We’ve been praising Netflix and the many binge-worthy shows where hours just fly by, but getting into a routine of the new ‘normal’ means organising, scheduling, and prioritising — for the most part; rest and reflection are essential elements of self-care. Where extra time is concerned, turn your attention to that hobby or skill you’ve been flirting on and off with for years. Luckily for most of us, technology has created possibilities for igniting your creativity as well the opportunities to grow in learning. Here are five hobbies you can pick up at home during the MCO:
A home yoga practice
“Can I do yoga if I’m not flexible?” Absolutely! In fact, one of the best ways to increase your body’s flexibility is to practice yoga. Don’t get discouraged if you can’t touch your toes. We all have to start somewhere, and flexibility is just one of the physical benefits to gain, along with strong chaturanga arms and legs, and core strength. In other words, it takes much more than a bendy spine. Don’t forget to throw some Yin poses in there too; a total body stretch that stimulates the body’s parasympathetic system. Turn your notifications on in your Instagram accounts so you can be alerted when some of our personal favourite yoga studios are going live with interactive classes, and keep practicing in your own time with these top YouTube workout channels.
A book club over Houseparty
Got a bookcase full of literature? Dust them off and get to reading, but if you need a buddy or two to make it more interesting, start an online book club. If you don’t have a Kindle, you can still purchase books from sites like Kinokuniya, Book Depository or BookXcess for excellent discounts, albeit with delayed deliveries. Set a deadline for finishing the book and then — wine is optional but recommended — hop onto a Houseparty call to share your takeaways. You can find plenty of great book recommendations at Oprah’s Book Club.
You can purchase calligraphy kits online but if the wait is again, too long, we’ve discovered that it’s possible to use ballpoint pens and watercolour to start practicing script types. Getting your calligraphy right takes a long time so thankfully, most of us in Malaysia have plenty of that on lockdown. What do you once you’ve nailed it down to a tee? Pick up bullet journalling, create labels for a tidy kitchen, and we won’t stop you from you creating “live, laugh, love” memorabilia.
Start a crystal collection
Crystals have always been around, but they’ve grown in popularity over the recent years. These semi-precious stones are believed to have healing powers that have been used since ancient civilisations — think talismans, offerings and as jewellery pieces for calming emotions and setting intensions. Where to start? It’s said that the crystal chooses you, but there handfuls for crystals for purposes like wealth, expelling bad luck, relieving stress, and even bringing more love into your life. You “use” them in meditation, cleansing them, and place them where the intention is strongest; for example, placing an amethyst by your bed to help you sleep better at night. ohmBox is a healing and wellness subscription box from Malaysia, with crystals among a whole box of self-care items sent to you monthly with helpful information and reading material.
Learn web developing
It’s one of the most useful skills in today’s world, especially now with a further push into the digital world of e-commerce. Once you can develop websites, you can even take up work as a freelancer or work on setting up your own new brand or business. To start, decide if you would prefer working on the frontend of websites, which includes designs, layouts and imagery; or on the backend where you work on processes and date — to put it lightly. There are a number of reputable sites with web development courses that start at the basics of HTML and CSS, so you don’t need much more prior experience than being able to navigate through any current website.