As Winston Churchill once said: “It is not use doing what you like; you have to like what you do.” Still, regardless of how much you like your work, at the end of the day it is still just that – work – and with it comes the pressure and stress. Work is what puts the food on the table and you may love it to bits, but it is not something you can do for a little bit and leave. A hobby gives you just that, a chance to be creative and work as little or as much as you would like to on something that interests you. Or just plainly to enjoy something in your free time, clearing your mind from the worries of the world. Nurture the hobby and it will nurture you back.
The calming nature of work without fixed goals
Books, radio and television were there for you, but they still presented passive activities without much input. Even today, with huge amounts of video content online, your input ends at choosing what to watch, not to actively participate in it. If you enjoy just the activity, but do not want to have short-term goals, any kind of hobby that has to do with creating things might be right up your alley. Working with clay or learning woodwork are both ways to enjoy the tactile feeling itself, without getting too invested in the final product. Of course, if you get good, you might be producing pieces that you would like to give to your friends or even sell occasionally, but that is not the goal of your hobby, it is but a side-effect. The real goal is your peace of mind.
Get your creative juices flowing
Perhaps you have always wanted to do ballet, or theater, or paint. You know, do some of the fine arts. However, life took you on a different route and you would like to get some of that old love back. And why should you not? You can find a local amateur club that could help you with that pretty much anywhere in the world. You could earn your ballet chops in Edinburgh, do some acting in New York, or go out and buy some art supplies in Sydney and enjoy your newfound passion. Being creative in a hobby has a tendency of flowing over into other parts of your life, making you approach your work and relationship in a more positive manner.
Make new friends
With hobbies come new ways to meet people. Whatever you are into: chess, board games, skateboarding or art, there will always be a group of other people who share the same passion. One of the most interesting things about groups that share a hobby is that they come from all walks of life and the one thing that brings them together is the actual hobby they enjoy. As individuals, we tend to choose our friends based on some preconception, lifestyle and values, but through hobbies we can meet people whose ways of life might never intersect with ours – and that would be a shame.
Build up your confidence
As Joker once put it: “If you’re good at something, never do it for free”. However, what a hobby actually allows you is to become good at something one step at a time, building your confidence along the way. Incrementally, you become better and better at the little things that make up your hobby. This confidence again flows over into your work life and family life, making you a better employee, spouse, father, whatever your work or family situation is.
Grow as a person
As you work on your skills, developing them for the hobby you are interested in, meeting new people who share the passion, and becoming more confident as a result of this, that is the wonderful effect that enjoying a hobby could have on you. The potential to be more than you already are, to create a greater social circle and have a better feeling of self-worth – they are not something to be taken lightly for a byproduct of having fun.