Letter to Editor: Mental Health Club: 8 Ways to stay occupied & healthy during social distancing


By Jessica Tuchin and Maggie O'Leary

Due to the COVID-19 outbreak, the world has become a stressful, scary place. Now that Archer is on spring break and people likely have more free time due to social distancing, The Mental Health Club wanted to suggest some activities to help you keep busy, active and healthy.

1. Make schedules

If you have trouble focusing on tasks without a set schedule, make your own! Before you go to bed, write down your goals for the next day or week. Each morning, revisit your goals and plan a schedule to focus your day.

2. Organize something

By now you have probably heard of Marie Kondo’s method for “decluttering,” but have you tried it? Click this link for an article that outlines her main points. Organizing helps you feel cleaner, more in control and satisfied. Don’t forget before and after photos!

3. Learn anything

Want to learn a new language? Check out Duolingo, a free language app! Want to learn how to do a Rubik’s cube? Try a youtube tutorial! If there is anything that you have always wanted to learn about, now is your chance.

4. Connect with friends

Zoom, Facetime and the good-old landline ensure that we still can interact with each other while in quarantine. Activities like virtual cooking competitions or Netflix parties make connecting with friends easy and fun!

5. Exercise

According to Harvard Health, “exercise reduces levels of the body’s stress hormones, such as adrenaline and cortisol.”  Exercising at home can actually be easy; try walking or running outside (while social distancing), following a yoga video, or doing workouts from the Archer Athletics Instagram.

6. Work on puzzles

Whether physical or online, puzzles are a great brain workout. Click here for some logic puzzles and here for some online jigsaw puzzles!

7. Keep a journal

During this confusing time, journaling can help you process your feelings. If you are not big on writing, you could draw, make collages, or find other ways to express yourself.

8. Help the community

There are countless ways to volunteer online, whether by sending virtual cards to people, volunteering for Crisis Text Lines, or even transcribing Smithsonian documents! In times of social isolation, reaching out and helping others is more important than ever.

Though we cannot control the world around us, we can still attempt to make the best of a horrible situation by taking care of ourselves, staying stimulated, active and connecting with others.