By - Peps0215
You could look at your local library (librarian here). We offer lots of different activities you could try out: painting, felting, gardening, cooking, etc. If you tried out a hobby you could see if you liked it and you would be able to meet other adults who share that interest. Book clubs can be fun to find the motivation to read. If that does not sound interesting, maybe try finding local groups who run, hike, bike, or hangout through social media or group meet up apps.
Librarians are the best
Libraries rock - thank you for what you do!
Most libraries have ebooks, audiobooks, and videos through services like Hoopla or Libby, which is a great way to explore different areas.
My library also has a 3D printer, which you can reserve, and it comes with a tech person to help you.
All California libraries have a link to LinkedIn training (formerly Lynda.com).
The library has a lot of activities that are amazing, not just for kids but for all ages. I'm always amazed at what our library offers and wish I had more time to pursue different things that they offer. Genealogy specifically, blows my mind.
To OP, I will say that if you can, try gardening even if it's a small container garden. I think something that helped me immensely was working outdoors on the garden (when it was the Spring-Fall seasons). It gave me something to look forward to, to plan for and I felt a sense of accomplishment when I saw things that I planted grow.
Life a lot of times does feel like it's just a cycle of wash/rinse/repeat be it work/home/sleep or other responsibilities. I can only say that when I started to feel this way last year, I recognized it was partially the seasons changing that affected my mood, and my unhappiness with my own physical health. I started exercising and lifting weights. I can't vouch for others, but I feel that exercising regularly helps me.
Being depressed and unmotivated is exactly why I got into embroidery. After you learn a few basic stitches, it's a very passive hobby that also allows you to be both creative and productive. It's also great if you like to multitask; I usually listen to a podcast while I stitch. It's great for anxiety. The focus required is just enough to fill your brain without overwhelming it.
Do you watch any youtube or website about it ?? I bought one few weeks ago and I didn't understand a shit of the instructions, I tried to do something and didn't make any sense , quickly left it, they say it should be relaxing and I was just stressed 😓
I started out with an embroidery kit and was also kind of confused. If you buy a kit, usually you'll get a little piece of paper that will tell you the stitch type and colour you're supposed to use for each group. If I didn't know how to do the stitch, yeah, I just looked it up on youtube. It's also fine if you mess up because you can just take your thread out and start over, most kits give you plenty of thread.
If you have a pic I might be able to better help. :)
I always bought cross stitch patterns from Etsy, they have a list of all of the colors you need, go to Michael’s, buy all of the cheap thread that you need for it and get started! I like listening to calm indie music while I do it
Edit: I used YouTube for instructions. There was one of a guy who cross stitched a ladybug and his instructions were great. I forgot his name but if you search “how to cross stitch” he’s near the top
Sewing for me!
Same perks - it's creative, can choose projects that require more or less concentration depending on my mood, it's goal oriented so I have steps to follow and increasing difficulty skills to unlock, and then you have something unique and actually usable or wearable at the end! Great for gifts, too.
Only downside is it can be expensive. And the learning curve - but if you're enjoying it, the learning is fun, too.
Crocheting is the same way for me!!
Hello fellow stitcher. I recommend embroidery. It helps with my anxiety and depression.
It really helped save my mental health during the second shutdown a year ago
ME TOO. I’m gonna start embroidery again because it’s cold and all of my outdoor activities aren’t possible with my cold intolerance
Reddit got me:
* Fountain pens.
* Art with fountain pens.
* Baking bread (mainly sourdough).
* Fermenting foods.
* Fermenting hot sauces.
* Growing hot peppers.
* Container gardening (in conjunction with growing hot peppers).
* Dehydrating hot peppers.
* Making hot pepper jelly.
Thankfully I have an extremely patient husband!
I love fountain pens and I love illuminating text. It's been so long since I've do it, I need to soon!
I've never gotten completely away from fountain pens because I started journaling in conjunction with collecting pens and ink, and that lets me use what I have and be somewhat creative at times. Especially with the garden journal.
I did get away from the art side of things for a while but I worked on a small piece for a friend this weekend and remembered how much fun it can be.
Could you tell us more about the garden journal?
Sure! It is a green hardcover journal that I use for notes about the garden.
I was writing 2021 garden notes in my regular journal but I was having to flip through a bunch of pages to find entries I was looking for and I decided for 2022 I would get a dedicated journal for gardening notes and stuff. Rainfall, fertilizing schedules, how soon I started getting veggies, etc.
When I started the green journal in Fall 2021, I started it with a through review of the 2021 garden. What I grew in what size containers. Experiments I tried and what worked and what didn't. Lessons I learned the hard way. Stuff that actually worked that surprised me. What was successful and what failed and why. What I could do better the next time I grow those things.
Now I'm starting the actual planning for the 2022 garden by listing what containers I have in what size, what I'm planning to grow, how big those plants get and how long to maturity which helps me figure out the size of container they will need and how soon I should start the seeds.
Just stuff like that. Any details I might tend to forget from one season to the next. It has been several years since I had a garden and sadly, I've forgotten a lot of what I learned from those previous gardens just from the passage of time.
What a great idea to commit to. Do you add sketches/ thoughts/ decorative touches, or is it purely practical? You've nudged me to be more diligent with my cooking and baking notes- there's something I find about note taking, especially in the form of rough drawings that really cements things in my memory. Plus I guess it's a keepsake of a year spent on a worthwhile pursuit!
I have made doodles of planting or trellising ideas that I want to try when words don't describe it very well. I've also put decorative stickers on some pages to fill empty space.
I also love doing colorful headings and other decorative touches with my fountain pens.
Same with fountain pens🤣 Got into it in my late 20s.
