Are you one of those people who thinks that hobbies are what we do in our spare time – and who has spare time these days anyway? But believe it or not, hobbies are really important to our mental wellbeing and productivity. Emotionally healthy people, are more than their jobs and labels!
Here are just some of the benefits of having a hobby:
- They increase confidence and self-esteem – Who doesn’t like the feeling of being good at something? Even if you’re starting out as a total beginner, learning something new is energising and creates a sense of accomplishment.
- They reduce stress – Hobbies refocus your mind onto something that you enjoy doing. If your pastime of choice involves physical activity, it will create chemical changes in your body that help to reduce stress. Even non-physical activities, like listening to music, can be highly effective in managing stress levels.
- They enhance your creativity – Learning a language, playing a musical instrument, or even jogging use different parts of your brain. Clearing mental blocks and releasing those good hormones unleash your creative side. (If you haven’t already, you can read one of our previous articles about fostering creativity here).
- They boost performance and job satisfaction – A study of 400 employees
found that people with hobbies were more creative on projects and had a better attitude towards work. Meanwhile, other research suggests that hobby-loving employees are more satisfied with their jobs and are less likely to experience burnout.
- They give you specialist skills – Whatever hobby you pursue – baking bread, geocaching, beekeeping – you’ll gain knowledge in a space that probably alludes most of the population. And don’t even get us started on the many benefits reaped by people who are committed to ongoing learning.
- They encourage patience – Sometimes in order to develop a new hobby, you have to learn how to do something that’s new to you, and you’ll need to be patient in order to build your skills.
- They make you a better problem-solver – Taking time away from work and everything else that’s going on in your life gives your brain a break, allowing it to veer away from its normal line of thinking to make new connections and discover novel solutions to challenges you might be facing.
- They help prevent bad habits – There’s an old saying that goes: ‘Idle hands are the devil’s workshop.’ If you have ‘good’ hobbies filling your free time, then you’ll be less likely to indulge in wasteful or negative activities.
Stuck on ideas for a hobby? Try reading, cooking, watching documentaries, exercising, gardening, learning to play an instrument… Whatever it is, just make sure to carve out time in your week to start that hobby now. Once you reduce Netflix, Instagram, and other time drainers from your schedule, you’ll probably have more space for hobbies than you think.
– The Coach Place Global
Image by Bianca Ackermann
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