Have you ever wondered why hobbies were invented? Or why some people value hobbies in their lives? Such questions can keep you second-guessing some choices in life and placing your priorities right.
What Is A Hobby?
a hobby is an activity that an individual engages in during their free time or an activity that a person spares time for. A hobby is different from a career or a profession though some people can convert their hobbies into their careers (Jones, 2012).
An important fact to note about a hobby is that it has to be an enjoyable activity that your mind and body wish to partake frequently for various reasons. A hobby should not be a forced activity, preferably an activity willingly adopted by yourself. Some people are born with an inherent zest for their hobbies while most people come to learn and like their hobbies along the course of life.
Do you have a hobby? Were you born with a hobby? What do you like to do during your free time?…
Discovering your hobby is as simple as answering the above questions. An activity that you occasionally do in your life, which is different from your responsibilities and helps your whole being in one way or another, can be termed a hobby. Do not be discouraged if you haven’t figured out your hobby yet; it can take some time before you do. Acknowledging your hobby is influenced by your surroundings, your upbringing, your peers, or even genes.
All these factors contribute to the aspect of varying hobbies; there is no limitation to the kinds of hobbies in the world; each day, we keep learning new abilities. With time you can surprise yourself with how much you can do on your own without learning or imitating someone.
Benefits Of Hobby In Real Life!
The perks that come with having a hobby are very beneficial hence the need to sensitize people on its importance. Hobbies have physical benefits, mental and emotional benefits, social and interpersonal benefits, self-improvement benefits, and enhancing creativity.
Most people acknowledge the physical benefits of hobbies due to the perception that hobbies have to be time and energy-consuming. Well, they are not wrong, most hobbies are involving, and a little sweat is involved hence the physical benefits to the body.
Hobbies such as swimming, martial arts, yoga, hiking, and camping require energy and genuine interest and offer physiological benefits to the body as they help you keep fit and in shape.
Other benefits of these physical hobbies include weight loss, strengthening bones, lower blood pressure, building muscle, and an overall increase in energy.
We know of people who like blowing off steam by running or jogging in parks where they get to be alone and relaxed (“Why hobbies are important,”).
Mental & Emotional Wellbeing
The mental and emotional benefits of hobbies might be the most appreciated aspect of having these leisure activities. There exist cases where individuals breakdown as a result of overwhelming and challenging life activities. In such instances, medical practitioners and professionals advise on taking a break and focusing on activities that help your body relax and your mind to calm down.
Hobbies generally relieve stress by making your body relax and taking your mind off daily work activities (Scott, 2012).
The most therapeutic hobby known is listening to music; everyone has their taste in music, which works for them; music soothes your wellbeing by communicating through its lyrics and creating a peaceful aura around you. There is indeed a healing power in music; some genres have real-life messages and experiences that may resonate well with whatever challenges you may be incurring in life.
Painting and drawing are other therapeutic hobbies that make an individual transform their anger into something visible and tangible. Hobbies enable you to channel negative energy into making something beautiful and even inspire others (“importance of hobbies for stress relief,” 2018).
Mental and emotional health is essential in an individual; hobbies that foster mental and emotional wellbeing build our self-esteem while giving us mastery and control over our lives.
There is a sense of fulfillment from these hobbies; after accomplishing a task, our bodies gain positive energy and attitude towards doing more.
Cooking and photography are part of these hobbies; following instructions on a recipe and cooking good food to blow off steam can give you purpose and assurance of being something more.
Photography is another way of channeling anger and negative attitude into capturing the best parts of life; there exists self-fulfillment in photographic work taken unconsciously that reminds a person of what is essential in life and what needs more focus (Scott, 2012).
All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy! We all have come across this saying as we grew up, a reminder to work on our social and interpersonal skills. Hobbies are a great way to meet new friends and socialize; bonds are created as we socialize and make new friends, we gain more support in life.
While meeting new people, you can explore what other people /your peers do and sometimes get to meet people with similar interests as yours. This reduces stress, boosts your confidence, and makes you embrace new opportunities (“importance of hobbies for stress relief,” 2018). It is fun to get out of your comfort zone and explore new places, new food, different cultures, and even different environments.
Hobbies that enhance socializing include playing games, trying new technology, watching movies, and exploring new restaurants. Many business partnerships start as random meetups, many marriages and relationships also started as socializing activities and going out of the comfort zone.
Hobbies foster creativity and innovation among people. Many professionals and celebrities grew as a result of focusing on their hobbies and tapping into their creativity.
A hobby can gradually grow into revenue-generating projects if more effort and focus are put in (Jones, 2012).
Reading books and articles is how great authors are born; writing fiction has led to the growth of bestseller authors worldwide. Great athletes in the world had a passion before becoming professional earlier in life; the urge and need to become more made them work on their hobby.
When someone becomes so good at doing a specific skill, it means that they have a passion for doing it and continuously derive ways of bettering their skills such as cake and cookie decorating, crocheting/knitting, and making jewelry.
