As winter looms and we find ourselves slipping into that cosy stay-at-home mindset, we’re no doubt going to find ourselves with a lot of free time in the evenings and on weekends.
Gone are the days of long walks in the sunshine and making the most of the garden late into the evening, Winter is all about taking time for yourself, keeping warm, comfortable and content.
Become the next social media sensation
If you’re not someone accustomed to the ever-changing landscape of social media then you might never have come across the hugely popular mobile app TikTok.
For the uninitiated, TikTok is a social media app that allows people to submit their own short user-generated videos (up to one minute long) which can very easily go viral within a matter of minutes if the creator jumps on the right hashtags and follows the correct trends.
TikTok is the true successor to Vine, a once-beloved Twitter owned video sharing app that fell victim to its own success, despite being hugely popular worldwide. Those in charge just couldn’t find a way to keep up with their competitors in what is a brutal, fast-paced industry and the app shut down in January 2017 much to the dismay of its dedicated user base.
Just months after the demise of Vine, Chinese lip-syncing app Musical.ly swooped in and took their crown… Months later it was rebranded into TikTok, the app that has taken Gen Z by storm.
Amazingly, anyone can become popular on the app, there are over 500,000,000 users worldwide and there are accounts dedicated to literally every weird subculture you can imagine.
Want to watch an 80 year-old Grandmother teach you how to cook? You can! Want to learn the latest viral dance from influencer Charli D’Amelio? You can! If you really want to you can watch someone raise frogs from tadpoles or dig a hole in the garden for 100 consecutive days… Strangely, TikTok really is that versatile. Anyone can get famous for doing anything!
Invest in a next generation games console
If there’s one thing many people are excited for this Winter it’s next generation games consoles!
Sony and Microsoft are preparing to release the latest iterations of their popular gaming machines, the PS5 and Xbox Series X respectively in the not-so-distant future.
Both come out in November and are already promising avid gamers great things. The PlayStation and the Xbox will come with built in backwards compatibility support, cloud-based game streaming, ultra fast SSDs and an incredible library of new and updated games on launch.
PlayStation users will be able to enjoy exclusive titles such as Gran Turismo 7, Spider Man: Miles Morales, Demon’s Souls, Horizon Forbidden West and God of War Ragnarok.
Xbox users on the other hand will be able to play exclusives such as Fable, Forza Motorsport, Halo Infinite, Gears 5 and State of Decay 3 and Avowed as and when they’re released.
Many people are quick to complain that next generation consoles aren’t worth buying on launch due to their perceived lack of games, but considering gamers have been waiting seven whole years for a real next-gen upgrade then there’s no doubt they’ll fly off the shelves worldwide.
Make new friends online
The wonderful thing about modern-day smartphones and the internet is that it opens up a new world of possibilities for people of all ages and backgrounds. Winter can be a somewhat quiet time if you live alone, so why not use technology to your advantage to make new connections.
While social media apps such as Twitter and Facebook can sometimes be overwhelming, they’re a wonderful place to find like-minded individuals with similar interests to your own.
Then there are online communities hidden within Internet forums and popular sites such as Reddit, where millions of users congregate on a daily basis to share their thoughts and opinions in dedicated moderated communities related to their interests called Subreddits.
If you like to mix social interaction with fun then you could turn to online gaming, massively multiplayer online games, known more commonly as MMOs are a fantastic way to get to know people from around the world. With the newest World of Warcraft expansion coming out this winter then there’s never been a better time to start playing.
Maybe you want to sprinkle a little more excitement into your game play by introducing a wagering element… Some of the very best bingo websites on the internet are known for their lively online chat hubs where players can socialise whilst playing games. Of course, if this is the route you’re choosing to go down then it’s imperative that you practice responsible gambling.
Learn to cook like the pros
Who needs cookbooks in 2020? NOT YOU! So far this year practically everything has gone online, and that includes learning to cook as well.
The rapid growth of online streaming services, live conferencing software and websites and sites like YouTube have given artisanal chefs the biggest new platform to show off what they can do, sharing their wonderful meal time masterpieces with the world.
We’ve all been there, sat in front of the television watching the Great British Bake Off, wishing we could make something as beautiful as what the contestants are working on… Well now’s your chance! In the last year a number of websites have popped up that are dedicated to teaching you how to make something truly spectacular.
Our pick of the bunch is CakeFlix, a multi-award winning site that streams over 1,200 incredible decorative dessert recipes as well as live shows that everyone can enjoy together. Cooking something new doesn’t have to mean flicking through a dusty old book anymore.
Get fit from the comfort of your own home
It’s cold outside, you want to eat whatever you want this winter… But you don’t want to get fat (even though you’re avoiding the gym)… Why not invest in some of the most technologically advanced exercise equipment on the market today whilst actually having fun.
Zwift is a modern and exciting take on cycling that allows you to ride your racing bike inside against other riders from around the globe on world famous circuits and places you might never get the chance to visit yourself in person.
Blending the fun of a video game with the intensity of a serious training regime is an incredibly smart way to get fit and healthy over the colder months of 2020. You can choose from multiple training plans, join group rides anywhere in the world or enter road races in a bid to become #1.
Maybe you don’t want to be tied down by the bike and want to diversify your exercises? The latest Peloton model comes with an adjustable 22’’ HD screen that allows riders to jump off the seat and hit the mat, taking part in live personal training / gym classes with a real life instructor.
Whilst these bikes come on the pricey side they’re well worth it if you’re serious about getting fit and want a fix of serotonin at the very same time.