20 Things You Can Do to Avoid Cabin Fever


It’s 2020, and we’ve spent much of the year worrying about whether we should be spending time outdoors, cancelling social functions, and singing ‘happy birthday’ at the sink about thirty times a day. Now that Marymount is closing down, we’ll be spending a lot more time in our homes. Despite our online learning, we’ll have a lot more time on our hands to do…  well, something. Staying in your house for a long time without going out can be mind-destroying, and watching the news constantly for updates can stress us out. It’s important to remember that we can leave our homes if we need to, but social distancing – that is, trying to avoid contact with others – is essential to containing the spread, even if you are perfectly healthy. It is just doing our bit for the community and the vulnerable people around us. So, here at the Marymount Messenger, we’ve compiled a list of 50 things that you can do at home to avoid cabin fever, and remember – this virus will not last forever. The more careful we are with going out and keeping ourselves safe, the sooner we can get back to our regular schedule.

So without further ado, let’s get onto the list… 


1. Redecorate your room
For many of us, especially now, we spend most of our time in our bedrooms. But maybe it’s been lacking personality. Whether it’s making some art, moving around your furniture, or even painting a wall, now’s the perfect time to do it!

2.Draw or paint something
There are a lot of cool things in our homes that we can draw. Try practicing your perspective in a sketchbook or sheets of paper.


3.Bake something
Baking not only fills up time, it gives us something yummy to enjoy for the next few days. You can bake something sweet, or even make your own bread! All you need to make yourself a loaf is flour, yeast, olive oil, salt and water. Here are some recipes to get you started:

How to Make a Homemade Artisan Bread Recipe – YouTube

Easy White Bread – BBC  

Paul Hollywood’s Easy White Bread

And of course, who doesn’t love a good brownie? Here is my personal favourite recipe! Just try not to eat five in one go…

Tasty’s Ultimate Brownies


4. Donate to charities online

It may seem like the world has ground to a halt, but there are still plenty of charities worldwide that need some help. Your local food bank will most likely be taking online donations, and as people stockpile, this is the moment where they will need your help most. Click here to go to the donations page for the Kingston Food Bank.


5. Practice your instrument
Many of us play instruments, but it’s hard to find opportunities to practice during regular school days. Try learning a new song you’ve always wanted to learn.


6. Water your plants
We know you forgot. It’s okay.


7. KonMari your closet
“Does this sweater really bring joy?” You may have heard of the KonMari Method, a method of tidying up created by Marie Kondo that asks whether an item “brings joy” before deciding to keep it or not. It’s a fantastic way to declutter your closet or even your whole room, and will keep you busy for a while! Here’s an article to find out more.


8. Start a new TV series or rewatch an old one
Netflix is everyone’s best friend right now. Ask your friends for some recommendations and click play.


9. Workout
It’s incredibly important to keep your body working, even while you’re at home most of the day. Make sure you’re taking frequent breaks, eating healthy, and doing exercise. Clear a space in your house and look for an online workout video, whether it be yoga, cardio or dance. Try moving for at least 20 minutes a day, or higher intensity workouts five times a week.


10. Contact your friends and family (virtually)
Keeping in contact with people outside your house will keep you sane. I don’t know what I would do without FaceTime right now. Get in contact with friends you haven’t spoken to in a while, and see how they’re doing, or call your classmates and work together on your assignments. In times of trial, let’s support each other.


11. Research something you want to know more about
Whether this is a university course you’ve heard about, a hobby you want to start, or an article you read, use this time to learn more about subjects you’re passionate about.


12. Read a book
Books are so much fun to buy, but we never seem to have the time to actually read them. Now’s the perfect time! Light some candles, put on some background music, turn down the lights, pull a blanket over your head, and spend some quality time with a new novel or biography.


13. Find some new music
If you have Spotify, you’ll know that it uses the music that you listen to to create unique ‘Made for You’ playlists. I’ve found some of my favourite songs and podcasts (more on that later) on these playlists. Try listening through and saving any you like. If you don’t have Spotify, try exploring some playlists on whatever music platform you use – try something you haven’t listened to before!


14. Write for the Marymount Messenger
Okay, maybe this applies to me most at the moment, but really! If you want to tell us about your experiences at home, or something interesting you’ve done, let us know! We’d love to hear from you.


15. Play with your pet
Don’t forget our lovely pets are in self-isolation too, and they’re probably wanting some company. Take your dog for a walk in the park (just make sure you keep distance with the other people there), play tug, or just sit with them for a while.


16. Make a smoothie
Grade 11, you’ve trained for this moment. Remember your workshop. Make a delicious smoothie. Enjoy it slowly. Practice some mindful eating!


17. Have a spa day
This whole don’t-leave-your-house thing can be exhausting, but one upside is that we don’t really have a reason to take off our pyjamas all day. Another upside is that you can paint your nails and nobody will send you to the school office to take them off at 3:58PM (yes, I’m still mad). Take this opportunity to have a spa day to yourself at home – put on a face mask and relax.


18. Listen to a podcast
Podcasts are very trendy right now, for a good reason – they are great for learning about pretty much anything, for casual entertainment, or even just for background noise when you’re doing something else (like KonMari-ing your room!). They are the ultimate anti-boredom tool. Here’s a list of some of my favourites:

  • Stuff You Should Know, to learn everything,
  • Stuff They Don’t Want You To Know, to learn everything conspiracy,
  • Ologies with Alie Ward – each episode features a different expert on any science subject. My personal favourite is corvid thanatology (that would be crow funerals for you)!
  • Life Kit, for lessons about how to live as an adult, 
  • Lore, for dark historical tales.


19. Clean your iPad/computer
If you’re like me, you continuously get notifications about your storage being full, and continuously ignore them. Now you have the time to go through your photos, videos and that mysterious ‘Other’ section and delete whatever you don’t need. It’ll speed up your device too. Also, make sure you’re updating your laptop regularly so you’re less susceptible to viruses and malware!


20. Practice gratitude
On Thursday, the Bulletin told us about the lovely idea of making a ‘blessings box’. The idea is that you make a box and write our blessings on slips of paper to put inside, and open when we’re feeling down. You don’t need to make a box, but write down a few things you’re grateful for in your life, even during self-isolation. We are incredibly lucky to be able to access an online education, for example – let’s appreciate it, even when we are dreading that one assignment!


Remember to stay positive – the more we stay inside, the healthier we can keep ourselves, our neighbours and our friends. We are lucky enough to be going through this in a time that connecting with others virtually is a part of life, and is literally as easy as the click of a button. By staying in contact with each other and supporting each other, we’ll be able to get through this together.