Many people think of relaxation as melting into the comfort of a spa, taking some time to soak in the bathtub, or reading a book by candlelight with a warm cup of herbal tea. All of this can be wonderful, of course, and we’re hardly going to make the argument that these are stressful experiences.
That said, they can also be rather tiring and leave you feeling very sleepy, especially after a long week. There’s nothing wrong with that of course, catching up on sleep can be a good thing, but what if you hope to be relaxed and engaged? For example, when you get into the flow state of a good walk, it’s possible to feel both relaxed and comforted, as well as focused and energized. This can help you be productive (in this case getting exercise) while also feeling comforted and relaxed, something you can appreciate.
So, there are benefits to stress-busting hobbies that keep you engaged. In this post, we’ll discuss four you may wish to get involved in:
Meditative Focus & Mindfulness
It’s easy to think that meditation is a means by which you sit down, relax and feel disengaged, but actually, the opposite is happening. Meditative focus, especially through methods like mindfulness, is quite a powerful means of building your concentration. Sitting down for ten minutes or more at a time, you’ll focus on your breath, body sensations, the world around you, and the thoughts that come and go, gently returning your focus to your anchor (such as the breath) when you get distracted.
This means that you’re actually actively listening and noticing, and that can help you build your focus over time, in a clear and comfortable manner. It’s highly engaging and interesting to focus on, and can actually take “gumption” or effort to get through. As such, it may be worth your time to try.
Learning A New Cuisine
There’s nothing quite as motivating as a hungry stomach, and so you can find cooking to be a highly productive and worthwhile hobby if you get into it. Learning a new cuisine is great for any home cook, new or experienced, because it inspires you to get out of your comfort zone.
Learning some beautiful Thai dishes, for example, can inspire you to go to the local Thai supermarket, or cooking seafood in a Japanese style can motivate you to do the same. From preparation and cooking techniques, to learning new ingredients (suc has how to fillet a fresh fish), will help you expand your skillset and show off to friends and family members. Or perhaps you wish to get into baking, making you the most popular person in your friend group bar none. A little renewed effort goes a long way.
Self-expression is very healthy, no matter how you choose to format it. From dancing to wearing a certain style of clothing, to learning how to play an instrument. Yet it can be costly to start a new hobby, or perhaps time-consuming, and not everyone has the means.
A good, near-free method of expressing yourself can be found in creative writing. That might come from writing blog posts and using a free platform to share them, or perhaps using a word processor to write short stories, or buying a journal and adding entries there a few times a week.
Writing creatively is an inspiring and fun process, and it can help you feel much more “yourself,” because it allows you to get out your thoughts, impressions about the world, and the mood you’re currently in. Give it a go, there’s nothing more relaxing and engaging than feeling you can express yourself through language.
Arts & Crafts
It can be lovely to get involved in the often social, always supportive arts and crafts scene. From learning how to knit your own throw for your sofa, to using this wonderful macrame step by step guide for home decoration, having a small project on the go can leave you with a beautiful result, one you’re proud of working on.
Remember, there’s no test to pass here, just a fun project to enjoy. That might involve building models (or even putting a LEGO set together with your child), enjoying some watercolors on canvas, or even making alterations to your clothing by sewing buttons on.
With this advice, you’re sure to stress bust with some wonderful hobbies that keep you engaged. In the long run, having a relaxation schedule like this in place can add so much to your personal sense of wellbeing.