Ten indoor activities to keep you entertained and healthy


It is a strange time for Chongqing, when the usual Spring Festival hustle and bustle of the city has been replaced by silent streets and people staying indoors to help to reduce the spread of, and avoid catching, the novel coronavirus which has now spread to every province in China.

Whilst staying indoors and practising self-quarantine or self-isolation can have positive effects with regards to limiting spread of the virus, it can have detrimental consequences for mental wellbeing. That’s why we have collated ten things you can do at home to keep yourself entertained and healthy during this difficult time.

What have you been doing to keep occupied? Let us know in the comments!

1. Join a free, live online yoga class run by local yogi Lynn

Lynn is a well known yoga teacher in Chongqing who is now running free 30 minute yoga classes on Taobao live, Monday - Friday at 3pm. Her mission is to connect people stuck in their homes and promote movement and stretching to keep our bodies healthy and strong.

To join: Open the Taobao app, search Taobao Live for ‘yogiiiiiiii’ for all of the video content. Or just copy and open the tao bao app:


2. Have a picnic

Shake up your usual lunchtime by setting up an indoor picnic! Move the furniture to the side of the room, put a blanket down on the floor with some pillows, put your food in a picnic basket and play card games or board games together for a cosy evening. Mix it up with healthy bean salads, homemade bread rolls and sweet treats.

3. Create a one day book club

Pick a short book to read and prepare some questions about the book, the plot and the characters that you will answer as a group at the end - you can find pre-prepared book club questions for lots of books online. This keeps your brain sharp and provokes new topics to discuss, and can be very interesting to learn more about your family members if you choose your own questions, such as “what would you do in the main character’s situation?”

For an alternative, you can even do the same with a movie or TV show.

4. Have a treasure hunt

Even if you have a small apartment, treasure hunts can be great fun for all the family. Prepare some numbered clues - you can rhyme them, or include word games, quizzes or riddles for a bigger challenge - then hide them around the apartment until a prize is found at the end!

5. Practice some meditation

Being stuck inside all day unable to go to work, school, or even outside can lead to overthinking, anxiety, boredom and even depression. Our mental wellbeing is as important as our physical wellbeing, and meditation is a good way to take some time to process how you’re feeling.

Meditation can take a number of forms. There are plenty of apps available, such as Calm or Headspace, and kids can also get involved with apps like Stop, Breathe & Think.

Journaling is also a good way to have some ‘me time’. Start a one-line-a-day diary, where you write down two sentences about what you’ve done each day and how you’re feeling, to have a log of what you’ve been up to and your emotions that you can look back on.

6. Get moving!

With gyms closed in residential complexes across Chongqing, High Intensity Interval Training can be a great way to get the blood flowing and increase endorphins - they are short bursts of high intensity exercises such as squats, punches and running on the spot, followed by a short period of rest. There are plenty of free HIIT workouts that can be found online, only take 20-30 minutes and many don’t need any equipment at all.

Or have a dance party with the kids! Put on your favourite songs and dance around the living room. You can even play musical statues, where someone controls the music, and when it stops, everyone has to stand still as a statue. Start with 10 points and lose one for every time you’re found moving during the statue time.

7. Flex your creative muscle

With plenty of time on our hands, now is the time to test things out that you might not have time to try usually. Get the colouring pencils out and try a self portrait, get messy with some finger painting, learn some needlework with some cross-stitch or embroidery, write a song or a poem, or start that book you’ve been thinking about for so long!

8. Learn a new skill with a free online course

The internet is full of opportunity to up-skill ourselves in so many ways. From IT and coding, through to learning new languages or courses in psychology and everything in between. Take some time for yourself and go back to education for a while.

9. Deep clean your apartment

Whilst it’s not the most glamorous job, having a clean, tidy, cosy place to spend time can make a massive difference to your morale and wellbeing - and can keep you busy during your time indoors. Do you have a pile of boxes in the spare bedroom that’s full of junk, or a drawer of dead batteries or old receipts? If you spend a day going through everything you’ve been putting off, you’ll be amazed by how satisfied you feel afterwards.

10. Volunteer virtually

At a time of crisis people are often looking for a way to give back to others. Luckily the internet connects us all and has a wealth of ways you can do that from the comfort of your own home, including being a career mentor on LinkedIn and becoming a UN Volunteer. Find more opportunities to help with proofreading, emotional support, transcriptions, creating blankets for those in need, and SO much more here

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