There was a time when my life was filled with various hobbies. In fact, Headstands and Heels started as nothing more than a passion project that I viewed as a creative outlet outside of work. As I became more passionate about growing my community and building this into a true “brand,” my hobby turned into a full-time career. Even though I still have just as much passion behind H&H, if not more than when I started, it no longer satisfies me in the same way as a hobby would. Nor should it.
I’ve been feeling a bit like I’m running on empty in a lot of ways lately. Maybe it’s because I’m spending so much time absorbed in the creative process and ever changing world of social media. However as I’ve reflected on this feeling, I’ve come to the realization that I’ve let some of my other passions take a back seat for too long. I have filled my free time with things that all end up either connecting back to work (i.e. brainstorming new video content, creating meetups for my DenFit group, planning out a future product launch, etc.). And during the time that I’m not doing that or working on house projects I’ve been spending a little too much time in front of the tv.
When NYC went under lockdown in 2020, I filled so much of my time with hobbies. I reconnected with my passion for art and even did a weekly “art hour” over zoom with a friend of mine who lived in France. I spent time baking and learning new recipes. I found fun workouts to try daily. I read lots of books, journaled daily, took fun very “extra” baths and even got back into playing the piano.
Despite the lack of normalcy, I found ways to remain happy and fulfilled outside of work. After moving to Denver I remained busy as ever but over these past 6 months a lot of my passions were slowly, one at a time, put back onto a shelf. And as a result, there are times when I feel lonely or bored or confused as to what to do when I end up with free time.
Passions and hobbies provide us with an outlet for escape and personal expression.
I find that they can truly boost our emotional wellbeing, the way we view ourselves and the world around us and many times even improve our physical health.
I think it’s time for me to reconnect with things I was once passionate about again and if you’re in a similar position, maybe this is a journey we can do together. Here are a three tips to get started:
Make Time for it Daily
This is probably the hardest part because realistically, we can all be like “who has time for xyz passions” when all these other obligations consume our day? But I find that consistency and repetition are the only ways to truly make something a habit and if we want to prioritize a hobby we must carve out time daily for it. Even if it means reading for 10 min before bed or playing 1 song on the piano. This is why 30 day challenges are so popular! It forces us to set aside just a little time to accomplish something every day. Luckily there are challenges for just about everything out there — whether it’s a painting, reading, working out, or writing. Plug in your hobby of choice into google or pinterest with the word “challenge” next to it and I guarantee you’ll find something that you can try.
Choose an Old Hobby You Used to Love
Reflect on what made you enjoy that hobby in the first place. Was it the people you did it with? Was it the feeling it gave you? If the overall feeling towards the hobby is a positive one, try reimursing yourself back into that same activity again instead of seeking out something new. If you enjoyed it for social reasons, look for a class or club in your area that you can join so you’ll be around other people with the same passion. Not only will you be putting yourself back in the groove with something you used to enjoy but you’ll be making some new connections along the way.
Get out of the Comparison Trap
It can feel daunting to get back into an old hobby because you may be comparing your performance to how you used to be. For example, if it’s been years since you’ve played an instrument chances are you’re a little rusty. It’s easy to get frustrated and stuck comparing how you are now to how you were “then.” Or if it’s a new hobby you’re starting it can be even more scary because now you’re stuck feeling like a beginner with too many people to compare yourself to. It’s so important to let this go and work to shift your mindset. At the end of the day you’re doing this for YOU and you alone. Your passion project isn’t something that needs to be put on display, you can keep it private if that allows you to dive fully in. Measure progress in small gains and take pride in whatever you’re able to accomplish each day.
I’m personally pretty excited to start making more time for the things I loved again. I want to set up a space in my office for painting and art. I need to dust off my rollerskates and bring them out for a spin in my local park. I want to teach myself at least two new songs on the piano and read more books.
So maybe I’m being overly ambitious but truthfully that’s the only way I know how to do things. I’m ready to dive back and in and reconnect with my passions — and I hope this inspires you to do the same. I’d love to hear from you and learn more about what hobbies you’re going to bring into your life! Feel free to send me a DM or email. I love chatting with you all.