Welcome back! Last week, we chatted about the complications from my surgery and receiving a nerve block. If you missed that blog and would like to catch up, click HERE.
Are you lonely? Looking for that special someone? Well, you came to the right blog. This week, we are going to investigate how having a hobby can improve your quality of life, but not in the traditional manner.
There are several ways that having a hobby can improve your life, in ways that you may have not considered until today. We all know and understand that unplugging and having alone time is critical to our mental health, but have we ever thought about the other benefits of hobbies?
Have you ever known someone that kept telling you about their passion, whether it be stamp collecting, geocaching, cooking, or something more exotic, and you found yourself daydreaming? Don’t do that. Seriously. Don’t. You know why? Because by sharing a part of themselves with you, it means they are reaching out. They want a connection. If this is a loved one, such as a child wanting to talk about their latest gaming experience, or a grandparent wanting to show you their genealogy charts, take a deep breath and realize…they want you. They want to connect with you. How amazing is that? Ask them questions. Make eye contact. Show them you appreciate that they are trying to connect with you on more than just a superficial level.
The real magic happens when you can share that same interest with someone else.
So here’s the million-dollar question: “how do I meet new people who have the same interests as I do“? How often do we hear, “where can I go other than a bar to meet people?“. Right now, granted, COVID is making things a little more difficult, but even still, if you have a hobby, there’s a zoom meeting for it online. When restrictions relax, you can then go out into groups of people who are like-minded, and if that special someone is out there, you can start out getting to know each other in a safe environment, and hey, you have at least one thing in common that can be a building block for something more, right?
Hobbies bring about social interaction. Interacting socially is healthy and it’s necessary for life. We are social people and the longer we are apart from others, the higher the chances of us becoming ill, and not just mentally ill, but physically ill as well.
“As the Harvard Women’s Health Watch reported, “Dozens of studies have shown that people who have satisfying relationships with family, friends and their community are happier, have fewer health problems, and live longer.
“In a study of 7,000 men and women in Alameda County, Calif., begun in 1965, Lisa F. Berkman and S. Leonard Syme found that ‘people who were disconnected from others were roughly three times more likely to die during the nine-year study than people with strong social ties,’ John Robbins recounted in his marvelous book on health and longevity, ‘Healthy at 100.’
“This major difference in survival occurred regardless of people’s age, gender, health practices or physical health status. In fact, the researchers found that ‘those with close social ties and unhealthful lifestyles (such as smoking, obesity and lack of exercise) actually lived longer than those with poor social ties but more healthful living habits,’ Mr. Robbins wrote. However, he quickly added, ‘Needless to say, people with both healthful lifestyles and close social ties lived the longest of all.‘”
So be a geek. Go find another geek to geek out with. It’s fun. It’s healthy. Ham radio clubs, stamp and coin collecting social media groups, community emergency response teams, sewing clubs, breed-specific dog clubs, scuba diving clubs, and so much more. The world is your oyster…so go getcha a pearl or two, even if it’s on a zoom meeting for now!
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