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How to kill downtime

Old 10-08-2018, 09:36 AM
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How to kill downtime

Hi everyone.

So Iíve been finding myself bored a lot during the day. My job is such that I often have a lot of downtime in the middle of the day. On certain days I may have up to 11 hours to kill, which is basically a day off. Itís not a bad schedule to have, but it often leaves me wondering what to do with myself. Usually Iíll be at home. I will workout, read, maybe clean the house a bit, mow the lawn if needed. Other than that, I am getting bored.

I was wondering if someone could give me some ideas for things to do during the day in the middle of the week, ideally things that will get me out of the house.

Thanks!
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Old 10-08-2018, 09:55 AM
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This is a list put together by our members:

https://www.soberrecovery.com/forums...ething-do.html (Looking For Something To Do?)
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Old 10-08-2018, 10:37 AM
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Thanks Anna. I totally did not even notice that link sitting right there at the top of the page!
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Old 10-08-2018, 12:08 PM
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That list includes cooking, which is a fantastic way to fill time. Today I spent a load of time making a chicken and mushroom pie, making it all in separate stints, allowing the pastry to chill,, the filling to come together etc, all before final assembly, cooking and serving. I started on it at 10am, and served at 7pm, and probably spent maybe two hours faffing around with it. Result:a delicious meal for all and a spotless kitchen (I love to clean as I go).

So, time taken up, a tangible reward (appreciated by family) and a minor fillip to the ego.

I've gone further, though. Baking is a wonderful therapy. Be it a basic bread, or a sophisticated piece of French patisserie it is very rewarding.

The books and instructional videos are all out there. It's about making mistakes, learning from them and applying the lessons next time. A bit like life. That, and kneading a heavy dough is a good workout.

It focuses the mind, is therapeutic, and you get to eat the results.
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Old 10-08-2018, 03:58 PM
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not sure what kind of shape you are in but consider learning to ride a unicycle. From my experience learning to ride a unicycle is fantastic for someone in recovery. They are challenging and endlessly rewarding. Great replacement for alcohol and boredom.
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Old 10-08-2018, 04:11 PM
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I swim,in an outdoor pool,6 days a week,Helps me enormously with my mental state.

I am an A A member,so will often go to a meeting ,extra to my regular ones.
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Old 10-08-2018, 05:31 PM
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I used to think downtime was the enemy but really I think it was my lack of imagination. For years my idea of fun was.
  • sit on couch.
  • Turn on tv.
  • Drink
  • pass out

that was so ingrained in me it took me a month or two to work out why I was so dissatisfied sober. I was still doing the above, with no alcohol.

I drank, at least in part, to make that bare bones existence tolerable.

Now - you can do whatever you want - take that challenge, pursue those interests, start those hobbies.

The world is waiting

D
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Old 10-09-2018, 07:23 AM
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Thank you everyone.

Gettingsmarter, learning to ride a unicycle is certainly something different!

My main thing is trying to get out of the house more and finding interesting solo activities to do during the day. I don’t get cravings or anything during the day (nighttime is when I deal with that), I just get bored and don’t know what to do with myself.
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Old 10-09-2018, 06:25 PM
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I had some serious issues with daytime downtime too. I'll add go to the zoo if you have a good one nearby. A membership to the zoo isn't terribly expensive most places and there's always something different to see. Plus, you're walking around and getting some exercise, you can always take your kid or a family member or friend if you're so inclined, and you can be like me and pretend you actually know how to use a camera (I am NOT photographically gifted).
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Old 10-09-2018, 08:56 PM
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Volunteering is always a good option. Not sure if you enjoy being around kids, but you could check if they have any opportunities to read with kids st local schools. Also, I think about when my mom was in a nursing home there were many patients who didn't have someone to visit them, there might be an opportunity for volunteering there as well.
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Old 10-09-2018, 09:14 PM
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I started taking pictures around the neighborhood or other places to capture unique perspectives. Then I would try to create art from these pictures using mixed media and acrylic painting. I discovered a creative side and it’s therapeutic for me.
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Old 10-10-2018, 12:11 PM
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These are great suggestions.

Flawed, the Philadelphia Zoo is not far from where I live. I haven’t been there since I was a kid. Maybe I’ll put it on my list.

Fearless taking pictures is something I’ve considered,

I just went for a long walk and found it very refreshing. It helps that it is super nice out today after being very dark and dreary for several days.

