Having a hobby includes a lot more than a money-drain for new gear or the struggle to finish another handmade project. There are some very positive physical and mental benefits for hobbyists. As January was National Hobby Month, here are four general reasons you should consider finding your off-hours passion and making it a “must” in your life.
Sports are an obvious hobby with physical benefits. Hiking, biking, golfing, tennis…the list goes on and on. They aren’t the only direction to go for physical activity though. Pottery and woodworking utilize finer motor skills and are two example of hobbies that develop eye and hand coordination. Learning new skills improves your brain as well as your muscles. Hands learn to be dexterous, feet grow agile, and minds can actually improve their memories. When considering what past times you want to invest in, consider activities that challenge both your physical endurance as well as your mental capacity. Another physical benefit includes your social life! Hobbies are a great way to meet new people. Craft fairs, clubs, and teams are just a few opportunities to meet like-minded friends.
De-stress and Eustress:
Activities like adult coloring books are a popular hobby for stress relief nowadays. You don’t have to be calm to de-stress however. Physical activity can be the perfect means to let out some built up energy and let the mind disengage from stressors. We want to clear our minds, but not shut them off. Hobbies allow us to experience eustress. This is the positive form where your mind is engaged and challenged. Eustress leads to a feeling of fulfillment. From practicing yoga and painting to building models or joining a chess team, challenges give us excitement and new heights to conquer.
Having passion for your hobby opens up not only your enjoyment, but some great outcomes. A creative spark keeps you engaged and making accomplishments you are proud of. Not only can these accomplishments improve your life, but they also can be shared. New or improved skills let us create something that others can enjoy. What can you build with robotics? Who is going to stay warm with your handmade quilt? Hobbies allow you to take a break with purpose. They allow you to be productive instead of falling into the trap of wasting time.
As I already mentioned, hobbies are an avenue for challenges, but include the key of visible rewards. Even if it takes the vintage car collector takes 30 years to make his project street-worthy, the dream of the end result keeps him going. Reaching new levels of success instills self-esteem. Finishing a project results in a sense of gratification. Life can make people feel depressed and like they can never succeed. Choosing to invest into an activity that you can see improvement and success in, reestablishes a sense of accomplishment and pride.
Hobbies allow people to do and be what they love. They improve our physical and mental capabilities. They deliver challenges and rewards. Maybe your passion doesn’t make you money; maybe it does. Notwithstanding, the values of hobbies are priceless in increasing one’s quality of life.