Ideas on How to Pass Time during Self-Isolation

Senior in the Garden

Whilst a self-isolation of this caliber is unlike anything the current generation has experienced, our seniors and elderly are no strangers to hardship. Whether it was war, famine or infectious diseases, the younger generations have a lot they can learn from the resilience and ingenuity of our senior citizens. One incredible example is their ability to adapt and be industrious in dire circumstances. While we are mourning the loss of our physical freedom, we have gained time and we can use that time to pursue our interests and improve morale.

Hobbies are an incredibly personal choice, but the following is just a starter list to inspire you to go back to your roots. What hobbies have you been putting on the backburner? How can you use those hobbies to reconnect with yourself, or to better connect with others?


Whether it is writing letters to get reacquainted with an old friend, creatively writing a novel series or telling your personal history in the form of a memoir, writing can be a therapeutic release for the feelings you have during these stressful times. This is especially true if you can use writing as a means to collaborate with your family members.

  • Writing letters to friends and family.
  • Oral histories, tell your children and grandchildren your family history as you know it, and have them write it.
  • Write poetry about themes that are meaningful to you: nature, romance, philosophy.
  • Do a writing challenge with a friend: pick a theme each month and write short stories based on that theme.
  • Plot out a novel. What story has your heart always wanted to tell?

Arts & Crafts

Exploring your creative passion through visually artistic pursuits can be fun and challenging. It is important to stay mentally active during times when we could become bored or complacent. Make sure to take time for you to relax and play.

  • Dig out old memories and create a scrapbook that you can share with your grandchildren over video conferencing.
  • Pick up knitting or crocheting and start your friends’ holiday presents early.
  • Learn to play a song on an instrument you own. Perform a mini-concert over video chat for your adoring fans!
  • Painting, drawing, or sketching makes for a challenging indoor activity. It also strengthens fine motor skills in your hands. You can either start with tutorials online or gather inspiration from your window.

Home & Garden

If you are used to working, volunteering or having a thriving social life, you may feel lost and anxious without anything productive or active to do. If you have excess energy, you may want to look around your home and see what could be improved. Doing projects with a loved one can add an element of camaraderie and feeling of achievement to your activities. Make sure to work together, whether that is through being physically together, or sharing progress from a distance.

  • What projects have been left incomplete because of your busy schedule? Now is the time to spruce up your home! Put a fresh coat of paint on the wall, or fix those little imperfections around the house.
  • Do you have access to a garden? Plant some easy to flower bulbs to brighten your lawn or grow veggies for harvest. Just make sure that you stay physically away from your neighbors.
  • Don’t have a garden or quarantined inside full time? Grow some herbs or succulents on your windowsill so you can add some greenery and oxygen to your room!

These are just a few examples of hobbies and activities you can enjoy during your time in quarantine. It is important to note that you do not need to be productive during this time if you are feeling depressed or tired. Your mental health is paramount and you need to make sure you are taking care of yourself first and foremost. You do not need to be productive; you need to be safe and stay mentally well. Make sure to reach out to your loved ones and care-workers, if you are feeling depressed. Take care of your body by eating healthy, sleeping regularly and socializing with your loved ones. Consult your doctor or care-worker if necessary.