9 things you can do during lockdown that are worth your time

Organise your email

My email is a mess. I am subscribed to numerous Writers' and Zero Waste newsletters which, although I mostly enjoy, clog my inbox. I find myself constantly marking things as read even if I haven't opened them just to get rid of the notification.

I've decided to take the time and organise my mess. I'll be doing that with labels and folders. I'm separating the emails by theme: writing, literature, zero waste, travel, etc. Here are some useful resources to get you started:

Update your CV

I have never heard of anyone who likes updating their resume but this is a great time to do that. It doesn't even have to be your "paper" CV. Update all your business profiles. If all your information is up-to-date then you can look into improving it. Don't know how to do that? Thankfully, I have some tips from you.

  1. Everything you need to know is on the Prospects website. If there is anything I have learned from the CV checks at uni, it's that you should be looking at that website. Honestly, I probably could have skipped the first CV check if I had just opened the website.

  2. Chronological or skill-based CV? Why not both? On the Prospects website, you will find the skill-based CV examples, which emphasise your skills (duh). However, it's an unusual way of organising a resume. Instead, you can try adding the skills at the beginning of your bullet point. Example: Instead of saying 'Giving written feedback to 17 writers, as well as editing 5 articles' say 'Editing: Giving written feedback to 17 writers, as well as editing 5 articles'. That way you are not only highlighting your achievements but also your skills.

  3. What about the language? Use active verbs when possible. That is words like 'created', 'analysed', 'developed' and 'initiated' to present yourself as a proactive person. More examples here. Make sure your spelling and grammar are on point. Avoid using cliches such as 'team player' and 'multitasker'.

  4. Use a professional email. This is very basic, but just putting it out there - If your email is still thatbitch33 then it's time for a change.

If your CV is looking good, then focus on your business profiles. Make your LinkedIn more effective by attaching articles, videos, pictures, presentations, etc. Maybe your website needs an update? If you don't have a website, you could use this time to create one.

Learn a language

I am teaching my brother in law Bulgarian during the lockdown. If you live with someone who speaks a language you don't know, you could use this time to learn it. There are also plenty of resources out there. We all know Duolingo. We also know that it's not always the most effective resource as it tends to teach you weird sentences you will never use. Try the free courses from Open University. Check out the BBC page on languages. Or go on YouTube, there are loads of available classes there.

Declutter your phone

If you are anything like me then you have a tone of useless screenshots, downloads and duplicates in your photos library. Well, now's the time to sort through them and delete anything you don't need. If you want an extra challenge, upload the pictures in albums on Google Photos. That will keep you occupied for a while.

Take an online course

Speaking of Open University, they have some great online classes you can take. Click here to browse through. There is, of course, skillshare. There are tutorials on YouTube. Online courses can be a great way to feel productive and learn something new. Also, they can be quite fun. Definitely a good way to fight boredom.

Watch all the Studio Ghibli Films

Studio Ghibli is one of the best animation film studios in the world. In case you haven't noticed, they are also available on Netflix. My favourite so far is Princess Mononoke.

Read War and Peace

What better time to read this long-ass classic? If you need your interest peaked watch this video. If War and Peace really isn't your jam, try an equally (if not more) challenging book, such as Ulysses. Maybe The Count of Monte Cristo or Bleak House? Here are 26 Very Long Books Worth the Time They'll Take to Read. If you are not looking for a challenge and want to read something good I recommend The Authenticity Project by Clare Pooley and In a Lonely Place by Dorothy B. Hughes.

Make kozunak

Everyone is making sourdough, pasta, pizza and dumplings. But have you ever made Bulgarian Easter Bread? Well, now is your chance. It will probably take you half a day to make, as it needs to proof for a while. It's a perfect weekend activity... or lockdown activity. Here is a recipe.

Improve your computer skills

I have been using the time to learn how to use InDesign and I'm having a lot of fun with it. Learning to use new software can be a great way to spend your time in lockdown. Of, course, useful software will depend on your profession. However, IT skills can come in handy anywhere. Here are some interesting articles on the topic:

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© Gery Galabova.