So, for almost the past two years every person in the world has been going through a similar event, the COVID19 pandemic. Depending on where you live your pandemic experience may have differed from those around you. In most of Canada, we’ve been living through lockdowns and reopening, lockdown then reopening, a cycle that has been repeating, and almost everyone I know has fallen prey to a pandemic hobby. Hobbies are a really good thing to have, they are a form of self-care! They can help us express our emotions and prevent burnout. Having something that you enjoy doing outside of work and regular life activities is important to keep yourself happy and healthy.
One of my favorite hobbies that became popular online because of the pandemic is making bread. Although I didn’t personally join in on this trend, I noticed the lack of flour at my grocery store and found myself taste testing a few of my friends’ home baked creations. Cooking was another hobby that a lot of people engaged in. With restaurants being closed and people being at home for their lunch breaks, there was an increase in interest for making creative, delicious dishes. Everyone also tried their hand at making whipped coffee or just making fancy coffee in general. There was an increase in sales for sports supplies like tennis rackets, weights, and ice skates. Even puzzles were hard to find on the shelves. People were turning their living rooms into yoga studios and gyms. Going out for walks, getting creative with outdoor and garage activities with your friends, and playing outdoor sports also became a hit. Because most people found themselves with a bit more time on their hands because of so many in-person activities being canceled, people got to slow down and take up a hobby that they might not have if it wasn’t for the pandemic.
Now I don’t want it to sound like this pandemic was an amazing experience because of hobbies. I know myself, and many others who faced struggles and are still facing the effects of the global pandemic. However, hobbies and creative ways to get through the lockdowns have helped us cope through this difficult time. But it is important to remember that these hobbies can help us cope through non-pandemic related difficulties too and adding crafts and physical hobbies to your daily routine can be good for your wellbeing. If you find yourself facing burnout, feeling grouchy or unmotivated, taking up a daily, or weekly hobby might be a way to combat those feelings and perk up your mood. For those with kids, or busy lifestyles, taking up a hobby might sound unattainable. But, even if it is reading a chapter of a book before bed or buying an adult coloring book and taking five minutes to color in the morning with your coffee, a hobby can help you cope.
During the pandemic, I taught myself how to crochet with some YouTube tutorials and it has now become a part of my evening routine, as one of my goals was to decrease my screen time before bed. I like to crochet while listening to online lectures, podcasts and while watching shows. Now that I can see a small group of friends in-person, we have a weekly craft night. People knit, paint, solve puzzles, and even build Lego! It is a time for us to get away from our daily chores and take time to do a hobby that may get pushed to the side if it was not for it being a routine. Now go out there and get yourself a hobby! It’s for your health!