Hobbies bring us joy and can thoroughly enrich our lives, whether it’s a way of meeting new people or adding purpose to our spare time and the most popular hobbies are beloved for just these reasons. The great news is that there are many hobbies you can try your hand at and new interests cropping up all the time. Here are some of the benefits of having a hobby you love and how it can boost your happiness.
It Encourages Breaks
Without hobbies, our time can be swallowed up by work, household chores or mindlessly scrolling through social media. When we have an activity to spend time on, we feel more productive and can give our time more purpose. Hobbies are also great for having fun and putting our focus into something meaningful and enjoyable.
Activities that require us to learn a new skill or advance our knowledge of what we already know are brilliant for breaking up the routine of everyday life and challenge us mentally and physically. They can even broaden our way of seeing the world and push us out of our comfort zones.
In 2020, more people around the world have been seeking ways to challenge themselves and try out something new. For example, the Google search interest in cycling in Estonia has increased by 325% and a staggering 806% in Hungary, while locals in Turkey are keen to learn a new language, with searches up by 550%.
A Boost in Physical Health
You don’t have to spend time on a physical hobby for it to have physical benefits. Research has shown that hobbies we find enjoyable can lower your blood pressure and cortisol levels, which are responsible for stress. What’s more, they can even have a positive effect on our body mass index and waist circumference.
A Great Way to Meet Other People
As adults, it can be difficult to make new friends and meet people outside of our everyday friendship groups. But hobbies are a great way of uniting people with similar interests and meeting people who enjoy the same things you do. This can even be true of solo activities, such as illustrating, as you can still communicate with people online or through social media.
Life can get stressful, from managing work tasks to picking the kids up from school or dealing with deadlines. While it might seem counter-productive to add yet another thing to your to-do list, studies have shown that hobbies actually relieve stress rather than add to it. In taking your mind off work or home responsibilities, you can improve your happiness, wellbeing and provide the perfect outlet for stress.
A Lesson in Mindfulness
Mindfulness has gained a lot of traction in recent years for its benefits to mental health. Hobbies are a great way of staying present and practicing mindfulness, as they encourage us to get in the zone and really focus on what we are doing in that exact moment. By spending time on something we love to do, we don’t have a chance to worry about the future or overthink the past – we’re completely focused, and this can be really beneficial to our stress levels and happiness.