Keeping myself occupied has never been a problem, especially since I am always on the go or focused on the next goal or destination. However, this Coronavirus pandemic has unexpectedly put a stop to the world, and has left society in a motionless state. Seeing that this is the first time the country has ever been shut down due to a virus, no one knows the best way to react.
Escaping New York City and my small Harlem apartment, I packed a backpack and flew to Atlanta to be with family. Staying up until 3am watching Netflix and long, unproductive days started to become a routine, until I decided to find ways to make a positive impact with this extra free time. Check out a few of the things that I've done or started during this time of being socially distant:
1. I dyed my hair -- I'm an impulse type of guy. If I have an urge to get a tattoo or piercing, I'm most likely on my way before even thinking it completely through. So yeah, I used a medium brown Revlon box kit and dyed almost half of my hair. My hair is super dark, so the color is darkened, but it's something that I can definitely get used to, and will probably do again in the future.
2. Buy stocks -- I always told myself to buy stock as gifts to myself whenever I accomplish things in life, yet somehow a pair of shoes or new clothes seems to be the reward instead. Once CashApp upgraded with the feature to buy stock through their app, I randomly selected companies that I follow and use, and purchased different amounts of stock in each. (I'll be sure to blog about this after some time passes.)
3. Cook more -- I'm a great cook,
not even gonna doubt myself, but living in NYC, I do not have the time (or want) to go grocery shopping and cook after a long day; especially living near hundreds of different restaurants.... so I do not cook. Being in a home full of groceries, my creative side has come about when preparing different meals throughout the day. I guess this is also a good time for me to update my recipe page.
4. Take an online class --I enrolled in Fundamentals of Project Management, whew. I loved being in school and taking notes; but I've always hated taking tests. Here I am, taking an online class because I'm definitely adding this certification to my resume once I complete this course. Updating my resume is the next step once the certification is complete.
5. Update music playlists -- Sure, trap music is my go to, but lets not forget the RnB or low-fi music to bring some peace and calm to your day. I'm damn sure tired of hearing "Something New" and "Savage" on TikTok every five minutes, so I'm updating my favorites playlist on Apple Music. Click here to check it out.
6. Binge watch new shows -- Black Twitter keeps me entertained, especially when EVERYONE you follow is talking and tweeting about the same show. I got my aunt hooked on Good Girls and Queen of the South; but I've been sure to make a list of the shows that my followers have recommended.
7. Workout -- Yes, working out, because sitting in the house all day is not healthy. I take daily walks, or jogs in the subdivision to keep myself active, and average almost 2 miles each day. I tried riding a bike one day, and let's just say I will not be doing that for a while.
8. Sort and delete emails -- Declutter your digital life. I check my emails daily, sometimes before I even check a text. There's no reason for you to have more than 500 unread emails at once. Delete the old emails and give room to new ones, and new opportunities. Send an email to an old friend or finally respond to those annoying LinkedIn messages, it may pay off.
9. Check finances -- Some people are not working during this time, and some are still spending as if they are. Check your balances and only spend when you have to. A practice that I've been sticking to is transferring money into my savings account and keeping enough in my checking to cover the basics. A few months ago, I opened an online checking account that money is sent to every week, and I promised myself to not even look at the balance until I absolutely need to. Check your credit score and account balances.
If you need financial relief, file for unemployment or call about your loans and see if the CARES Act can assist you during this time. Use your resources.
10. Read -- I do not read as much as I used to or should, but I have about 4 books that I've bought in the past few months that I've started and need to finish. Granted, most of the books are in my apartment in NY, but I made sure to grab Rick Ross' book before heading to the airport.
*sidenote: I miss having a reason to get dressed each day, but the current rotation of sweatpants will do for now.
Just a few ways that I've been staying sane, or trying to pass time while I'm self-quarantining in the house. I hope that everyone out there is staying safe and practicing social distancing. Sooner than later, we will be back outside, at brunches and day parties...living our regular lives!