Pastime 101: HUGE List of Ideas for passing time when you are bored

There are periods in life when you have "a time to kill" and just don't know what to do. Maybe you are alone at home for a while or you are at office and there is no work today. In those situations, you end up getting bored and the mind goes on "auto-pilot" choosing to do anything at random which may or may not be of your liking. Below are some ideas to consciously decide and choose what to do in those situations!

  1. Play a game of Solitaire. Solitaire here is just a euphemism for "games in general".
    My favorite is Solitaire because I've been enjoying it right since the age of Windows-98 but there are many other choices in the Android world too these days like Temple Run, Subway Surfer, Reversi, etc. and of course, Solitaire too! Just pick your poison if you're in the mood to play games.
  2. Finish that "incomplete side project". If you're a programmer like me, I'm sure you must have some great app ideas and you may be already working on some of them in the form of github side-projects. The thing about side projects is that we don't really find a lot of time to work on them and they just continue staying as side projects. Maybe now is a good time to work on one of them and reach it to completion?
  3. Water the plants. Its better to not have plants at all than being that forgetful person who misses watering the plants every now and then. They feel pain too (though not in the human sense as they lack a nervous system). Watering the plants frequently also helps cultivate empathy which is highly needed for human evolution but gradually eroding in the present generation.
  4. Read a novel or story book. I know the auto-pilot mechanism would rather have you watch TV or a movie, but I'm stressing on a book for two reasons: First, unlike a movie that just spoon-feeds your imagination making it more dumb in the long run, a book or novel nurtures and nourishes it making it more creative and a problem-solver. Secondly, TV and films have way more propaganda these days than any useful content which isn't a very healthy mix to consume.
  5. Read the newspaper. Reading newspaper daily is a wonderful habit to nurture, your news consumption will be far more fact-based than narrative-based if you stick to reading your news instead of watching it on TV. Its not necessary to have it on actual paper though, many newspapers have their e-paper versions and news blogs online which have the same content.
  6. Pay your pending bills. How many times have you footed a bill with late fees for missing a payment in the earlier month? The ideal habit is to set an event notification on your google calendar for recurring bill payments but when you have free time (like right now!), you can perform a quick reality check by asking yourself if you're missing any payment deadlines.
  7. Organize your Browser Bookmarks. Trust me, they are always in need of organization! Especially so if you're the kind of person who likes to frequently bookmark all the fascinating articles and online resources one comes across but stores them to a folder like "reading list" or "technology" for want of proper categorization. More often than not, you may also want to get rid of old bookmarks as new information keeps coming. If you have some free time to spare, get working on this right away!
  8. Check out earning opportunities online. We are living in the midst of a pandemic and economic depression, everyone is in need of extra sources of income to make a living. Check out job sites like Upwork and Fiverr, see if there is something on Craigslist that you can help with.
  9. Read about Frugal Living. Frugal living is increasingly becoming important not only because we are in the midst of a pandemic but people are realizing that its crucial for conservation of resources on the planet too. The resources are finite and population is only going to increase, so unless we all start conserving in whatever way we can, its going to be a problem in future.
  10. Help some dude online. Everyone faces a problem in life, and when they couldn't find a solution on their own, they post a support request on a forum like StackOverflow, SuperUser and even some subreddits. If that relates to your area of expertise, go ahead and solve their problem! This will not only give you a refresher on the topic, it will also add to your online reputation. And you never know when this positive karma will reflect back in future (maybe someone will read your answered solution and offer you a related gig!).
  11. Check out Reddit. There is no other place like Reddit for the bored folks! You can find all sorts of folks posting vibrantly here, be it related to Politics, Books and Writing, Movies, Life Pro Tips, etc. Just keep posting and commenting in the subreddits and go with the flow, just remember to avoid toxicity though (it happens a lot in the politics related subs - which is a slang for subreddits by the way!).
  12. Check out Twitter. While Reddit is the place where frustrated folks pour their emotions out anonymously, Twitter is the place where real folks post their professional opinions! So, if there are experts in your field and you want to know what they're up to lately, Twitter is the place where you should be. Follow those experts and see what they are tweeting about, maybe something good or knowledgeable might come out of it!
  13. Visit thy neighbor. If you're an introvert dude and have a nice and friendly neighbor around your house, then please go and visit them! The gregarious instinct is one of the most important things in the human psyche, most of us derive happiness when we meet and talk to other people. You must take this on priority and do it, especially if you're an introvert person who doesn't usually meet too many people.
  14. Work on your hobbies. Your free time will be most constructively used if you spend it on nurturing your hobbies. Activities like writing and blogging, stamps and coins collection, planation and gardening, reading news and specific topics, etc. is not only nourishing to the soul but can turn into a potentially earning opportunity.
  15. Explore History. If you are a history buff or aspiring to be one, you'll enjoy reading and learning about history events. Some of the most useful places to do this are the History subreddit and the History Stack Exchange.
  16. Read about Occult. Occult isn't a very politically correct topic in today's times when conservative values are being increasingly ridiculed and torn asunder globally. Even then, if you're interested in this topic, there are some good places to visit on the net including the Occult and related subreddits like para-psychology, astrology, buddhism, meditation, etc.
  17. Write and Blog. Writing is a great itch to scratch and believe it or not but most people don't even know how wonderful writers they are! Writing isn't any rocket science as its highly misunderstood to be and propagandized by some self-proclaimed elitists on this subject. If you're a literate and can communicate verbally, you already are a writer. You just have to hone that skill with practice and nurturing, and what better time to do it than right now!
  18. Work on quitting addictions. This one is easier said than done, I know. But that doesn't mean you should quit trying. If you're addicted to smoking or drinking, there already is a cognitive dissonance in your psyche about quitting whatever your level of addiction. Even the most highly addicted smoker or drinker in the world will have some part of their mind constantly craving to be free of addiction. Read about it online, and most importantly, try and focus on the benefits of quitting rather than the drawbacks of continuing the addiction. Positive reinforcement is a lot helpful here than negative ones, I know many smokers who quit for good with positive reinforcement alone, they used to imagine the good life they will have after being free of addiction, they used to focus on great things in life other than smoking, etc. before finally quitting. None of them ever went to a rehab or facility, they did it using sheer will power sitting at their homes!