Before the pandemic happened, many of us wouldn’t understand the significance of wearing face masks in public, observing social distancing, and staying inside our homes for several months. Whether we like it or not, the COVID-19 pandemic has taken a toll on everyone’s life, forcing us to sacrifice the things we used to enjoy.
Fast forward to 2021, many are still emotionally recovering from their quarantine blues. These include people who struggled from several months of isolation, leading them to mental burnout. While it has been a tough time for everyone, the pandemic has taught many great lessons about rediscovering a new lifestyle while indoors.
Today, hobbies became more than just a pastime. Being stuck at home encouraged people to take on new creative pursuits, which in turn, benefited their overall mental health. Some developed new hobbies such as scrapbooking by collecting old photos, colorful stickers, designer foil paper, and other craft supplies.
A lot of things had changed, but we cannot deny the effect of our new hobbies on our mental health. In this article, we’ll talk about the value of turning our hobbies into a lifestyle during the pandemic.
Hobbies made us more functional
Being functionally stuck at home became a new norm when everyone has to cut off their ties with the outside world. We’ve sacrificed seeing our families, friends, and loved ones, making us feel trapped and deal with the mental health effects of isolation for almost a year. Many of us feel like we lost a huge part of ourselves, especially when we lost the things that were impossible or too essential to misplace.
To deal with the crippling consequences of boredom and isolation, people have been pursuing a hobby or finding a new one to forget all the bad news caused by COVID-19. To prove this, do a Google search for “hobby and COVID-19” and it will yield over 158 million results.
COVID-19 taught people to be resourceful by pursuing other forms of hobbies beyond their current interests. People are reading, writing, collecting items, making art, gardening, and other creative pastimes. Aside from wasting time doomscrolling on social media, people learned to displace their unused energy into something worthwhile. This helped release stress and anxiety and express themselves in their own creative way.
Basically, hobbies became a healthy diversion from a world filled with bad news. The overwhelming effects of COVID-19 prove there’s only so much we can take with social media and the current climate. Channeling our energy into something rewarding became our ultimate saving grace.
Hobbies protected our mental health
Creative pursuits push the brain to function at an optimal level. The mental health benefits of trying new hobbies are something everyone is quite familiar with, but it was only the pandemic when everyone took this very seriously.
Brain games, crossword puzzles, books, and music became the best sources of distraction whenever stress, anxiety, and depression are about to eat us up. As a result, hobbies became extremely beneficial for the brain in different ways.
Doing activities that keep our mind and hands busy helps in easing the stress on our minds and bodies. Our hobbies have the ability to balance out the stress caused by COVID-19 by tapping into our creativity. Thus, hobbies became essential to maintaining our overall wellness and mental health.
In these uncertain times, hobbies serve as a rewarding activity that gave us a sense of accomplishment that’s completely comforting and satisfying. Even the act of cooking a new meal for the family can be a form of fulfillment, which gives us more confidence to do things beyond our capabilities.
Hobbies taught us that perfection is not everything
Some people take on new hobbies only to end up quitting. People use social media as a reference when looking for creative hobbies during the lockdown. They watch videos of people doing art or cooking food which often turns out successful. But once they finally do it on their own and can’t produce the same results, what was supposed to be a new hobby made them more frustrated than ever.
Having a hobby during the pandemic taught people that any creative pursuit should be enjoyable and relaxing. It doesn’t have to look perfect on social media, what matters is how the activity makes them feel better, relaxed, and calm. We have so much time in our hands right now that all this extra time should be used for something that empowers us physically, mentally, and emotionally.
While the year 2020 was a tough time for everyone, COVID-19 taught us that there’s always a silver lining in every crisis. Being stuck at home and losing our connection with the outside world has taught a lot of valuable lessons about not taking things for granted. As we move forward with a renewed optimism, we hope our new hobbies will give us a more meaningful purpose regardless of the situation.