it?
13. Crochet a Blanket
Crocheting was once one of my favorite hobbies. I haven’t done it in a while, but with a box of string downstairs and crochet hooks hidden all over the house, I’m considering creating a stash buster blanket where basically it’ll be the same pattern throughout but created by using all my remaining yarn. You can pick up yarn for cheap at Michaels, Hobby Lobby or Joanns and a couple crochet hooks (don’t forget to check out amazon!). There’s patterns both free, and paid all over the internet that you can follow. Along with tutorials on YouTube that make it very easy for beginners. It’s a great way to pass the time and focus your mind on something other than worrisome subjects.
14. Knit a Scarf
Same as above but a different technique using a different needle. You could also knit a blanket if you chose to or even crochet a scarf. Both of these go a little hand-in-hand. Why not just pick up items for both and find which one you like better. Some prefer knitting, while others prefer crocheting. You might as well check out other needle crafts like cross stitching.
15. Bake Some Goodies
Not only can baking keep your mind off stuff but the end result is the best. I find baking to be a lot of fun, though I cannot decorate that great. But who cares what it ends up looking like as long as it tastes good. You can find millions of recipes right here on the internet. My favorite being these Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies.
16. Start a New Series (or Rewatch an Old Fave)
The best way to busy your mind is to jump into one of those new Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime, or Disney+ series you’ve been meaning to check out. Or even just go back to re-watching an old favorite. Nathan and I currently re-watching Sons of Anarchy on Hulu and I love it. I don’t think we’ll ever tire of the show. If you’ve got a show like that, why not restart it and re-live all your favorite moments?
17. Start Planning in a Happy Planner
You didn’t actually think I was going to make a list of things you can do to busy yourself without mentioning this, did you? Seriously though, there’s so many different things you can do with a Happy Planner. You can customize it to fit your needs. You can frankenplan several planners into one. Or you can even get a few for notebooks. Heather Kell’s Topic’s For Multiple Planners videogives you 50 different topics you can use for multiple planners. Check out the video and see if any jump out at you. Not only can you pick Happy Planner stuff up at your local Michaels, Hobby Lobby, or Joann’s but you can also order some of the times on Amazon and all of them from the Happy Planner website.
18. Write Down a List of 100 Things You Are Grateful For
The best way to beat out negative thoughts is to replace them with positive thoughts. Sit down, grab a drink, a pen, and some paper and compile a list of 100 things that you are grateful for. Once this is done, keep it some place that you will see it every day. If you’re feeling anxious, go over the list and know that there are some happy, positive things in your life. It really works wonders.
19. Work Out
Another great way to beat negative thoughts and stress is to get your blood flowing. Working can ease symptoms of both depression and anxiety. Your body starts releasing endorphins when you work out and that helps combat those pesky negative feelings you have. Working out is just as good for physical health as it is for mental health. There are so many benefits you can get from working out and both Amazon Prime Video and YouTube have some great work out videos you can follow along with in your own home.
20. Try Out Yoga
Yoga. It’s been a fad for years now. But did you know that Yoga is so much more than going to a studio and posting about it for insta clicks? Yoga has been practiced by people following Buddhism for millennium’s despite what Karen at Hot Yoga has been telling you. Yoga is more about the control of your mind and emotions than it is your flexibility and fitness level. Yoga can really help you out during a particular stressful time. Though if you start now, I say to continue on with it. It should be a daily thing everyone does.
21. Look Through Old Family Photos
Walking down memory lane can be so fun and fulfilling. It can also keep your mind busy and focused on happy positive things. So go and grab your photo albums and get to flipping. You might be crying by the time you close the last album, but at least you’ll know they are tears of happiness.
22. Complete a Puzzle
Puzzles can be both relaxing and time-consuming (in the most positive way possible). It’s also another fun activity to do with multiple people. Maybe you have different puzzles in your house, you could split those up among family members and make it a challenge or even just challenge yourself to complete the biggest one in a set time-frame. You’ll be too focused on racing against the clock to stop and worry about the you-know-what.
23. Scroll Through iFunny
iFunny is filled with memes. It’s a great way to pass the time because during most of that you’ll be laughing. And if you’re not you’ll at least be thinking “that’s a lame meme” instead of googling how to make your own hand sanitizer from vodka. (Side note, please don’t do this.)
24. Play a Board Game
Another great and fun way to keep your mind busy during this whole crazy thing? Board games. They provide hours of entertainment for multiple people. And if you don’t have any on hand, don’t forget to check out the website named after the Rainforest. There’s so many to choose from. Classic games we played as kids, new games, adult games, family games. You could even play a few card games. Solitaire is a great solo game to play if you’re by yourself. (Duh, it’s kind of in it’s name.)
25. Play a Video Game
Alas, back to the digital age. Playing video games such as GTA and Call of Duty can keep you busy while also being social and then there’s Minecraft which is a great way to be creative while you’re playing on your favorite game console or computer. I love Minecraft because it’s a great game to play with the whole family. Nathan, Brodey, Hailey and I all started our own world together. We have multiple buildings, stock piles, mine tracks, and farms and it’s been a lot of fun seeing what new things we come up with. It’s also a great game to get lost in and lose track of time.
I hope if you’ve got fears about the Coronavirus that you found something on this list that can help you keep your mind off of all the negativity surrounding it. And if you didn’t, I at least hope this article kept you entertained for a small amount of time. If you plan to pick something off this list, what is it? I wanna know!
My top 5 I’m going to do are:
- Write a story – Today I’m challenging myself to add 10K to my current WIP. (Work in progress.)
- I’m heading over to skillshare to sign up for the two months free promo and I’m going to take a few classes over there.
- I’m also going to start my work out regime again. It consists of this video on YouTube, plus walking up and down my stairs 25 times, and lifting my little 8 lb weight.
- I am also going to do that stash buster blanket.
- When my kids get home today, I think we’ll be doing some paintings.