30 Productive Activities To Do Instead of Netflix

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Activities to do besides netflix

Did you know that the majority of people spend 5 hours watching TV… daily? 

A year ago, this was definitely me. I used to watch Netflix to relax, which funnily enough, actually just made it feel like I had no time to relax. 

We were never really taught what to do with our free time. You often read about how to be productive and spend time being busy, but rarely about how to use your personal time properly. I hope to combat this with the 30 best things to do instead of watching Netflix. 

Let’s get into it. 

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How to Incorporate these Tasks into Your Schedule 

I wanted to write a quick section about how to implement these things into your schedule during appropriate times. A lot of people, including myself, try to do high-energy tasks as soon as we get home, and burn out. 

I’ve decided to categorize each task based on how much energy you will expend when doing them. 

I personally enjoy doing low-energy tasks in the morning and after work. 

High energy tasks in the afternoon and late at night. 

Medium energy tasks during low to high energy transitions throughout the day.

Low, Medium, and High Energy Meaning

Low Energy – Times when you’re feeling exhausted and you have little to no motivation or drive to do anything. You also struggle to focus too much on anything.

Medium Energy – When you’re transitioning from a low to a high energy period during the day. You struggle a little to focus on complicated subjects but find no problem in doing things like daily chores.

High Energy – The time when you have the highest energy in the day. During this time you can focus on more complicated subjects and work for longer periods of time. 

1. Painting (Low-Medium Energy)


Painting is a great pastime for individuals who want to express their creativity through color. You can choose to either start with a completely blank canvas or paint in a painting book. 

High quality supplies from Amazon to get started:

2. Coloring (Low Energy)


I recently have become obsessed with adult coloring books. I’ve found that coloring is perfect for when you’re feeling really exhausted but you don’t want to fall into the trap of watching Netflix or tv.

Coloring can also be a great activity to do with your kids or anyone you’re bonding with. I personally love spending time with my niece coloring and talking about her day. 

High quality supplies from Amazon to get started:

3. Educational Courses (Low-High Energy)

educational courses

Online courses have become all the buzz in the internet atmosphere. Watching courses are great because it allows you to learn things while relaxing. 

I love combining the courses I watch with lower energy activities, like coloring, to keep my hands and brain occupied at the same time.

Depending on the course, it will either take a low, medium, or high amount of energy. 

4. Cooking (Medium Energy)


Personally, I am not very fond of cooking. On the other hand, my boyfriend loves to bake and try new things in the kitchen. When you’re feeling hungry, spend time making an actual meal rather than quickly grabbing a snack. 

If you like cooking, I recommend grabbing this cookbook that talks about the science of it. It’s a personal favorite of my boyfriend’s.

5. Swimming (High Energy)


Swimming is a great hobby to have. Not only does it help you to have a healthy heart, but it can also be a lot of fun. I suggest swimming with others, but if you don’t have anyone to go with, there are ways you can make it more fun for yourself. 

Ways to Have More Fun Alone in the Swimming Pool – PoolSide News

5 Tips to Make Swimming Alone More Fun – SW

6. Yoga (Medium Energy)


Yoga has currently been a popular activity, and for a good reason too. You can pair up yoga and meditation to help with any anxiety you may have. The good thing about yoga is that all you really need is a good mat, a pillow, and access to YouTube!

7. Workout (High Energy)


I believe at this point, nearly every person is aware of the benefits of working out. 

Adding just 150 minutes of exercise a week can increase your life expectancy by 7 years!

If you’re unsure of where to start, don’t fret. I personally started working out at home by following videos on YouTube. Don’t feel pressured to start going to the gym every day or having to work out for an hour at a time. 

Do what you can!

8. Gardening (High Energy)


Not only is gardening great for Vitamin D intake, but it also provides some needed exercise and beauty to everyone’s life. If you’re someone who has been putting off yard work, this is your sign to get started!

