It seems that for many, 2020 was the year of picking up new hobbies. With lockdowns, social distancing, government restrictions and travel restrictions, there wasn’t a whole lot that we could do to keep ourselves entertained. As a result, we all had to find new and interesting ways to keep busy throughout the peak of the pandemic. Whilst many people did not keep up with their new hobby or classes, some individuals have discovered new passions that they were previously unaware of. Having hobbies and developing new skills is not something that we should give up on now that 2020 is over. Check out some of our tops ideas for hobbies and activities to participate in throughout 2021.
Learn a foreign language
Whilst we cannot travel internationally, for the most part, we are still able to experience other cultures and improve our overall skill set by learning a new language. Branching out and participating in an online or in-person language class will prepare you for international travel once the world returns to normal life once more. There are many apps that offer either free or affordable lessons, including Duolingo and Babbel. Additionally, there is an abundance of online resources on YouTube that will help you to learn new phrases and conversational topics.
Develop a new skill
Developing a new skill can help you to feel like you are constantly experiencing personal growth and will help to keep you feeling satisfied and accomplished. Learning a new skill can range from anything from becoming a confident public speaker, to being able to cook a new dish or cuisine, to riding a bike. Masterclass or YouTube are incredible platforms to learn new and interesting skills. For example, Gordon Ramsey has an online Masterclass on cooking, whilst there are a number of recipe videos on YouTube for you to try out. You may even discover that you have a natural talent in an area that you did not know you did before.
Read one book per month
Most of us do not read enough anymore, often due to our busy and chaotic lives. By setting a goal to read one book a month, you will be able to rapidly expand your knowledge base if you choose to read non-fiction books. If you prefer fiction novels, you will be able to get through some of the classics in literature by the end of the year. If you are extremely time-poor, audiobooks may be a fantastic option to go for. Apps for your phone, such as Audible, can be used when commuting to and from work, walking the dog, or dropping the kids off at school.
Playing a new sport
Physical activity is essential for our overall health and well-being. It is estimated that up to nearly one in three Australians do not get enough exercise per week. Furthermore, approximately 15% of Australians are completely inactive, not participating in weekly exercise at all. Taking up a new sport is a way to become more physically active, whilst also providing an element of social activity. Team sports can provide opportunities to socialise with existing friends or even provide the platform to makes new ones. So, throw on your basketball apparel, football boots or grab your tennis shoes and get out there!
The majority of us live very stressful lives between work, raising children and trying to maintain a social life. Approximately 15% of Australians have reported extremely high levels of daily stress. Meditation is one way in which we can all take a moment to experience peace and calm, as well as set our intentions for the day. Meditating has been proven to decrease stress and provide a sense of being grounded. In our fast-paced world, taking just ten minutes out of the day to practice meditation can provide a sense of calm and significantly reduce stress.
Let’s face it; we all love a good night at the pub after a long weekend. After a year of lockdowns, there is no better time to support your local venue. Many pubs and bars are running competitions and events throughout the week such as darts or pool. Picking up an activity like this could be a fun way to spend time with your friends throughout the week. So, familiarise yourself with all of the pool table accessories, or how to score your dartboard cabinet results and make your way down to the local pub. You can even enjoy a beer or two whilst you are there!
Upskill in your field of work
Whether your speciality is working as an interior designer, working in technology and IT managed services or being employed at a construction company; there is always room to grow professionally and improve your skill sets. For example, an individual working as a home interior designer may choose to do an online course about commercial and retail interior design. There are many options available online to help employees and business owners develop new skills, including online TAFE courses, online University courses and programs such as management coaching and team development workshops. Some of these options may be costly initially, however in the long run it can help to maximise your income or business revenue. Furthermore, many of these courses will help you to develop transferable life skills including proper time management, better public speaking abilities, or increased confidence.
So, whilst we are beginning to return to a new normal following the COVID-19 pandemic event of last year, we still need to remember to take some time out for ourselves. Picking up new hobbies or learning new skills is a fantastic way to keep yourself feeling energised and motivated. It can be an excellent way to spend time with your friends and family as well, so make sure to get everyone involved. It doesn’t matter whether it is playing pool with your friends down at the local pub, cooking a new meal together as a family or reading a good book; remember to enjoy the simple pleasures in life!