By Hettie Howlett.

Being home and not knowing what to do during the day can be overwhelming and depressing. But it’s a great opportunity to do things that full-time workers often intend to do but never quite make the time. Here are some suggestions that I have found helpful:

 

Pray and go to Mass

             You must take time for this! Don’t be ashamed if you don’t feel like praying. But do it anyway. This may be hard if you’re far from a church but you can pray at home. Even just 10 minutes is better than nothing. Read Park It (At All Costs) for some encouragement.

 

Exercise

             Try something new – bike, swim, dance, walk, run, cross country ski, etc.

             Do it daily

             Consider weights and other strength training, especially for your core

             Join a recreation league

             Look for community classes such as scuba, tennis, martial arts, etc.

 

Personal Growth and knowledge

             Consider individual counseling or group therapy (like ones for grief, etc). Check with local hospitals, funeral homes, Catholic Charities, or your diocese. I did GriefShare and found it extremely helpful.

             Self help materials – perhaps you can’t find a counselor or you just want to be a little healthier. Try Ten Days to Self Esteem, Resisting Happiness, The Anxiety and Phobia Workbook. Or The Place We Find Ourselves podcast.

             Career services – Does your local college offer advice? Is there a women’s center nearby? Research how to improve your resume/CV. Learn more about our career initiative here.

             Career books like What Color is Your Parachute? and Do What You Are

             Cook a new meal, learn a foreign language, explore a computer program that may help your job hunt or school efforts. Your library might offer free access to resources such as lynda.com 

             Join a club – see if your local library offers craft groups, book groups, etc.

Take a class- Find newsletters from the library, community college, community center, etc. to see what they offer

             Pick up an old hobby – Were you in the band in school and haven’t touched your instrument in 10 years? Give it a try! Revisit drawing, poetry, painting, stargazing or other hobbies that used to give you joy.

Learn a new hobby – calligraphy, sewing, knitting, churning butter 🙂

             Volunteer – it looks good on your resume/CV and will help you give to others.

 

Finances

             Create a budget spreadsheet

             Sign up for online banking

             Track your credit card spending

             Read about investing (example, Smart Women Love Money by Alice Finn)

             Ask friends, family, your pastor, people at the parish for help or recommendations

             Or if you’re a financial guru, please offer your help to others!

 

Relationships

             Reconnect with old friends

             Learn how to make small talk. Check out this blog or The Fine Art of Small Talk by Debra Fine

             Write a note to someone. Wasn’t snail mail in the convent special?

             Find ways to meet new people (local Catholic group, meet-ups, book clubs)

             Visit a shut-in or take communion to the sick / elderly

             Babysit and/or visit a stay at home mom who might feel isolated

 

I would love to hear your thoughts and suggestions. Please comment below!

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