High quality products from Amazon to get started: 

9. Reading (Medium Energy)


Reading is definitely an underappreciated activity to do in your spare time. Reading helps memory, empathy, vocabulary, and decreases depression. 

Reading should be considered a high priority in every person’s life. Reading will help you to be involved in the world and open up your imagination in ways you can’t believe are possible. 

I personally enjoy reading and listening to books.

High quality e-reader made by Amazon:

10. Writing (Medium-High Energy)


Writing a book is a great way to spend your time. Writing gives you a sense of peace and encourages ways for you to be inspired. 

You can write books for fun on sites like Wattpad or publish them on sites like Amazon. The great thing about writing books is that it looks great on your Resume and when talking to others about your professional experience. 

It’s also just a fun hobby. 

11. Journaling (Low-Medium Energy)


Journaling is a great past time activity. A lot of people make the mistake of viewing journaling as only long handwritten sections of personal information. Journaling is really anything you can think of doing with a journal.

You can create reading journals, diaries, or even bullet journals. The sky really is the limit.

12. Origami (Low Energy)


Origami is one of the most well-known but rarely practiced pastime activity on this list. Origami is great if you are on a tight budget and you enjoy focusing on small details. You can literally do origami anywhere, and not get any weird looks from passersby. 

13. To-Do / Declutter (Medium-High Energy)

to do list

One of the most common and least fun things to do instead of watching Netflix is to tackle your to-do lists. Perhaps you could even clean out your pantry or reorganize your office space. 

I feel great after getting all of my busywork done because it clears my mind for more important things. 

Check out these cute sticky notes that I bet would look nice in your office!

14. Video Games (Medium Energy)

video games

Video games are a great way to pass time. Not only are you able to play games with friends, but you’re also allowed to complete missions and work towards an end goal. 

Amazingly, video games actually improve spatial skills, problem-solving, and sometimes may improve your reading skills. They’re are a great way to get away from busy daily life – as long as you don’t play too much. 

My Personal Favorites:

15. Card Games (Medium Energy)

card games

Did you know that you can actually play paid poker online? There are a multitude of card games that you can play by yourself, with others, or to make money. Card games teach strategic thinking and can improve math and memory. 

16. Board Games (Medium Energy)

board games

Whether you practice chess openings to learning money management through monopoly, board games are a great pastime for the entire family.

Although board and card games are very similar in nature, they are completely different in practice. Like card games, board games can also teach strategic thinking, and improve your math and memory. 

17. Trying a New System (Medium-High Energy)

trying a new system

Another interesting thing to do instead of watching Netflix is to switch up your system. When I say system, I’m referring to your routine or your daily habits. You can also try to move all of your physical papers to your laptop.

In fact, I recently put all of my passwords onto LastPass (which is an awesome online password management system) and it has been a lifesaver. 

It’s important to try new systems and habits because it ensures that you continually grow as a person. 

18. Crocheting (Low-Medium Energy)


Crocheting is a very popular pastime. Not only is crocheting cheap, but it’s also relatively easy once you know what to do. If I personally crocheted, I would pair this with watching one of my courses.

19. Volunteering (High Energy)


Although volunteering is a high-energy pastime to do instead of Netflix, there are many benefits to it. Not only do you get to help others, but you get to learn how to be more selfless. 

For some of us, it’s really easy to be selfish and much harder to be selfless. Most of us were raised to only care and provide for ourselves. Volunteering will help you to be more empathetic and help provide your life with purpose. 

20. Become Green (Medium Energy)

becoming green

When I say become green, I mostly mean to brainstorm some ideas on ways you can help the planet. I personally choose to reuse my bags when I shop or use reusable paper towels. 

There are so many things that you can do even if you don’t make a lot of money. Cutting down on only one thing can make a big difference. It’s important to understand the costs and benefits of becoming more green as a society. 

Looking for More Info?:

Advantages of Going Green: Help the Environment

25+ Good Reasons to Go Green to Save Our Mother Earth

Are The Effects of Global Warming Really That Bad?

