When spending so much time at home there’s only so much TV you can watch, so it’s time to get creative. Below is a list of ideas to get your brain stimulated and hopefully help change your daily routine. Maybe try something new from the list every day!
Please note that all our recommendations are in keeping with the Government’s regulations and health advice during the Covid-19 outbreak at the time of publication.
It’s easy to feel a lack of motivation when you’re out of your usual routine and not doing your usual activities. Get your brain busy with your Scrabble set, or tuck into the newspaper crosswords. If you’re looking to find something new, there are plenty of games online;
- Lumosity: This a brain training app that will keep track of your scores and progress each time you try a brain ‘workout’. You can choose topics ranging from math, to memory games.
- Braingle: The online platform has a mix of codes and ciphers, trivia quizzes, optical illusions, and puzzles to choose from. With over 15,000 games on the site, you’ll never be stuck for options.
- Wordscapes app: This app uses word searches and crosswords to get your brain whirring. The levels get progressively more difficult, and it gets more and more addictive! You can create and join teams on the app so you can compete with and against one another, and chat. The app is available for Apple and Android.
Audio books and podcasts
Listening to a book in your garden or kitchen as you go about your day is the ultimate relaxing way to get through your reading list. There are a number of websites where you can access audio books:
- Audible: This app works on a monthly subscription basis. When you sign up you get a free 30-day trial to test it out. After this you pay €9 a month. There are thousands of books to choose from, and the option to return any book you don’t enjoy.
- Borrowbox: If you’re a member of your local library, you’re eligible to become a member of Borrowbox. This is an app that allows you to borrow audio and eBooks for free. While there is less choice available than on Audible, it also depends on the offerings of your library. However, this is a great free option for audio books.
- Spotify: If you want something easier to digest than an audio book, then podcasts are the answer. Using the Spotify app, you can access thousands of podcasts covering every topic imaginable. Spotify also puts millions of songs and albums at your fingertips. Spotify is free to join, but you will hear some ads in between tracks. You can choose to pay €9.99 a month however to bypass adverts.
- Walking: It’s important to adhere to the government guidelines when it comes to public exercise. Try to avoid areas which have a higher volume of people, such as beaches or busy pedestrian areas. A number of parks in Dublin have now introduced a designated window of time reserved for different age groups.
- Chair yoga: If you want to get active without going outdoors, you could try yoga or a new adaptation, called chair yoga. All you need is yourself, some comfy clothes and a chair! There are many tutorials available on YouTube, ranging from five minutes to 45-minute classes.
Learn new skills
- Art or design: If you’ve always wanted to exercise your artistic flair, there’s no time like the present. You can use whatever supplies you have to hand, whether that be paint or pencils, or you can order them online if you need to. Take advantage of the many resources also available online—YouTube tutorials are a great place to start.
- Online classes: LearningCloud hosts online classes with industry experts that have been adapted so people can learn from their own home. The prices vary per course and course length, but Learning Cloud sells itself on being affordable. You can try anything from business, to interior design, to psychology and counselling.
- Cooking: Spice up your menu and try out some new recipes. There are endless cooking channels online to follow, and some of the best Irish channels include Donal Skehan’s healthy and delicious options. When you can have family visit again, you’ll be offering a dining experience to remember!
- Learn a new language: Has learning Spanish always been on the to-do list? Or do you wish you could help your grandkids with their French lessons? Duolingo is one of the most popular online resources for learning a new language or brushing up on a language you haven’t used for years. Duolingo uses games, tests and grading to help you learn. The app is free, but you can pay for extras if you wish.
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