Happy self-quarantine! Yeah, I know it's been a while since I last showed signs of life in this platform and for that, I am truly sorry. I took on this project last year and that's exactly where it got left behind. How elegantly rude of me! But you know what's been going around: that those of us who have the possibilities should take this huge amount of social distancing time we've been given and put it to good use. This is me doing exactly that and hopefully helping you do the same along the way.
I actually had planned another topic to set this blog back on its tracks, while I cooked this one in the back burner. However, I decided to start off with this one because it is time-sensitive. Some of the apps I'll mention are free during this month, so it is important this gets to you while the month is still somewhat young.
Broken into categories, the following are apps or sites that have helped me get through quarantine and not just that but also making the time worthwhile. Most of them I've tried myself, but those I haven't I'll be sure to let you know.
Work out. If it is already a drag to work out as it is, not having set lessons, a pushing coach or a gym to motivate you definitely complicates things.
NTC (Nike Training Club) - a huge library of all types of workouts —endurance, mobility, strength, and even yoga— that can be as short as 5 minutes and as long as 47 minutes. Besides, you can combine them any way you want, repeat them as many times as you wish and win achievements and trophies for that. And in case you need more guidance, you can pick a plan that will help you reach your goals in weeks.
Down Dog - this app gets its name from the famous yoga position. And it is for... you guessed it: wonderful yoga. I honestly loved this app from the moment I tried it after my boyfriend shared a recommendation from a friend of his. Thing is, it isn't always free, but it is during this entire month at least. It is so good that I'm for sure going to pay once the free period is over. You can choose the type of practice, the duration, what you wish to focus on and your mastery level. Mindblowing.
Hang out. This self-isolation time has definitely made us realize many things. One of them is that our relationships might easily be the most valuable thing we have earned through life. Besides video calling and spilling the tea for each other, playing games can definitely lower your stress.
Bunch - after the entire House Party fiasco —it being real or not— I don't trust it very much. A few days after deleting my HS account, I stumbled into Bunch, which is the cutest app for group video calls AND multiplayer games like Pool, Draw Party, Trivia Superhighway, Charades and more. (Pro tip: Bunch supports third-party game apps if you have them downloaded in your smartphone, like UNO and Minecraft.)
Colonist - basically online Catan (haven't tried it... yet, but I'm super excited about it)
Krunker - if you don't have the beauty that is a console, you can play this shooting game online. My boyfriend and I tried it, but the servers were overloaded. Hope you have better luck than we did.
Skribbl - the best, cutest Pictionary-like game online. You can choose your words from many language options and draw with a variety of tools and colors.
Pretend You're Xyzzy - basically a Cards Against Humanity online clone. I have not tried it, but I checked it out to give you the right information. The opening page claims it is a game still in development and there might be some limitations, but still fun.
Netflix Party - you might've heard of this one. NP is a Google Chrome extension that allows several people to watch the same Netflix movie or show —as long as it is available in the country of each participant— at the same time. Dream come true.
Chill out. Most of the time, we will have to endure alone. And some people aren't huge fans of being alone. Notice how I said "alone" and not "lonely". Difference.
Solitaire - or honestly, any puzzle game. This is nothing new, as a matter of fact, solitaire is around 237 years old. It never gets old old, though. I was obsessed with it during the first weeks of quarantine and now that I play either on the app or with physical cards, I've gotten so much better.
Dipsea - maybe you can use this time to explore your sexuality. If you want to check it out, Dipsea is offering a lot of content such as sexy stories and informative episodes for free this month.
Headspace - last but not least. When I recently started with meditation, I used this app. Its design is beautiful and the content has such quality, although many things are unlocked only with member payment. However, Headspace has created a program under the Explore tab called Weathering the Storm and includes a free selection of meditations and mind exercises to support all of us during the global crisis.
These are hard times for everyone and nobody is perfect. Don't get mad at yourself if you're not being as productive as the snippets of 1% productivity out of a day that people share on social media. Be kind to yourselves. And enjoy these apps!