Getting Back into Your Hobbies

If you are like me, you suddenly have a lot of free time on your hands. While this time can be seen as an opportunity to relax and get into new and old hobbies, this may seem harder than it sounds. Though it is a very privileged problem to have, while talking with many of my peers, I have discovered that many of us are struggling to break our cycle of binge-watching television, marathon gaming, and endless social media scrolling. Maybe you have a goal during this time of working out consistently, finishing a book, getting ahead on your schoolwork or picking up an old or new habit. Here are some tips that I have been using to try to get on top of things I need to get done and the things I want to do. 

Turn your phone off. I usually turn on the “do not disturb” setting on my phone or have “downtime” for my apps, however, I still find myself turning off these settings or checking my phone a million times while I’m trying to be productive. As a solution to this problem, I have started turning my phone off while I am doing my homework or other work. 

There are times that I am trying to motivate myself to complete a task such as cleaning or picking up my book instead of what I am currently doing. To get myself motivated, I usually tell myself that I will take ten minutes to do such a task. I stop what I am doing, turn my timer on for 10 or 15 minutes and focus on doing that task or activity. When the time is up, I either return to what I was doing or usually, I am now absorbed in the current task and do it to completion. 

Set a goal and then break it down into smaller goals. I have a large project for a class I am currently taking. Every week I have a goal of where I want to be in the project by the end of the week. Then every day, I set a goal for what I want to complete during the day. This has helped me not feel as overwhelmed by the work I have to get done. 

Find a friend that has a similar hobby or goal. Put some feelers out there and find out if any of your friends or family are interested in the same thing. Maybe you want to start reading again during quarantine or start reading more. The two of you could read the same book and discuss it. Or you could use each other as accountability buddies, and check-in with your progress of completing the tasks, encouraging each other along the way. 

Find out what works for you. Some people like having a set schedule for each day of what they want to get done every day during certain set times. Other people work best when they just go with the flow for the day. Personally, having a schedule doesn’t work for me; it is more overwhelming than helpful. Instead, I like writing down my goals for the day and working on them as the day goes by. These goals can be school-related or personally related. For example, the other day, I put on my goal sheet that I wanted to finish coloring a drawing in my coloring book.

Take some time to reflect and decide what you need and want out of this unique instance in our lives. Even if your goal is just to get through it, that is enough too.