The Importance of Hobbies for Happiness and Stress Relief
How many times have you wished you had time to pick up a new hobby or skill? Often, we pine for the time and resources to learn to play a new instrument, write a book, plant a garden, etc. The common reason many people never pursue these activities is that they feel they just don’t have a time.
The Benefits of Hobbies
However, people with stressful jobs, family responsibilities, and busy schedules need hobbies just as much, if not more, than the person with less on their plate. Hobbies are extremely beneficial in relieving our stress and promoting our health and happiness.
Hobbies provide a number of important benefits. They provide us a break from responsibilities and work, and give us an outlet to use our free time to do something we love or care about. Many hobbies, such as group sports, book clubs, or other social pastimes give us an opportunity to expand our social circles and have a social life outside of our families and co-workers (which any busy parent can tell you is important to do once in a while).
Psychologically, performing an activity that gives you pleasure, such as playing music or golfing, gives you a boost and brings joy to your life. If you want more happiness and less stress, hobbies are a valuable tool in achieving that. In addition, hobbies help to rejuvenate our senses and keep stress overload at bay. If your job is overwhelmingly busy on a regular basis, a few hours a week recharging through a favorite pastime is extremely valuable.
At Core Products, we strive to promote health and pain-free lives, and hobbies can help us with that too. We’ve recently been talking about how much stress plays a factor in contributing to pain – chronic stress, with no relief, can exacerbate neck and back pain. Stress also breaks down our resistance to pain, so that aches and injuries we receive can actually feel worse than they should. Hobbies relieve stress, which can lead to less pain – so we’re all for them!
Making Time for Pastimes
So we’ve covered why hobbies are important, but as we know, it’s so easy for them to fall by the wayside in the face of our time-consuming obligations, like work, school, or taking care of family. How can we make time?
First, determine what you can cut back on and prioritize. Chances are, you don’t want to skip doing the laundry or helping your kids with homework – but how much time do you spend watching TV? Do you ever have downtime on the weekends you spend on the couch? Identify any times you could be spending on recreation – chances are, there’s more of it than you think.
Next, schedule a regular time to spend with this hobby. It may not sound relaxing for your pastime to be on a schedule, but you’ll be glad you set aside time for your hobby once you’re on a regular schedule – otherwise, it’s too easy to put it off. Make sure you let others (family members, friends) that you will be unavailable during this time (or invite them along if it’s a group activity).
Finally, get up and do it! Much of the battle when doing anything is just getting started. Even if you don’t feel like it, or you have other things to do, get up and use the time you’ve scheduled. If your hobby is something you’re passionate about, it won’t be long before you settle into the groove and find yourself actually having fun!
Good luck, and get out there!
We hope you’re inspired to give yourself a little “me” time. Whether you love to golf, paint, play music, or go hiking, It’s important to your happiness and stress level to get out there and do it! You won’t be doing your career, family, or schoolwork any good if your stress level is cranked to 11 all day long. In fact, you’ll be due for a meltdown. Do your body, and your mind, some good and relax with something you love to do. You’ll thank yourself later!