Sometimes the last things you want to do is go out somewhere in order to do something fun. But when the hours upon hours of TV get old, you might start searching for something else that you can do. Plus, if you stare at a screen all day for work, that might be the last thing you want to do when you get home. So where do you even start when it comes to finding a new hobby? There are some old-fashioned at-home leisure activities we should bring back, one of which just might be your new favorite way to spend a rainy day or a low-key evening after work.
Whether you used to do more activities and have more hobbies (and then gave in to the lure of an evening spent on the couch in front of the TV) or you're just looking to do something different or try something new, you might want to consider looking at leisure activities outside of the norm, things that maybe you'd never thought about trying before, but that people participated in long before Netflix or Hulu came along. If you're not up for the challenge of learning some of these new skills on your own, you could also find online videos or even classes (though you'd have to leave the house for that), where you could make some new friends too.
Either way, if you're sick of screens and have already read everything on your "must-read" list, a brand-new-to-you hobby that you could do at home might not only meet your need for something different, but might challenge you just a little bit too, making you feel more productive than binge-watching normally does.
1. Needlepoint Or Embroidery
Channel Parks and Recreation's Leslie Knope or pop star herself Taylor Swift and try your hand at needlepoint. Not only is this something that's — more than likely — new to you, it's also something that requires a lot of concentration and effort and maybe a little bit of creativity, to boot. MTV News reported that Swift once made Ed Sheeran a Drake-themed needlepoint piece, so it doesn't have to be all those florals and baby animals that you might associate more with your grandmother than yourself.
2. Solving Puzzles
Whether you're working with a relatively easy puzzle or you're challenging yourself with one that's one thousand pieces or more, people should be doing more puzzles. They help you flex your problem-solving skills, while also doing something that's generally low-key enough that you can wind down from the stress of the day.
3. Knitting Or Crocheting
Knitting and crocheting also might be something that you associate with older people, but that's really not the case anymore. Knitting has gotten trendy in recent years, as The Guardian reported, and it's possible (though somewhat challenging) to teach yourself at home. Start with something easy and work your way up. Plus, there are some serious benefits that come with learning a new skill, as Harvard Health Blog reported.
4. Playing Board Games
You don't have to host a full-fledged game night in order to make board games your go-to leisure activity. In an interview with Bustle, Monica Parikh, a dating and relationships coach, said that games like chess and Monopoly, which make you think and strategize more, can also help you connect with your partner if the two of you play together. Plus they force you to use your critical thinking skills, which long nights of television, reading, or relaxing in a bubble bath just don't.
5. Bake From Scratch
Baking from scratch doesn't sound like an "old-fashioned" activity, but with the proliferation of mixes available on grocery store shelves nowadays, it kind of...is? Try your hand at a new recipe and work your way to more complicated techniques. And since you likely won't be able to eat absolutely everything you make, you can give some to neighbors, coworkers, friends, or family. If you need any more convincing, HuffPost reported that there are actually some psychological benefits of cooking for people.
Trust me when I say that people love receiving surprise desserts.
6. Practice Your Penmanship
It's hard to deny that people don't write nearly as many letters as they used to. If you've ever seen Pride & Prejudice, for example, you've seen how people can spend quite a bit of time composing thoughtful letters to friends, romantic interests, and family members, updating them on their lives or telling them how much they matter; things you now probably do via text, social media, emails, or even phone calls. Sending more letters can be fun for you and for whomever you're sending them to, because who doesn't like to get mail that's not bills?
If you're not into the idea of writing letters, learning calligraphy or other hand-lettering can be a fun and somewhat challenging way of spending some of your time. The New York Times reported that writing by hand can help improve learning, as well. Just don't be too surprised if your sister asks you to help address her wedding invitations using your new skills.
Leslie Knope is clearly the queen of old-fashioned at-home leisure activities. Chances are, you have approximately one million pictures and mementos lying around that could totally be put into scrapbooks. And although scrapbooking might not be for everybody, making one lets you get creative and pull together something that you'll keep for quite awhile or that makes a thoughtful gift for someone close to you. You never know until you try.
8. Watch A Movie In A Fort
So it's not a very grown-up or accomplished leisure activity, but who says adults making a fort for fun is a bad idea? Just because you're not a little kid anymore doesn't mean that you can't inject a little playfulness into your evening or weekend routine. You and your partner can work together to make a fort and then lounge around in it, reading, watching TV, or drinking a glass of wine. It probably won't become an everyday occurrence, but you can't deny that it's something different.
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