Hopefully he also likes hot pepper everything 😋
Hahaha Not as much as I do!! To be fair, he is a supertaster and supersmeller so he's a lot more sensitive to smells and flavors than I am.
I also have friends and coworkers who are more than happy to be taste testers and guinea pigs for my creations. 😄
Haha yes after I wrote that I thought, hey it's not like he has to like it! My friend does fermented chilli sauce and it is SO good . Keep up these tasty hobbies!
Have you tried brewing kombucha yet (saw your fermented foods/hot sauces)? I used to and hope to do it again when I can commit to not killing my Scoby.
A friend of mine who brews kombucha likes to name the scoby-- this is a fact I can never forget, because I laughed so hard when she introduced me to Scoby Bryant.
Scoby Bryant! 😂 I’m never going to unsee this
There are threads in r/Sourdough about what everyone has named their sourdough starter. Some of them are hugely creative and hilarious.
Yes, actually I got heavily into that before fountain pens but not from Reddit. LOL
At my peak, I was doing a cycle of 2 gallons a week (two one gallon jars, and one 2.5 gallon jar on alternating weeks) and the second ferment would be delicious stuff like kiwi, strawberry, blueberry, ginger, etc. It got overwhelming and I had to let it go but I still have all the stuff (jars, flip-top bottles). Maybe after I retire I'll get another SCOBY and start brewing again. haha
Wow that is a lot! I don’t think I was doing quite as much, but also got a bit overwhelmed and let a few batches go too long. My poor Scobys.
I enjoyed thinking up different combinations for the second ferment and had some really delicious batches, too. Hopefully we both can take it up again at some point!
Yeah, it was a lot! I ended up converting one of the gallon jars to a SCOBY hotel for long term storage and it was almost completely full by the time I was so overwhelmed that I couldn't do it any longer.
Maybe one day! 😊
I'm not sure it's fair to call 33 "later in life". I'd say this is the time when you first decide upon adult hobbies at all. I mean, sure, we pick up some interests in our 20s that stick with us all our life, and some things we did in our teens might still be around, but generally I think what we pick up as a hobby now has the potential to be a life-long one - unlike gaming or partying. (Though a lot of people still seem to be gaming in their 30s.)
That said, I'm not sure. I think I picked up an earnest interest in reading around my 30th birthday. I didn't really get into traveling until shortly before that either (and then Covid struck!) and also started swimming regularly. I also started taking cooking more seriously, though that's definitely been a more gradual evolution up from my frozen-pizza self at 20.
I also started another degree, but I'm not sure you would want to call that a hobby.
Actually, in hindsight, that's a lot of recent-ish hobbies.
My mom took up hiking, going to theaters, photography and at 50+ and also started growing her own veggies and herbs.
I think a good perspective is: life doesn't stop. It flows, like a river. You are never anywhere before you are gone already. You are being rushed through, carried along with the stream, and in hindsight, everything is just a moment. All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us. What do you want to experience? What's valuable for you? What are things you really totally want to have done or experienced in life? edit: oh also, I always recommend adopting from a local shelter. Why not a friendly little cat or dog? There are always lots of hopefuls waiting for their chance at a good life, and in turn they'll enrich yours!
Yeah...I'm 33. Can we stop acting like we're about to drop dead?
That being said, I love running, but recently (within the past year) picked up hiking and absolutely love it. Hubs and I are making it our goal to visit all the state parks in our state. It's peaceful and relaxing and gets us out of our house.
You’re right. I think there is just this self consciousness for me that since I haven’t been doing something since I was a kid I’m an outsider and don’t belong in that community. Didn’t mean to imply it’s too late to start, it just feels like a bigger mental obstacle to overcome that feeling.
Very few people as adults have had their hobbies since they were kids.
I'm into collecting plants. I like the feeling of nurturing and caring for something and seeing it thrive.
Second plants and gardening. Can keep it simple go as complex as you can imagine.
hello fellow plant parent!! :)
I was going to say houseplants too. :D
There are four hobbies I've *really* gotten into, to where I dove in and ate, slept, and breathed it for several months to years. Those are playing Ingress, crocheting, playing video games (decades), and caring for houseplants. The latter two are ones I'm still into.
I admit, I've sort of taken inspiration from other people. Which I think a lot of people do. I know so many people who started baking bread during lockdown, just because they knew other people who did it. I started embroidering during lockdown because it kept popping up on my Instagram and I thought, why the heck not. I tried painting after I saw a film about a painter (I'm not very good, though).
I also don't think there's anything wrong with starting a hobby, trying it, and moving on if it's not for you. It does depend on cost, and barriers to entry of course, but you can look at a list like this (not affiliated or anything, literally just googled new hobbies to try):
And then just start working your way through and seeing if anything sticks. And if it doesn't stick, there's still joy to be gained in the act of doing something while you're doing it. Even if you only do calligraphy once, if you liked it that one time, it's a win!
Etsy is a great place to look for starter kits for various hobbies. That's where I get embroidery kits. You can get kits to make hot sauce, soap, cheese, candles.
I have always been artsy, but I have hated and detested Watercolors. So I took a 30 day challenge. Painted a watercolor a day from a prompt list for 30 days.
**BEST THING I EVER DID!**
The prompt list made me paint things I would have never painted/drawn in my life. Made my get creative. Forcing myself to do it everyday sucked while also being an amazing motivation. I was proud that I kept the streak going. And at the very end of it, I not only fell in love with watercolors, I also got to see my progression over 30 days. It was an amazing experience that I am forever grateful for taking on.
