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Unemployed or Slow at Work?: 7 Ways to Use Your Time

For years, Abby Slutsky stayed home with her children and was busy with fulfilling activities when they were at school or elsewhere.

If you have been furloughed from a job or find that your business is slow compared to past years, you may be wondering how to fill your time (especially if you work from home). Keeping busy can make your life more meaningful and give you less time to worry about any financial concerns you may have. Of course, you may be cold calling or sending out job applications, but the reality is there are only so many opportunities to send to in a day and rejections from cold calling may not make you upbeat. So, while you are trying to better your situation, you may also find yourself with a lot of extra time to fill. What can you do with it?

Use your time by carving out an hour or so to play a sport. Photo by Gonzalo Facello from Pexels

Use your time by carving out an hour or so to play a sport. Photo by Gonzalo Facello from Pexels

1. Enjoy a Sport

Fortunately, if the weather is nice and you have time because you are unemployed or not busy at work, there are plenty of free or low-cost sports you can enjoy. Consider a pickup game of basketball, a game of tennis on the local high school courts, or a walk in a nearby park or track. If you have a bike, ride to a destination or just enjoy pedaling through your neighborhood. You may even want to ride with friends if some of them also have more free time than usual.

2. Learn a Game

If you have always wanted to learn bridge, canasta, mah jongg or any other game, you can find a YouTube video that can get you started. Although I am only a novice bridge player, I started learning with free online YouTube videos. Joan Butts and Peter Hollands offer some free videos that can help get you started. Do a quick search, and you are bound to find a free video explaining whatever game you want to learn.

3. Cook or Learn How

If you do not know how to cook, now can be the time to learn. It is far cheaper than eating out, and it is a lifelong skill that will save you money. Free cooking shows and videos abound, so learning how is free. Preparing a meal can take time. Cook with children, your family, or enjoy doing it alone.

Grooming takes time and can help you look good and feel positive about yourself. Photo by cottonbro from Pexels

Grooming takes time and can help you look good and feel positive about yourself. Photo by cottonbro from Pexels

4. Treat Yourself to an At-Home Beauty Regime

Give yourself a shave, color your hair, or spend time giving yourself a manicure. The effort you put into grooming will help you have a strong foot forward when you have an interview or see others socially. Looking your best can also help you maintain a positive attitude.

5. Volunteer

Even if you do not want to leave your home or be around others, there are many volunteer opportunities that do not require you to have contact with people. Volunteer opportunities may require making phone calls, writing letters, and performing other tasks that are contact free. One easy way to find opportunities is to go to Volunteer Match which has a list of virtual and in-person opportunities that may satisfy your interests and help you feel a sense of accomplishment.

Given the current environment, I will touch on some of the virtual opportunities that they list; however, listings change daily. Visit with a veteran on the phone or in-person, tutor children online, write grants, or help with website development. Pre-covid, I used Volunteer Match to find an opportunity volunteering for hospice. It was a fulfilling, life-changing experience. Given my personal experience with Volunteer Match, I feel very comfortable recommending the website.

As a bonus, volunteering may help you accumulate skills that you can add to your resume if you are unemployed and looking for work.

6. Garden, Clean or Spruce Up Your House

Do-it-yourself projects not only improve your home; they also give many people a sense of accomplishment. Additionally, cleaning, gardening, and making repairs save money because you do not have to hire someone else to do the job. Even if you are not handy, cleaning out the garage or gardening will keep you busy.

A virtual class is a click away, and there are plenty of free classes available. Photo by Andrew Neel from Pexels

A virtual class is a click away, and there are plenty of free classes available. Photo by Andrew Neel from Pexels

7. Take a Class

Although school can be expensive, Coursera offers some free online and low-cost courses that you can enjoy. Some of the courses are taught by professors from top universities. There are free classes teaching python, excel, languages, and many other topics. Some of the classes may enhance your marketability, but there are plenty of classes that you can take for pure enjoyment.

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2021 Abby Slutsky

Comments

Abby Slutsky (author) from America on March 13, 2021:

Thanks for reading and sharing your thoughts.

Abby Slutsky (author) from America on March 13, 2021:

Thanks for stopping by to read and share your thoughts.

Abby Slutsky (author) from America on March 12, 2021:

Thnks for reading and sharing your thoughts.

MG Singh emge from Singapore on March 12, 2021:

Great suggestions and it opens new vistas.

Peggy Woods from Houston, Texas on March 12, 2021:

You have given people many ideas of how to fill the time that may benefit them in the future.

Abby Slutsky (author) from America on March 12, 2021:

Thanks so much for reading. I always appreciate your comments.

Abby Slutsky (author) from America on March 12, 2021:

Thanks so much for reading. I appreciate your time and comment.

Devika Primić from Dubrovnik, Croatia on March 12, 2021:

It is helpful for anyone unemployed and I learned lots from your hub.

Pamela Oglesby from Sunny Florida on March 12, 2021:

These are very good suggestions to fill up your time and to perhaps learn a new skill. I imagine this article will help some people with too much time on their hands, Abby.

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