Having a hobby means different things to different people. For some people it’s a way to distract themselves, for some people it is a way to combat stress, for some people a hobby becomes the meaning of life.
From the point of view of science, any hobby is an activity that is different from our daily routine that our brain is used to. Our brain loves to optimise and automate what it works with every day; any new activity provides an impulse to cheer up. Therefore, the youthfulness and efficiency of our brain depends on neuroplasticity – its ability to create new neural connections.
Unfamiliar activities help to build connections, because at this time the brain is actively engaged in work. Hobbies – even ones such as playing a 777 slot machine help to switch and reconfigure the brain. When we’re working for long periods of time, we stop finding optimal solutions and start missing opportunities. To overcome this state it’s necessary to do something completely different. The brain, passionately working on a completely new task, will eventually find a solution for the task that seemed to be a dead end.
From the point of view of psychological science, one of the basic needs of a personality, without which we cannot be happy, is the need for recognition and self-actualisation.
In other words, a person who is passionate about a hobby finds a new social circle where he or she will be valued and can also get recognition for his or her talents. Positive reinforcement of success gives us the impetus to strive for more.
How to find a hobby you’ll love
To find a hobby you’ll love doing, you need to listen to yourself and your desires to carefully observe your thoughts and actions. Each of us has something that brings us joy and makes us feel better.
The first place to explore which direction is to take a psychological test to understand your temperament. A simplified version will determine what your temperament is and help you better understand what field to move into. If you have a weak and unbalanced psychotype of nervous activity, you are better suited to creative hobbies; if you are a strong and emotional psychotype, perhaps you should consider activities of social orientation (theater or dance). Sports hobbies will suit a strong unbalanced psychotype.
The result of the test will not give you an exact answer, so it’s equally beneficial to keep a notebook for writing down moments that made you happy, brought you confidence, and any other positive emotions for a whole week. At the end of the week, analyse your answers and divide them into groups: physical activity, creativity and cooking, communication with people, communication with nature, communication with technology, communication with the world of words and music. Try to move in the area where you will gain more positive feedback.
Tips for choosing a hobby: active or passive?
Active hobbies involve movement and generally include anything that requires us to go outdoors. They can be conditionally divided into several other groups.
Cycling, hiking, sports team games, yoga, Crossfit – everything that is somehow related to sports. Such hobbies help our brains to actively oxygenate, develop agility, coordination, and body confidence.
Fishing, botany, mushroom collecting, hiking, mountaineering, traveling, archaeology, gardening. Such hobbies broaden our horizons, develop attentiveness, empathy to the world around us, each such activity carries a lot of new discoveries around, and thus will ensure active brain work.
Playful and social hobbies
This can include hobbies related to theatrical activities: historical reconstruction, dancing, singing, debate clubs, stand-up – these hobbies will help to develop self-confidence, acquire public speaking skills, develop emotional intelligence and empathy.
These are quiet activities that often do not require going outdoors, they can be practiced at home. They can also be divided into several groups:
This includes all kinds of hobbies related to manual labor, creation of everyday objects and household items: knitting, sewing, embroidery, carpentry, burning, cooking. Such hobbies develop fine motor skills, artistic taste, they perfectly help to overcome stress, if your activity is associated with high activity.
Radio amateurism, construction, robotics, modeling, puzzles. These types of hobbies develop logical and spatial thinking, fine motor skills, the skill of working with electrical tools and microcircuits, and give knowledge about how the electronic world around us is organized.
Drawing, modeling, sculpting, origami, photography. These activities are great for developing artistic taste, emotional intelligence, understanding about color, shape, spatial thinking.
Computer creativity and books
This can include programming, cartooning, blogging, poetry, reading books. Such hobbies allow us to develop our communication skills, imagination.
How to find a hobby if nothing interests you
When choosing a hobby, you should first of all rely on your emotions. If at the thought of this activity in your soul ignites joyful impatience, and in the eyes jumping sparks – you should try. If you’re not a very emotional person, try using a backwards method – discard the options you don’t like.
The second important factor for choosing a hobby should be that the activity you choose should be new to you, i.e. it should give our brain completely unfamiliar tasks.
Is it possible to combine a hobby and a job?
“Find a hobby and you won’t have to work a day in your life” – this quote is often cited when talking about human success and purpose in life. It’s great when a hobby becomes an important part of life and starts generating income, but in any business, at some point there is an element of routine, and then the favorite thing is no longer as enjoyable as it used to be.
- Positive emotions from the work process
- Constant self-improvement in the chosen field
- No need to resort to willpower
- Emotional burnout – when you work with something for too long, you get tired even from positive emotions.
- Narrowly focused brain development – the brain improves only in this case, and with age it is more difficult for it to reorganise itself
- Danger of becoming dependent on your favourite work, which can lead to problems in other areas of life