Many of us have hectic schedules, and we don’t take enough time out to rest, relax and indulge our hobbies and interests. Studies show that hobbies can boost mental health and make you feel calmer and happier. If you’re looking for inspiration, here are some ideas to explore.
Being outside is beneficial for mental wellbeing, and it can also enhance physical health and reduce stress. Outdoor pursuits enable you to have fun, test your mettle, enjoy different environments, take in the views and spend time alone or socialise with others. From hiking, kayaking and rock climbing to mountain biking, fishing and rafting, there are endless activities to consider. If you’re not sure how to get started, why not look online for details of local open water swimming, walking or hiking clubs or plan a day out at a national park with friends and family?
Playing a musical instrument
Many of us love listening to music and going to concerts and gigs, but have you ever wanted to learn to play a musical instrument? Playing an instrument is an incredible skill and it can also help to relax you and boost your confidence. You can take classes or learn online via video tutorials or lessons and practice using digital sheet music and apps that provide feedback on your performance. Depending on your preferences, you may want to think about joining a band or a group once you reach a certain level. Being part of a band, orchestra or choir is an excellent way to meet people and have fun.
Creative hobbies can have an amazingly positive impact on mental health, especially if you find it difficult to express yourself or you have a stressful job, which doesn’t allow you to be creative. Activities like drawing and painting enable you to put thoughts or feelings on paper and they can be cathartic. Being creative is also enjoyable and it can help you to unwind and relax at the end of a busy day or a tough week. If you’re keen to hone your skills, look for classes in your local area or browse online courses.
Exercise is one of the best ways to protect and enhance your health. Regular exercise is proven to lower the risk of physical health conditions, but it can also help you to control stress, manage your emotions and improve sleep quality. When you exercise, your body also releases endorphins and the levels of serotonin and dopamine in your brain increase, which provides a natural high. There are lots of ways to get into exercise, including joining sports teams or clubs, working out at home and taking classes with others. You can choose from a vast array of sports and activities from yoga, street dance and spinning to trampolining, playing tennis and swimming.
Many of us are trying to be proactive in protecting and improving our mental health. Hobbies are proven to boost wellbeing and they can also be effective stress-busters and offer opportunities to meet new friends. If you’re looking for a new hobby, why not consider these suggestions?
Thank you for reading. I hope this helps you feel ready to try a new hobby that could positively impact your mood.