BORED OF THE LOCKDOWN? 7 EXCITING WAYS TO KILL BOREDOM.

In the wake of the current outbreak, the predicted yet unexpected had happened. Mankind is, again, being reminded of the menace of the flu that happened almost a century back. Those who survived the flu back then wished they never were born. Today, the busiest cities have, in the twinkle of an eye, become more silent than the graveyards. The largest stock markets are starting to feel the deep pressure they had when they were just opening- the fear of uncertainty. The so-called “bosses” who were once blinded by pride- I mean those whose priority were on the return of interest rather than the interest of their workers have been forced to reconsider their options. Supermarkets whose goal had always been to outwit their opponents now care about themselves as a matter of safety. Those bustling night houses are now lined with insects filling the space of those who once thought life had no meaning. Rather than a drunk at a corner , what you see are empty chairs filled with dusts. Those banking halls that made us believe we can’t live a day without visiting them to raise their in-stock monies have made us realize the truth. What we referred to as our properties, in actual monetary terms, are assets to them while being liabilities to us. But with the current case, the table has turned.


Talking of the ecosystem, the north wind seems to be in the reverse direction. Human activities that were once regarded as a threat to animals ‘ existence have turned out to be at the minimal level and the level of satisfaction felt by those nearly extinct organisms might just be beyond words. In the past few days, industrial emissions have witnessed a reduction – something that has not happened several years ago. Although this is making governments relax laws enforcing the reduction of emissions of greenhouse gases while passing laws that criminalize any climate protest. Ironic isn’t it? Let me remind us that when the pandemic is over, we still have a greater menace ahead –one which is nearly inevitable and whose starting point we can’t say neither can we relate its end. While a climate denier may claim that this period will play a part in fighting climate change (that’s even if he comes to his senses), the carbons we have released in the time past are enough to cause a devastating effect, one that is, in multiple folds, worse than what the world is facing.


Oh! Sorry, I just got stuck in my climate activism. That was just by the way and not the gist of the topic.


Now, while everything seems to be taking a turn, Forbes Magazine reports that the number of internet users has gone up by 70% just in a matter of weeks of intense lockdowns. While a small part of the masses see this time as an opportunity to either further their course or to start something great, a major proportion now spend a substantial amount of time on the net so caught up in their own doings, doing nothing. Come to think of it, did you know that the Chinese word for “Crisis” (Weiji) has an ambivalent meaning of danger and OPPORTUNITY?

I agree hands up that things have been on the flip side since the outbreak, But, of course, books are also a salve and a consolation. In the long centuries during which the plague ravaged Europe, the quarantined, if they were lucky enough to have books, read them. If not, and if they were well enough, they told stories. How much more the present generation currently practicing social distancing?

The books that you’ve always wanted to read before the outbreak haven’t changed its form. It’s still lying where you left it obeying the first law of motion. You see, while those who are uninfected might claim some degree of protection, they still need some form of vaccination. Why? Because in the course of the past days in lockdown, their mind has been infected with quite a whole lot of wishy-washy fallacies which they obviously got through reading. Reading may be an infection, the mind of the writer seeping, unstoppable, into the mind of the reader. And yet it is also an antidote, proven, unfailing, and exquisite. It goes without saying that while your intellectual prowess is not enough to take you to where you desire, your lack of certain cognitive knowledge is enough to take you to where you don’t want.


I really can’t stress the abundance of information on the same cell phone that you and I spend an average 4 years of our lifetime looking down at. I am particularly concerned about READING because your interest in reading led you to this piece and the usage of whatever insight I would give much depends on whether or not you would want to read.
That said, I’ve read and received countless claims from both friends and acquaintances on things to do to get one’s hands on deck during the period.


First, you can either hone your pre-existing skills in Coding or similar subjects or you develop new ones. Here’s why. The world is fast developing. No one cares what facts and data you have memorized. In the future, you will be hired not because of what you know but because of what you can do with what you know. You don’t believe me? Stay with me! In the future, most jobs will be automated so the ones who succeed are those who are curious, innovative, with resilience to adapt to the changes that will be introduced into their field through automation. Forbes Magazine Tech Experts have predicted 13 jobs that will be displaced by 2030 and data from a survey by the Mckinsey and Company suggest that between 400 million and 800 million individuals could be displaced by automation and need to find new jobs by 2030 around the world. Yet, several millions of jobs will be created and this is just to reiterate the fact that only those well suited for the transition will remain. While this is not to substitute the skills you already have, it will help you to make a move towards the ones you don’t have. You may check out http://www.khanacademy.org or http://www.codecademy.com or http://www.sololearn.com


LEARN A NEW LANGUAGE.
Furthermore, how about you learn a new language? Come to think of it, what if you end up having an interview with someone from a different culture and just in the middle of discussing, you mentioned your polyglot skills. One of the languages you’ve learned turned out to be your interviewer’s mother tongue, trust you will smile out of the room. Or consider yourself on a flight that had to stop in a place you don’t know due to an unforeseen contingency- presumably weather, coincidentally knowing how to speak the language of the country will give you some level of confidence that you aren’t lost. Or just the fun of speaking Russian with your friends while your parents stare with wonder. As little as 15 minutes a day is all you need. Check out http://www.duolingo.com or http://www.memrise.com or http://www.mzansilingos.com


VISIT A VIRTUAL GALLERY
Or is it that dream adventure of yours? Have you ever thought of visiting Times Square? Or the 9/11 center or the Museum of Arts, New York? Well, now you can do so using Google Art and Culture project – http://www.googlartsandcultureprojects.com. With contents from over 2000 partnered museums, from the corner of your room, you can visit your dream places in the world.

