Unliking Insta: Try These 7 Things to Pass the Time at Home Instead

It’s a move that has sent a whole generation into meltdown.

Instagram has been road testing a new feature that hides likes on a user’s post, with Canada, Australia, Japan and Brazil among the first countries to see the heart icon disappear from their feed.

It’s a move that could be rolled out worldwide, in an attempt to help battle online trolling and the mental health issues that surround using social media platforms.

As you can imagine, there has been an uproar from some brands and ‘influencers’ but there has been plenty of positivity to the change as well.

Maybe we should all be spending less time checking our social networks anyway; after all, there’s a whole bunch of free stuff we can do at home in our spare time that is, arguably, a lot more enriching for our souls.

Here are just seven ideas:

#1 – Remember Books?

Speaking of books… you remember them, right? You know, the things with pages inside that have words on them.

We may live in a digital world but there are still plenty of bestsellers hitting the shelves in 2019 and beyond.

This year alone we have seen huge autobiographical releases from an eclectic cast such as Michelle Obama, Elton John, and Louis Theroux, while fiction authors including Margaret Atwood, Hilary Mantel and Stephen King all have new novels coming out in the coming months.

This is a golden age of reading, so do your eyes a favour: put down the LED screens and pick up a book!

#2 – Gameface

It’s scientifically proven: gaming helps to release endorphins and improve mood. And so playing video games is a worthwhile pursuit for people of all ages.

If you are of a slightly ‘vintage’ disposition or are a younger gamer looking to retrace the history of the games console, there has been a real demand for ‘retro’ gaming in the past couple of years. That has led to a number of manufacturers re-releasing their legendary consoles in ‘mini’ form, including Sega’s original Megadrive and Nintendo’s SNES. Re-live a simpler age and enjoy some all-time classics into the bargain.

Maybe money is a bit tight. No problem – there are ways to play games online for free. There are free gaming apps and browser sites, while some casinos encourage players without funds to give their games a try: promotions such as the 50 free spins no deposit casino offer are a great way to get your gaming fix without parting with a dime. From slot games and poker to blackjack, roulette, and baccarat, these online casinos have games to keep you entertained for hours.

#4 – There’s More to Life Than Netflix

We’ve all been there: firing up the Netflix app on our TVs and tablets, only to spend hours frantically searching for something interesting to watch. By the time we do, we’re usually too tired to even press play!

What we really need is options and, while Netflix’s catalog is undeniably the biggest and best, you could always try Hulu, Amazon Prime, and HBO for more choice.

Money a bit tight? Again, no problem: streaming sites such as Sony’s Crackle, Vudu and Popcornflix are completely free if you don’t mind the odd ad here and there.

#5 – Grow and Gain

You don’t need a huge garden space if you want to grow plants, vegetables, and herbs.

Indeed, all you need are some pots, some seeds, soil and nutrients, and the diligence to water and feed them regularly.

Plants will help to oxygenate your rooms, while scented herbs help to make a room smell fresh and inviting. You can always use your produce to up your cooking game, too.

#6 – Fit and Firing

Two of the things that put people off from joining the gym are a) it’s too expensive, and b) they are conscious of working out in front of other people.

Also, a lot of folks really struggle for motivation to head out to the gym after a hard day at work.

The solution? Bring the gym to you! There are lots of different pieces of equipment you can buy, and if you commit to using them these soon pay for themselves when compared to the costs of gym memberships.

Yoga, pilates, calisthenics…there are tons of fitness programs you can follow online via specialist YouTube channels. It really has never been easier to get fit without even having to change out of your pajamas.

#7 – Lie Back and Relax

Scientists recommend that we turn off our phones at least an hour before bed, and don’t turn them back on until the morning.

How many of us adhere to this basic rule? Not all of us, that’s for sure, and the Wall Street Journal says that roughly 25% of adults check their phones in the middle of the night.

But there are genuine scientific reasons for it, and the most prominent is that cellphone use upsets our circadian rhythms – making it ultra-hard to drop off to sleep.

So, give yourself the best chance of sleeping well by turning off Insta, putting down your phone and relaxing. Hop in a relaxing bath, apply a face mask, read a book…whatever it takes to ensure social media does not stop you from getting a good night’s sleep.