What are some ways to stay occupied during this lockdown? That’s a question a lot of us have been asking. As the lockdown related to COVID-19 continues indefinitely, many of us are having trouble staying sane. This lack of sanity is likely related to going stir crazy and being bored. If you are experiencing more than just some stir craziness, like depression or anxiety, we recommend you reach out to somebody and get some help. However, if you are just really really bored like I am, here are some ways to stay occupied during this lockdown.
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Play some video games!
This tip may seem obvious coming from a gaming news website, but a great way to stay occupied during this lockdown is to play some video games.
How I started was pulling out some of my backlog. I suggest you do the same. This is the perfect time to catch up on those games you bought and never finished or played. For me, this means staying occupied by completing Spider-Man, finally starting NieR, and replaying Ni No Kuni.
Now is also a fantastic time to pick-up brand-new games! We recently had releases of triple-A titles like Final Fantasy 7 Remake, Doom: Eternal, and Animal Crossing: New Horizons. There has also been a slew of other smaller titles released from independent developers that are worth checking out. Titles like Wunderling, Starport Delta, In Other Waters, and Unrailed are just a few of the titles that we have been reviewing recently at Gamezo. If you want to check out some good titles, our reviews page is a great place to swing by.
Another great way to stay occupied during this lockdown is to play some multiplayer games. I have been doing a ton of this. I already spend a lot of time on iRacing, but I have also added games I usually would not play to my list like VALORANT and Warzone. While I am not a big FPS player, my friends are, and in these times, having some level of community and companionship is important.
Play some other games!
Hey, maybe you already have played hours of video games to pass the time, and now you are looking for anything else to stay occupied. Card games, board games, and tabletop games are all great ways to pass some time. I know that you may object to this since we should all be social distancing, but there are ways to enjoy these games even in these times.
The two ways I have been able to play card/board/tabletop games are either directly with my family that I live with or via video call. It is not perfect, and in some instances, we decided to move to something like Tabletop Simulator anyway, but it’s nice to get a break from the controller.
If you think these games are for kids, I would implore you to look into games like Magic: the Gathering, Riot Quest, Nemesis, Dungeons & Dragons, and Warhammer. Just because these more technical and video game-like games exist does not preclude you from playing Monopoly or even a spirited game of solitaire.
Pick up a hobby!
Sure, video gaming is a hobby, but what if you need to step away from games to stay occupied and mentally healthy? I say pick up a new hobby! This hobby could be writing, crafting, learning an instrument, learning a new language, or even learning to make your own video game.
I have picked up model building. I have a love of cars and motorsport, so I recently built a 100-piece BMW that raced in the Super GT series in Japan back in 2012. It took loads of time, patience, and focus to build. Now I have to paint it. Regardless, the process has done wonders for my mood, and I am currently learning a new skill in painting models. It’s all very zen, I promise.
Another hobby I have picked up is learning to make a video game. I have some background in computer science, so I may have an easier time than others, but it has been surprisingly easy to pick up. I am not going to be releasing my indie game anytime soon, but maybe someday. If you have always loved games and had an idea for your own, now is a great time to start figuring things out. Udemy has a ton of courses around programming and game design you can get on sale on a pretty regular basis. Check it out.
If there’s anything you’ve always wanted to learn to do, now is the time. Write some poetry, learn archery, paint a masterpiece, do whatever you have been putting off.
I am a big proponent of reading. My whole life, I targeted one book per month. A year ago, I actually came very close to hitting one book a week for an entire year. There is so much knowledge to gain, amazing stories to discover, and characters to love.
If you don’t like physically reading, I would suggest audiobooks. Audible is an excellent service that charges a fee to get one book a month and then offers additional book purchases at a reduced rate. Your local library may even offer audiobooks via an app, so ask.
As far as what to ready, I cannot recommend Ernest Cline’s works enough. You may already be familiar with Ready Player One, but I enjoyed his book Armada even more. There are also the classics such as Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, Enders Game,The Hobbit, Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter, and The Magicians. Okay, that last one may not be a classic, but I love it.
Don’t be afraid to learn during this time. Pick up some books on history, how-to topics, science, or any other topic you are interested in. I split my reading equally between entertainment, self-improvement, and education.
Also, reading does not just include books. Pick up magazines, poetry, guides, comic books, manga, graphic novels, or any other type of reading material that entertains you. Two of my favorite comic books of all time (and I am begging you to check them out) are Invincible by Robert Kirkman (he created The Walking Dead) and I Hate Fairyland by Skottie Young (my favorite comic book artist).
Listen to a Podcast!
Whatever I have learned from books, I have learned probably double from good podcasts. Other than learning, podcasts are a great way to spend time being entertained. Whether you listen to hear opinions, check out the news, or to be entertained, podcasts are a great time killer.
I would be hard-pressed to tell you which podcasts to listen to; there are so many. I know my wife enjoys Lore, which covers folklore and the supernatural. I am a big fan of Missed Apex Podcast, which covers Formula 1 news. It doesn’t matter what you like; there is a podcast for you.
If you are looking for a great gaming podcast, we have our own here at Gamezo. It’s All Fun and Games can be found anywhere podcasts are, and we stream every Sunday live on Twitch. Keep your eyes peeled; we are planning to start including interviews with folks from the gaming industry!
There have been very few problems in my life that I have not been able to solve with a little exercise. Not only is exercise great for your body, but it helps release endorphins that make you feel good mentally. I also find it helps quiet my inner chatter and calm me down.
I tend to be a high energy person, so I opt for hitting the heavy bag, swinging kettlebells, and doing long sessions on the stationary bike. What works for me may be too intense for you, or too light. Do what is right for you.
Even if you do not want to follow a formal exercise regiment, try to get outside and walk around. I love going out in the yard and kicking the soccer ball with the kids or taking a walk through the woods behind the house. It may not be an hour of hard Muay Thai on the heavy bag, but I am out and moving.
I am positive that I did not list off everything you can be doing to stay occupied during this lockdown, but hopefully I gave you some ideas. Some quick additional ideas include watching movies/TV shows, finding streamers or other content creators you like, learning the art of meditation, and even creating your own list of ways to get through this lockdown.
In the end, what is important is that you find things you enjoy to occupy your time. While I am still working (my day job and my journalism job), I still have more time than I ever did before. It is vital to fill that time with positive things.
One last thing, right now (April 17, 2020), we are running some game giveaways on Twitter to help you pass the time. Make sure to follow us there, @GamezoGG, for more information on how to enter to win!
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