Don’t Get Bored in the Apocalypse

“I’ll be too busy to be bored!”

That’s what I hear from a lot of other preppers who get into this discussion with me. But y’all. Look at 2020. I’d say that’s a pretty serious event that has lasted a damn-long time, and boredom is one of the worst aspects of trying to survive it while we quarantine either alone or with our families. Everyone seems to envision a prep scenario as fast, busy, and 24-hours-a-day of struggling for survival. Chances are that it will be much more subtle, and after the adrenaline wanes you’ll find yourself in the menial daily tasks of living, rebuilding, and surviving. And that’s when the depression sneaks in. You begin to stop and think about how different life was in the before-times. How much easier it was. How much you miss being able to do things, like go hang out with friends during a pandemic, or in a grid-down situation, how much you miss playing video games or watching your favorite YouTubers. You’re going to have to find something that gives you a sense of joy, that keeps you busy enough to keep from living entirely in a place of stress and grief. This is about morale. Morale is needed for survival.

The biggest things you can do RIGHT NOW to prepare for this, is to learn whatever skills and safety measures are needed for your activity or hobby, and ensure you have all of the supplies and tools required.

Staying active is one of the best things you can do to help your morale, and it will help keep your body strong and healthy in the mean time! Think about what you like to do that keeps your body moving and provides you some level of entertainment? What would you add to this list?

  1. Skateboarding
  2. Surfing
  3. Dancing
  4. Gymnastics
  5. Going for a run
  6. Going on long walks
  7. Mountain biking
  8. Distance biking
  9. Recumbent biking
  10. Beating your personal best in something (sit-ups, timed laps, etc.)
  11. Swimming
  12. Hiking
  13. Trail running
  14. Rock climbing
  15. Snorkeling
  16. Skooba diving
  17. Weight lifting
  18. Jumprope
  19. Hula-hooping with tricks
  20. Yoga / Pilates / Tai-Chi
  21. Martial Arts
  22. Aerobics
  23. Sports, if you have enough people in your group (soccer, football, basketball, tennis, roller derby, etc.)
  24. Skiing / Snow-boarding
  25. Skating / Roller-blading
  26. Cross-fit
  27. Frolf (frisbee golf)
  28. Golf
  29. Kayaking / Canoeing / Rafting
  30. Resistance training
  31. Jump-roping
  32. Acrobatics
  33. Wind-surfing
  34. River-rafting
  35. Parkour

Entertainment is another area where we will all likely be lacking when the SHTF (*shit hits the fan). In many “big” scenarios such as major natural disaster, EMP, or other grid-down situations, we will have to re-learn how to find entertainment away from electronics and screens. Here are some ideas for your group to keep their minds busy, develop culture in your new situation, and boost morale!

  1. Musical performance. Hopefully someone in your group is musically inclined and has instruments they can play. Have small concerts for your group.
  2. You can also learn to play an instrument, and then continue refining your skill. Learn to sing to go along with it, and then write your own songs. Perform for yourself and others in your group.
  3. Sing-a-longs. It may sound hokey, but it can be a lot of fun, and really boost the mood in a group setting. Music brings about a lot of nostalgia, and everyone singing together creates a fun experience.
  4. Have a drum circle. This is a fun activity that works well to encourage bonding and a sense of oneness within a group. “Drums” can be made from nearly anything, and there is no wrong way to participate. Check out this drum circle recording to get an idea of how they work.
  5. Bon fire. This is a classic activity to bring people together. Enjoy the fire, roast some marshmallows, and watch the stars. You can make it a cathartic experience by including an activity whereby people write down their worries, regrets, and sadness, and then throw it into the fire to release it. This is especially helpful in stressful situations.
  6. Story-telling. This is a true art-form, and can be as complex or simple as you like. It’s a good idea to write down the basics of the stories you want to tell, and then let your imagination do the work as you explain it. Try to have everyone in your group take turns telling stories.
  7. Poetry reading / Poetry SLAM. Encourage people to write and share their poetry at a weekly, or monthly event for your group. Poetry is cathartic in the writing, speaking, and hearing of it. It can be inspiring and provide an expressive outlet that can also be entertaining.
  8. Live theater. It doesn’t matter if no one has ever acted before. You can either practice and perform established plays, or you can write your own! You could perform a monologue as well. Don’t forget you could do your best to act out your favorite books and movies from memory.
  9. Board games. It seems simple and classic, but it works! Board games are fun, entertaining, and easy to do. Try setting up a schedule where you have one night a week that you all get together to play games.
  10. Card games. I love card games, and many of my favorites involve a simple deck of cards (or two). I would suggest that you print out the instructions for all the various games here so you can refer back to them for a fun weekly night of cards!
  11. Comedy. Have everyone in your group either put together a small list of jokes, do some improv, or perform a short comedy routine. Laughter really does a lot to boost morale.
  12. Have a potluck picnic. Let everyone make something special with whatever y’all have on hand. Bring a blanket outside and enjoy the sunshine while you eat together.
  13. Outdoor games. There are some fun games to play outside that can bring endless hours of good-hearted fun. Try playing horse-shoes, corn-hole, lawn-bowling, lawn-darts, limbo, relay races, frisbee, dodge ball, capture the flag, mini-golf, or even a DIY obstacle course!
  14. Fireworks. This is one to plan ahead for, but go ahead and stock up around the fourth of July when they are on sale! Sparklers and fireworks do a lot to bring joy and excitement to a group. Just be careful!
  15. Have a “just because” party. Who needs a reason? Blow up balloons, make a homemade cake, the works!
  16. Scavenger hunt. Use whatever is around you to create a scavenger hunt list. See who can complete it the fastest.
  17. Trivia-nights. Use your memory, books you have on hand, or questionnaires to have a fun trivia night.
  18. Get in the water – go to the lake, beach, river, swimming hole, or creek!
  19. Variety Show / Talent Show! Everyone can do something different that they’re good at. Showcase it at a diy talent show!
  20. Share-a-skill. What are you good at? What about other members of your group? Stay busy by teaching and learning new skills. Not only is this entertaining, but it can drastically help you in your preps.

