The summer is coming to an end and the new school year has started. Maybe you’re one of the lucky few who went from being a full time, super-stay-home-Mom or Dad, to having an extra six hours on your hands. Or maybe you just managed to carve out an hour or two in the evenings or on the weekends.
And sure, when you subtract the time it takes to make a dent in the “Honey Do” list, start a project you’ve been meaning to get around to, squeeze in a workout (or yard work) and shower, the odds are, you might still have a little time to do something fun!
But where to start… Are you slowly but surely being drawn to the dark side of binge consumer behavior? Do you find yourself disappearing into the folds of your couch, eyes fixated on a screen; remote, gaming or reading device in one hand, mouth opening every time you bend the elbow of the other arm because your hand periodically rests in a bowl or bag of your favorite snacks?
If so, you need a hobby. But what should you do? No! Wait, what could you do? The possibilities (unlike your free time) are endless! But finding the right hobby can be difficult. So here are some tips to help you choose your perfect pastime! Whether you’re looking for hobbies for men or hobbies for women these tips will show you how to pick a hobby that you’ll love.
Before You Even Start
First of all, know that picking a hobby is probably going to take some time, wrong turns, and maybe even a little bit of money before you find a fit that’s right for you. Just because you feel enthusiastic about something, does not guarantee it will come easy to you. So with that in mind, don’t be afraid to start experimenting!
Knowing Where to Begin
Probably the most difficult step is the first one – figuring out where to begin. Here are a few hints to point you in the right direction:
- Got talent? What are you good at? What do you enjoy? What would you like to learn more about? These are good questions to answer before starting your search for a fulfilling pastime. For example, a person who finds they enjoy outdoor scenery might need a hobby that can include; hiking, biking, camping, landscape photography or even painting if you have any artistic ability. Each of these can become very fulfilling hobbies with opportunities for new learning and personal accomplishments.
- Previous Hobbies: Surely, you’ve had at least one hobby in the past? Perhaps it’s time to revisit that old interest. You can take it to the next level, add a twist, or do something related. Is there anything you miss doing? This is a good place to start.
- Environment: Another jump-starter could be the place you live. Do you live near mountains, a lake, an ocean, an art district, or a music district? Any societies or club facilities nearby? Craft or home improvement stores? What kind of hobby would be made convenient by your community?
- Friends: What are your friends or loved ones up to? Maybe you can join in! Have you thought about forming a club with a circle of friends who enjoy common interests? There are lots of options depending on your mutual activities of preference: fishing, boating, book club, hiking/biking/running club – the lists are endless; an added bonus of doing this is the ability to meet and work with other established clubs sharing the same interests, whether they be local, national or international!
- Double Duty: Do you have any projects that could double as a hobby? Need to exercise more? Eat out less and eat more home-cooked meals? Discover your family history? Do more things with your living family members? Find a way to turn a goal into a fun hobby!
- Keep Your Eyes Peeled: You can find inspiration anywhere. Were you amazed by the ice-dancers at the Olympics? Impressed by the man cave your friend carved out of a piece of petrified wood and an unused basement? Wish you could dance along to your favorite pop songs? Tired of paying a lot of money for family photographs or decorative prints? Stop admiring from the outside and jump in!
- Be Original: Finally, don’t let what other people are doing limit you. If you have a great, innovative idea – go ahead and chase it! Just be sure you can do it safely, without negative repercussions for the people or environment around you, and of course make sure it’s legal!
Once you’ve selected something you think could be fun, it’s time to start experimenting. But before you spend hundreds of dollars on equipment, outfits, passes, and lessons, see if there isn’t a cheaper way to start. It might be beneficial to dip your toe in the water before you dive in head first! You don’t have to commit to the hobby you choose.
A lot of interests are whimsical and temporary. Something you may be passionate about for a few weeks could fizzle quickly – especially if it turns out to be more challenging than you expected. So see if you can borrow or rent equipment that you may need. Ask a friend to show you the ropes, or start with free online tutorials before you sign up for an expensive class.
Never Forget to Have Fun
Once you’ve found a hobby that you enjoy and can commit to, make sure you don’t ruin it by expecting too much of yourself. Remember that hobbies are supposed to be enjoyable! Even if you are determined to become an expert, make sure you are patient with yourself and have fun at each stage.
So get out there and find a hobby that can add spice, meaning, and excitement to your life!
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