It’s the classic question that somehow trips us all up in conversations with new people, job interviews and first dates: “So, do you have any hobbies?” Few of us are willing to admit that we don’t really do anything specific with our time, so we mutter something about our love of music or interest in films or cooking. This is all well and good, but sometimes a hobby can be a fantastic talking point and teach you new skills you never thought you could master. To get the ball rolling, here is some inspiration for some new activities to get involved in…
Sport is an excellent place to start. It doesn’t have to be anything especially strenuous, and in fact it might be better to start with something a little more leisurely, especially if you’re a long-term couch potato. Boating could be a good place to start. You learn the skill very quickly, it’s something that may come in handy in life and you get to spend a lot of time out at sea on a yacht, which is great fun. Other fun sports to try could be various forms of dance, from sensual Egyptian dance to high-energy Zumba, or you could ease yourself in gently with countryside rambles or a spot of swimming.
While citing cooking as a hobby is all well and good, it’s not especially inspiring, so it can be a good idea to find your niche. What is it you specifically enjoy about cooking? Is it baking? Are you a one-pot wonder? You could try taking a cookery class at a local culinary school, or you could even try your hand at the art of mixology and rustle up some tempting cocktails. Maybe you fancy yourself as a master carver. Whatever it is, find your speciality in the kitchen and work on that.
Similarly, lots of us bleat on about enjoying music as a hobby. However, when was the last time you actually went to a concert or picked up an instrument? Learning to play an instrument is great fun, highly rewarding and often offers up a steep learning curve which is appealing for impatient learners. Find a music teacher to help you take your first steps into music playing, or check out your favourite band’s tour schedule to see if you can snap up tickets. Alternatively, find local music nights and pop along to see what all the fuss is about.
It’s always interesting to hear about somebody’s niche interest. If you like flowers, why not try flower arranging? Many florists offer flower arranging classes in the evenings or at weekends, which is very useful as you can create attractive displays for your own home as well as bouquets for friends. Perhaps you could turn your hand to fragrance creation, or ceramics, or mosaics? Being creative doesn’t have to tie you to painting and drawing, and there is a whole world of creative pursuits out there waiting to be tackled.
Hobbies and interests make us all more interesting people, and are fantastic for self-development. Why not find yourself a new hobby to spark conversations with new people and to give you something to do to fill your free time productively?
Christine Blake is always on the search for new pastimes to fill her leisure time