Some people see hobbies as something to do to fill the time. They are meant to be enjoyed and don’t seem to have much impact beyond that.
However, this view underestimates how much of a difference having a hobby can make. Hobbies can be a fantastic way to stay on track with recovery while improving our mental health and increasing our motivation. They can open us to new experiences, mindsets, and perspectives. There are many benefits to finding hobbies we enjoy and engaging in them regularly.
How to Establish a Hobby
When trying to find a new hobby, you may find it helpful to take some time to think about what your interests are. Do you enjoy being outside? Have you always wanted to learn how to garden or to spend more time biking, swimming, or doing yoga? Does painting or another kind of art sound like an activity that could bring you joy? Is there anything you liked to do when you were younger that you would like to rediscover or anything you wanted to pursue that you haven’t yet, like ballroom dancing, playing a musical instrument, learning how to cook well, or reading for pleasure?
One of the main things to remember is that hobbies are for enjoyment, personal growth, and relaxation. They are not meant to be productive. If they also end up bringing productivity into our lives, that can be a plus, but we should remember that hobbies are for our enjoyment and don’t have to contribute to society.
Once you have an idea of a hobby to pursue, try making it a regular part of your daily or weekly life. Consider reading books about the hobby, watching YouTube videos, or taking a class if you feel like you would enjoy learning more about it.
Benefits of Hobbies on Recovery
In a world that places so much emphasis on being productive to be seen as a valid member of society, taking time to indulge in our hobbies can be very healing for our mental health. Practicing hobbies has been shown to reduce stress, which many of us struggle with.
The reduction of stress can positively impact our mental health, creating a more inviting headspace for us to inhabit. When our mental health is in good place, we can become more outgoing, confident, and willing to take chances on ourselves for the better.
Hobbies can also have positive changes on our physical health and have lasting effects on our bodies. Whether or not a hobby involves physical exercise, spending our time doing something we enjoy instead of sitting on the couch or lying in bed can invigorate our minds and bodies, which can improve our health.
Those of us who struggle with maintaining a consistent sleeping pattern may be pleasantly surprised to know that hobbies can help with creating a better sleep cycle. When our minds are busy with the tasks at hand during the day, we are more likely to have the ability to unwind at night. When we don’t sit idle-minded when we are awake, falling asleep can become much easier.
Connections With People
Hobbies can also bring new connections to us. Chances are, we are not the only person who enjoys our hobby. We can build relationships with others over our shared love of the hobbies we partake in.
This can be a great way of forming connections, especially for those of us who struggle to make friends. When we meet people based on shared interests, we have things in common to talk about, which can make the process of bonding much easier.
Better Work-Life Balance
When we feel accomplished in our personal lives, we can be more productive in our professional life. When we approach our work with a more confident and upbeat mindset, we may be able to complete more tasks, which can further improve our outlook on life.
We may not have the job of our dreams, but we can improve our energy, sleep patterns, and mindset by engaging deeply with our work and seeing ourselves accomplishing tasks. We spend a great portion of our lives working, so why not make the best of it?
Motivation for Sobriety
When we enter into recovery, our primary goal is to heal our mental health in ways that support long-term sobriety and well-being. There can be many obstacles that may trigger us to relapse, and it can be difficult to stay positive.
When we invest our time into things that give us joy, we are less likely to be distracted by potential hurdles that may send us backward in our recovery progress. Instead of fixating on what we no longer can depend on for a short-term boost of distraction and relief, we can turn to hobbies and watch as they change our view on life and our confidence. Over time, hobbies can change our mindset for the better. They can promote better mental health, keep us physically healthy, reduce stress, and create new friendships for us.
Take some time to think about what piques your interest and go for it. The world is filled with possibilities, and we would be selling ourselves short if we didn’t get out there and try everything we want to try.
At many points in our recovery journey, we may find ourselves feeling bored. What can we do to enjoy our time now as sober individuals? Taking time to think about what we might enjoy as hobbies can help us grow both physically and mentally. Hobbies have been proven to reduce stress, which can lead to better mental health. They can also help us meet new people who share the same interests and hobbies, leading to new, healthy friendships. A shared hobby can be a great way to break the ice with people we might not talk to otherwise. Hobbies can also positively affect us in our professional life. If we feel happy and fulfilled in our personal lives, we may be more motivated to achieve in our professional lives. There are many potential hobbies in the world that we can explore. Call 449 Recovery at (949) 435-7449 today.