Interesting Ideas for Spending the Time

This ‘Ideas Sheet’ has been sent to Cherry Lodge Cancer Care by Alessia Bicocchi, a CL therapist with a special interest in the mental well being of our members.

PERSPECTIVES – What We Can Control

Finding your Pearl in the Oyster …

We may not have control over a worldwide virus, but we do have a greater degree of control over our behaviour and our thoughts than we might realize.

So, here are a few things to consider doing and some perspectives you might choose to take:

Exercise – we know that exercise is essential for good health, both physical and emotional.

Exercise alone if you’re able to motivate yourself or use a YouTube video to get a structured session; find an online yoga class or exercise routine, or go for a walk – in a natural context, not around others.

Do “That Thing” You’ve Always Wanted to do – being at home does not have to be boring. It’s your perspective about being at home that you can control.

How many times have you said, “I wish I had the time to…”
Well, now could be “the time.’

Here are just a few examples from the mundane to the intellectually stimulating:
  • Clean out/organize closets and/or drawers
  • Organize your photos
  • Go through your e-mails and throw out all those old ones
  • Clean up all those apps and folders sitting on your mobile devices or computers
  • Binge watch a favourite show
  • Catch up on movies
  • Colour/draw/paint
  • Read a book
  • Write a book
  • Learn a language
  • Take an online course in a topic of interest to you
  • Develop a new skill
  • Pick up that musical instrument you’ve had at home and play
  • Call people you haven’t talked to in a long time
  • Start a gratitude journal for those things you’re grateful for during these hard times
  • Reach out to others online – join a virtual book club or simply connect with friends for a virtual cup of tea or coffee.

What to do with kids at home

Kids often do best with routines and schedules. If they are now home, and not in school, parents will need to create that structure.

Make calendars, daily schedules, have kids participate in making these so they are invested in the process.  For those of you less likely to create your own schedules, you may find some of these charts helpful:
Customizable routine charts 
Printable Charts from Priceless Parenting
Printable Daily Schedules on Pinterest

You can do an online search for many more ideas about what to do with kids at home but here’s a start to generating some ideas:

  • Create a scavenger hunt around the house
  • Teach organizational skills by helping kids organize their rooms
  • Learn a new skill together online
  • Cook together, bake together, use the time to connect and teach concepts
  • Craft time – the ideas here are endless with lots of ideas in online searches “crafts for kids”
  • Colour together or encourage independent time to do this and then share what has been done
  • Create a story or a photo album about their lives
  • Remember kids (and many adults too) do best with structure. If you want them to engage in an activity for a period of time (so you can get something done), then use a timer or clock to help kids understand how long they will engage in a particular activity.
  • Play cards, word games, board games
  • Make a board game
  • Plant a garden, even in small pots indoors
  • Write a letter or draw a picture to send to a grandparent or family friend
  • Listen to music or dance!

An Invaluable Resource for Kids & ADULTS

Dr Jody Thomas, a paediatric psychologist, and her team have created this resource for the Stanford University School of Medicine. It’s a website that interfaces with smart phones and tablets called: Imaginaction.

It is a relaxation based program teaching kids how to use ‘their imagination’ to get some control over their thoughts, feelings and even their bodies.

Useful if a kid or person needs to spend time in a Hospital: