How many times have you put things off, stating, “there’s just not enough time! Between work, and the house, and the kids, and the after-school activities, and the-?” Amid the lifestyle changes that have us actively social distancing, staying home, and changing our daily lives as we knew them, we here at Eastman Tourism want to stay positive. There are so many things that we can discover about ourselves, families, and communities in these challenging times. Using your newfound free-time can be a blessing in disguise.
Through the remainder of the COVID-19 pandemic, Eastman Tourism is going to focus on promoting active, healthy lifestyle choices you can make that will: reduce stress, help you reconnect with yourself and your family, and explore the fantastic world around us.
We’ll begin with some simple changes that we can act upon right now.
Get a New Hobby, or Pick up an Old One
Once life gets too busy, many of us leave our hobbies behind. This may be the perfect opportunity for you to discover a new one, or pick up a hobby that you loved from your childhood. If you don’t have a hobby, you may feel stumped. Think back to your childhood – what did you love to do a child? If you have kids, what are their favourite pass-times, and can you learn to love them as well? What is something that you always wanted to learn or do, but keep putting off because you’ve been too busy?
Exploring a variety of hobbies can be a great way to discover new things about yourself, help you connect with your family, and help pass the time as we moved through this time of social distancing.
There are so many wonderful things you can choose from; indoor hobbies are great to integrate into your everyday life, no matter the season. Here’s just a shortlist of ideas to inspire you:
- creative writing,
- jewelry making,
- whittling, and more.
Not all hobbies are restricted to the indoors – get outside and discover the vast wilderness that surrounds us; after all, time in nature has not been cancelled. Enjoying things like:
- mountain biking,
- sand art,
- walking, and more.
No matter what you fancy, there are plenty of options to keep you busy. Many of our local retailers remain open and could use the support of their local community during these trying times. Check with your local stores to see if online ordering or social distancing pick-up arrangements can be made.
Be Virtually Social
Just because we are keeping our distance and staying home doesn’t mean that we can’t continue to be the social creatures we naturally are. We just have to go about it in different ways. With the technology at our fingertips today, staying social through social media, video chats, emails, texts and phone calls means that we can remain in contact with our friends and family. But virtual socialization doesn’t have to end there.
Let’s stay social with our local businesses, event organizers, and non-profit organizations. We may have limited our shopping trips, but that doesn’t mean we have to forget about the local businesses that we love to frequent. Here are a few things we can do from home to show some love for our local community and be social:
- Order take-out from your favourite restaurant or bakery
- Shop over the phone, or online with your local stores
- Show some love by leaving positive Google or Facebook reviews for the businesses you love to shop at
- Share social media posts being put out by local businesses that you frequent
Another great way to get social is to get your friends and family involved with your newfound hobby. Search out virtual workshops or classes that you can take together to help you with your new hobby, or create your very own with a group of friends and video chats!
Finding time to add exercise to your daily routine will not only help you lose some weight and gain some muscles – it will help you feel better. Exercising is a natural way to boost your happiness and stave off the blues. After 20 to 30 minutes of hard aerobic exercise, endorphins are released and will result in a mood and energy boost for two to three hours, and a mild buzz for up to 24 hours.
Self-isolation and social distancing can lead to mild symptoms of depression and loneliness, so adding exercise to your routine can help keep you active and positive. The type of activity you choose doesn’t matter as much as just getting up off the couch and doing something active. And you don’t have to limit yourself to indoor activities either.
Things like walking, hiking, running, and cycling are great outdoor activities. With the abundance of parks and trail systems that we have available to us in each of our Eastman communities, there are plenty of great new places for us to discover. As the season continues to change, there will be more and more active outdoor activities that we can develop into our daily routines.
You can also check with your local gyms and trainers to see if they will be offering virtual classes so that you can continue with the exercise routines you have come accustomed to.
As all of us continue to learn how to live with self-isolation and social distancing, remember that you can still have an active and creative lifestyle. Eastman Tourism will continue bringing you content to help inspire you and keep you exploring the great corner of the province that we call home.
Be well and stay healthy.