Chances are that you rarely have free time to spend in your busy schedule especially if you have a certain goal you want to reach. Even when you get an hour of free time, you look for new productive ways to keep working in order to accomplish your goal.
Of course, working on your goal with everything you have is necessary to achieve it, however, it should not take from your free time as well. Taking a step back and rejuvenating yourself by doing something for fun can turn you into a more productive person hence making it easier to carry out your tasks.
For those of you who are workaholics, you need to know that life is about the balance of work and fun in order to have a healthy and pleasant lifestyle. For you to have such a lifestyle, you need to detach yourself from your regular routine activities and give yourself time to relax, enjoy, and do something you like for yourself.
Some of you have a busy lifestyle and wish to spend a single day alone in their house having to do something they’ve always wanted to do in their free time or just do nothing at all. For them, free time is something they look forward to all the time as their agenda on how to spend it is already planned for. This helps them become better versions of themselves and enjoy their lives while accomplishing their aspiration.
But what about those who are stuck to have a lot of free time in their hand because they are either unemployed, in a summer vacation, or just that they are going through some kind of fate they have to live with due to unspoken circumstances? Do you think they are enjoying their free time?
One thing is for sure, the first week or couple of weeks can be enjoyable as they can do what they want or do nothing at all to clear their heads. But then what? It is almost a month by now and there is nothing else left to do and their body aches from lying down or sitting in one place all day. Do you think they will be happy about the ample free time in their hands?
The answer to this can be both: yes and no.
No, are those who spend their free time either lying down on their couch the whole day while staring at their smartphones and getting frustrated by the end of the day, and soon lose their sanity because of the boredom and emptiness they feel.
Yes, are those who plan out what to do in their free time to enjoy themselves without wasting their time. They will be the happier version because they always look for productive ways to spend their free time and enjoy it.
In which category do you fall? Yes or No?
It is true that most people think spending time alone can be very frustrating and boring. However, what they don’t understand is how you spend it is what matters.
Easy ways to spend your free time
Below is a list of productive things you can do in your free time that will help you kill time and have fun at the same time. Whether you are unemployed or have a lot of free time in your hand, use these ideas to benefit the most out of your free time.
1. Try things you’ve always wanted to try
Before choosing something to do from my ideas below, take out a piece of paper or a blank page on your screen and start jotting down the things you thought of doing whenever you get free time. It can be things you can and can not do at the moment. It doesn’t matter. Just write them down.
There is no better time to actually start executing those wishes than during this free time you are facing. Don’t procrastinate or choose how to spend your free time randomly. Make a proper list and start trying whatever you want immediately.
This is a term I never believed in because I never really understood how meditation worked. When people spoke about its benefits and that it is something that made them feel at ease, I just mocked them.
Yoga for me was all about the meditation done during the Lotus (Padmasana) pose. I never thought it was more about the physical, mental and spiritual benefits until a friend of my friend at work, who is a yoga instructor, came to our school to give us a free trial of her yoga lessons. It was then that I came to understand that yoga is more than just about the Lotus pose because after that session, unexpectedly, I felt different. My body felt lighter and fresh. That was the day my interest in yoga started.
When I got some free time, I looked into it and started watching some YouTube videos by searching for beginner’s guide to yoga. Today, I spend at least 20-30 minutes meditating every day. I find it to be very effective in many ways.
It helps lower my stress level and sometimes improves my focus when I lose concentration. This resulted in elevating my mood to remove negativity from my mind. My body feels better too.
So I am telling you, it is definitely something worth trying.
3. Create a workout routine
Instead of just sitting and not moving around, setting up a fitness program that can help you achieve your body goal is a good thing to do in your free time. As we all know, exercising has a lot of benefits both physically and mentally.
I got myself a treadmill to exercise on. If I am planning on working out, I start by practicing yoga for 10-15 mins to stretch my body. Then, I do some aerobics for 15 mins as a warm-up exercise before starting my journey on the treadmill.
So try picking up a workout routine you would enjoy and stick with.
4. Get organized and settle your house
I am sure we all have that chaotic desk and/or a messy cupboard that we always wanted to arrange but couldn’t find the time to do so. Your free time is the best time to get your things organized by keeping them neat and tidy.
You can also move around inside your house to see what needs to be done. For example, clean your house, wash the dishes, do the laundry, rearrange your furniture, throw stuff you don’t use anymore, and many other house chores to kill time.
5. Learn a new language
You must have heard someone speak a certain language and mesmerized you into wanting to speak that language. Since you are free and have a lot of time to spend, take up a course in that language and start learning it.
The easiest way to learn a language is to interact and listen to the natives of that language speak. You can do so by watching a movie, listening to songs, and writing sentences or paragraphs in that language. This way you will learn faster and excel in it.
I have always wanted to learn French, Spanish, and Korean (because I am a KDrama addict). I took French classes during my primary and secondary school but their teaching strategies were solely based on learning the language’s grammar rather than practicing its listening and speaking skills.
