10 Surefire Ways to Beat Boredom at Home This Winter
Stay entertained indoors while you wait for spring.
Photo via Freepik
TL;DR: Conquer the boredom and the blahs of winter with plenty of ideas to keep busy at home—and deals on the things you need to make it happen.
Some say chatting about the weather is mindless small talk—filler, if you will. However, the weather and time of year definitely have an impact on how we feel and what we do. When winter descends, not everyone wants to head out in the cold to keep busy.
The key to a happier winter without going stir-crazy is making it fun or rewarding (or both!) to stay at home.
To help you get excited, we've compiled an inspiring list to help keep you entertained through the season.
1. Exercise Your Brain
According to Cambridge University Press and Assessment, adults who learn a second language give their brain a powerful workout, which can provide a ton of health benefits, including improved memory and even helping to stave off dementia. Lucky for all of us, we don't have to sit in a classroom for hours and hours every week to accomplish this. There are a bunch of online tools and apps to help you learn a new language (and other personal or professional subjects) via your device and cozy indoor room of choice.
2. Take Up a Hobby
Most of us could instantly think of at least one thing we've always wanted to try if asked. Whether you want to start a gaming channel on YouTube, take up dog training, or learn to play an instrument, winter is a pretty good time to give it a whirl. Let that chill drive you into the arms of a new or forgotten interest. Focusing on one task—as opposed to the ever-present need to multitask—can have a calming effect and make those long winter nights feel like they're whizzing by.
3. Expend Excess Energy With Home Workouts
The lack of daylight during the winter can really put a damper on your will to get to the gym in the morning. Most of us look at the still-dark sky and would rather snuggle in a little longer than head out before the sun. Creating a fitness routine at home is a happy medium—you still get a workout done but get to sleep in. We're not talking about a full home gym setup, though. Keep it simple by adding a single piece of compact exercise equipment like a folding treadmill or opt for a foldable rower for a low-impact full-body workout. Either way, you'll get that heart pumping and the feel-good endorphins and dopamine flowing morning, noon, or night.
4. Take Care of Yourself Post-Workout
Any of us can become sore after a workout. Whether running, kickboxing, lifting weights, or doing Pilates, worked muscles can easily become sore muscles. Taking the time to tend to these spots is a worthy use of minutes, and since it takes many days to form a habit (more than 21, according to Forbes), you might as well start now that there's a little extra time to devote. Make sure to do some post-workout stretches, massage out any tight spots, and relax any lingering soreness in a warm bath or steamy shower to finish it off. You could also really treat yourself with an at-home massage chair.
5. Cook for Someone Special
Nothing smells better than a delicious meal being cooked. Trying new recipes or working on your own culinary creations is not only an enjoyable way to pass the time, but it can also help you save money and eat healthier by limiting takeout meals and having more control over ingredients. Sharpen your knives and dust off that rarely used cookbook you got years ago. Or hop online to find some inspo and chefs, like these viral TikTok recipes.
6. Work on Your Swing
If you're a golfer, you probably miss your time on the green during the winter months. Indoor putting greens and affordable home golf simulators allow you to practice your swing between days on the links. Some can even help you better your shots via swing analyzers so you are ahead of the curve when the courses thaw.
7. Optimize Your Workspace
If you're anything like us, your office space needs constant attention. A messy desk makes for a cluttered mind, which no one wants. While papers, to-do items, and things that need filing are definitely to blame here, one of the biggest culprits is the cable clutter that comes from the devices that need daily charging. It might help to take some time to go through those papers sitting around and look into a more up-to-date charging solution that could help end the cable clutter quickly and efficiently.
9. Host Game Nights
Whip up some snacks and apps, and invite the crew over to hang out and play some games, whether the board or techie variety. Include a choice of drinks for your guests. You can even set up interesting lighting and other aesthetics to set the mood. Whether your group is made up of couples, your poker buddies, or a mix of everyone, there are ways to elevate a standard game night to be one for the books.
9. Begin That Side Hustle
There's something about the term "side gig" that makes it sound like easy, breezy money. While it may eventually become that, it does take some time and effort to get things rolling. If you have an idea to make some extra cash, roll up your sleeves and get to work now to reap the benefits later. There are countless ways to learn how to earn. From focusing on a career change to beefing up your resume to tools that hone your photo editing skills, online education can be a convenient and budget-friendly way to learn and grow.
10. Plan Your Travels
Weird but true: Sometimes planning a trip is more exciting than taking the trip. Getting your travel gear together, arranging the details, and researching restaurants are all part of the experience. While it can be pricey to travel, there are a ton of travel hacks, such as alert services and discount memberships, that can help you find discounts on things like domestic and international flights to save you cash.
Find Your Own Winter Fun
Regardless of whether these ideas resonate with you, winter doesn't have to be something to just get through until spring. The key to beating boredom at home this winter is to use the downtime the season brings to lean into something that gives you joy and happiness in the moment or that can be a stepping stone to a more fulfilling life all year round.
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