This! Could you please share the challenge if it’s something you found online? I have a watercolor kit and sometimes I just stare at it. I have no goal. I just aimlessly blob too much watery paint on a piece of paper for an hour and go “well, that looks awful, but it sure felt nice and calming” 😅
This would really help me kick start a solid practice!
I did an inktober challenge list. Several different artists make lists. I honestly don't remember who's I used. But if you Google #Inktober you will get a bunch of different prompt lists.
Thanks! Yeah I go down a Google black hole whenever I look for courses, so I love hearing about specific recommendations that are actually were useful and enjoyable. I think I found one though so I'm excited to get started!
First off...good for you. I don't know what I would with 30 watercolors though.....
For me it was seeing incremental improvements. Bought skates last winter and went skating 3-5/week. Watched YouTube videos to learn drills, filmed myself skating. I was able to do crossovers last winter, hope to do a hockey stop this season. Set achievable goals and keep track of your progress.
Yes!!! I too started (roller)skating. So much fun and so rewarding.
I just bought a pair of inclines just the other day. I used to play street hockey when I was a kid and LOVED it, but all of my skills have gone down the drain. Waiting on my pads to get here (today!!) and then I’m heading out to a newly paved empty parking lot to practice. Did you fall a lot when you started? If so, how bad were the falls? I’m nervous, but excited. I’m more nervous about people seeing me and thinking “what is that woman doing? She’s too old for that” Sorry for the random questions, but I didn’t think I would see this hobby listed and took advantage of it.
I fell some but not a lot. With rollerskates it’s surprisingly hard to balance and if I fell I fell on my butt. I heard (and remember from childhood) that it’s easier on inline skates. I didn’t really hurt myself tho. Don’t worry too much. The first day I felt like a Bambi on ice but the next day was already better. I like that the learning curve in the beginning is moving up quite fast. It’s so much fun! I actually saw quite a lot of adults on all kinds of skates.
I'm 33, grew up in a very boring, conservative family whose only hobby was endlessly watching repeats on tv. Always felt a bit bored with life, I broke out a bit, travelled, had some horse riding lessons and learned to hoop dance, but spent most evenings watching tv.
A few years ago I did a tandem skydive on a whim and it pretty much changed my life. Loved it so much I started working there and eventually got my license. It opened my eyes to all sorts of other 'extreme' hobbies people do, and i've also learnt to paraglide and climb since then, dabble in a bit of kayaking and mountain biking too. All the things my parents told me 'look fun but they're not for people like us'. I'm lucky in that I live somewhere set up for all that kind of stuff, but although it might be harder to see unless you look for it in other locations, it's all still there (every city has an indoor climbing gym) or will have communities of folk who travel on their weekends to do these things.
On the other end of the scale, I also started playing D&D a few years ago. I discovered Critical Role, decided I wanted to play, found a local geek group on facebook and asked if there was a game I could join. Had some of the best times of my life crying with laughter playing D&D.
Good luck finding your thing! Life gets fun very quickly when you discover something you love doing.
You’re my hero! That all sounds so awesome and like you’ve built such an enriching life for yourself.
Adult education classes are AWESOME for this shit. My husband and I got into guitar because I had 2 beers and signed us up for "guitar for everyone!" There's also continuing education in my area for wood working which are a blast.
Hey I love that idea. Did you do this through a local community college?
Technical high school that is in our area for the guitar, they also offered a bunch of stuff like knitting and sewing. For the wood working there is a dedicated school. I have seen this kind of stuff offered through community colleges through. You are usually gonna be googling for "continuing education". Oh also check and see if your local recreation department offers anything, a lot of times they will.
Edit: Oh and maker spaces also tend to offer wood working courses, forgot I took a course on how to sharpen chisels from one near me ages ago.
I always find a new hobby. Some things stick, others don’t.
I really love Domestika, udemy and other platforms like that. They have tons of tutorials that are usually around 10 dollar or so. For me it is easier to stick to something if I can follow a plan. I also like real classes when the covid situation allows it.
Here are some hobbies I did or do for inspiration:
- rollerskating (loving it)
- tap dance
- theater/inspo class
- different drawing online tutorials (e.g. draw a box is free)
- procreate online course
- sewing in general
- meditiation (I am part of a meditation and Buddhism class since many years)
It's okay to have non-specific hobbies. If someone asked me what my hobbies are I couldn't tell them, as I have pretty much no free time due to work and study constraints. But surely you have a few interests? Maybe you could turn those into hobbies. For example my interests are fashion, jewellery and haircare. Some ways I turn those into hobbies is by collecting certain items, going window shopping when I can, joining forums and Facebook groups to give people advice, etc.
Yeah I guess that’s similar to me. For example, cooking is something I do a lot of but it doesn’t feel like a hobby necessarily because feeding myself is just kind of a necessary part of my life rather than something I do for the sake of expressing creativity or whatever. I just don’t feel like I have a lot of special things that I do.
I’m gonna call it a hobby. I used to gatekeep about what qualified as a hobby and what didn’t and made myself feel bad about it. Why do we do that? I also cook a lot and I was like “well I follow recipes so it’s not creative, and I only do it sometimes because other times I order McDonald’s, so it doesn’t count”. Pffft.
Cooking is a hobby if you like doing it, you don’t have to prove anything to anyone. Watching movies is a hobby even if all you’re doing is sitting on the couch watching Netflix.
You are the inner voice I need in my life! Thanks :)
I think before you lock into something you should consider what you hope to get out of it.
Learning a new skill?
Doing something goal oriented that results in useful outcomes (sewing, pottery, woodwork, foreign language, coding)?
Doing something relaxing/meditative with no concern about outcome (painting/drawing, yoga, meditation, hiking)?
