All about hobbies

How I relax: My favorite hobbies

Writer Dave Barry said, "There's a fine line between a hobby and mental illness."

I think what he was alluding to was how obsessed we can become with our hobbies. Human beings collect things, rebuild things, watch things, eat things, travel to see things, upgrade things, and buy all sorts of things in the pursuit of their hobbies. This brings to mind an old Jewish proverb which says, "When a habit begins to cost money, it's a hobby."

But why do we bother to spend so much time and money on hobbies?

Because they distract us from the doldrums of everyday life. One of my favorite hobbies to engage in is watching films. I enjoy going to the movie theater, renting movies, and going to film festivals. I also enjoy dissecting films and discussing them with my friends. When I'm in the movie theater, I enter another world and leave my own behind. Films for me are a sweet escape.

I think that's what all good hobbies do. They distract us from everyday life, and allow us to become immersed in those things we love to do, even if only for short time. What would life be without our hobbies? What would life be without fun? We all need hobbies to keep us engaged in our sometimes dull every day existence.

Another hobby of mine is hockey. I play hockey, coach my son at hockey, watch hockey on television, go watch professional hockey games, and even play hockey on our Xbox. Most of all, though, I enjoy playing hockey. While I'm on the ice, no matter how bad my week was at work, or how stressful my personal life may be, I can forget about everything and focus on the game, even if only for an hour.

In hockey, as with all hobbies, I feel refreshed and ready to face the world after I indulge myself in what I love doing. It's a hobby that refreshes my batteries, reduces stress, and clears my mind. A good hobby usually does all of these things.

Both of my favorite hobbies, movies and hockey, involve being part of a community of other hobbyists. Part of the allure of hobbies is how we can connect with other people through our shared interests. Hobbies allow us to talk to other people who also like Ham radio, or skiing, or fishing. They also give us a chance to swap tales, techniques, and tips on the best equipment for engaging in our hobbies.

Some hobbies can be personal things which we do on our own, as well. Having a different or original hobby sets some people apart and allows them to showcase their creativity or uniqueness. Hobbies can also serve to allow us to do what we love even when our careers don't allow us to fulfilling needs which aren't being met in our personal lives.

Most of all, hobbies give us something to do when we don't have to be doing anything else. They give us something to look forward to, increase our satisfaction in life, and enrich us.