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Reclaiming Your Joy: The Power of Incorporating Hobbies into Your Busy Life

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Hobbies are much more than an entertaining way to spend your time. Several studies have shown that people who actively engage in hobbies are less likely to experience stress, low mood, and depression. One 2021 study by Simon Fraser University researchers found that keeping active through varied activities can even reduce the risk of developing dementia. Just about the only downside to hobbies is that they take time—and you may not have a lot to spare. Harness their powerful benefits by honing your time management skills.

Setting SMART Goals

Committing to a hobby involves the same processes as giving your heart and soul to achieving any goal. You can boost your chance of success by setting SMART goals. SMART is an acronym for goals that are Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-Bound. When deciding when and where to practice a new hobby, choose a specific one.

For instance, if you enjoy knitting, you can make a few clothing items for family members. List the items you want to make, and be specific. Set a time frame for completing each item and make sure your goal is realistic. Create a schedule and include specific days and times for planning, buying materials, and knitting the garments. Measure your progress and adjust your plan if necessary.

Prioritize Your Chosen Hobbies

A wide array of hobbies may catch your eye, including sports, creative pursuits, and opportunities for social interactions. Make a list of these hobbies, including the pros and cons of each (for instance, some hobbies may be more time-consuming or more expensive than others). Start with the top one or two hobbies on your list and gradually add more if you have the time. Don’t pick too many, or you could become unmotivated when you find you don’t have time to do them all.

Find Your Passion and Purpose

It is important to invest in hobbies that can make your life more meaningful. You may, for instance, be into children’s education and may want to help girls bridge the STEM gap or have a better chance of being leaders in the future. If so, you may want to start a blog where you can share your thoughts and the fruits of your research.

You may also want to talk about current topics that capture parents’ attention, including gender-neutral games for kids, the importance of science and math for girls, and new opportunities for women’s education. Think about using your social media channels to review or suggest games and toys that can help girls and boys break free of stereotypes. Share talks and information by thought leaders and recommend resources for families. Invite others to share opinions and information so you can build a thriving network.

Eliminate Distractions

A report by Nielsen shows that American adults spend over 11 hours per day listening to, watching, reading, or generally interacting with media. Interestingly, many say they don’t have a spare hour or two for hobbies like reading, playing a musical instrument, or working out. How many streamed programs or YouTube videos do you watch daily? Could cutting back on your leisure-based screen time free up time for hobbies that boost your physical and mental health?

Research indicates that hobbies are a great way to spend your time and energy. They reduce stress and help you feel more motivated. Ensure you have time for your hobbies by setting SMART goals, prioritizing your hobbies, and finding pastimes that enrich your purpose. Finally, cut back on screen time so you can participate in at least one of your favorite hobbies.


About the Author: Lottie spent a decade working as a librarian before taking time out to start a family. She has since rekindled her teenage love of writing and enjoys contributing to a range of publications, both printed and online, on a variety of topics.

Photo by Elena Mozhvilo on Unsplash

rtor.org and Our Sponsor Laurel House, Inc. Celebrate Pride in June

On June 28, 1969, New York City police raided the Stonewall Inn, a gay nightclub in Greenwich Village, sparking a riot and six days of protests. This incident, known as the Stonewall Uprising, marks a turning point in the gay rights movement, now celebrated as Pride Month in June.

This Pride Month, www.rtor.org and Laurel House affirm their commitment to supporting members of the LGBTQ+ community in their quest for equity and justice, especially in their fight for accessible, safe, health, and mental health care.

www.rtor.org and Laurel House are committed to the advancement of racial equity and social justice, and to making mental health services available to all.

The opinions and views expressed in any guest blog post do not necessarily reflect those of www.rtor.org or its sponsor, Laurel House, Inc. The author and www.rtor.org have no affiliations with any products or services mentioned in the article or linked to therein. Guest Authors may have affiliations to products mentioned or linked to in their author bios.

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