In part 1 I wrote about reading, knitting, music and walking a dog as examples of relaxing hobbies. Four other hobbies found to be relaxing are gardening, baking, craft and writing.
Gardening Time spent gardening is relaxing. You are out in the fresh air and in touch with Nature. Various studies have shown Nature is relaxing and good for your health. If the sun is shining you will receive the benefits of Vitamin D. Sunlight has been found to calm the mind and lift the spirits. Research has shown bacteria in soil helps increase brain cell activity to produce serotonin which acts like an antidepressant.
A number of scents produced by garden plants are known to make people feel relaxed. These include lavender, jasmine, rose, lemon verbena and pine. The smell of a freshly mowed lawn promotes a relaxed feeling.
Concentrating on planting seeds or seedlings distracts from stressful events. It gives something positive to anticipate as one looks forward to beautiful flowers or vegetables. Digging, raking, planting and pruning are good exercise and encourage a good night’s sleep.
Baking Spending time in the kitchen baking can be a relaxing hobby for some people. Baking cakes, biscuits and the like can allow one to be creative. It is more likely to be relaxing than cooking a meal for the family at the end of a stressful day. The actions of mixing, rolling out pastry and kneading dough are good for the soul. The smell of baking is comforting and the creativity builds self esteem.
Craft Work Sewing, scrap booking, pottery and quilting are just a few of the many crafts people like to do for recreation. These activities keep the mind occupied so one can’t dwell on worries and fears. The repetitive actions involved in some crafts can be relaxing.
Some people attend craft groups. This may be specific such as a quilting group where people share information and help each other with their projects. It may be a general social group where people bring along whatever type of craft they are working on. Groups like this give the benefit of socialising as well as the opportunity to be creative.
Studies have shown craft work can help people who suffer depression. It can also help prevent the onset of dementia When a person is so involved in craft work that he or she is oblivious to everything else they relax instead of stressing.
Writing Writing as a hobby can take various forms. Some people keep a journal in which they record their thoughts and feelings as well as events. They may write in a gratitude journal, concentrating on the positive things that have happened. This can be relaxing and uplifting. Some choose to combine the written word with sketches or photos. A journal can help to clarify a person’s thoughts.
Writing poetry allows the writer to express their feelings in a creative way. It can act as a type of therapy and the process of expressing feelings can allow the person to unwind and relax.
Some like to write short stories or a novel length work. The creativity can promote healing and relaxation.
Different people find different hobbies relaxing. Whatever an individual finds relaxing will be beneficial for that person. The important thing is to have a hobby and spend time on it regularly to give yourself a break from the things you consider ‘work’.