Socializing (improv class, meet up groups, foreign language learning, amateur singing group, hiking club)?
Solo restoration time (hiking, yoga, any arts that can be done at home)?
Getting out of your comfort zone? (Depends what's scary for you - rock climbing if heights, improv class if social anxiety, painting if you think you aren't creative, etc.).
Also consider cost - some hobbies can really add up! Some require upfront costs, but then are fine. Others require constant financial input.
One thing that could be helpful is flipping through a reputable community college's course catalog and see which random classes make you light up with interest. Doesn't mean you have to take those courses, but it could guide you to figure out if you're looking for an athletic hobby, or a sciencey one, or a creative endeavor, etc. Probably even things you never considered before.
This is great advice! Try to find your true end goal. I moved and didn't have a lot of new friends, and had a job where I was really busy and sort of lost my hobbies. Once I learned how to work at my job better and had a little more time to myself again, I realized I had lost interest in everything and felt like a really boring person. I talked to a counselor who asked me what I'd like to learn or do as a hobby and I did actually come up with about 6-7 things but couldn't seem to get started on any of them. She pointed out that I said I was lonely, and that all the hobbies I listed were solitary activities. So she suggested I look at the end goal (Be more social, make friends) as part of my hobby search and that completely changed my list. It's still tricky where I am due to Covid stuff (group activities with unknown people), but it has changed my perspective. Good luck!
Just curious if you don't mind, what did you end up doing?
I'm still reading about ideas tbh as this happened recently. It was the change in perspective that made me facepalm. But I just found a in-person cooking class that looked interesting and I'm considering taking up beginning boxing! (There are a couple of gyms that are open that offer it - they just limit attendance so you have to sign up for a time ahead of time). I've been looking at some volunteer ideas too but nothing has popped up there yet.
I like how you break this down into the end goal. I think this is a really helpful way to think about what I am looking to gain. Appreciate the thoughtful feedback :)
It shouldn’t necessarily be about the end goal. In fact, you can often enjoy the process more if you aren’t attached to an outcome.
Sure! I have the opposite problem - too many hobbies haha
Just try a bit of everything until you find something you like. I've tried so many things that I was terrible at or got bored with after a while (knitting, cross stitch, sewing, playing musical instruments, running, adult coloring books lol) and some things that stuck (reading, hiking, camping, cycling, yoga, painting my nails, enjoying/collecting music and art instead of creating it).
There's nothing wrong with boring 🤣🤣
I usually turn my needs into a hobby. Needed to lose weight for surgery so started walking which turned to hikes then added cycling which is essentially hiking on wheels right? 🤣
I am very very focused on women's health, issues and finances - cos of my upbringing and background. I found like minded friends and we have a women's group to promote and support women. We meet every month or so and one event we organised was axe throwing and archery. Loved it so much, I started taking archery lessons.
I love this comment and the positive energy from it. I can relate turning needs into a hobby, as I was struggling bc of stress and mental health so I started yoga, painting, dancing etc and met bunch of amazing like minded friends, and learned to relief stress in different ways. I think the best thing about having hobbies is not just about doing the activity, but we meet like minded people along the way and also it makes us become better!
What road blocks are you encountering? When I want to try a new hobby I just google materials or info and off I go.
Finding something that sounds interesting :( I feel like I haven’t even been able to read more than a few pages of a book in months.
Would you be open to audiobooks? They're a nice way to absorb reading material when you can't be bothered to sit down and actually read words on paper (I know the feeling).
Oh I hate when I can't even enjoy reading anymore.
To answer your question, I guess I tend to sort of build on interests that were already there but branch into new corners of it - but I'm not sure *anything* is going to sound interesting if you're depressed.
Yeah, I have started to recognize that is probably a big part of this.
It's been rehashed that this is very clearly depression but also.. I don't establish interest before I do something, either. "People do archery. I'll try archery. Oh I hate archery apparently but that was three weeks of classes added to my belt as an experience. Next." I'm never seeking something that interests me, I'm seeking something to do. If it interests me, neat. Most things are only fun for me in retrospect like that and expectations often undermine my enjoyment.
Making magnets out of clay, wittling, stand up paddle boarding, burlesque, baking french desserts - the options are endless and there are dirt cheap ways to try them using dollar store packages or signing up for a class or two.
Depression is chemical so it's not a cure however there is a situational part of depression and pulling yourself out of the slog is super impactful to your healing.
There are things that I’m curious enough to try on my own, and for others I find that external structure and doing it with others helps. So a new friend suggested that we could do something creative together, like pottery - and while it’s not necessarily something that interests me, I look forward to trying it out, meeting and spending time with others, learning a new thing etc. And if it sticks as a hobby, so be it.
Could your existing interests guide your hobby exploration? What do you like about travelling? Is it seeing new beautiful places? Learning about their history? Language? Cuisine? Taking photos? etc.
I focused on something I did like, food, and expanded into how I could elevate food. So, I got into canning and baking! It's fun because I learn more about the things I eat, how it's made, get to experiment and try new things, and share it with others. Giving away homemade food makes me feel good and other people love it.
