Hobbies are often thought of as activities for people who have tons of spare time on their hands. However, hobbies are also essential to creating a balanced lifestyle for people with busy schedules. Keep reading to learn more about the ways hobbies can be a valuable addition to any routine.
While different hobbies offer different benefits, some benefits can be obtained from most hobbies. For example, hobbies are a great form of stress relief. Engaging in an activity that brings enjoyment or relaxation can help take a person’s mind off other stressful events in their daily lives.
Hobbies are also a way to produce a positive form of stress called eustress. Eustress occurs when a person is faced with a challenge but feels confident in their abilities to overcome it. Partaking in hobbies that stimulate the mind and body leads to a sense of fulfillment and satisfaction.
Research shows that having too much free time can be just as bad as having too little. That means that experiences of eustress, where individuals are challenged in healthy ways, are good for a person’s well-being.
Having a hobby is also good for your mental health in general. By relieving stress and burnout, hobbies can help to mitigate the effects of conditions such as depression and anxiety. Since hobbies help to maintain physical and mental well-being, they can also help to improve body image and self-esteem.
Another positive effect of engaging in hobbies is the social aspect. Many hobbies, such as sports, music, and cooking, can be enjoyed with others. These activities can be a great way to spend time with loved ones or meet new people. Having a strong social network is important for physical and mental health. This means that the stress-relieving and mental health-boosting effects that hobbies can offer, can become even more significant when hobbies are shared with others.
Active hobbies involve some sort of physical activity and are perfect for keeping the body in good condition. Different forms of physical activity can exercise different parts of the body, but overall, any form of exercise is good for the body as a whole. For example, cycling is good for leg strength but also for overall flexibility, joint mobility, and stamina. Other active hobbies include:
These activities can stimulate the mind and help improve and maintain brain function. This is not limited to academic-related pursuits like science and mathematics. Instead, these hobbies can benefit a wide range of brain functions such as memory, pattern recognition, analytical skill, and perception. Some intellectual hobbies include:
- Language learning
- Word games
These hobbies involve the process of creation. They are most commonly associated with the arts but can go beyond them. They can stimulate one’s creativity, encouraging free expression and an open imagination. Some creative hobbies include:
Note that active, intellectual and creative hobbies are not definitive groupings, and many activities can be placed into more than one category. Gardening can include a physical aspect, which is the physical act of tending to a garden. However, gathering knowledge about taking care of plants can also be considered as a mental aspect of gardening.
Many other hobbies are also like this, which means that many hobbies can benefit several areas of the body and mind. Try out different hobbies to see which you enjoy most. At the end of the day, hobbies are primarily for relaxation and easing the mind, and you are more likely to stick with a hobby you actually enjoy.
About the author
Kyle is a writer for Youth Mind who studied English at Wilfrid Laurier University. When he’s not writing, he enjoys art and music.