Like many of you, I’ve spent more than the last year of my quarantine hanging out with friends. However, when it finally came time to reintegrate back into society, I quickly realized that I was a bit out of practice. Simply “going out” doesn’t come as easy as it used to be! There are times when you are overwhelmed with interesting ideas about things to do and there just don’t seem to be enough hours in the day to complete your list. But there are other times when boredom can help you get better. When that happens, it can easily end up sitting around, scrolling through social media “together” without being present. Are you tempted to go to the old coffee shop or the watering hole you used to do? Read on. To help inspire my own creative hangouts, I’ve put together this list of things to do with your friends when you’re feeling bored.
After a year of not being able to spend quality time with my friends, my goal is to be more intentional in every minute to be with them. If you’re regrouping and need some ideas, you’ve come to the right place. Use the ideas below for inspiration or make bucket list. So boring, goodbye.
Things to do with friends when bored:
1. Create a spa experience. It can be as simple as lifting your feet up and applying a mask, or taking a foot bath or taking a massage train and applying a hair mask.
2. Go for a walk. Exercise in a park or beautiful neighborhood while talking and staring at houses (my favorite part).
3. Play a game. Whether it’s cards, board games, beer pong, or old fashioned hide and seek, games are a great distraction for friends.
4. Have a movie marathon. It’s okay if you don’t have the energy to function. Watch every Harry Potter movie with a bag of hot popcorn and a glass of wine. Or use this list of the best movies of the ’90s as inspiration.
5. Make a cardio-dance workout video. Because dance parties are always better with friends.
6. Mix seasonal cocktails. Love this mug and use your best mugs and freshest ingredients. Then toast to your friendship.
7. Find the nearest beach or pool. You’re never too old to splash around in the water with your best friends. Don’t forget to pack everything you need — this beach packing list will come in handy!
8. Try a new restaurant in town. Get out of your comfort zone and experience new things together. Everyone ordered something different on the menu.
9. Wine tasting at home. Buy three bottles of wine: one over $20, one around $15 and one under $10. Cover the bottles with foil, give each person a sip, and guess which wine it is. Or try a natural wine like pèt nat and open up your palette!
10. Do something creative. Go to an art store and pick up a fun project or go for a walk in an old pair of jeans or a t-shirt with some scissors and an embroidered suit.
11. Start a book club. Plans always seem to go better together, so take your time and finally start that book club. Plan the order of the books you want to read (everyone adds one to the list). Inspired by the most talked about books on TikTok.
twelfth. Make a mood board. Create a general mood board or create an individual board. Compare then.
13. Have an international dinner party. Create and enjoy a menu with delicious dishes from around the world. My ideal international dinner: spicy tuna crispy rice starter, tabletop pizza, dinner tacos and truffle fries. Oh, and gelato for dessert.
14. Play a TV show. This is one of my favorite things to do when I’m bored with my friends. Choose a series of short films and watch the whole thing in one day.
15. Book a lovely table and order takeout. Make the dining table a relevant part of the dinner, not the cooking. Use the dishes placed in the back of your pantry to collect dust and linen napkins you’ve been too lazy to use.
16. Try a new recipe. Because trial and error is more fun than laughing with a friend.
17. Bake something. I prefer to bake with friends, so I don’t eat dozens of cookies alone.
18. Make your own pizza. Start from scratch with homemade dough or use a store-bought pie crust. Get personalized sizes so everyone can go crazy with their top picks. More fun than Domino’s.
19. Do your yoga. Watch videos or walk each other through some of your favorite streams.
20. Do a puzzle. Call me crazy, but the puzzle is thrilling. Has anyone else competed on placing the last piece of the puzzle?
21. Build a new playlist together. Add songs that remind you of the memories together and listen to when you’re apart.
22. Purify your wardrobe with a style show. You know that scene in Sex & The City when Carrie Bradshaw moves out of her apartment and tries on all her clothes for her friends to vote on? Yes, do it. Productive and fun.
23. Have your own CS preferences. Go to the grocery store and buy every vanilla ice cream and rate them, or get creative and experiment with something else.