I am currently thinking of learning French from scratch. I understand some basic Korean because of the amount of KDramas I watched in the past seven years. Soon, I will work my way to learning Spanish as well as soon as I can.
6. Attain a new skill
Certainly, we all have some skill in mind that we want to learn or improve in. It can be a skill related to a job we are looking forward to apply or just a skill we want to be experts in.
There are a lot of skills you can learn today related to marketing, technology, photography, coding, or any other niche. Look for trending required skills in your niche and take a course to learn and improve your talent in it.
7. Start a new hobby
Some of you may not even have a hobby or maybe you didn’t still figure out what it is yet. This is the time you should start discovering your hobby and start practicing it and maybe turn it into a skill.
For those of you who already have a hobby, try out something new. There are tons of hobbies one can try out like painting, cooking, puzzle, crosswords, knitting, photography, and many more. So choose something you wouldn’t mind to try and try it out.
I love drawing. I used to draw during high school and some times during college too. However, I stopped for a while as I got busy with life but happily, I resumed drawing not too long ago. It is fair to say that I got a little rusty, but with practice, I am getting better at it.
8. Start dancing or learn how to dance
If you know how to dance, then you should do it all the time because the amount of energy it releases from your body and mind is just amazing. You feel like you own the floor when you dance.
If you don’t know how to dance, you should consider taking some dancing lessons. YouTube has simple choreography instructions for all levels to teach simple moves on how to dance as a beginner.
I loveeee dancing! I can dance but I am not an expert. I just love dancing. I love how I feel when I do it. Perfection doesn’t really matter to me. To me, dancing is all about moving with the beats. If anyone moves their body by following the rhythm of the music, then anybody can dance.
9. Spend time in self-care
When we are busy, we don’t find time to look after ourselves and care much about our self-care routine. This is why you should think about taking care of yourself in your free time. Look for ways to love yourself more so it lifts your spirits and reflects on others to love you.
Have a face mask to solve a skin problem, deep-clean your pores, get your nails done, care for your feet, put some oil in your hair, go for a massage or try new ways to nourish your skin in your free time to feel better about yourself.
Mondays and Fridays are my personal care days. I apply face masks, put oil in my hair, deep-condition my hair, or tend my skin on either of the two days every week. It gives me a soothing feeling about myself.
10. Experiment in the kitchen
Who doesn’t love food? Yes, we all do. So why not go into the kitchen, look around for the available ingredients, and try making a new dish you believe can be tasty?
Try cooking or baking something new whether it is from a YouTube video you watched or just some idea you want to try out.
I am not really a kitchen-lover so I didn’t really try this out before. However, it is something my mom and little sister do when they want to kill time.
11. Write a letter to someone
Did you ever have something to say to someone but didn’t get the chance to do so because they are out of your life in the present time?
Take out a piece of paper and write a letter to someone you’ve always wanted to say something to. It can be a letter to your ex-boyfriend, a late parent, or someone close to you, or even to your future self. The main thing is, try letting out all the emotions you have regarding the person you are writing to.
I once wrote a letter to my ex-boyfriend and said all the things I couldn’t say to him. I felt good writing what I couldn’t tell him.
12. Keep a diary/journal
Keeping a diary allows you to clarify your thoughts and feelings about what is happening around you in your life. When you write down how you feel or what you’re thinking about, it helps you process it better. It widens your mind and helps you trigger your problem-solving skills.
Journaling is a great way to start discovering yourself. Use your free time to get to know yourself better by asking yourself deep questions about your past, present, and future. This will help you understand yourself better hence solve problems in your life based on your true personality.
I keep a diary online to let out all the emotions inside me regarding a situation or a person. I am the kind of person who hardly expresses, so I write to help me feel better. I used to have a notebook as my diary but then I shifted to online writing for privacy and security purposes.
13. Read a book
Unless you are the type of person who hates reading, this is a great way to pass your time. Reading can help you improve your vocabulary, increase your knowledge, sharpen your memory, and most importantly, it gives you different perspectives on life.
The book you choose to read doesn’t have to be an educational book. It can be a novel, a self-development book or a book on any niche you are interested in. Even if you are unable to go to the library, try getting books online and read them using your phone/tablet. You can also read a magazine or an article online if you didn’t find an interesting book.
I enjoy reading novels whenever I get the time to do so. I am not a bookworm, but I love holding a book in my hand whenever I spend time alone outdoors or whenever I find time at home.
14. Start a blog
Blogging has now become the best way to spend your time by writing about what you love and sharing it with others to read your blog. Trying to organize a blog post, writing it, and then sharing it with the world is time consuming. Thus, spending your time blogging can be fun and productive.
You can start blogging on anything that interests you. It can be about technology, movies, cooking, health, fashion, etc. Think about what you enjoy talking about the most, write topics related to it, and share it with everyone.
As long as you have great writing skills and make your blog interesting to scroll and read, it will eventually attract a number of people who share your interests.