21. Night Out with Friends (High Energy)

night out with friends

Ah, a classic night out with friends. I personally don’t have any friends to go out with (lol) but if I did I’d make sure to spend time with them often. Just remember to not drink and drive!

22. Make a Quilt (Medium Energy)

make a quilt

I personally know a few people who make quilts and they love it. Quiltmaking can be a very fun activity and gift for the family. It’s also known to be a huge stress reliever and a way to express yourself creatively. 

If you’re looking to get into quilting, check out this article: 

Beginners Guide to Start Quilting

23. Spice Up Your Resume (Medium Energy)

spice up your resume

Although this activity isn’t a lot of fun, you can spend some time updating and revising your resume. 

Something I like to personally do is create a ‘future resume’ of all of the skills and things I’d like to learn on it. This way once I learn all of the skills, I’m better able to see how much value I can provide to an employer. 

Spicing up your resume also helps to ensure that you’re keeping on top of things and that you’re continually learning more skills – even if it’s just for fun.

24. Learn a New Skill (Low-High Energy)

learn a new skill

There are so many things to learn, why not? Learning helps to continue self-development, which is important to your self-identity and feeling purposeful in life. 

It also provides a big boost to your internal satisfaction with yourself. 

25. Watch Online Documentaries (Low-Medium Energy)

watch online documentaries

Online documentaries are very similar to Netflix, except they’re actually teaching you something. They can be fun to pair with coloring, painting, or any low-energy activity that you can partake in. 

The great thing about documentaries is that they’re non-committable. This just means that if you find the subject boring then you can just find a new one to watch.

Another benefit of documentaries that people rarely talk about – is how they can introduce you to new hobbies and things you’d enjoy doing. 

You can find plenty of documentaries online for free on sites like YouTube.

26. Play an Instrument (Medium Energy)

play an instrument

Besides the fact that instruments actually make you more intelligent – instruments are a great pastime for every single person. 

I personally invest time in playing the piano for this exact reason. Playing instruments is a ton of fun once you get the hang of it.

A great starter instrument for adults & kids alike:

27. Find New Songs (Low-Medium Energy)

find new songs

Hopefully, by now you have a playlist of some sort. A fun activity for when you’re just wanting to sit on your phone and relax on the couch is to find new songs to listen to. 

While it can be time-consuming and tedious to find great songs – it can be very rewarding. 

28. Spa Day (Low-Medium Energy)

spa day

Don’t even get me started on the importance of self-care. Self-care was one of the main reasons I decided to start this blog. To learn more about why I started this blog, click here.

A spa day can include massages, skin care, baths, journaling, exercising, and even eating snacks. Spa days are important for everyone, especially for people who work a lot. 

Keep in mind that ‘spa days’ don’t have to actually be an entire day. You can have a spa night or even a spa morning.

29. Learn Investing / Create a Budget (Medium Energy)


Another great thing to do is to spend time on your budget or financial health. Finances have long been a key ingredient to a happy and fulfilling life. 

Even if you don’t make a lot of money, it’s important to save and invest when you can. 

There are so many websites that you can learn more about spending, investing, and budgeting your money.

I lightly cover this topic on my blog because I believe it’s another key ingredient to being productive and a healthy individual. 

A Relevant Post:

5 Realistic Money Hacks

30. Dancing (High Energy)


You may have never considered dancing to be a great way to spend your time once you get home. 

Dancing is awesome for losing weight but it’s amazing for stress relief as well. I enjoy dancing because it allows me to express myself creatively and to just ‘let loose’. 

Also, who doesn’t want to show off their cool dance moves?


I really hope that this list helped you in finding new things to do instead of watching Netflix. Also, congrats on spending the time to better yourself and to use your time more wisely. 

Make sure to grab your Free Productivity Guide down below that will give you some tips to be a more productive person.