As the world is changing rapidly due to the coronavirus pandemic, a lot of us here in Canada are now self-isolating and practising social distancing. We are spending a lot of time in our homes, avoiding crowds, visits with family and friends, and going out only when necessary. 

My boys are on Spring Break for two weeks, and I have found I now have some clusters of time when they are happy and occupied, playing or working on kid activity printables, and I am looking for productive things to do at home, while they are busy.

I have been trying to find things to do that don’t involve Netflix; there’s only so much T.V. you can watch each day. So I have put together a List of Productive Things to Do While Self-Isolating During The Coronavirus Outbreak. Feel free to add your own ideas in the comments. Hopefully, we can all find inspiration as we find ourselves spending more and more time at home. 

List of Productive Things to Do While Self-Isolating During The Coronavirus Outbreak


  1. Take an online course: Sign up for an online course, now is a great time to learn that skill you have had no time to learn before. There are so many websites with FREE and paid options, or you can simply go on YouTube and find tutorials for free. So many possibilities.
  2. Spring Declutter: Staying home gives you a chance to Spring Clean your place at your own pace. You can start slowly, find old toys the kid’s don’t play with anymore, donate baby books, look for things you don’t use and have stored somewhere and forgotten about. Collect all unwanted items to donate and give away. 
  3. Organize your closets: Do a closet clean, check to see if you have any clothes that don’t fit or you don’t wear anymore. Get your spring wardrobe ready and put all your winter clothes away. Organize your kid’s closets too, and “Marie Kondo” that mess.
  4. Create a photo book and organize your photos: If you have been waiting for free time to finally organize and create photo books to print your favourite books from your last family holiday or celebration, now is the time. Finally, organize and make a baby book and get it printed—so many websites to do this online from your home.
  5. Learn a new language: Remember when you got that course or bought that book to learn a new language? Maybe you never got to it because you had no free time. Well, now you’ll have some extra free time to get to it finally. Find a Skype video friend to practice with.
  6. Deep clean your kitchen: Now you can finally focus on deep cleaning your kitchen. Organize your kitchen drawers, clean your oven, deep clean your microwave, clean your dishwasher, move the fridge and stove and vacuum behind them.
  7. Work on your taxes: Taxes needs to get done anyway. Maybe this is a good time to organize all the receipts and get those taxes done.
  8. Start a new book series: Do you have a book you want to start that you haven’t read yet? How about a book series that you have always wanted to read? Join an online book club. You can get ebooks from your local library or buy new books or ebooks online from Amazon.
  9. Meal plan for the next two weeks: If you usually don’t have the time to sit down and meal plan, try it now. You can go online and look for new recipes, shop for ingredients online, and have all your meals for the next few weeks planned. 
  10. Start a YouTube workout challenge: No going to the gym for a few weeks? No problem. If you have a TV or laptop, even from your phone, you can start a free Youtube workout challenge to stay active from home. So many good free workouts online. I put together a post with a week full of free daily 15-20 min long workouts.
  11. Sort, clean and delete photos from your phone: I am so guilty of never doing this, my phone is FILLED with so many photos, including duplicates and photos I don’t want to keep anyway. It takes time to go through your phone’s photo folder and delete unwanted photos—the perfect thing to do right now if you have some free time.
  12. Organize your computer’s desktop and files: If your computer’s desktop is filled with random files, photos and documents, take some time to go through them and organize everything. Having a clean desktop feels so good.
  13. Descale your coffee makers: If you have never done this, or can’t remember the last time you did it, then go and do it now—Google instructions on how to do it for your specific coffee machine. 
  14. Vacuum your vehicles: Time to head to the garage and clean your car, pick up all the garbage your kids have left in the car and vacuum underneath their car seats. Great use of your time.
  15. Give yourself a mani-pedi: When was the last time you got a mani-pedi? Since you are not going to the salon, gather all your tools and polishes and give yourself a mani-pedi.
  16. Do a face and hair mask: Bring the spa to home and give yourself an extra-long hair mask or facial mask. Pamper yourself for a bit.
  17. Clear your inbox: Perfect time to go through all your e-mails and respond to those that have been waiting to hear from you for a while. Get that inbox to zero and feel the satisfaction.
  18. Bake and make pasta sauces, jams and things you can store/preserve long term: This one can involve the kids, get them to help you bake cookies, muffins, extra snacks, and things you can eat in the next few weeks.
  19. Work on your Will and other important documents you have been waiting to get to: Don’t have a Will yet? You can work on that right now. Time to organize all those documents you have been waiting to organize. There are online websites that can help you with that as well. 
  20. Create detailed playlists of your favourite music: This one is fun and productive. Create a playlist of your favourites and enjoy them while you work on it.
  21. Optimize your desk and workspace: Is your desk a mess? Time to file and organize those bills, documents and kid’s crafts. 
  22. Write letters to catch up with family and friends: Since we won’t be travelling to see friends and family for a while, writing letters and e-mails to loved ones is a lovely way to stay connected. Try sending snail mail for a change.
  23. Vacuum the inside of your clothes dryer lint filter: You should be doing this regularly anyway. 
  24. Check your medicine cabinets for expired products: A great time to sort through old expired products and medications and get replacements if needed.
  25. Go outside for a walk or go on a hike: Don’t forget to go outside and enjoy some fresh air. Find spots that are not busy and walk. We all need the fresh air and vitamin D right now.

Look at the positives of this situation and the fact that you have some extra free time at home to do things you used not to have time to do. Try to live a normal life as much as you can within our new “normal”.

Share your own ideas of productive things to do to inspire others, and share this post with friends and family looking for productive things to do while we deal with the coronavirus outbreak.

Stay safe, healthy, and productive, friends.