We wish you the best, and we’re in this together.
With the COVID-19 situation worsening globally, many governments have put in place measures that restrict their citizens’ movements – be it the nation-wide lockdown in Italy, or Malaysia’s restricted movement order that bans social visits; and our little red dot is no exception. Singapore has implemented a variety of measures to limit the movement of her citizens, which kicked in on Thursday (26 March). With our favourite haunts — from cinemas to clubs, bars to karaokes closed; we’re left to “celebrate” life from the confines of our own homes.
Now, that is a dreary fate to be subject to, because I – a 19 year old that enjoys KTV-ing a little too much – have found myself at a loss. A loss that presents itself in the form of no more midnight belting of sad mandopop songs).
Working from home can get monotonous and dull at times, and the comfort of one’s home makes it so easy to fall into unproductive behaviours. While maintaining a certain level of productivity is important, it is also equally necessary to learn to take breaks and breathe outside of work, while still remaining in our humble abodes.
I’ve made a list of things I’ve been doing outside of work (whilst working from home), which may hopefully benefit or inspire someone out there looking for ways to spend time at home.
- Make a Schedule
Just a few days ago, I’ve started planning the days out using my planner. Because of the work-from-home arrangements, many, including myself, may find the lines between ‘work’ and ‘home’ being blurred. Whilst working, I revert back to old procrastination habits and fail to do as much work as needed.
With a planner, I’m trying to schedule my hours out; to give myself both a sense of satisfaction when I’ve finished the schedule for the day and (hopefully) boost my productivity streak. Before having a schedule, I very clearly remember endlessly scrolling through my social media for hours – from watching too many ‘Say Yes to the Dress’ clips on YouTube to spiraling down the Animal Crossing: New Horizons rabbit hole, even though I do not own a switch and have no plans on buying one (not in THIS economy).
2. Virtual Hang-out!
Just because there are social distancing measures and regulations to restrict our movement does not mean we’d have to sacrifice bonding time with our friends! Even while keeping our distance, it’s very good for both your mental and emotional health to keep in touch with friends, family and loved ones.
Video throwback to Gabrielle and Athena of teamCARPE using Zoom to edit the Garden Beats Festival video.
There are a variety of platforms to choose from: Facetime, Skype, Discord and even Slack (if that gives you “work” vibes – we’re sorry!).
By using online platforms as a hang-out spot, you’d help to slow down the transmission of any transmittable diseases e.g the cold and still be able to chill with your bros.
3. Gym! (in the comfort of your own home)
My New Year’s resolution this year was to exercise more and be healthier. Prior to the outbreak, I’ve been travelling to Clarke Quay to get my weekly dose of HIIT. But, because I’m trying to reduce time spent in public and on public transport, gym sessions were something I had to sacrifice. However! Just because I can’t go to the gym does not mean that I can’t bring the gym to me. I’m currently working out at home through the use of my yoga-mat and YouTube tutorials.
The Thoughtworthy Co is a couple from Singapore who shares their stories of living consciously, caring for the environment and a minimalist approach to living. In their home tour video, we saw their home gym set-up and were amazed!
If you can’t do a home gym, there are also several ‘home workout’ videos on YouTube such as this one by Chris Heria that you can try out and integrate into your schedule.
4. Cooking or Baking
There is something very innately satisfying about cooking – to have utmost control over my food and the ingredients I wish to use, and the ability to piece and build every dish makes me feel like a cool architect of sorts.
Youtube cooking gurus Binging with Babish and You Suck at Cooking both provide very simple, fuss-free and delicious recipes for beginners. Allrecipes.com is a user-contributed platform that provides easy to follow recipes with well-written instructions and clear ingredients.
Carpe’s team member Liang Ying also shared that netizens seem to be really into baking – especially baking sourdough bread; which yeast unexpected but oddly wholesome.
Stay tuned for: our special feature of things you can bake at home, whipping up a storm in your own abode, with our favourite youth culinary master.
Mindful living is very on-trend right now, but we can’t just follow trends blindly. Som we kept asking ourselves and people we knew: Why is conscious living – including exercises and meditation sessions – such a big thing?
teamCARPE’s Aurelli shared that meditation was a new hobby she picked up amidst the work-from-home arrangements to declutter the mind. Scott Doughty’s IGTV series on mindful living and practises may provide a further perspective on the benefits of meditation and how you can do it any time, any where.
Personally, I also try to meditate in my free time using the app ‘Headspace’. It provides basic meditation lessons for free, and during this crisis they are also providing more content for meditation, sleep and relaxation for free under the section ‘Weathering the storm’. Not only is meditation a great way to relax and destress, it also helps us build our mindfulness and establish a clear headspace.
Recently I’ve found myself starting to pick up painting via Bob Ross tutorials on Youtube. Though I’ve still not figured out how he paints the sky such a nice pleasant shade of blue, being able to create gives me a big serotonin boost.
I’ve also found myself writing more, and even wanting to pick up sewing! Youtube provides many hours of free artistic inspiration and tutorials, my current favourite is definitely the OG Bob Ross. British artist Gemma Correll is also providing free downloaded drawing and coloring pages on her Instagram, @gemmacorrell.
This pandemic has drastically altered the way we live our lives, with almost 20,000 fatalities worldwide. For many of us, this is a stressful time – with economic growth slowing down, a loss of jobs worldwide and our own health at risk; it may be hard to de-stress and wind down.
Even though it is vital for us to maintain the grind, the grind has to stop sometimes in order for us to be able to detach from work and find time for ourselves.
It is most crucial that we play our part as responsible citizens – practising good personal hygiene and following the social distancing regulations. Front-line medical staff all around the world risk their lives trying to cure and prevent the spread of the disease, essential workers e.g food and beverage industry staff still have to report to work; the least we could do is play our part and remain home.
Written by Ngan Lin, Edited by Athena. Catch up with both of them here at teamCARPE.