I pick up stuff my friends like! I am good at it like 25% but it opens me up to stuff I'd never figure to try on my own. I can knit, watercolor, make candles, do nails, and flower arrange (some better than others), and as an artist, I love dumping my medium for others my friends are into from time to time. I have been practicing learning how to do digital art for the first time and soon because of 2 gorgeous prints I got from friends, I'm really hoping to try linocutting again for the first time since high school! I promise even if you think you suck at art, there's SOMETHING you'll be good at, I went to art school for high school and college and some types I just suck at, others feel like they were made just for me! Monoprints are really fun and easy, I recommend them a lot. Other things I've gotten into as an adult are cooking, baking with my SIL, writing (I do creative nonfiction and poetry), framing photos/art and decorating a lot so my space feels like it belongs to me and makes me happy, having pets (rabbits for me), and volunteering from literally any of my interests. For example knitting, you can probably find clubs and/or nursing homes that invite folks in to knit and chat with the elderly. I could probably go on, but I've already written a novel, haha, but if you want more, ask! :)
This is a sort of different perspective, but you're on Reddit, so I am thinking there may be another area of opportunity for you. The reality is that we have a lot more time than we are able to consciously appreciate because technology grips us so much. Think about your relationship with technology and whether it might be making all of this worse. See if you can make some changes that help you with mindfulness, which will allow you to enjoy all things in life much more. If you're addicted to getting dopamine hits from browsing the web and social media, then nothing feels fun or engaging in comparison, and it's all engineered to be that way.
There is a subreddit dedicated to all of this - r/nosurf
Mindfulness meditation helped me - the Waking Up app by Sam Harris. Slow going for a month or two but if you stick with it you'll start to feel the effects
Cal Newport has a couple of great books which opened my eyes to how this was affecting me. If you don't feel ready for a book, check out his appearances on the Rich Roll podcast which is where I first heard of him.
Working on mindfulness has let me enjoy all of the stupid little things in life more like noticing things outside while I'm driving, striking up conversations with people in line at the store, or even just looking at the clouds moving across the sky and appreciating how beautiful they are. From there it all snowballs and you stop having to be so forceful about your choice of activities all the time.
Hope this helps.
I think it takes lots of trial and error to find new hobbies. I would look at one day/weekend workshops where you can try things out without commitment I also make note of cool stuff I see online; they're all potential hobbies.
I think all of my hobbies are quite solitary things to do so i guess it depends if you are just looking for stuff to keep you occupied at night etc or stuff to get you out and about and meeting new people?
I pick up new hobbies and interests all the time and have Pinterest boards and join credit groups of stuff I think looks fun and that I intend to try at some point. Stuff I do or am interested in trying;
Bleaching/tie dying t-shirts,
Youtube is really helpful in this respect because you might come across stuff you've never thought of before but once you see it in a video it becomes " I could do that... " then ideas might start coming to yoy, this happened to me recently with paint pouring.
Also something I haven't really seen anyone else mention but are you interested in gaming at all? There are so many amazing games out there to cover any interests, its not all just shooters and sports and some games are so big and open planned you can literally just go around exploring to your hearts content ie. Red dead redemption 2 or any assassins creed game. Then there are things like city building games, really story driven games where you basically walk around and read the story as you go, farming, puzzles, horror. Pretty much anything you can think of.
My absolute most favorite hobby is mushroom hunting. Started super slow (only morels), then whe. I was in grad school and needed to put my focus on something non-school or child rearing related I'd research some that *might* grow near me. My kids are older now, and I'm out of school and self employed. Whenever I can schedule an afternoon off I'll skip my happy ass out into the woods and wander around. Take lots of pictures, a good field guide, and just keep learning. I'm not a pro (yet), but dang if it isn't good for my soul. I just think I need to move south, we've been under snow long enough already! This year was tough with a drought...
I took up paragliding when I was a broken shell of a person after my divorce. I gained confidence, made friends, and I get to be the closest thing to a bird.
I used to feel this way, I thought everyone around me was busy and important, and I was so boring in comparison. So I decided to actively try new hobbies by looking at people I thought were cool and copying them. I found my favorite hobbies this way: ukulele, cooking, camping, hiking, paddleboarding, home organization/DIY, houseplants, personal finance, video games, art.
It's hard to start new things, it can be scary to be a beginner at something, but all you have to do is start.
You lost me at personal finance as a hobby.....lol
What, you don’t make budget spreadsheets for fun?! Lol
I'm a very casual crafter (is this a thing? lol). There are a lot of art supplies in my house and sometimes if I'm really bored I search Pinterest for inspiration and pick a simple project. Same with calligraphy and lettering. I'm bad at all of this, but it's fun to try.
I also enjoy studying, so I'm always on the hunt for some online course about different subjects that I'm interested in at the moment. Right now my "big project" is learning French.
My tip is to start with things that are either free or cheap so you can try it out, and then "leveling up" if you like doing something. Also, it's okay to have some more casual hobbies.
Go out and try stuff! Be open not being good at a new thing! Hobbies are about the journey and process. If you are interested in a book discard it. You have only one life don't waste resources on something that doesn't relax you, make you money, or add value to your life. Is there anything you've been curious about either recently or as a kid?
I hear you and I am same age, and I am with you in this. I add in special artistic things-- like cooking new recipes, making things for the home or completing new projects, reading and listening to educational interesting articles or podcasts. There is more to a person than what you do or like. Much meaning comes from connection, meaningful relationships and conversations and moments, which I am missing right now. I know that is where most of happiness will come from.
I use to run a lot. Generally I love working out and being active. But I needed a hobby that also allowed me to relax, like something meditative. I draw, but I get paid to do that. So I took up sewing. A creative outlet that's purely for me, and meditative. My goal was to find a hobby that didn't elevate stress at all.
trying new things and exploring/experimenting. during covid i decided to do quarterly arts and crafts projects. so far i've done: diamond paintings, painting by numbers, putting together models, doing jigsaw puzzles, coloring mandalas. i might be missing something. my january project is trying fluid art.
if you're looking for more intellectual hobbies, start by analyzing your thoughts and pay attention to things that catch your interest (ie: what news articles do you read, which subs do you subscribe to, what causes are you passionate about). that's how i discovered my passion for psychology and philosophy.