LEARN A RECIPE

Or you learn how to make that delicious meal you often buy because you had no time to learn how to make it but would like to know how to make. Now is a good time as any to elevate your cooking skills by learning from the best in the area. Granted, it’s best you stay at home but you can still watch and learn or use the ingredients you do have. Impress your friends by inviting them over for a meal when the lockdown is over. Or surprise a family member when a celebration like a birthday comes in.


START A BOOK CLUB—ONLINE
This is a good time like any other to start an online club. Decide on a book or a theme your circle wants to explore and get cracking. In fact, a book club can be a great way to get to know more like-minded people and expand your circle. Set a couple of ground rules, such as ‘agree to disagree’, ‘let’s hear from everyone’, to help the book club be a space for a lively, enjoyable discussion and not descend into argumentative chaos.
Pick a date and time, get together on remote conferencing platforms such as Zoom or Google Hangout and have yourselves an online book club party.

LEARN THAT SKILL.
Learn a skill that you’ve always wanted to learn but never had the time to! (I’m going to try to learn Coding and improve my blogging skills.) Develop the musical traits you’ve noticed in yourself. Take a drawing paper and create the space for those diagrams emerging from your inner self. Take a pen and write those great words coming from within.

START A YOUTUBE CHANNEL
Why not? Grab your phone and start recording. No special equipment is needed for beginner videos. Your YouTube channel could be anything from teaching others how to bake cakes to creating a “vlog” (video blog) about what it’s like to be in isolation with the coronavirus going on outside. Again, it doesn’t have to be a perfect, polished video. As author Rob Moore says, “Start now, get perfect later.” Take action. Start something amazing.

RAISE YOUR VOICE!
One of my favorite speaker once said “once you open your mouth, you tell the world who you are” Sure! Podcasting is a great way to articulate your views on certain issues. Come to think of it, you don’t need a studio or any big instrument to start, just your phone will do. Let me give you an hint to an secret fact about podcasting. Podcasting is a much less crowded and competitive space than blogging, making now the perfect time to get started.
As of March 2020, there are just over 900K podcasts, but over 600 million blogs!
Well to put that in perspective, Neil Paltel once noted that “There are over 1 billion blogs and roughly 7 billion people in this world. That’s 1 blog for every 7 people… On the other hand, there are roughly 700,000 podcasts. That means there is only 1 podcast for every 10,000 people or so. Podcasting is 1,428 times less competitive than blogging.”
In podcasting, you have the stage and you can reach any number of audiences as long as you know the rules of the game. Check out http://www.hubhopper.com.

START BLOGGING: HOW ABOUT YOU START BLOGGING? IT IS COOL, FUN, AND EASY.
One of the widely acclaimed misconceptions is that you need to be a great writer to start blogging. Well, all you need is the passion mixed with dedication and spiced with excitement.
Blogging entails a whole lot. It depends on your choice of writing. According to Scot Chow, “ You don’t need to be an expert on your topic in order to have a successful blog. For example, readers of a cooking blog don’t want to read a textbook from a food scientist, they want to hear the experiences of someone who has actually cooked some real meals, mistakes and all.” You just need the aforementioned to set the ball rolling.

So why blogging of all things?


First, you can share your stories on your blog. If you have an experience you would want to make public, blogging is one sure way to do that since you can reach a large audience from your blog.
Also, if you are an entrepreneur, blogging is a pretty cool way to make your business known to the world.
And you can make money from blogging – which is quite not as painstaking as making money through podcasting. Since you only need to spend few hours a week writing your content, it will be more of a passive income and you can continue to earn on the long run. While you may be wondering how is that possible and how much can you earn, stay calm, the answer is still within the 24 Alphabets. Well, this and many more will I address in a detailed guide that will be released soon. All you need to do is to stay tuned and stay safe.

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Lastly, just few years ago, a survey was carried out on some sick people on their death bed and they were asked to reflect on their biggest regret. You see, most of them didn’t regret the things they did but the things they didn’t do. Now imagine yourself close to your death and beside you are the dreams you didn’t nurture, the books you didn’t write or the invention you didn’t make staring at you angrily saying “we came to you and only you could have given us life. But now, we will have to die with you FOREVER”.

Whether you are in a lockdown doesn’t really count, what is, however, important is how you will exit the lockdown. If it must be, it is up to you.


Let me know what step you plan to take and how I may help in the comment section or you send me an email. And remember to join the almost half a thousand followers by clicking on the subscribe button and do well to share to others using any of the social media link below.


#Stay safe

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