2 min read

The importance of developing new hobbies and interests

The importance of developing new hobbies and interests
Photo by Nick Duell / Unsplash

Hey friends!

I've spent a fair bit of time over the last couple of weeks pursuing two of my new hobbies - chess and mountain biking. It's made me think about why we need hobbies, and how we develop new ones. Here's a few of my thoughts.

Why do we need hobbies?

Hobbies are things we do for enjoyment, to take a break from 'the norm' and to fill up our free time with something useful.

Doing the same thing every day without any fun, excitement or hobbies, would leave us tired, unmotivated and bored. On the flip side, pursuing a new (or existing) hobby gives us something to talk and get excited about, presents us with a challenge, and may also give us an opportunity to become part of a community of like-minded people.

How should I develop a new interest/hobby then?

In Obsidian (an app I have previously talked about), I use a "might do list". I put anything and everything on this list which I think I may enjoy or might have an interest in pursuing at some stage. Not everything on the list is a potential hobby though. For example, contributing to an open-source app, programming a video game and organizing a holiday are all on my might-do list, even though they are just one-off things I am interested in doing. So when I decide I want to try something new, I simply jump into my list and see which one interests me the most. I have used this approach to pursue everything from cubing, to cup stacking, to keyboard design, to chess, mountain biking and - still to come, rock climbing!
I'm not saying this approach would suit everyone but, personally, I really like the concept and it works well for me.

Most of my friends have little hobbies which they enjoy doing in their free time. They range from playing an instrument, to reading, programming, bike riding, learning a language, running or playing chess.

The best thing about developing hobbies and new interests is that you can pick them up at any age. What are you waiting for, give it a go!

Thanks for reading!

Some of my favourite things

Google Chrome extension

Unhook - Remove YouTube Recommended Videos
Removes Recommended Videos and Auto-play from YouTube. Very effective in removing distractions, particularly when used with an ad-blocker.

Chess resource

Lichess, the program I've been using to get better at chess. It has great lessons on the essentials, and is completely free!

Quote of the week

“It’s fun to have hobbies, to exercise and get in shape, to play music, and to make and fix things. Life is interesting — there is so much to do that generally we don’t have enough time to do it all. Monotasking can help us give our hobbies and physical activities more focused attention so that we enjoy them more and maybe get better at them, too. Whether we are playing, learning, teaching, creating, or traveling, we can monotask in order to maximize our happiness and fun.” -Thatcher Wine, The Twelve Monotasks: Do One Thing at a Time to Do Everything Better

Have a great week!
Cheers, Toby