Winter activities for when you feel stuck

What to do when you’ve done it all?

Isabella Bonilla

Since you’ve probably already deep cleaned your entire household, become a master baker and watched every latest episode of The Mandalorian, it’s going to be difficult to come up with new things for you to do while stuck at home. Between having to tackle NTI, home life and whatever other chaos is going on in your world, burnout seems inevitable. Combined with social isolating guidelines, wow, life seems kind of dreary sometimes.

It’s hard to be thankful for what you do have when you feel stuck in a loop: empty, hopeless and powerless to your situation. It’s important to remember that every new day accomplishes something and that you have the power to be adventurous.

So, as the temperature drops and midterms creep closer, don’t let your mind work itself up or feel cornered. You’re full of endless potential and exist on a much broader spectrum than a political label, social dilemma or test grade. It’s okay to focus on the human experience. Look to what you can rather than what you cannot do.   

Become a Plant Parent 

This is especially beneficial if you’re in a situation where you can’t or don’t want to have a pet. Having something to care for- even if it’s just watering it once a week-is an outlet for gratitude and proven mood booster.  Spend some time researching a household plant that will fit your personality and home environment; there’s no better time to look for indoor greenery than in a season featuring a minimalist color palette.  

Golden pothos, spider plants, aloe vera and lemon balm are all easy to care for, versatile and help reduce air pollutants. 

Go to Climb Nulu 

Climb Nulu is an indoor bouldering gym featuring multiple walls of varying difficulty, as well as a minimalist gym in the back. First time day passes are only $15, and that includes shoe rentals. All you have to do is fill out a waiver and reserve a time to rock climb. Pop in some earbuds or bring a couple of friends. The facility is definitely large enough to accommodate social distancing requirements.

Challenge yourself both physically and mentally by working out climbing paths and tapping into your inner beast mode. It sounds cheesy, but you really do accomplish something here at the end of the day. Besides, who wants to be stuck doing the same online fitness videos? (No shade here, MadFit puts out some great content) Not to mention, you’ll help support a local business during these rough times. 

Become an ambassador for Words of Thanks

Words of Thanks is an online volunteer organization that was created by high school students. The entire premise of the organization is set on sending others meaningful cards, whether that’s senior citizens, healthcare workers, hospital patients or anyone in between. Every two weeks they send out an email with a description of who they’ve partnered with to send cards to and where they’re located.  You have the option to either physically mail or email the card. I recommend Canva if you choose the online route; it’s easy to use and produces great results.

Once a month the organizers put together a Zoom call for all the ambassadors to join. High school aged students from across the globe are able to connect and play games like Kahoot together during this time. Overall it’s a neat experience and can also count towards community service hours. All you have to do is fill out a form and you’ll begin to receive assignments. 


For those feeling extra ambitious, here a few challenge activities. Choose at least two of the following activities to complete.  

  • Make a traditional ethnic dish such as Moroccan tagine, Hungarian goulash or Cuban picadillo. Venture out of your comfort zone and shop at a local ethnic food market such as Choi’s Asian Food Market, Golden Key Market or La Rosita. If you’re at a loss, start here.
  • Create a list of questions to ask your grandparents, older relatives or elderly neighbors. Since we’re practicing social distancing, call or FaceTime them. Not only will they appreciate the interaction, but you’ll get to be part of a unique experience as well. Write down their answers or simply enjoy what they have to say- you’d be surprised what interesting stories arise from basic conversation starters. 
  • Write a letter to your 2021 self. Kick this tradition off by composing a list of all your current favorite things (in regards to music, sounds, foods, places, books, shows, etc.) and by talking about what you’re like now. What are your ideals? What inside jokes do you and your friends have? Revel in the nostalgia you’ll experience 365 days from now. 
  • Challenge your friends to a fort building competition. See who can build the biggest, most elaborate, wackiest indoor fort out of all the blankets, chairs and ugly Christmas sweaters you can find. Send each other pictures or do a virtual tour to show off your creations. Check out our December cozy movie calendar for a post-win celebration. 
  • Find other ways to volunteer online. Offer free tutoring sessions via Zoom or check out this site for some different opportunities.

Send in your suggestions or experiences to Manual RedEye; we’d love to hear from you!