I literally have a running list of things to accomplish. I don’t always master one before I move on but I’ll at least have the basics down and will return to it when I want. I love learning languages, wood burning, writing, coloring, nail art, mtn biking, running, CrossFit, I got my license to skydive alone, learn piano. So many things. Pick an interest and go for it!
A few years back a work friend convinced me to go to his Judo club. I loved it and kept it up for a year or so until I moved away and got worried about potential injury preventing me from working. Never would have tried that out by myself but just allowed myself to be convinced to try it. I need another friend to force me to an exercise class, lol.
I forget exactly how or why I got into clay modelling- it was probably just on sale at the art supply! I like doing something in front of the TV and I've made candle holders, currently working on a couple of lamp bases. The basic air dry clay is cheap and you can use cheap paints and varnishes on it. Making little Xmas tree decorations is good place to start!
I used to sew a lot, the first hurdle is someone showing you how the machine works, then you can pick things up as you go. I never used patterns but I figured out simple garments and patchworks. It's nice to have a big space for it, but I sewed for hours at a cluttered desk in my old teenage bedroom. If you're into fashion, furnishings, eco thrifty stuff, it's very rewarding. It can be as expensive as you make it really.
Drawing/ sketchbooking- IME if this is something you did a lot as a child, it's worth the work it takes to get back into. Drawing when you do it regularly is wonderful. I find restarting after some time quite stressful! There are good classes, and some games/ exercises to get into the flow of it.
What interests you? Idk that 33 is late, it just means you werent forced into this 'hobby' as a kid lol. But think about what youve seen that makes you think 'that looks fun' then find out what you need for it and start, and set attainable goals for it. If you wanna learn piano then start with scales, if you wanna learn rock climbing join a rock climbing gym
I was a very busy working mom, newly diagnosed with T2 diabetes when i figured out there was a need for new hobbies and my body was screaming for exercise and a deep lifestyle change.
So I managed to get a regular pastime that checked a lot of boxes. I ended up hanging out at my favorite getaway, which is an island one hour away by sea from my city, a couple of hours total travel time and spent almost all weekends there for a while, taking care not to get disconnected from my friends locally, I saw them on Fridays or occasionally on weekends.
Low-shoulder season the prices were quite low. I spend my time doing voluntary work on the beaches. So vitamid D check, vigorous exercise check, being in a consistently happy place every weekend from the moment I set foot to the port until getting back to it, check. I was already a customer before that time period, so getting some socialization with the owners in the quiet hotel check. One of them was elderly and appreciated the company and she was entertaining, her job was to make people feel good and she was good at it. The island was very quiet off-season, but over time I became known there and made friends and I call one of them one of my closest friends now. He stays year-round in his second home. So I almost never got bored of that and it inspired me to get opportunities for great travel later, because my regular weekends were so good, only the best would do as an alternative, within a reasonable budget of course. That progressed to solo travels and the informal travel agent for a very well traveled friend, we take great getaways together, she has regular agents and says I get the best choices.
I also got special treatment in high season too at that place and got special deals for the budget rooms and had a place reserved every single weekend in high season, that I think nobody really had.
So that was an example of thinking a little outside the box. At first I tried to change my lifestyle with the gym, but that turned out less exercise and more boring than the resort life.
I started woodworking at 39 yo. Love it!
I'm a horse trainer and coach, and I have quite a few newbies in their forties and fifties, a few in their sixties! Why not?
I often give people the same piece of advice: what were you into as a child, that you never had the chance to try? Figure skating? Line Dancing? Violon? Volleyball or synchronized swimming? Or costume making? Go for it!
One of my uncles, a retired RCMP police officer, started painting in his late fifties, and was quite good at it! My Dad started hiking when he retired. My MIL is soon-to-be 70 yo and is currently learning stain-glass art.
I found the same thing when quarantine started. Not sure what your disposable income is like, but for me I changed hobbies about every quarter and I plan on rotating through them this year. I get bored very easily so I need variety but know I have the supplies so I have options readily available. I started with puzzles and water coloring, then I did some embroidery, plants, I have a t-shirt quilt in the works. My mom got me a multi step craft project. I switched to acrylic painting in the summer. Going to get my scuba certification as I have an ocean vacay next year and want to finally do that.
Find a forest (:
I needed a hobby so I just started sketching this week. I am not much of an artist, but it still fun and relaxing. I just bought a sketch book and am using regular pencils. I say just grab something that looks interesting and has low entry costs and go for it. It will probably take several attempts before you find something you can stick with.
Buy a kit to try a new hobby out and see if you like it. That’s how I got into soap-making, miniature-making, candle-making and knitting. For soap-making and candle-making, I’d check out Brambleberry’s kits, for miniatures look for “DIY dollhouses” on Amazon, and for knitting, this maker is great: https://etsy.me/2Cib9py
so in the past 2 years i have tried drawing, painting, sewing, crafts of various types. learning more about various subjects (lgbt and trans, poly, kink). started partner dancing. im going to start pole dancing soon and do roller skating in the spring when its warmer.
its honestly try something, see if you like it, if you do continue.
edit: im currently 46
1) I looked on Google and Facebook for events / clubs / businesses that were things I was remotely interested in, then I committed to showing up to those things at least a few times to give myself a chance to try the activity and make some new friends. For me moving to a new city, that was swing dancing, then later playing jazz music (I already play classical).
2) I developed an interest through a new friend or existing friend and joining them in an activity they were already regularly involved in (karaoke, board games, yoga, kayaking).
