As more and more people are confined to their homes to help stop the spread of Covid-19, we are seeking ways to stay healthy and inspired during the down time. Here are some of our staff's favorite ways to pass the time in productive and comforting ways.
While it often seems like there is no time to sit down and read a book, many of us now have ample evening hours to fill, and there's no better mental escape than to get lost in a novel. MZ Chief Operating Officer recommends The Starless Sea by Erin Morgenstern (author of the Night Circus), a modern fantasy that weaves rich imagery through literary journeys, making it easy to get lost in a rich web of storytelling.
Handicrafts are a great way to keep your mind and hands engaged in a creative and fulfilling activity. Liz says she's taking the opportunity to crochet her sister a sweater using cotton and bamboo yarn. Looking to get started in fiber arts? You can order the book Knitting Yourself to Calm by Lynne Rowe as well as supplies online to get yourself started!
Hang with Pets
Our founder Shelley says she hasn't really left her house except to go on long walks in the forest with her dog and Director of Sales Gisela says that snuggling with her chihuahuas has been the most soothing activity. Furry family members almost certainly are loving their people being home for extended hours, and the comfort and affection pets give can be a healing balm in uncertain times.
Don't have a pet? Consider adopting or fostering! Many animal shelters are experiencing recent difficulty due to low numbers of donations and volunteers. Fostering or adopting a pet can offer relief to these organizations, with the additional benefit of offering you a loving companion. Contact your local animal shelter or humane society to find out more!
Marketing Director Hannah says she has been soaking up slow time by doting on her plants while listening to podcasts and music. Care-taking plants can offer a sense of control in an increasingly volatile world and gardening or repotting house plants is a perfect solo activity.
For your listening pleasure, we recommend the podcast Happy Place, where host Fearne Cotton brings on guests to delve into mindfulness and what happiness means to different people. It's an inspiring and uplifting listen that is sure to bring comfort and calm.
Hannah has taken the opportunity to learn how to bake bread and whipped up a seeded sourdough loaf! While it may seem intimidating, baking bread actually requires very little ingredients and is extremely rewarding. Check out this recipe to try it at home.
Working from home means there's finally time to master the morning smoothie. Gisela has been starting her days with plant-based smoothies that boost the immune system and satisfy. Her go-to recipe:
1 scoop vanilla plant-based protein powder like Plant Works
1 cup frozen blueberries
1.5 cups unsweetened coconut milk
1/4 cup cashews
Simply blend ingredients with ice and garnish with edible nasturtium blossoms before enjoying!
When you're in need of a distraction, Netflix delivers every time. We've been seeking feel-good series and films such as the award-winning film Roma, set in Mexico City, engaging cooking series Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat and Amy Poehler's Wine Country, when you're in need of a laugh.
Getting exercise is not only important to keep our bodies healthy, but to manage stress levels as well. Walking and running are great ways to get fresh air, but if you're stuck at home, we've been loving Workout Daily, where you get texted a new 7-minute workout daily and you can connect socially to cheer on and work out with your friends. They are currently offering a one month free trial!
Both the need to for calm in the chaos of the world right now, as well the ample time at home, makes this the perfect time to start or hone your meditation practice. We recommend using the app Headspace to get started, or help yourself stay on track.
We hope this roundup offers you some ideas and inspiration for how to use your newfound at-home time. We'd love to hear about what activities you've been enjoying, let us know in the comments!