Why You Need a Hobby and How to Find the Right Fit for You

Everybody should have a hobby that allows them to decompress after a long day. Think of it as an escape that leaves you with a little something to enjoy later on, seeing as most hobbies involve creating something.

Why do you need a hobby?

There are many reasons why hobbies are psychologically beneficial. One of the main reasons is that hobbies help improve our well-being. Research has indicated that people with hobbies are less likely to suffer stress, low moods, and depression. By engaging in activities they enjoy, people experience an increase in feelings of happiness and pleasure. They provide us with a sense of purpose, accomplishment, and satisfaction. Hobbies can also help us make new friends and improve our social skills.

But with all the things you can do, from knitting to model trains, how do you find the hobby for you?

What exactly defines a hobby?

Well, first of all, we need to define what a hobby is. Most people think of hobbies as something they spend their time doing, something that fills their spare hours. There should be more to it than that – it should involve a passion. You should love your chosen hobby and want to spend as much time doing it as possible.

So before you start looking for your hobby, think about what you’re actually passionate about. Maybe it’s writing, painting, singing, or cooking. However big or small the hobby is, that’s the way to go if you’re passionate about it.

Hobby hunting

Once you understand how to determine which hobby suits you best, it’s time to start looking for one!

Even if you believe you’ve found “the one,” you may fall out of love just as quickly as you fell into it. It’s all good, though. Part of the process is learning what you’re not into, just as much as finding your true passion. There are plenty more hobbies in the world; you’re sure to find one that resonates with you.

As far as hunting grounds, there are two main spots you’ll want to get acquainted with – your brick-and-mortar hobby shops and online hobby stores.

Old school hobby hunting

The great part about hobby stores is that you can take a walk around and see what different hobbies have to offer. There’s a fair shot you’ll find something you want to try out! If you find yourself in the hobby store wondering where to start, it might be helpful to set a budget before you walk out with half of the Jo-Ann craft aisle stashed in your bags.

Tips

Start small; you don’t have to spend much money on hobby supplies if that’s not what you’re looking for. They may seem enticing because your reptile brain wants the pretty, shiny things, but hobby supplies can get pricey. So before you buy something that may not even be necessary, think about whether or not you will use it.

I would also suggest thinking of a starting project. This way, you have a clear goal for yourself. If you’re getting into knitting, consider completing your first pair of mittens or a scarf as your trial run with the hobby. This is a perfect way to mitigate any major damage to your wallet as you discover this new side of yourself. This is supposed to be fun and relaxing, and I don’t find going broke much of either.

Also, don’t be afraid to ask for help! Most employees at Jo-Ann, Michaels, or other such craft stores are into an assortment of hobbies and should be able to give you insight that you won’t find on the back of a box.

Finally, make sure you become VERY familiar with the store’s return policy. The last thing you want is to be stuck with something you now realize you’ll never use (or never use again) when you can return all or some of it for your money back. Depending on how generous their policy is, you may be able to test out several different hobbies on the cheap before really investing too much money into them.

Hunting: spider style

Get it? Cause it’s on the web. Fine. We are moving on.

Another hobby hunting ground is online, where hobby suppliers line their sites with catalogs of hobby supplies and hobby ideas. This is perfect for hobby hunters who aren’t entirely sure what they want to indulge in but know they want a hobby of some kind. The only real issue with online hobby shopping is the sheer number of options.

Tips

Many of these sites will feature online-only deals, so it’s an excellent way to break into a hobby affordably. Some offer first-time buyer coupons, so take advantage of them.

Reviews can be hit or miss, but I still suggest checking them out. You can usually parse out an average in your head if you go through enough of them. It’s an excellent way to see how actual people enjoy the product, even if you’re the only one in a twenty-mile radius that’s into the hobby.

Nothing beats the ease and comfort of shopping online. Are you looking for that one super rare item that your local stores have been out of for months? You can likely find it online in a matter of minutes and have them bring it to your doorstep. Depending on how niche your hobby might be, this can be the difference between enjoying your passion and despising where you live.

Like a traditional store, you need to know the return policy. Most places will allow you to return an online item to a brick-and-mortar store, substantially reducing return times. Make sure you’re clear on the ins and outs before they ship you a $200 pair of diamond knitting needles you don’t need anymore.

Bonus perk

Whether you’re shopping online or in-store, any hobby shop worth its weight will likely offer classes! If you find that you want to get into something and can’t imagine how you’d learn, that will be your best option. You can also check out YouTube, which will likely have no less than a million other fellow hobby enthusiasts sharing their skills with the world.

Check out the Jo-Ann and Michaels websites and see what they can do for your hobby needs.

Remember, this is all about you

At the end of the day, a hobby is all about you. It’s about what lets you unwind and chill. If it becomes financially or mentally stressful, maybe it’s time to look for something new (says the gamer who yells “I hate this game” at every game he plays). I wish you happy hunting and chill days with your future new hobby.

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