It has been of general interest to me just how much a hobby can improve your life and what it affects. To explore this I set about finding myself a new hobby, and seeing how different I felt or didn’t. The hobby I ended up choosing was war gaming. The collecting of little model figurines and using them to pretend to fight battles. It’s a fairly engaging hobby requiring some basic craft skills to assemble and paint the models. When playing the game attached to the models, a fair degree of tactical thinking is involved.
The first obstacle for my hobby to overcome was time. I never feel like I have spare time now that I am in full-time work. It was a mystery to me just when I’d find the time to partake in my hobby. As I soon discovered, however, with something you are enthusiastic about at stake, you soon find little ways to squeeze minutes and hours out of your day. Simple things like doing my weekly shop on the end of my work shift and not going during my day off managed to save me an hour with which to assemble some of my miniatures. Combining little things like my dish washing with my cooking, so as my meal is slowly boiling or roasting in the oven I clean up the earlier crockery of the day. Alongside a few other simple little tricks, I have found a couple of hours a week to focus entirely on my hobby. My time management has indeed improved thanks to my hobby. But there was more that needed to improve.
Quality of Life
I found my mood improving slightly as I started to get more involved in my hobby. For a rundown guy working full-time, this came as somewhat of a surprise. The slight tedium of my job seemed to phase me less. Possibly due to the knowledge that I had something more to look forward to. The sense of minor achievement from seeing my finished models standing on the battlefield probably had a lot to do with this. As did the positive feedback from the other war gamers about my painting and alterations I had made to the original models. All in all, I found myself happier in life and it started to have a wonderful effect. I was somewhat more inclined to tidy up around my home, partly so I had space to work on my models and partly due to the pride I took in my war gaming leaking across to other aspects of my life. Taking that little touch of pride and applying it to everything I did so I would feel that same swell resulted in me completing tasks faster or better than I normally would when handling chores.
While I am aware that my experience here may not happen with everyone, I would strongly recommend those reading this article to find themselves a hobby that will take them out of their house and their comfort zone now and then, especially a hobby that requires a lot of effort put into it to get the most out of it. It gives you something other than daily life to motivate you, and if you are as lucky as me, it can make you a more efficient person in your chores. Giving you more time to enjoy yourself. Good luck, and if you don’t feel any different, at least you have something fun to do during the week or month that breaks the monotony.