If you're like me, you've probably spent a lot of time on TikTok during quarantine and, let's be honest, you're probably still waiting for your videos to go viral. While I love memorizing Charli D'amelio's dances as much as the next girl, I must admit there are tons of activities that would be more productive than waiting to be launched into TikTok stardom. While quarantine is by no means ideal, it does provide us teens with a unique opportunity to learn new skills that we would never have thought about amidst the hustle and bustle of everyday life.
To give you a sense of what I mean, here are four things to do during quarantine that are more productive than Tik Tok:
Teach yourself to code
While learning coding languages may seem daunting, there are tons of resources online to help you get started. If you have an interest in IT, these skills could be a great way to make yourself hirable and increase your future earning potential. Before you begin, make sure to think about what you want to be able to code and choose an appropriate coding language to start with. A great place to start this is Code Academy!
While this may seem obvious, most teenagers forget how much they can learn by simply cracking open a book. Whether you like novels, nonfiction, or even just the newspaper, reading for a few hours a day will help give you new ideas and even improve your writing skills. If you're looking for recommendations, here's a curated list of great teen reads.
Start a business
How often have you had a great idea, but thought, "I just don't have time to act on it right now?" Well, right now, you have nothing but time! Whether it's selling baked goods, doing graphic design, or launching a startup, the possibilities are truly endless. If you need some guidance, you may want to check out this set of entrepreneurial resources from Junior Achievement.
Take a class
Whether you want to enroll in a local community college's online course to gain college credits or do something more flexible like watching a YouTube lecture series, taking an online course could be a great way to explore a new interest. If you're having trouble finding something, I recommend the Harvard lecture series, Justice, which explores timeless moral dilemmas, and Udemy courses, which span every topic from music production to money management.
Quarantine may be long, frustrating, and lonely, but it doesn't have to be a waste of time. Empower yourself to use this time to work towards your professional or academic goals. Invest in your future. You won't regret it!
In the last few months, as coronavirus has torn through the country, I've found myself feeling powerless. When I watch the news each night, I feel as though, as a teenager, there's nothing I can do to solve the problems this virus has created.
Even after a coronavirus vaccine is discovered, as we throw away our masks for good and finally hug our friends, the legacy of this pandemic will continue to be felt. Even as we return to "normalcy," there may be parts of life as we knew it that never return.