3) An existing interest led me to a new, related interest. I've been doing vinyasa yoga for a year and a half, which led me to a different yoga studio which also does aerial yoga which I've done for six months, and now this month I'm starting beginning classes for other aerial arts (silks, hammock, trapeze).
4) I have "someday" interests that I might like to try, and I look for things occasionally. One of these is woodworking. I've made things with wood a handful of times and love the experience. I've researched some opportunities that I could explore in the future if I want to spend more time doing it.
Yes, but COVID took it away almost entirely. Started to scuba dive in my 40ies. So that's not really a pandemic friendly hobby. :(
I actually had to look at the username to make sure I didn’t write this. You sound exactly like me, running and traveling (the latter being squashed the last two years).
I’ve struggled with this too. I got a watercolor starter kit and started tinkering, using videos I found online and started to look for watercolor classes in my city. Meetup.com is a great place to find groups into specific activities that you could learn.
I am also trying to find ways to get more into the dog community with training my Aussie, since I can only do so much training her on my own.
I bought a bike and inline skates, but taking those up alone has been hard to get started!
My biggest thing has been podcasts of a huge variety. It’s a bit of a hobby itself (kinda?) but the topics they bring up often introduce activities or ideas I never thought of too!
Befriend someone with ADHD! They (by they I mean me and others like me) will dive deep into various things, find out ALL THE THINGS, be itching to talk to someone about it to share the excitement, and sadly a few weeks later they'll get distracted by something else again.
The trick is to get those things in a cycle. Hopefully. I come back to nail painting the most. Don't let anyone tell you that isn't a hobby.
Side note: I \*thought\* I was boring too, I take pride in being boring and liking quite things, but when I went to organize all the things I realized I'm "into" a LOT. Is it possible that if you deep organize you'll find some old hobbies?
How is 33 “later in life”? Say you live to your 90s, you’re more or less in the first third.
Anyway, I just...try things. If I’ve always found something interesting, assuming it’s not physically impossible or prohibitively expensive, you just start. I don’t really understand the question.
All of my hobbies are things I just thought looked fun, and decided to try it.
I will also add I intend to that my entire life. New hobbies at 80, why not?
I picked up some jigsaw puzzles over lockdown and now positively look forward to doing them. I do them without the box so I have to concentrate on shapes & colours and it really helps to give my mind a break from the usual chatter.
I’m all about hobbies I can do from the sofa so cross stitch is another one.
Doing things with other people really helps me get started with a hobby! I took a few classes for ceramics before getting into it as a hobby and doing it on my own regularly. Same thing with yoga, which I now do every single day. Once I get over the initial period of figuring out that I like a thing, I usually find community and inspiration on Instagram and reddit!
If you have friends who like to craft, picking something to learn/do together one afternoon or evening can help you get over the initial friction of building up motivation or “picking up” the hobby. I learned embroidery from a friend who knew a few stitches, and we just hung out while stitching for hours! I ended up liking it so much that I went out and bought a bunch of supplies for myself to continue it :)
Similarly, if you have friends who like the outdoors, hiking / urban walks are a great way to spend time together or on your own. I use the AllTrails app to find different hikes around me.
There’s also a LOT of stuff online if you would rather start to learn something on your own; you can find tutorial videos on YouTube for pretty much anything, for free. It’s where I watch cooking and some crafting content!
Edit / I echo the sentiment around plants; taking up a hobby of either working with your hands or caring for something can be extremely fulfilling and centering.
What do you want from a hobby? there are a lot of solo hobbies, but others to pursue if you want a social hobby. If you already like running, what about joining a running group if you want to make friends?
Yeah I am actually in a running group already. I think maybe what I’m looking for are social outlets beyond that circle. I feel like all my female friends have drifted away or have recently had children and being childfree I find it harder to connect with them now/ they are too busy.
I also found myself without friends for a variety of reasons and life circumstances.
I hit up the library: a goldmine of info on groups and providing activities from book groups to cookery to ancestry research to craft.
We have a local women's centre: I joined the writing group. Some women don't write much. Maybe a paragraph. Some write hundreds of words. Doesn't matter. It's about sharing, encouraging and connecting.
Dungeons & Dragons: I joined a much younger group. It's all about imagination, creativity and having a good time.
I found a Facebook group for women over 40 that get together for everything from coffee, live bands, trivia nights, meals, fundraising events and movies. Someone posts an event and if you want to go, you join in. It is a really diverse group centred on purely social activities.
I have done all of this in under 6 months after being terribly anxious and in a horrible life situation that I removed myself from to start again. I haven't made any close, heartfelt friends but I have pleasant company, people I can laugh with, different things to experience. There are a couple of women who I click with and we are planning to get together to get to know each other better. You never know, I might just find some great close friends.
Go to a group. If you don't like it, you don't have to go back. Just say thanks and move on until you find something that gels with you. Take very good of yourself and wish you every success.
Why do you feel the need to do new things? You travel and you run and that gives you fulfilment and enjoyment.
If they don’t give you the fulfilment and enjoyment you require then I have two things to tell you. Firstly 35 isn’t old. Secondly, it doesn’t matter how old you are. To bastardise the wisdom of Terry Pratchett; if you’re not dead, you’re not too old.
I don’t feel like I’m too old, just realizing it’s harder to find some hobbies.
I do really enjoy running and traveling but it would be nice to balance these out. Traveling is just a handful of times a year and running is a handful of times a week.
Then what do you want to do?
Work that out and then work back from there.
Do you want to run a marathon? Triathlon?
Do you want to run the triathlon in outfits you’ve made yourself?
If it’s something you don’t want to do you won’t find the motivation.
