I was asked the other day what is the best way to find a new hobby as an adult. My hobbies tend to find me. I see or hear something that catches my interest and think, “It would be awesome to be able to do that!” The question made me think about how I would go about finding a new hobby if I were making an actual effort to find something new. I decided on several questions to ask yourself if you are looking for a new hobby.
What Inspires You?
What do you see or hear that blows you away! It could be art or music or a cool craft project. At least half of my hobbies have come from just thinking something was cool and wanting to learn how to do that. If you’re not finding anything try watching random YouTube videos, or scan through Pinterest, or use StumbleUpon. These sites feature some very creative people doing cool things that just might inspire you. Learn to play an instrument. The amount of free material on nearly anything you can think of is amazing through video sharing sites and digital lesson sites.
What did you used to enjoy when you were young?
Take a trip down memory lane. When I was a kid I wrote a lot of short fiction and I drew a lot. I haven’t drawn anything in years. If I were mining my childhood for a hobby, I would start there. What about you? What did you love to spend time doing when you were a kid? Walks in the woods? Take up hiking! Swimming, canoeing, bug collecting? Whatever it was you used to love doing it and maybe you still would!
If you were financially free and could do anything, what would you do?
This one is the gem of high school guidance counselors, and Office Space. Unless your answer is “nothing, man. I would do absolutely nothing.” Despite how glorious that might sound, you might get bored eventually. If you could do anything what would you do? The most obvious difference in this exercise is that with unlimited resources you might have more options like opening your own motorcycle shop or other things that might not be possible on limited resources, but they can still be informative. Look for the seed of your dream. What is it about that hobby that appeals to you, and how can you engage with it now.
What do you like to do?
Look at the things you enjoy and see if there is a way for you to get into the creation of content for that. Like to read? Write something you would like to read. Love computer games? There are tons of courses available online now that can teach to you code, design, or create art for your own games. Many games have tools to create content for them that can be shared with the community of players. Love music? Write a song or figure out how to play a song you love on an instrument.
Don’t let money stop you.
There are so many activities that you could try that don’t cost a thing. I could probably fill an entire post with ideas about how to enjoy your leisure time without touching your wallet. Go outside. Do body weight workouts. Meditate. Journal. Draw. Read at the library. Expose yourself to a new language. Find people around you who are doing things like playing board games with services like Meetup. Look at sales on Udemy where you can learn a new hobby for less than $10 many times.
Finding a hobby is really about finding yourself. The things on which you choose to spend your time are illustrative of your priorities. If you don’t have any idea what to do you’re not diving deep enough into your own mind. Find what gives you joy and figure out how to make it a part of your life. Life is too short to spend it bored and unfulfilled. You owe it to yourself to create value in the moments when you have nothing more pressing to do. Hobbies are good for the soul!