Putting more effort into a creative hobby helps train the brain to be more creative in other aspects of your life (Jones, 2012).
Hobbies enhance self-improvement; most people enjoy their hobbies since they provide an opportunity to improve the quality of life, boost their confidence level, and improve self-esteem.
Before choosing a hobby like this, consider elements of your life that you would like to work on, change, or achieve in the future.
Having a goal is a form of dedication and commitment to bettering yourself. For example, you may be struggling with weight, chose a hobby that will put you on the right track, such as morning runs or yoga. If you wish to learn a new language, consider developing foreign music interests or even attending a class.
It’s all about initiative and self-drive, the acknowledgment that you would like to be better. Examples of hobbies that enhance self-improvement include cooking, meditation, journaling, traveling alone, and volunteering to different courses.
Cognitive & Behavioural Benefits!
Hobbies boost brain power and cognitive function; the brain becomes susceptible to a decline in cognitive function as we age. We need to keep and maintain our brains sharp by undertaking several activities; as you develop interests in learning new things, so does the brain improve and develop more mental function to hold on.
As you continue to grow, train your mind to engage in more activities to avoid dormancy, develop interests in activities that will excite your mind, and enjoy doing. Our brains are just like muscles and computers, the more information we feed them, the more we need to exercise, and the stronger the brain will function.
It’s not just for the old; every individual is encouraged to keep their brains constantly exercising daily.
It is incredible how hobbies are used to help those in addiction recovery, be it drug addiction or moving on from an abusive relationship.
Hobbies are used to stabilize the mental state of those who have suffered under the influence of something else. These individuals often need a distraction from boredom to avoid the risk of relapsing and going back to the initial torturous states. Boredom is a dangerous emotion for individuals in recovery. It can lead to comfort eating, which mostly leads to ill health and obesity, depression, feelings of anger, and feeling dissatisfied with recovery.
The recommended hobbies for those in recovery include those aimed at channeling negative energy into meaningful projects, positive energy, and activities that enhance the creation of something from the beginning, such as quilting or crocheting.
Despite the condition of one’s stability, choosing a healthy hobby always helps to get you on the right track of life.
Despite the general importance/benefits of hobbies on the general aspects of life, there exist individual effects of hobbies; the way hobbies determine a person’s character.
Hobbies are transformative in many ways. First, they make a person more interesting. Individuals who spend time enjoying their hobbies and those who designate specific times for their leisure activities have experiences and exciting stories to share.
People who invest in their hobbies in one way or another, such as traveling, watching movies, creating new friends, and taking on new classes, have more exposure to life and are good storytellers. Their experiences make them compatible with many personalities, and are easy to talk to since they have diversified their experiences.
Such people also pose great teachers, teaching those interested in their hobbies how to be better and improve. Part of being interesting involves making friends and creating long-lasting relationships/friendships.
Hobbies enable an individual to be more patient under trying circumstances. Learning a hobby entails learning something completely new from scratch without giving up.
An example is learning a new language, someone from the Asian countries interested in learning French; it takes a lot of commitment, patience, and dedication to accomplish learning it.
It is safe to say that hobbies help build interpersonal and intuitive skills; they help you become a better version of yourself. The patience that comes with learning something brand new builds resilience within a person, and this trait goes a long way in life.
Hobbies also give you a different perspective of life and enrich your life; no matter your hobby of choice, you will always learn something new and be exposed to new ideas, this helps with personal growth. Hobbies are meant to challenge you; if you can’t find your hobby challenging, the odds are that it is not as engaging hence less enjoyable.
Just as an old saying goes, ‘an idle mind is the devil’s workshop’; hobbies help prevent bad habits and time wastage (“Why hobbies are important,”).
Should Hobbies Be Important Factor In Our Life?
To understand the importance of hobbies from a broader perspective, we need to analyze various common hobbies and their nature.
Let’s start with dancing; this is an enjoyable hobby that requires passion and effort. Dancing has many health benefits as it is a physical activity. It is an easy and accessible form of exercise. It does not require a lot of equipment, just some music, and your flexible body.
Dancing is also considered a societal activity; this is achieved through communal dance groups or dance lessons. The best aspect of dancing is that it is a fun and enjoyable, pain-free, and an energizing workout.
Dancing is considered an effective cardio workout that improves cardiovascular health strengthens bones, and increases stamina.
Considering the health benefits of dancing as a hobby, it is advisable for those seeking a new hobby to try it out.
Watching films, documentaries and movies is another exciting hobby. Focusing on something outside the norm helps relax the mind. Watching as a hobby generally expands one’s imagination and improves the way of thinking.
Despite being interesting, documentaries are very educative, especially about the past and why things are the way they are. By watching, you will be unwinding, relaxing while gaining knowledge at the same time. Watching also enhances creativity and leads to the growth of amazing scriptwriters and actors.
Gardening is another example of a good hobby; it is a form of exercise and a project. Taking your mind of challenging situations by channeling your energy into the growth of plants and generally making a garden can be therapeutic.
