By Arielle Neill
Here we are again, a third national lockdown. Even though we are all sick of it by now and wish life could return to normal, rather than looking at this time in a negative way, it is important to recognise the opportunity that this time gives us to try new things and relax as our daily routines have become far less busy.
At some point we have all probably reflected on the first lockdown and realised we could’ve used our time in a different way. So, if you’re sick of zoom quizzes and baking banana bread here are some more creative ways you can spend your time in the (hopefully) final lockdown.
1. Have a go at pottery
Feeling creative? Why not try your hand at pottery? With air-dry clay selling from £6.99 on Amazon, anyone can become a sculptor. Whether you make a full-on sculpture or simply your soon-to-be favourite mug, anyone can try their hand at pottery and it can be a useful and productive time filler. Websites such as montemarte.net and delineateyourdwelling.com provide advice for first-time sculptors and there are a range of lessons available online via YouTube.
2. Become an artist
This is another one for those of you out there who love to get creative. Go buy yourself a sketchpad or even a couple canvases and get painting! Again, there are a range of Art classes online or on YouTube. Or, if you want a more hands-on experience, Skillshare offers online classes with a 14-Day free trial period.
3. Learn yoga
In these uncertain times, it’s important to relax and unwind. If you’re a first-time yogi maybe try out some beginner’s classes on YouTube such as Yoga with Kassandra or, if you want to experience classes in real-time, have a go at the weekly live Yogawithmadz classes which offer a student discount of £5 per class. If you are already a pro, why not have a look at some online courses and become a certified instructor? You could then set up your own online yoga classes and start earning!
4. Become TikTok famous
Keen dancer, singer or comedian? Why not start making TikTok videos? It might not be for everyone but for those of you who are not stage shy and think you could provide some quality entertainment, why not give it a go? The emergence of many TikTok stars in lockdown gives us all hope and who knows, within a year you could be living the influencer life.
5. Sell your old clothes on Depop
If you’re anything like me, you probably have a massive pile of clothes hiding somewhere in your house that you’ve been telling yourself you’re going to get rid of for years. Now is the perfect time to get on your grind and start finally earning some money from your old wardrobe! Not only that but re-homing old clothes is more sustainable, so you’re saving the environment as well as your bank account!
6. Learn a new language
Going on holiday might seem like a far cry from our current reality, but learning a new language that you could potentially put into practice this Summer may make you feel more motivated during these times. Duolingo offers a range of language classes varying from French and Spanish to Mandarin Chinese. By learning basic language skills, you are opening yourself up to new opportunities and, if you expand your learning of languages, you will make yourself far more employable.
7. Get Fit
Home workouts became a key part of everyday life during the first Coronavirus lockdown, with PTs such as Joe Wicks and Chloe Ting becoming a staple in all households. If you’re bored of these, you could try other fitness challenges such as CouchTo5K or the Seven-Minute Workout Challenge.
There are also a wide range of healthy cooking recipes on websites such as BBC Good Food and Deliciously Ella. Why not try out some of these and get summer body ready!
Feeling unproductive? Why not give back to society through a volunteering programme? Volunteering is a great way to improve your communication skills, being a great asset for your CV. It has also been a rough year for everyone, making volunteering a great way to give back to the community and improve the livelihoods of others.
Here are some links to volunteering programmes:
9. Watch TV with your Friends, Family or Partner
After completing all these tasks, you probably need some time to unwind. Whether you’re at home or Uni, there will always be some friends or family that you are missing. If you’re tired of Zoom quizzes, you could download Teleparty to stream Netflix shows and movies with your friends whilst chatting to them at the same time.
10. Schedule a Game Night
Finally, a game night is the perfect chance to bring the family/ your housemates together. Maybe schedule it for one or two days a week and get dressed up before you play if you have felt sluggish all week. You could play classics such as Cards or Monopoly, or if you’re feeling daring have a go at Cards Against Humanity (although I wouldn’t recommend this to anyone playing with their family! It can get awkward). Try to find new games to play in order to keep things interesting or even make your own. Everyone loves a bit of healthy competition.
If any of these activities pique your interest and you wish to pursue them outside of lockdown, have a look at the Leeds Student Union page to see if there are any societies you can join.