Until a few years ago, I never thought about the number of different hobbies and interests that I had. Then my sister retired, and I watched her struggle for several years to deal with the loss of her vocation, which had been her life. She didn’t have hobbies – she put everything into her job; then, when her job was no longer there, she didn’t know what to do.
Over time, she replaced her hours working with other pastimes, and now, almost 5 years after retirement, she recently told me that she was very happy being retired. I on the other hand, find myself increasingly frustrated that my avocations far out-stretch my time and energy available. How about you? Which camp do you fall into? Too many, or not enough interests and hobbies?
Business Insider, summarized The 20 most common hobbies of the richest people in the world last year. If you guessed that number 1 was golf, you were way off! In fact, the most common past-time for the world’s richest people is Philanthropy. That’s a warm fuzzy for you! (Golf was actually way down at number 14!) Happily for us librarians, reading made the top 20, and was really the only one that I had in common with the world’s richest people. Though I may desire to spend my days in philanthropic pursuits and worldwide travel my purse is a little too light for that to be a major past-time for me at this time.
If the Business Insider list was a little outside your comfort zone, you can also check out Lifehacks article: This List of 50 Low-cost Hobbies Will Excite You. I am being very careful to not read this article very closely, because it seems I have the opposite problem… too many hobbies for the time and energy I have. Hence the topic of hobbies on a productivity blog. How do I balance my life so that the things that give me most joy don’t get stored on the back burner?
What if your work is fulfilling, but leaves little time for more creative pursuits? The Muse discusses this at their blog: How to Find and Make Time for Your Passion Even When You’re Busy. Lifehacker offers a Geek’s Guide to Budgeting Hobbies, because we all have experienced the financial hit as well as the time crunch when it comes to some of our favorite past-times. I particularly liked their “mini-vacation” hobby holidays idea. I have actually been able to somewhat successfully implement that in my own life by wrapping two vacation days around holiday long weekends, giving myself five days to focus on a certain cleaning project (Memorial Day was my Garage!), or hobby (I have 4th of July earmarked for putting together a quilt for ALABiblioquilters).
The Time Management Ninja reminds us Why You Need a Hobby to Be More Productive. His advice is well taken. It is hard to remember sometimes, when all our ToDo lists are screaming at us, but having experienced burnout more than once during my working years, I can fully endorse his advice. In retrospect, I would much rather use the energy and time expended trying to recover from burnout on hobbies and creative outlets of my choice. How about you? Now, during the “only slightly” less crazed days of summer, join me in searching for precious pockets of time, energy and money to devote to rekindling our passions in our favorite (or new!) hobbies.