Self care at home: Shows, music and recipes to enjoy while social distancing

Illustration by Lauren Johnson

Iman Mekonen, Spectrum Editor

To pass time and to cure the impending boredom of self-isolation, I’ve been trying to incorporate more activities into my daily schedule. While doing this, I’ve consumed more music and movies than I have before and picked up hobbies which normally I would not have had time for.

It’s important to keep in mind that the rules and regulations put in place regarding reducing the spread of COVID-19 are not just for your safety but for everyone around you, including those with high health risks, such as the elderly, those with underlying conditions and infants.

Although being confined to our own houses isn’t ideal, taking time each day to focus on your well-being is important. Here’s a list of things that can help pass the time at home, ranging from tasks to keep you busy like home workouts and baking, to music and movie recommendations.


Film and TV

Despite the closures of theaters and production delays for several anticipated movie releases from franchises such as Marvel and James Bond, there’s still a wide variety of movies and TV shows available on various streaming apps. Recently, I’ve been watching reality shows that have been sitting on my watchlist and revisiting some old favorites.

Here are a few of my Netflix recommendations:

  • “Love Is Blind”
  • “Community”
  • “Next in Fashion”



Although some artists have canceled summer tours and delayed the release dates of albums, there’s been a lot of new music released, which makes being at home a little bit easier. Some of my favorite artists have dropped new singles and albums, which have spiced up my normal playlist. Some long-awaited album releases I’ve been enjoying include “After Hours” by The Weekend, “The New Abnormal” by The Strokes as well as singles from Frank Ocean and Drake. This is a great time to discover new music that’s new to you or listen to an album that you’ve been meaning to get to.

Even if your favorite artist hasn’t released any music recently (I’m looking at you Rihanna) several celebrities are taking to Instagram and other social media apps to broadcast home concerts, answer Q&A’s from fans and play unreleased music. I’ve been watching Instagram live broadcasts from Ari Lennox (@arilennox,) Rex Orange County (@rexorangecounty) and Tory Lanez (@torylanez) for a mix of music and entertaining comedy.

Here are some albums that I’ve been listening to lately:

  • “Bon Iver” by Bon Iver”
  • “It Is What It Is” by Thundercat 
  • “- Ugh, those feels again” by Snoh Aalegra


Mental health

This can be a difficult time for anyone mentally, but taking a break from social media and stressful school work can help to ease stress. Taking time to focus on mindfulness is important, whether that’s in the form of downloading an app for meditation or watching a YouTube video of a guided meditation. 


Being active

Being stuck at home isn’t an excuse for not exercising. There are several at-home workouts available that require little to no equipment to do. Walking around campus and going to the gym were some of my outlets for getting exercise every day. Since those aren’t options anymore, I try to walk my dog around my neighborhood as often as possible. Doing something as simple as this can give your mind a much-needed break from school work.



Spending time at home is perfect for trying that recipe you’ve never gotten around to making. My personal favorite recipe is a simple banana bread, which requires typical household ingredients including flour, eggs, vegetable oil and of course, bananas. It’s pretty easy to try with only two basic steps. If you want to add one more, my go-to topping on a freshly baked slice is a scoop of vanilla ice cream. A list of more complex recipes can be found here, if you’re up for a challenge, and an easier baking recipe is available here.

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