Quarantined? There’s an App For That
The bad news is, we’re still in quarantine. The good news is, we have a whole lot of technology at our fingertips to get us through it. (Can you imagine doing this in the ‘80s? The long distance phone bills alone – sheesh!) We’re all for spending a little more time outside, getting organized, taking up a new craft, cooking, doing puzzles, and playing good old fashioned board games with the family, but sometimes there are rainy days and lazy days and miles and miles between us and our loved ones. Luckily, we have little hand-held computers in our pockets to keep us healthy, connected, and entertained – and who knows, maybe we’ll learn a little something new along the way.
Attend virtual seminars from some of the world’s most renowned experts in their field: Malcom Gladwell teaches writing, Annie Leibovitz teaches photography, Martin Scorsese teaches filmmaking… You catch the drift. (This one is not free, but it IS worth it.)
A collection of at-home workouts and fitness programs, Nike is helping everyone to stay healthy and active during this, by making their premium plans free to all members until further notice.
With gyms and workout facilities all closed, a lot of us are getting our exercise by walking/running outdoors. Sweatcoin is an app that will track all your outside steps and reward you for them with “Sweatcoins” that can be redeemed for actual items. It’s basically getting paid to walk the dog.
It’s probably not what most of us want to be doing right now, but this app is great for tracking calories and diet. Sooner or later, we’re going to have to answer for eating all day every day during this lockdown, might as well at least keep an eye on it.
Ok, we LOVE this app. Not only can you connect face-to-face with multiple people at once, there are also in-app games like trivia, a version of “Heads Up”, and a virtual “Win Lose or Draw”. You can use it no matter what kind of phone you have, and you can even do it on your desktop!
Messenger is another app that works across all types of devices, and you can also have multiple people on a single face-to-face call. It’s also handy because you in addition to video calls, you can text chat, and you can reach out to anyone you’re Facebook friends with, even if you don’t have their phone number.
If you want to kill a little time on your own, these are a couple popular app games you may not have heard of:
Similar to Pictionary, you choose a word from a category and draw it for your friend to guess. You collect coins for correctly guessed drawings, which you can use to add more colors to your palette or buy different “categories” – it’s fun for all ages!
During this time, Audible.com is making a large collection of children’s stories available for free to the public, whether you have a subscription or not. (Although, we highly recommend considering a subscription – they have a great selection of titles, and audiobooks are so great for when you’re taking walks or doing chores!)
Obviously, your public library is not a place you can visit right now, but if you have a library card, check to see if your local branch is on Libby. It’s a free app that allows you to borrow ebooks and audiobooks using your library card.
There is pretty much a podcast for any and every genre, topic, and niche. They’re a great way to be informed, inspired, or entertained. Depending on your device and where/how you like to listen, you might want to explore which app best suits your needs. We have linked to a list of the most popular.
While many therapists are making arrangements for remote appointments, if you didn’t already have one before the quarantine began, it can be difficult to find one right now. BetterHelp is a virtual service that matches you with a real life licensed therapist that you can communicate with via message, chat, phone, or video.
Meditation is widely revered as having profound positive impact on mental well-being, but it can be hard to get into if you’re not established in the practice. Balance is an individualized guided meditation app that adapts to your struggles and goals.
Whatever you’re doing to occupy your time, we hope you’re staying happy and healthy. We’ll get through this!