There are times when your usual hobbies just don’t cut the proverbial mustard any longer. You know, we all love reading and watching a movie now and then, but sometimes you need something a little more challenging or perhaps even creative in your life. You need something to do in your free time that doesn’t involve cleaning the house or rearranging your sock drawer – yawn, right?
Well, luckily for you we’re in the same boat and we have a few ideas that might be right up your alley. And no, although it’s lots of fun, none of our suggestions involve those 90s toys we love so much! So let’s take a look at what we came up with.
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Learn to play an instrument
Yes, we really are going there. Despite what you might think, learning to play an instrument isn’t something that only young people do. In fact, you’re never too old to pick up an instrument. People learn to play piano in their retirement all the time. And there’s a very good reason why.
You see learning how to play an instrument is therapeutic. It fosters a sense of achievement, promotes brain activity, and just keeps you happy. Of course, it doesn’t matter which instrument you decide to play, but some are much easier to pick than others while there’s also the expense to consider too. Not only that but will your family or housemates appreciate a grand piano taking over the entire dining room? Probably not, but no one can complain about a guitar or flute. That is, once you’re not playing it at 2am every night.
Whatever instrument you choose, you’ll have a great time. But remember, this is supposed to be fun, so while you should practice whenever you can, it’s not a job. Have fun and enjoy the moment and if you’re not all that good, who cares? You’re doing this for you, and not so you can sell out the local concert hall.
Play poker online
It’s not the first thing that comes to mind when we think about playing something on our smartphone or laptop. But believe it or not, there are an increasing number of non-poker lovers who are now playing the game regularly online. And trust us, once you’ve learned how to play poker online, you’ll wonder why you never played it before.
So what’s so great about it? Well, there are some surprising benefits to playing poker that put it on a par with picking up that instrument we mentioned earlier. It’s a strategic game (no, it’s not all about luck) and so it forces you to think logically. People who play poker also learn how to control their emotions, which is a skill that quite a lot of us could benefit from, right?
It’s also a great way to hone your decision-making. You think logically and make the best choice based on the information at hand and not some gut feeling that says ‘go for it’. Finally, it’s a social game that allows you to meet other people even in the online version. While playing with friends is always a great option, playing online gives you the chance to play a few hands whenever you feel like it. All in all, it’s pretty great. Oh, and we forgot to mention that you might even win some games if you keep up the practice.
Again this is probably something that you think only your cool Aunt Jasmine takes part in, but there’s a surprisingly large crafting and upcycling community out there. You just need to know where to look. So what exactly is crafting and upcycling anyhow?
It involves using any items you may have lying around the house and repurposing them for another use. Say for example, turning old pallets into furniture or using old beads from necklaces to glamify your clothes or bags.
The great thing about upcycling and crafting is that you’re free to do anything you like. If making a pair of binoculars out of old toilet roll tubes is what you have in mind, then knock yourself out. And if you get really good at it, you can bring your stuff along to flea markets and car boot sales and try to make yourself a little extra cash on the side. Being creative and making money? We’re in!
You can get started learning photography on your smartphoneThere was a time when learning photography was one of the most expensive hobbies you could pick up. And truth be told, you still can spend a hell of a lot of money on this pastime. But with smartphones and point-and-shoot cameras now delivering better images than ever before, you can get started learning photography on the cheap.
There are tons of free guides on using your smartphone to take amazing imagesand while you still need to develop an eye for a good subject, anyone can jump right in. You’ll be surprised at just how easy it is to get completely immersed in the pursuit of the perfect shot.
And if you get good at it, you’ll probably invest in a decent camera and start taking all your friends special event photos. Could this be another side hustle like crafting and upcycling? Sure, why not, but even if it’s not, it’s still hugely satisfying to hang your shots on the wall.
We were going to go with the cooking option but to be frank, most people are quite good at cooking these days. The real reason we’re going with baking though is because it’s purely about the enjoyment of eating yummy things. And as you all know, everyone likes yummy things, especially baked goodies.
Start off small with cupcakes and cookies, and once you’ve nailed down how sweet you like your baking to be you can get a little more adventurous with your creations. Trust us, before you know it a tray of cookies won’t be enough. You’ll be baking banana bread, cinnamon brioches, bread puddings, and flourless lemon loaves. You’ll have enough cakes and scones to feed an army and you’ll keep baking more.
The only problem we see with this hobby is that you have to eat everything you bake – oh no, what terrible news! Actually, you’ll never manage to eat it all but there are always plenty of friends and neighbors who are more than willing to eat your delicious creations.
So there you have it – 5 great hobbies that won’t bore you to tears. They’ll keep your mind active and bring you that sense of achievement your Tuesday evening have been missing for so long now.