Finding a hobby you’re passionate about is one of the best things in life. Dictionary.com defines a hobby as: an activity done regularly in one’s leisure time for pleasure. That definition is different from what people imagine. Usually what comes to mind when you think of a hobby as stamp collecting, knitting, or mountain climbing. These are all excellent hobbies, however, a minuscule amount of the hobbies out there. As someone who has more hobbies and interests than hours in the day, it bewilders me when people tell me they don’t have a hobby or have trouble finding one. That’s exactly what’s motivated me to write this post. I’m looking forward to helping you find something special you’ll love and enjoy. I initially intended this as a single post, but I couldn’t justify limiting the content. Rather than restricting ideas, I decided to expand this into 3 separate posts.
The truth is there’s no exact formula to this equation. In theory, it sounds simple to pick a thing you know or think you’ll like and run with, but we know it’s not that simple. A lot of that comes down to never taking the time to figure out what you like. Even in high school, it’s possible you had an interest in wood shop. Your parents advised other activities would look better on college applications. You compromise enough times on this and soon you can lose sight of who you are, and what you like. You had fun and grew to like what you did, but you left behind a curiosity without exploring it. That’s exactly what I want you to focus on to start things off. Make a list of everything you’ve been curious about or had a second thought on and write it down. It could be a huge list and that’s okay, the more options the better. It doesn’t matter how ridiculous you think it might be. If you wanted to learn how to chop trees and eat flapjacks (don’t judge my dreams) write it down. We will pull from this list different activities but that’s not the entire point of the exercise. I want you to get into the mindset of thinking curiously.
I distinctly remember being 19 and lying in bed at Ft. Wainwright Alaska, fresh from basic training. It was 9 pm and I thought how good ice cream sounded but lamented it was too late. The epiphany that as an adult I could in fact eat ice cream at 9 pm without parental reprimand hit me hard. So hard in fact that I proceeded to run to the store and eat myself sick on ice cream. This in turn led to me to do the things that came to mind instead of wondering about it. I played hockey, and broomball, went ice fishing and dog sledding as well as bear hunting. I’d never been curious or wanted to do these things before. However, the time and place presented me with an opportunity and I took it. I don’t do any of those things now, but I’m glad I know for certain whether I like them or not, and that they’re not my calling.
Have the mentality of a curious kid. Say yes to things and give every fleeting idea a second look. Stop thinking you’re a finished product or set in your ways because you only stop growing when you allow yourself to.