The saying “so much to do, so little time” was once a cliché we could all relate to. But these days, such seems to be inapplicable, for most of us are at home due to the enhanced community quarantine (ECQ). With more time on our hands now, we ask, what more can we do to stay productive?
If there’s anything we are learning from our current reality during this time, it is that we can now do what we’ve always wanted to accomplish in the comforts of our home — be it baking, cooking, gardening, and other hobbies we had no time to learn before.
Interested? Here are some activities you may want to try to make the most out of the ECQ period.
Why don’t you try whipping up something in the kitchen using ingredients you never thought would work before — like the famous, easy 7-up chicken marinade or challenge yourself to cook a perfectly seared steak or experimenting on preparing the Dalgona in various versions — from coffee to fruity flavors — that are making the rounds on the internet?
Now is the best time to sharpen your culinary skills; then by the time the quarantine is over, you may gather your friends for a dinner at home and serve them your best recipe discoveries yet.
While you’re at it, why don’t you try baking sweet treats to brighten someone’s day, too?
You can start with the basic ones — from baking cookies, then banana bread, to probably advancing to cakes; that is when you’re confident enough with your weighing and measuring skills. Yes, bake it ’til you make it.
Arts & Crafts
While garbage collection may be a problem these days, recycling and upcycling wastes at home are highly recommended. Turn them into something useful such as the tissue roll carton as a cable wire organizer, PET bottles as a case for your pencil or art tools, cans as flower vases, etc.
You can make pencil cases for your kids, new jars for your room, and even toys for your kids, among other creative ways to reuse them. There are even free online classes that you may join to unleash your artistic side, as well as free music lessons, to boot.
Want an escape but can’t go out because of the virus? Let must-read fiction and non-fiction — be it hard copies or eBooks — take you to places and settings you’ve never seen before. Books help your brain withdraw from anxiety-inducing news on your social media feeds.
You can do some light reading with food books or to feel some love while on quarantine, there are romance novels. Do read up on travel and create that itinerary of your biggest adventure yet once this quarantine is over.
Work it out
In these uncertain times, it is best to sweat the stress out, not only to stay healthy but to also keep the happy hormones going. No gym equipment? No problem. There are still a lot of exercises you may do using ordinary items or fixtures at home.
Need weights? Use PET bottles as DIY dumbbell; need elevation for your cardio exercise, use the stairs; or if you need to run but has no space, do high-knee, stationary run or jog. For Zumba or Yoga classes, there’s always YouTube.
We’ve also seen more people trying to grow their own urban garden at home in their effort to be more sustainable these days. You might have come across Facebook and Instagram posts by your friends showing off the progress of their mini farm and hydroponic techniques using recyclable bottles.
A lot of beverage companies are receiving requests from non-government organizations for donations of PET and other plastic bottles, too, as they will use them as pots for their plants to create sustainable farms for the communities they are serving.
“We have received several requests for plastic bottle donations from various groups for urban farming projects. And as a company that champions sustainable practices, we are more than willing to help them create a greener world,” said Frederick Ong, President & CEO of Pepsi-Cola Products Philippines, Inc.
“Other than our frontliners, our environmental advocates are to be considered heroes also, because what they are doing is for the long-term. And we are here to support their causes,” he added.
And if there’s something we are realizing during the quarantine period, it is that the earth seems to be healing, because of less human activities outside our homes. Most of us are realizing the grim effects of not taking care of the environment. And this pandemic is teaching us to nourish Mother Nature more for us to enjoy healthier years.
More than ever, it is high time to learn how to remain productive, while taking care of the environment. It is clear that we are breathing cleaner air and seeing clearer skies these days. And let’s all do our job to keep it this way to save more lives and for the benefit of generations to come.
But if you opt to do nothing during this quarantine period, there’s no problem with that, too. Remember: The most productive people also make time doing nothing for self-care and balanced life.