Today is day 1 for me after struggling for a few days. My emotions have been all over the place. One thing I am starting to do today is carry a small notepad around with me and writing down every single thing I can throughout the day that I find positive, even the littlest of things.
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Old 10-10-2018, 12:27 PM
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Originally Posted by mns1 View Post
One thing I am starting to do today is carry a small notepad around with me and writing down every single thing I can throughout the day that I find positive, even the littlest of things.
This is a really good idea, because sometimes the positives get lost in amongst all the other stuff. And, I can't say enough good things about walking.
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Old 10-10-2018, 12:56 PM
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MN1, downtime and boredom, yes. And Dee, yes, come home from work, switch on TV, drink, pass out, get up, rinse and repeat. Been my MO for years.

I'm on Day 5 MN. I like your ideas of writing down positive things. When I wake up in the morning, I think or say out loud at least three things for which I am grateful. And, living a first world life, there's a lot I take for granted. I also like doing "metta", or loving kindness meditation where I focus good thoughts on those around me. Helps to keep me a bit better connected and out of my own head.

How's Day 1 going? What are your triggers/trip ups? Mine has been loneliness in the afternoons/evenings after work. Poor me, I'm all alone. I live alone, and I have created my own destiny by isolating and drinking. In choosing not to drink, I can also choose to not be lonely - so I have a list of old friends to call, or I can at least come here, read posts and help others as best I can.
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Old 10-10-2018, 01:25 PM
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Great job on day 5 Pinnacle. Meditation is something I used to be very consistent with, and I’m bringing that back into the gameplan as well. I love resting awareness meditations, they really quiet my reeling mind. The whole come home, pour a drink, and drink until I pass out has been my routine for years as well. My biggest triggers are things like seeing people drink on TV/movies/etc. Early evening is when the thoughts start, which then progress to full-blown cravings. Then I hit the liqour store on my way home and you know the rest...

Happy to say that I am not really experiencing that right now and it’s getting to be about that time of day.
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Old 10-10-2018, 03:31 PM
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Originally Posted by mns1 View Post
Hi everyone.

So I’ve been finding myself bored a lot during the day. My job is such that I often have a lot of downtime in the middle of the day. On certain days I may have up to 11 hours to kill, which is basically a day off. It’s not a bad schedule to have, but it often leaves me wondering what to do with myself. Usually I’ll be at home. I will workout, read, maybe clean the house a bit, mow the lawn if needed. Other than that, I am getting bored.

I was wondering if someone could give me some ideas for things to do during the day in the middle of the week, ideally things that will get me out of the house.

Thanks!
I have the same issue... a HUGE amount of downtime with an unchallenging job and living on my own during the week.

I talked to a counselor and she strongly recommended that I seek out human interaction. If you are an extrovert yourself, I definitely recommend making that a focus. AA meetings, local meet up groups, volunteering, time with friends... anything that allows you to interact with others.
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Old 10-10-2018, 05:48 PM
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Originally Posted by TeeJayVerm View Post
I talked to a counselor and she strongly recommended that I seek out human interaction. If you are an extrovert yourself, I definitely recommend making that a focus. AA meetings, local meet up groups, volunteering, time with friends... anything that allows you to interact with others.
TJV my therapist recommended I try to get out and interact with people more too. The thing is, I am a textbook introvert, so I am intimidated by big groups or meeting people I donít know. So he said that just being around people is good enough. For example, going to a cafe to read or do work or just people-watch, or seeing a movie by yourself on a Friday night when the theater is busy. I saw the movie Venom this past Saturday and it was kind of nice to be in a full theater, being a part of a group reacting to scenes in the movie. The goal he said is just to be among other people, even if you are not necessarily interacting with them directly.
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Old 10-10-2018, 06:05 PM
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I might be in my mid 40s but I never grew out of video games. I'm from that generation.

There's a lot of lengthy deep games out there that can hold my attention for a month as I play through the story. There's a few other games that I play multiplayer that I never get tired of and can pick up and play whenever I want. I'll get 1000+ hours to of some games.

It's a good hobby for an introvert. I was involved in music most of my life but don't focus on it much anymore because I have some hearing problems now from it.
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Old 10-10-2018, 06:15 PM
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Serious introvert here too!
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Old 10-10-2018, 06:57 PM
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tekink I do have a PS4 I could whip out. I enjoy certain videos games. That’s definitely something to consider on a rainy day with nothing to do.

Pinnacle, the introvert struggle is real!
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