You’re right, I need to look for inspiration first
Seriously you can do those things listed. I was the fat kid and made some friends who decided we should sign up for a triathlon and then it snowballed.
Yeah I have done a few marathons and plan to continue with those goals, just sometimes worry about injury by having too many “physical” hobbies at once.
I guess this thread is also making me realize that maybe I don’t give myself enough credit for the things I do. Depression does that I guess :(
Totally smart to do what your body needs. If you don’t hate cycling that’s a good one because it’s lower impact, though I now don’t do it much due to safety (moved to a more urban place).
I think somehow there’s pressure to be “interesting” and have some cool hobby, but anything you can enjoy that takes you away from work and life responsibilities for a bit is great. You do deserve credit!
During Lockdown watching Love is Blind and texting my friends was my main non-work non-home hobby. Whatever gets us through 😆
I decided on some things I wanted.
For instance, I've always loved beautiful fish tanks. So I got into keeping one and the hobby slowly expanded.
I've been thinking about the clothes I'd like to be wearing a lot over the last 5yrs and they are almost impossible to find in stores these days, so I'm thinking of getting into sewing just to make myself the kinds of pants and dresses and tops I want.
I'd also like to have fresh herbs and strawberries, but that's kind of on the back burner.
All of my hobbies are things that I can commit time to when and if I feel like it ❤
I think for me it was coming across videos on YT, etc... I'd done knitting when I was younger, and thinking about it about a year ago got me seeking out videos, and then I was reminded of crochet. I just went from there figuring out stitches and patterns! It's something that you can do while watching movies or listening to audiobooks, too, which really works well for me.
Try something new or something you've always wanted to try and if you like doing it, it will become a hobby.
I recently took up squash after getting divorced and feeling like I was stuck in a rut. I wanted to get fitter, cross train for my main sport, learn something new and meet some new people. So I started with lessons with a coach, then I joined the club. It’s super nice, they have a club house with a bar, run leagues and there is a monthly ladies’ night where we all play each other then have a meal together. I was so nervous about going to the club nights but they were super welcoming and I’m enjoying it so much! It also helped me get through a bad break up as it gave me a reason to go out and be active (mmm endorphins!). So my advice to you is think of what you want out of a new activity (fitness? Social? New skill?) and draw on those ‘I’ve always wanted to try X’ feelings that we all have. Then go and try it out! If you don’t like it, then try the next thing. Best case, you have found a new hobby - worse case, you don’t ever need to say ‘I’ve always wanted to try X’ in a regretful tone again, because you did!
As a fellow mildly depressed woman I also have a hard time thinking of something that sounds fun so do you need anything done? That's where I start. I need this dress taken in/out--I sew. I need Holiday decorations--I make them. Have a corner in a room that I hate--update it with a table I painted or decoupaged.
My hobbies usually center around what I need that week or month and I make myself make what I can. It keeps me from being stuck in the thinking phase and lends a sense of urgency to getting started.
Also as far as sewing goes: start small, thrift some pieces, play around. I started hand sewing little coin purses while I watched something. Now most of my clothing is upcycled and super inexpensive. Good luck!
Tiktok showed me how to make arts and crafts from stuff at the dollar store. It’s cheap, easy, and if it looks like crap - oh well!
If you're looking for new things to try, have you checked out local meetup groups? Maybe there'll be one that catches your eye, whether it's boardgaming or hiking or whatnot. As far as my hobbies, here's what I do to keep myself going:
- running (which you already do)
- trail running (same church as above, but a different pew)
- hiking (big or small, I love them all)
- sewing (every year I sew at least one new article of clothing)
- cross country skiing (obviously this is winter dependent)
- cooking (I've gotta eat anyway, might as well have fun with it)
- food preservation
That's already a lot of hobbies, but I recently became aware of competitive orienteering, which sounds like an intersection of trail running and geocaching. Giving some real consideration to trying that out!
I've always done crafts but, during the pandemic, I got a book of origami paper with directions. Was frustrating at first but, fun now! (I'm 64) Joann fabrics has the books. I'm sure you can find them on line too!
When I moved out for the first time, I realized I wanted something to do other than watch TV or read, so IDK why but I decided on crochet.
I bought myself a set of hooks and then started watching tutorials on youtube. I taught myself, and the more I did it, the more I loved it.
Now, I've progressed to making cardigans and sweaters, in addition to blankets, scarves, hats, and hand warmers. They make wonderful gifts, and crocheting is therapeutic and calming.
What type of hobby do you want? I think what you need to do is try some different things and see what appeals to you. Do you want another sport? Maybe something team-based (like hockey or football) or something with a sense of community but individual (rock climbing)? Do you want to learn a skill (language, musical instrument, craft)? Do you want to do something social (e.g. get involved in community programs, volunteer)?
I like dance classes. So I found some and went, and after awhile I even made some proper friends!
But tbh the best way is to give something a go and find out if you like it. You don’t have to commit.
I took up downhill skiing at 30 and I absolutely love it. I'm not the best skier but it's so much fun and it's such a great way to get outdoors in the Winter, spend time with friends and get some exercise. Opening day is Saturday and I can't wait!
My grandmother took up quilting when she retired in her late 50s. She had always sewed making clothes and doing simple tailoring jobs for family. She went on to become a prolific quilter, making hundreds of quilts of all sizes for family and friends and small table runners and wall hangings. At her funeral my mom asked everyone to please bring any quilts they had that she made and we hung on them on the pews in the church. It was incredible to see so many in one place.
My mom taught herself Italian during the Pandemic using the DuoLingo app. She practiced every day for over a year and now she's moving on to learning Norwegian. I am in constant awe of her dedication and curiosity!
It's never too late to learn something new!