Welcome to day 495 of quarantine. As it would seem that we’re going to be in this thing for a bit, we need tools to help us not lose our everliving minds. I am dedicated to your mental, emotional, and spiritual health, fellow single Christian. Binging shows on your couch might get old at some point, so I’ve come up with some other options to sprinkle into the mix.
Here are ten ways to stay sane in quarantine.
If you live alone (or can’t stand your roommate), there are a couple of ways you can have a virtual game night. You can use Jackbox and whoever is hosting share their screen on Google Hangouts or Zoom. They also have an article about how to play virtually on their site. The party packs of games cost a bit of money, but it’s not bad, especially if you split the cost with a couple of friends.
I also stumbled across this Harry Potter virtual escape room that can be played alone or in a group. I went through it by myself, and there were some challenging moments. If you want to play it as a group, I’d suggest a screen share situation in Google Hangouts.
Zoom Movie Night
I tried multiple ways of doing a virtual movie night, and Zoom was by far the best. My friends and I couldn’t get Netflix Party to work at all, and screen sharing with Google Hangout caused audio and video lags and glitches. Zoom really is the best for this.
If you start a screen share, just make sure you click the option to “Share Computer Audio” as well. I know Zoom cost money for meetings of more than 2 screens that last longer than 40 minutes. If you’re really not looking to shell out $15/month, either only watch it with one other computer or watch your movie in 40 minute increments.
There are a ton of ways to stay active in quarantine if it’s your thing. If it isn't, this would be a good time to look into stretching or yoga, as we are all more sedentary than usual. Even before the lockdown, I was using BeachBody on demand, which has a ton of great workout videos, a large number of which do not require equipment. If you’re not looking to pay for a subscription, check out this article with different free offerings divided by type of workout. There are some big names on there, including Barry’s Bootcamp and 305 Fitness!
Sometimes you just gotta belt out Celine Dion in your apartment by yourself. Search YouTube for the title of your go-to jam + karaoke, and it’s probably there. I haven’t tried this as a group, but I would imagine the audio lag would be a big problem.
Spontaneous dance party
Play upbeat music as you’re cooking or cleaning and let the music take you away. Or schedule a 5 minute dance break regularly in your work day. There are a ton of awesome dance playlists on Spotify to choose from. Looking for slower grooves? Check out Kitchen Swagger. Upbeat? Try Cleaning Kit and Get Chores Done. Browse their “Mood” and “Party” categories for the music that gets you to move.
Entrepreneurs cannot stop doing free webinars right now. I follow a ton who are churning them out left, right, and center. But if you’re looking for something not business-related, check out “The Great Courses” on Audible, iTunes U, and Masterclass.
Your friends also know things. Have you heard of a powerpoint party? Everyone in your crew puts together a brief powerpoint about something they know well (serious or silly), and then gives a presentation. This would be super easy to do in Google Hangouts. Choose a moderator, allow time for a Q&A, and get ready to learn.
There are at least 87 million comedy specials on the various streaming services right now. I’m a big fan of Trevor Noah and John Mulaney, but to each his own. You could also do a Google Hangout with friends and read dad jokes to each other while trying to maintain a straight face. If you smile, the other person gets a point. First person to 10 wins.
When you spend most of the day sitting around staring at your computer, it’s good to get up and do something with your hands. Pinterest is riddled with amazing recipes in varying degrees of complexity. Check out YouTube for video tutorials if you want to learn a new skill, like how to poach meringue or bake a loaf of sourdough.
What’s better than a good story to take your mind off your woes? Maybe you could even host a virtual story time with your friends. I’ve been doing this on my Instagram every night, and it’s super fun. This would be a good alternative to a virtual book club (though that’s a fun option as well). Get together with the same group at the same time every day or every few days and take turns reading from the same book.
Looking for stuff to read? I’ve put together this list of fiction and non-fiction titles. Some are on my list to read in quarantine, some I’ve already read and love.
There are over 600,000 podcasts out right now. And the amount of ready-made playlists? Too numerous to count. I won’t even get into the number of audiobooks available at the touch of a screen. As far as podcasts go, I love Myths and Legends, Science Vs, Pass the Mic, The Next Right Thing, and The Dropout. If you’re looking for stories and conversations from single Christians on the most important things that fill their lives and the stories that have shaped them, you can also check out my podcast, “Unsuitable with MaryB. Safrit.”
This is truly the tip of the iceberg, and all focused on things you can do inside the walls of your apartment. What about you? How are you staying sane? Drop a comment below and let me know!