24. Give each other makeup. Don’t let other people look in the mirror and do their makeup and/or hair. If the results are good, go out and show it off!
25. Go shopping for each other. Online or in person, choose for each other an outfit the other has to wear. Be good with this, girls.
26. Write letters to each other. Sure, we’ll send each other sincere messages, but messages are temporary. Handwritten letters are a dying art that I am determined to keep alive.
27. Create and compare group lists. Give each other time for individuals to write down what they want to do/achieve, then compare and make a “master list” of similar things. Then go do them together.
28. Give each other compliments. Go around and tell people what you love about them. Take the time to build up your friends and remind them how great they are.
29. Gourmet latte. Add a new ingredient, froth your milk, or simply enjoy it as an afternoon pick-me-up. Tip: jot down how your friend drinks coffee so you can surprise them with a cup of joe another time.
30. Sing karaoke. Traditional Karaoke is fun enough, but if you’re looking for a good laugh, try Cowboy Karaoke. The singer was turning on his headphones with high volume of the song, blindfolded and unable to hear himself singing. For everyone else, you’ll have an unbelievably fun A Cappella performance.
31. Learn a new skill. Self-development is always a good thing, but learning a new skill with friends will allow everyone to feel supported. Try taking a virtual cooking class together (MasterClass and Sur La Table both offer a wide range of options) or engage in a new creative medium through Skillshare. Cheer each other on and acknowledge each other’s victories.
32. Go deep. Playing games together is always a fun time. You can have a little more intent on your friends-only game night, and pick a few options that let you learn new things about each other. We’re not really strangers and Hygge Games are all loved!
33. Discover your enneagram. Speaking of getting to know each other better, enneagram is a great way to learn more about yourself and your friends. Dive into nine different types of Enneagram and take a quiz to see which one you are. After you know your type, do an activity together where you share and reflect on what you’ve learned. This guide walks you through a purposeful conversation based on your Enneagram type. Bonus: If you’re starting a book club with your friends (see idea #11), read The way back to you so you can become an Enneagram expert together.
33. Explore your city. Even if you’ve lived in your town for years, there’s always something new to discover. Let’s analyze together a list of museums, galleries, shops, etc. that you have always wanted to see. Spend the day walking around and seeing your surroundings from a new perspective.
34. Shibori dye. One of the oldest indigo dyeing techniques in Japan, shibori dyeing is a long tradition. This set has everything you need to get started. Gather a few pieces to dye (white t-shirts, reusable t-shirts, and tea towels are all great options) and get ready to make your masterpieces.
35. Dive into an unfamiliar topic. Sometimes, the best way to break the cycle of boredom can be to go down a random rabbit hole. Choose a topic you’ve always wanted to learn more about. This can really be anything and you can get as specific as you want. Pick a topic together, research and share all the fun things you have to learn.
36. Try a viral TikTok recipe. Whether you’re Gen Z or not, there’s no denying it: TikTok is a great place for recipe inspiration. Make Emily Mariko’s Salmon Rice Bowl (promise you’ll crave it for every meal after) or try this for round and identical cookies.
37. Have fun with flowers. Go to the store and buy a variety of your favorite flowers. Equip your own vase and all the necessary tools to create your own DIY bouquets.
38. Visit a virtual museum. One benefit of the mass shift to virtual life is that many museums worldwide have made their collections available online. The Louvre offers curated tours, and The Getty shows you through their exhibits. Check out this list for more museums you can explore together via your computer.
39. Braid your heart out. There are so many step-by-step tutorials out there on how to braid your hair that you can only dream of. Fishtail braids, French braids, Dutch braids, you can name it. Practice what you’ve learned together — you might find your new favorite hairstyle.
40. Paint your nails. Make your own bread or go to a local beauty salon together. Whether you’re doing it at home or doing a professional manicure, shake things up and try a color or look you don’t normally get.
Save this article for the next time you are bored with your friends and drop your comments below!
This post was originally published on June 11, 2021, and has since been updated.