I started this blog to spend my time writing about the things I would want to share with everyone around me. Teaching is not just a job to me. It is more of a habit. I love helping others learn something I know. I enjoy sharing my knowledge and perspective on life to prove to people that there is more to life than what meet the eyes. So I started my blog to teach, inform and learn about different things in life.
15. Create a to-watch list
I am sure you’ve seen trailers of interesting movies and you planned on watching them as soon as you get time, or you heard about some TV shows that your friends talked about and how much they loved those shows. Collect the names of all the movies and TV shows you want to watch in a list and start watching them one by one.
I always have a KDramas and TV shows watch list that I keep updating every once in a while. Whenever I read a nice review of a KDrama, movie or a TV show, or hear about anything to watch from my friends, I add the name to my watch list.
16. Take a long drive or a walk
If you feel bored with just sitting and not doing anything, start your car and go for a long drive. Taking a long drive with your favorite road trip music will make you enjoy your time. Don’t think of where you wanna end up. Just keep driving to clear your head.
The same goes for walking. If you don’t happen to have a car, you can just go for a long walk in your district or an open area of your choice. Apart from the health and fitness benefits, walking helps reduce stress, anxiety, and fatigue. This way, it will replace your negative mood with a positive one.
Since I don’t know how to drive and hence don’t own a car, I love taking a walk in my area while listening to music to change my negative mood and clear my head.
17. Go to an amusement park
As long as you are not afraid of rides, book a ticket and enjoy the rides in an amusement park. The combination of fear and speed of thrilling rides gives you an adrenaline rush that, in my opinion, you should experience at least once in your lifetime.
Even if you don’t love rides, there are other things you can do in an amusement park. Things like playing games to win a prize, catching a show, enjoying eating or drinking while watching children scream in the rides, etc. The joy these children feel while playing is drawn on their faces and it just brings a smile to one’s face unintentionally.
Thrilling rides are just my thing! The feeling is just exhilarating. The minute I get strapped into my seat, the excitement consumes me. I do smell the stink of my fear if I am riding a thrilling ride for the first time, but that is the best part of it. Nonetheless, if I don’t feel like going on any ride, I just take a corner with my favorite drink and scroll the place with my eyes watching children have the time of their life.
18. Try watching the sunrise/sunset
Trust me when I say this…it is the best feeling ever! Watching the sunrise or sunset is a whole different feeling. Especially if you are at the beach or an open area, the view is just overwhelming. Looking at the sky penetrating the golden rays from the sun will bring peace to your mind and soul.
The reason I love dawn and dusk is that it is the only time I can directly look at the sun and the clouds surrounding it without it having to hurt my eyes. The view at this time of the day is sensational!
It is something I wish I can do frequently but unfortunately, I don’t have the view of the sun from my window since the buildings are blocking it. But I still stare at the sky with music in my ears whenever I can and sneak peeks of the golden rays from sky.
19. Reflect on religion
There must be times when you feel like something is missing in your life. Something you can’t really explain or pin-point at. Mostly, this feeling is in relation to the spiritual side of yourself.
Spend some time pondering on faith, religion, and God. Look into how you may have forgotten the presence of God in your life and deviated from the practice of your religion in your daily life.
Religion helps you think about your purpose in life. Spend some time thanking God for all the blessings He shared with you.
20. Network with your friends/family
There are people who come to your mind when you are busy doing something and you tell yourself “I will check up on him/her later” since you were hooked with something when you remembered them. But later, they skip your mind and you never get the chance to do that phone call or send them that message. Now, you have all the free time you need to contact them.
Go through your contacts list and call all your friends and relatives that you were not able to call and catch up with. If they are free, try arranging a meeting to make it even more fun.
I mostly fail to remember who I planned contacting when I was busy. So, whenever I find some free time in my hand, I go through my contacts list searching for those who I haven’t heard from in a while and either call them up or pop them a message.
Other ways to spend your free time
The more you think about what to do when you are free, the more ideas you get on how to spend that time.
Below are more ways to spend your free time. I do practice some of them but not all.
21. Brainstorm ideas
22. Research something interesting
23. Writing poetry
24. Draw and create a piece of art
27. Making jewelries
28. Learning a musical instrument
31. Creating a scrapbook
32. Clear out your inbox
With coronavirus spreading around us, most of us either got unemployed or is working from home which makes us have longer time to spend within four walls. Picking up some of the 32 ways to spend your free time will help you get along with your surrounding and enjoy your time at home.
Remember that lying down in your sofa the whole day doing nothing is the worst way to spend your free time. It may seem tempting at first but it will just take time from your life.
My advice to you is to utilize these ways to try and enjoy your free time productively whether you are employed or unemployed. Instead of wasting your free time without planning out things you would love to do, learn to exercise productive tasks that are both fun and useful.
It is true that sometimes you just want to do nothing in your free time and that’s ok, but don’t make it your routine and kill the time that will never come back.
Thank you for reading till the end 🙂
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Share some ideas on how you spend your free time productively with us in the comments below.