Specializing in growing vegetables provides you with food and herbs; it cuts the costs of buying food. It is a very educative hobby as you learn various conditions of places and types of edible plants and the conditions necessary for their growth.
Many people’s favorite hobby is traveling; it is understandable as to why it is a popular hobby.
Travelling is an expensive hobby yet very fulfilling and satisfactory; it is a very detailed and involving hobby that requires real passion and means.
Travelling enhances your social skills as you get to travel to new people and new places meeting different people and blending in. Travelling improves the geographical knowledge of individuals and allows people to seek something more in life. Travelling also breeds careers and professionals; in the modern world, we have travel bloggers who get paid to travel and share their experience.
Travel bloggers are a real example of what starts as a hobby growing into a profession and generating revenue. Documenting your travel escapades also sharpens photography skills and can be a significant influence on others. Many lives can be positively impacted by the tales of a traveler’s adventures.
As much as we highlight and discuss the importance of hobbies, it is also necessary to shine a light on how to discover or find a hobby. It is very surprising that many people can’t figure out their hobbies; other people out rightly confess to having no hobbies.
It is sad that in all the years of someone’s existence, they have been unable to find an activity that excites them and makes them better people.
I think we all deserve to have an escape plan form the challenges that life throws at us; we all need to seek comfort in something different, we all need to have a secret source of joy and contentment. Not everyone is good at opening up and freely expressing their grievances; hobbies are meant to fill that gap for such people, it is like therapy. Don’t we all like to be set free, listened to, and unjudged?
Then we all deserve to find our hobbies, somewhere to channel our frustrations without losing ourselves in the process.
How To Find Yourself An Hobby For Life!
Here are a few ways to determine and find a suitable hobby for yourself; it should be something you are willing to do, an activity that will bring you joy.
Most importantly, it should be appropriate for your age and personality. The first way to find a hobby is by taking it back to your childhood; a lot has happening while growing up; as you age, responsibilities increase, and you reach a point where the things that once mattered disappear or lose meaning.
Reflect to a time when you were young, free, and wild when you had no responsibilities whatsoever when you were free to explore your abilities. During those days, you didn’t do something unless you really loved it. You may have outgrown some interests, but the chances are that deep down, some of those interests still matter; they just need a little revival. Such childhood activities include riding a bicycle; back then, learning how to ride a bike was so important, and many kids yearned for it.
Remember how that felt and try giving it a try, who knows? You may like it!
If you are having a bad day, chose an activity that will make you forget about it; this is mostly a safe space for you. It might be your kitchen where you get to cook, or it might be a favorite TV show; whatever it is, try doing it often, and it might turn out to be your favorite activity.
If you try out something new and it seems as if you are trying too hard or putting in a lot of effort, that’s not your hobby. A hobby should be effortlessly easy and exciting, it should swiftly unburden your thoughts and make you feel better.
You can sometimes try remembering past hobbies that you may have forgotten; it may sound weird, but it actually happens. Life has many ups and downs, and in the process, people tend to be more occupied with other matters and forget about what makes them happy.
Think back to some projects you’ve done in your past and remember how you did them and how you felt at the time; you might get your old hobby back.
The most important consideration when choosing a hobby is acknowledging what you would like to change about yourself. Purpose to improve on yourself, and you will easily find a hobby. If you want to be more social and make a couple of friends, maybe it is time to start traveling, going out, and making new friends.
If you want to sharpen your cooking skills, it is time to start cooking and even take some cooking classes to improve your skills. If you want to shed some weight, you might consider dancing as a hobby, but only if your hobby makes you happy and is enjoyable.
Many people stereotypically assume that hobbies are for the more relaxed individuals who lead quiet lives; contrary to this, even those busy people with stressful jobs need hobbies just as much as everyone else. It is crucial as individuals to look out for ourselves and our health by developing hobbies and enjoying them for our gain.
The list of hobbies is endless, and there is no shame in having a unique hobby, as long as you enjoy it, and it helps you become a better person, go for it(“Why hobbies are important,”).
- Scott, E. (2012). The importance of hobbies for stress relief. verywellmind. com/the-importanceof-hobbies-for-stress-relief-3144574.
- Jones, E. (2012). Turn Your Talent Into a Business: A Guide to Earning a Living from Your Hobby. Harriman House Limited.
- Robinson, K., & Aronica, L. (2014). Finding your element: How to discover your talents and passions and transform your life. Penguin.
- Ilasco, M. (2010). Craft, Inc.: Turn your creative hobby into a business. Chronicle Books.
- The importance of hobbies for stress relief. (2018, April 24). Alliance Work Partners. https://www.awpnow.com/main/2018/04/24/the-importance-of-hobbies-for-stress-relief/
- (n.d.). University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture Cooperative Extension Service. https://www.uaex.edu/life-skills-wellness/extension-homemakers/Hobbies_LessonGuide.pdf
- Why hobbies are important. (n.d.). Skilled at Life. https://www.skilledatlife.com/why-hobbies-are-important/