15 Things to Do While You’re Bedbound

Date published: 05.02.2020

Whether you are on temporary bed rest or long-term housebound due to a chronic condition, spending day after day in bed can become terribly boring. It is important to make yourself as physically and mentally as comfortable as possible. If you need to find more ways to entertain yourself to keep yourself in good spirits, here are things you can do while you’re bedbound.

  1. Make Over Your Bed

Since you’ll be spending a lot of time there, you need to make your bed a pleasant place to be. Make sure that you have a comfortable mattress and support pillows for sitting up in bed. You can layer cosy blankets and make it pretty with decorative throw cushions or a patterned duvet cover. Use essential oils or a diffuser to keep the area around your bed smelling nice.


  1. Read Books or Blogs

Whether you read a paperback novel, an e-book on a smart device, or lie back and listen to an audiobook, reading is a great way to pass time. You could browse true stories online or listen to podcasts if you prefer non-fiction. There are a lot of options for reading which can cater to any level of physical capability and budget, with plenty of online libraries available.


  1. Write Your Own Stories

Reading other stories may inspire you to write your own. Whether this is with a paper and pen, typing on a laptop, or dictating to your phone, you can make a record of your own life story or create a fictional adventure. Your body may be confined to your bed right now, but there are no limits to your imagination. You could start a blog or journal to update every day.

  1. Draw and Colour In

With a lap tray or overbed table, you can use the stable flat surface for drawing or colouring. If you aren’t much of an artist, you can either get better with practice or stick to colouring in other people’s work. There are lots of themed colouring books for adults, promoting this as a relaxing activity for all ages. You could download a colouring-in app if you can’t hold pencils.

  1. Get Crafty

If you are able to use your hands freely, you could get into a new crafting hobby. Knitting, crocheting, cross-stitching - these can have a practical use if you create gifts for family and friends. You could try scrapbooking to document memories or something a bit messier like painting, as long as you can protect your bedding to keep it clean and tidy up easily after.

  1. Listen to Music

Everybody likes music, even if they prefer listening to one specific genre only. You could create your own playlists on Spotify or iTunes and listen to your favourite songs over and over. Or you could explore recommended artists and catch up on that album everyone has been talking about. Try listening to a new artist every day to see if you find a new favourite. 

  1. Watch TV & Movies

Binge-watching isn’t the healthiest thing to do, but being stuck in bed means that there’s no time like the present to catch up on all those Netflix shows or buzzworthy films you’ve been missing out on. If you want familiar comfort, you can re-watch your old favourite television series or movies. Streaming services make it easier than ever to find something to watch.

  1. Study Online 

If you want your screen time to be more productive, enrol in an online course. You can find lots of free resources online if you want to learn something new or download a specific app. For example, you could spend time learning a language with Duolingo or watch educational videos on Skillshare. You could even aim to complete a part-time online degree or diploma.

  1. Solve Puzzles

Keeping your brain active is an important part of overall health. Exercising your brain can also be entertaining if you attempt activities such as crosswords, word searches, sudoku, and other puzzles. Again, if you are unable to hold a pen for a long time, you can download a brain training app on a smart device to complete puzzles more easily with a touch-screen.

  1. Play Games

Video games are a fun way to pass time and more immersive than watching television. You could download free PC games or play online games on a laptop, or download apps on your phone to play fun games like Candy Crush and challenge your friends. Games are a good way to get some social interaction too, as you can connect with online communities.

  1. Stay in Touch 

Communicating with the people you care about is vital if you are unable to speak to them in person and they cannot visit you very often. Text every day and make regular phone calls so that you are still in the loop about the goings-on beyond your bedroom. You can even write snail-mail letters and someone can post them for you to stay in touch the old-fashioned way.

  1. Go Shopping Online

Retail therapy is actually easier when you’re browsing online and not limited to the shops on your high street or in a shopping centre. You can visit as many different websites as you want, make wishlists of your favourite items, and search the sales. Looking for bargains can be fun even if you don’t actually order anything, but if you do, you can get home delivery.

  1. Personal Maintenance

Just because you won’t be going outside doesn’t mean that you should stop maintaining your physical appearance. Staying clean, doing your hair, and dressing nicely can help your mental state by making you feel better physically. You could get someone to help you with things like shaving or applying skincare or cosmetics if you are unable to do it by yourself.

  1. Learn to Meditate

Staying in the same position for a long time can actually be peaceful if you train your mind not to wander in the wrong directions. Take the opportunity to practice meditation such as gentle stretches or breathing exercises. Doing this a few times a day can make a massive difference to your overall well-being. You can find meditation guides online or via an app.

  1. Do Exercises in Bed

Being bed-bound can feel stagnating, especially if you are not able to move around much. There are lots of simple exercises that you can do while lying down to keep your muscles active and get your blood flowing. This will help your condition to improve faster as well. If you have a doctor or physical therapist, get advice from them about which exercises to do.