Rather than racking up screen time by watching hours of TikTok, something I myself am guilty of, we have put together some entertaining and effective ways to spend your time while cooped up. We may not be experts, but I would like to thank all of the ladies who gave us their top recommendations!
1. Binge a television series or
After finishing schoolwork and catching a likely sunburn these days, consider watching a new series or rewatching a classic on Disney+, Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime, etc. Whether you are into drama, comedy, crime, or science fiction, there is bound to be something for you. Here are some of the newest recommendations brought to you by your sisters:
Netflix: All American, You, Cheer, Love is Blind, Gossip Girl, Dynasty, Black Mirror, I Am Not Okay with This, Tiger King, The Good Place, Grey's Anatomy, Money Heist
Hulu: Love Island UK, Brooklyn 99, Letterkenny
Aside from binging, if you like sports The NBA, NFL, NHL and MLB have all given fans the option to watch games from past years. You can even watch iconic wrestling matches through the WWE Network.
2. Watch a movie
You may be familiar with Redbox, HBO On Demand, and Amazon Prime as ways to rent or buy movies but you may not be familiar with these new ways people are choosing to get their content. With theatres across the country being shut down, companies are choosing to follow Universal Studios in making new films available on-demand for only $20. Don't want to spend the money? No problem! Netflix has come up with a clever solution to also spend date night in using Netflix Party, a feature that allows you to stream with your friends. Netflix Party works similar to Zoom without the video chat; simply create your party link, invite friends, and chat away while you enjoy the show. Here is a list of some of the early released, promising-looking movies as well as some classics.
New Releases: I Still Believe, Bloodshot, The Hunt, The Way Back, The Gentlemen
Amazon Prime: So Undercover, Instant Family, A Simple Favor, A Quiet Place
Netflix: How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days, Sex and the City 2, Bounty Hunter, Bird Box, Marriage Story, Zodiac, Step Brothers, Blue Valentine
3. Listen to a podcast
32% of Americans listen to podcasts at least once a month. Most of us are used to listening to podcasts while driving or working, but consider listening to a new one the next time you lay by the pool or have some free time. Some of the suggestions from our sisters include:
True Crime Casefiles
The Created Podcast- brought to you by our very own Shelby Swygert
Gals on The Go
Off the Vine With Kaitlyn Bristowe
My Favorite Murder
4. Read a new book
We may be past the days of required reading, but there's never been a better time for some Summer reading in between studying. Here are a few of our selections:
Girl Wash Your Face by Rachel Hollis
Bossypants by Tina Fey
#Girboss by Sophia Amaruso, the CEO of Nasty Gal
Girl, Stop Apologizing by Rachel Hollis
5. Get some exercise
One of the best ways we can stay healthy and productive during this time is to get active. Many gyms and fitness studios are live streaming workouts FOR FREE, a great alternative for those with makeshift weights and social media. Companies like Nike, Soulcycle, Daily Burn, and Peloton are also increasing their free trials of at home workouts to 90 days in some cases. You can find more in depth details on their special offers here.
We are looking into getting people in the Panhellenic community to share their at home workouts and yoga lessons soon. If you live in a coastal community one of the things I have found to be fun is walking or running the nearby bridge. You can walk your neighborhood, swim laps in the pool, or even play Wii Sports. In the off chance you can't get outside, explore nature using Google Earth. Feel free to share your home exercise tips in the comments!
6. Spend time with your friends and family virtually
At this point we all have a good idea of how to work Zoom, but have you figured out fun ways to use the program to chat with friends? You can play board games like Pictionary, Charades, Trivia, or even the popular Incoherent. You can play Game Pigeon games, Trivia Crack, and many others on your phone too. Additionally, some of you may have gaming consoles which can be another great way to connect virtually. Try Instagram’s new ‘co-watching’ feature or Squad, an app that allows you screen share whatever is on your phone. Consider making a group vlog or TikTok, if you haven't yet, and tag us for a feature on the Instagram story.
7. Get creative or start a new hobby
You can be the most talented artist or someone who has never picked up a paintbrush, either way now is the perfect time to start crafting. At some point we all find ourselves struggling to make big/little canvases, banners, and paddles for someone we care about. With time on your hands, consider trolling Pinterest for some ideas and try something new. Some of the suggestions we received were to start a journal, practice drawing(even stick figures will work), make an inspo board, or improve your makeup skills. Recruitment is the next big thing on the Panhellenic agenda, and I'm sure we can all learn a thing or two from some of our favorite beauty gurus on YouTube. Last but not least, you can learn to cook! BBC and Better Homes & Gardens have great videos, but why not take a FREE cooking course from Milk Street, offered through the end of April?
8. Take a free class or tour somewhere new
On top of cooking classes, you can find three months of free guitar lessons on Fender and foreign language courses at Duolingo. We may not attend an Ivy League, but now there's nothing to stop you from taking a free class at one too. Yale, Harvard, Princeton and Columbia are offering free classes to which you can pay for a certificate after completion. Find 450 courses available here. Yale's most popular course, "Psychology and the Good Life," that teaches stressed-out students how to be happier, was released for free as well. Taking only about 20 hours to complete, why not try it?
Over 2,500 museums and galleries around the world are offering virtual tours including New York’s Museum of Modern Art and Amsterdam’s Van Gogh Museum. Stay in the U.S. or take a trip to the Great Wall of China or The Louvre, based in Paris. The San Diego Zoo, Georgia Aquarium, and the Monterrey Bay Aquarium are also showing live feeds of many exhibits and live streams for your viewing pleasure. If you are in need of a little Broadway fix, you can enjoy a free seven-day trial with plenty available at BroadwayHD.com.
9. Make some MONEY
In hard times like these, take advantage of apps like Pocket Points, which rewards you with coupons and gifts for staying off your phone while studying. If you're trying to win big, scholarships are another great way to earn with minimal effort. You can look up various websites to find even the most unique grants, but UCF's A2O (Access to Opportunities) scholarship website is a good starting point. Another way to make some change and help those in need is by donating plasma. Biotest Plasma is accepting donors by appointment only and usually has sweet offers for making even more money. Last but not least, you can get a job. Many large name companies are hiring, so if you need rent money or some disposable income find jobs hiring.
10. Reorganize or design
Finally, if you're REALLY bored you can clean out your car, organize your closet, and fill out your planner. I find that the best organizing tips ultimately come from Pinterest, and who knows, you might even find some things to purchase on Amazon to complete the look. We mentioned crafting earlier but some people have even taken the time to repaint and redesign their rooms. As for the planner, you can take the time and finally go back to school with the to-die-for, color coded planner we all envy. Finish off by scheduling your Summer and Fall classes.
In all seriousness, we strongly urge you to isolate yourselves as much as possible and practice your social distancing. We all need to remain safe and healthy in order to return to campus as soon as we can. In the meantime, we hope that you find these activities helpful in staying busy. You can find many more ideas here, but be sure to send in any suggestions you have for us through the Suggestion Box link on our home page.