You Need a Hobby

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We're a culture that loves planning. The most efficient way to live, we say, is to schedule up every day in digestible, half-hour or smaller chunks. That's the best way to squeeze the most out of life. Except in the vast majority of cases, that's the road straight to Burnoutsville.

Human people weren't meant to be productive every second they're awake, and trying to impose that kind of outlook on your life is a surefire way to miss out on what makes life good. That's why Hope Reese, writing for Vox, suggests you invest in a hobby — but there's one catch. You have to mean it. "[O]ur hustle culture leaves us with no moment unaccounted for — because we feel that even our 'free' moments must involve the pursuit of excellence, money, self-improvement, and 'growth,'" Reese writes. But "[c]hallenging leisure activities … improve mental and physical wellbeing, foster learning, and build communities."

You need to have fun. We all do. Pursuing an interest or an activity because it excites you is reason enough; you don't need more than that. But if you do need to justify "frivolous" leisure activities to yourself, consider that getting work off the brain can help your brain make creative breakthroughs. You'll also benefit from real rest that rounds you out as a person, not just an employee. Anyway, we all need spaces in our lives that aren't dictated by perfectionism. Get messy. Treat yourself. Tool around with art supplies. Read Reese's full article for a point-by-point breakdown on choosing the right hobby for you.