Hobbies are my favorite way to bust the boredom. These are things you can do on your own without a group, and that you find both entertaining and fun. Many times they are also constructive, though they don’t have to be. Here are some suggestions!

  1. Writing – fiction, non-fiction, biography, articles, research, poetry, etc.
  2. Journaling
  3. Scrapbooking
  4. Reading
  5. Wine-making
  6. Home-brewing beer
  7. Cheese-making
  8. Beekeeping
  9. Tattooing – it would be best to learn stick-and-poke techniques from a professional for off-grid tattoos.
  10. Painting wargame figures and making terrain
  11. Construction (large scale building construction)
  12. Woodworking (smaller scale furniture and accessories)
  13. Wood-carving
  14. Whittling
  15. Mechanic work
  16. Playing an instrument
  17. Writing music
  18. Singing
  19. Fine art painting (watercolor, acrylic, or oil)
  20. Drawing
  21. Adult coloring
  22. Sculpture
  23. Rock painting
  24. Meditation
  25. Tarot card reading
  26. Pendulum reading
  27. Rune reading
  28. Candle-making
  29. Soap-making
  30. Gold-panning
  31. Learning magic tricks
  32. Macrame
  33. Knitting
  34. Crochet
  35. Embroidery
  36. Sewing
  37. Spinning yarn
  38. Weaving
  39. Vegetable gardening
  40. Herb gardening
  41. Sprouts and Microgreens gardening
  42. Aquaponics
  43. Raising rabbits
  44. Raising livestock
  45. Foraging for food and herbs
  46. Dumpster diving
  47. Fishing
  48. Noodling
  49. Hunting
  50. Origami
  51. Caving
  52. Spear fishing
  53. Ice fishing
  54. Fly fishing
  55. Deep sea fishing
  56. Firearms training and marksmanship
  57. Gunsmithing
  58. Bow hunting
  59. Barbecuing (especially over an open flame)
  60. Smoking meats
  61. Camping
  62. Beat Boxing
  63. Hatchet throwing
  64. Paragliding
  65. Star gazing
  66. Learning a foreign language
  67. Aerial silk dancing and yoga
  68. Self-care
  69. Cosplay
  70. Self-defense
  71. Lego building
  72. Botany
  73. Entomology
  74. Jewelry making
  75. Juggling
  76. Sling shots
  77. Stone-skipping
  78. Caligraphy
  79. Knife-making
  80. Blacksmithing
  81. Lock-picking
  82. Knotting
  83. Crossword puzzles
  84. Sudoku
  85. Sign language
  86. Fire poi
  87. Knife throwing
  88. Lifeguard skills
  89. First Aid / CPR
  90. Photography
  91. Mountaineering
  92. Horseback riding
  93. Caving
  94. Paper making
  95. Falconry
  96. Slack-lining
  97. Leather-making
  98. Taxidermy
  99. Herbology
  100. Tea making

WHEW! That’s a lot of things to keep you busy in the apocalypse. What kinds of things do you like to do now? What did I miss on these lists??

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