With many of us still spending a lot of time at home, we’ve all had to get creative this past year at filling the time (sourdough bread making anyone?). Even the busiest among us can get bored, and when it hits, it’s what we do with boredom that counts. So, we compiled a list of fun things to do when you’re bored at home to help.
Growing up, whenever we would come to my mom with the classic, “Mommm, I’m bored,” she would answer, “boredom is a choice.” While that wasn’t really the answer we were looking for, she was onto something. As children (and adults!), boredom is actually good for us. According to neuroscientists, boredom allows our brain space to rest and simultaneously can push us into greater creativity, task engagement, and job productivity.
Boredom is a state of mind and we can sit in our boredom, or choose to find something spirit-lifting to fill our time with.
Anyone else hit a lull in your day and find yourself mindlessly scrolling Instagram before realizing that 30 minutes have passed? Rather than always reaching for the phone, we’re suggesting shutting the computer and turning your phone on airplane mode—or off completely—and find another way to quench your boredom. Try one of these 45 mood-boosting and refreshing activities instead (and they’re basically free!).
1. Take a detox bath. Light a candle, pour in some Epsom salts, and soak up the bliss while gently supporting your body’s detox process.
2. Try this simple feel-good winter detox. Intensive and demanding detoxes are out. Supporting your body is in. These three tips offer simple ways to support your body when it’s chilly out.
4. Watch as many episodes as you want of your favorite show. No guilt, just keep watching until it stops being fun. Then maybe take a nap.
5. Make a playlist of your favorite throwback songs. Try picking a specific time in life for ultimate nostalgia (high school, college, 2002, etc).
6. Watch a classic movie you’ve never seen. Not sure where to start? Here’s a good list.
7. Give yourself a mini facial. Cleanse, mask, tone, serum, moisturize. Your skin deserves it.
8. Do a guided meditation. Try this one.
9. Unroll your yoga mat. It’ll feel good to move your body whether it’s for 10 minutes or 40.
10. Listen to a podcast while you rest. If you’re like us, podcast listening almost always means multitasking and listening in the background while we get something done. Instead, lie down, close your eyes and listen to a podcast. Try out one of these series.
11. Make a gratitude list. Last year was a doozy and it’s good to be intentional about seeing the beauty and good in our lives. Jot down a few things you’re grateful for, you’ll be surprised how many there are!
12. Take a few deep breaths. Bonus points for taking them outside. Toes in the grass, face turned towards the sun, breathe in, breath out.
13. Start a book you’ve been meaning to read. If you don’t know where to start, we’ve got a great list.
14. Go on a walk. It might be chilly out but some fresh air will do you good! Try to turn your phone on silent or airplane mode or better yet, leave it at home!
15. Plan your next trip. After a year at home and now cooped up inside due to cooler weather, the travel bug is hitting hard. Dream up a spot or two to travel to so you have your plan ready to go when things open up again!
16. Clean out one of your bathroom drawers. Say goodbye to old perfume samples and that facial lotion that broke your skin out and get some order in place.
17. Clean your makeup brushes. We’re all guilty of waiting wayyyy too long between washes. It’s very simple and important.
18. Organize your lingerie drawer. One of the easiest spots to just throw your panties and bras in and go. Having an organized space helps you actually know what you have and makes putting your clothes away easy. Read our tips for the perfectly sorted lingerie drawer.
19. Clean out your fridge. Something smells in there.
20. Give your laundry pile some TLC. Spot treat and hand wash that shirt that’s been sitting on top of the washing machine for a week.
21. Let some fresh air in. If it’s a pretty day, open up your windows and doors and give your indoor air a refresh. Looking for other ways to make it smell good without lighting a candle? We got you.
22. Organize all those papers. Stacks tucked in drawers and in a catch-all by the door You know you have a big stack of papers. Or maybe you have a few little stacks of paper. What are all of those papers? Bills? Or something else? Time to organize them.
23. Toss out your toxic cleaning products. You can have products that actually clean well, sans all the junk and toxic chemicals in most cleaners. Check out our list of the best ones.
24. Unsubscribe from emails. Set a timer for 15 minutes, and unclog your inbox. It really just takes a simple click.
25. Delete old computer files. That random photo you downloaded from Pinterest a year ago? Yeah, we doubt you need that. For more tips on cleaning up your tech, check out this post.
26. Organize your pantry. A pantry where you can see everything?! Make that dream a reality. Here are our best tips for whipping it into shape.
27. Plan a fun meal to make this month (from a physical cookbook!). Whether you make it for yourself, to share with a few friends, there’s something extra special about turning the pages of an actual cookbook.
28. Use what you have to whip up a recipe. Ever feel like you’re stuck on what to make, yet you have a decently full fridge and pantry? Look in your fridge and pantry, type what ingredients you have into this site, and make something yum without having to make a trip to the grocery store. Or these recipes using pantry staples are good too.
29. Make your meal plan for the week. My week always feels like it goes a lot smoother and I eat much healthier when I spend some time thinking through what to eat. Bust out the cookbooks and start planning.
30. Make kombucha. Surprisingly easy and fun! Check out our step-by-step guide.
31. Bake bread. If you haven’t tried your hand at sourdough or banana bread this year, it’s time.
32. Make a random meal. If you’re feeling adventurous, pretend like you’re on Chopped with this random food generator. Open the link, it suggests five random foods and you have to try & make something delicious with them!
33. Bake cookies. A batch of cookies is always right. Try out our favorite chocolate chip cookies recipe here!
34. Make this bone broth hot chocolate. Don’t be scared by the broth base—you can’t taste it, promise. This hot chocolate is nourishing, soothing, and delicious!
35. Practice your flower arranging skills. Pick up some flowers from your local market, and make a pretty arrangement, one for you and one to drop off with a friend or a neighbor.
37. Put together a care package for a friend. Keep it simple and sweet with things like a chocolate bar, candle, and chapstick, plus a note to let them know you were thinking of them.
38. DIY a meditation corner. This one will pay off big time, next time a bit of anxiety or boredom hits. A little effort goes a long way and we’ll walk you through it step-by-step.
39. Create a vision board. Attention flows where energy goes. Spend some time mapping a visual for your goals—find out how here.
41. Paint a still life. It can be of a favorite ceramic bowl, your breakfast, a bookshelf, your cat. Just have fun, it doesn’t have to be good. But maybe it will be!
42. Get out your sewing stuff. That button that fell off your shirt four months ago, that favorite sweater with the tiny snag. You don’t have to be a seamstress to make simple fixes to your clothes. Besides, there’s always youtube to fill in any skill gaps.
43. Send a handwritten note. A love note, thank you note or just a note to say hi—we guarantee it will make someone’s day.
44. Start learning a new language. Will you be fluent by the time your boredom passes? Probably not. But make it your goal to pick up three to five new phrases or words.
45. Write down all of these boredom-busting ideas. Place the pieces of paper in a mason jar. The next time you’re bored, pull something from the jar and do it.