“Don’t worry about what the world needs. Ask what makes you come alive and do that, because what the world needs is people who have come alive.” – Howard Thurman
Not that long ago, our minds were clutter- and stress-free, and there was a good reason behind it. When we were children, we could get lost for hours in a single activity, whether it was building amazing things with blocks, dancing in our rooms, drawing, reading, writing, playing house and so much more. Our minds would be focused on these activities that bring us joy and keep us focused on them only, completely unaware of the things going on outside our worlds.
Now, most of us are all work and no play, and that takes a toll on the mind as well as our overall levels of contentment. In some ways, that child was much wiser than we are today, and we need to take a deep hard look at ourselves and bring that innocent wisdom back into our lives.
Hobbies are much more than pleasant pastimes, particularly for adults whose lives are often overwhelmed by enormous amounts of stress, so embark on this journey with us and see all the wonderful ways in which your life can be vastly improved by simply taking up a hobby.
How Hobbies Improve All Aspects of Your Life
Just calm seas and palm trees
For a mind that’s always spinning and is in dire need of a break, the right choice of a hobby can make a world of difference. If you truly want to achieve the level of serenity and calm that a permanent stay at a tropical island can provide, while of course, physically staying in the real world, you simply must give yoga and meditation a try.
Most people give up yoga too quickly on account of certain positions being too difficult, but what you have to understand is that it’s a process, and there are poses or asanas for beginners that will help you ease into it. There are of course classes you can take, but if you’re feeling too self-conscious for now, there are always great instructors on YouTube you can turn to for visual guidance until you get in the swing of things.
Not only will meditation and yoga bring peace to the mind, but they will also make it sharper, more aware and centered, and this will have an enormously positive impact on all aspects of your life, not to mention mental and physical health. On top of these, knitting can also have an incredibly soothing effect, plus, you end up with a great skill and self-made sweater and other woolly goods.
People against loneliness
The life of a busy professional who has little time for themselves can be a lonely one. The busier you get the more contact with people you lose, hence developing a risk of becoming depressed and even developing anxiety. No man is an island, and we need each other to survive and thrive.
Luckily, there are plenty of group hobbies you can take, where aside from pursuing an interest or acquiring a skill, you can forge real friendships and stop loneliness in its tracks. One of the most upbeat and social ones is definitely dancing, so even if you’re not particularly dexterous with your feet, pick up a pair of jazz dance shoes and find a class near you. Your feet might discover that they just needed the right guidance, and even if you discover you’re no Jack Cole, you’ll still have fun. There are numerous other reasons to dance – health reasons standing second only to the ‘socializing’ reason, so why not give it a go? If you’re not the groovy type, well, you can always turn to photography classes, painting, sculpting, if you have an artistic side to you.
Sharp as a whip
You may already be familiar with this, but it doesn’t hurt to mention – hobbies do wonders for sharpening the mind and increasing your concentration and overall brain function. DIY projects, like building airplane models are a great place to start, as this kind of activity requires attention to detail, precision and this is exactly what makes you sharper – it’s like the gym for the mind. Reading of course is a tried and tested tool for sharpness, but there are also more challenging hobbies such as learning to play an instrument, learning a new language (which is also social), and finally, if you’re into puzzles that tickle the brain (and frustrate it at times), go right ahead and stock up on mind-bending games.
There you have it – stress relief, richer social life, wits, better physical and mental health. Hobbies have you covered, now all you have to do is pick one and stick with it (or try several until you find the one that’s just right).