In my previous post on hobbies, I listed what my current hobbies were and my thoughts about them. A note on my previous list though. I tried to list only serious hobbies and not superficial things that I regularly do. Take for example: movies. I do watch movies, but just because I do it once or twice when I’m out with friends does not a hobby become. To me, a hobby has to be something that I’m willing to invest time into and learn the intricacies of.

And that is, I think, the problem with finding new hobbies. I’m not happy with the fact that I end up sinking my “hobby time” into less-rewarding hobbies such as gaming, but I just can’t find replacements that will satisfy my criteria. In the end, it is a cost-benefit analysis; will my new hobby provide me with a rewarding enough experience to justify the effort I put into it?

I believe that I get this from photography. When I take photos, I’m documenting my life so I can remember it. When I develop photos, I appreciate the fact that I’m able to create art or beauty so easily; plus I can hang it on tape it to my wall. When I find a bargain, be it a used CD or clothes; I’m happy because I got a deal and other people may have paid full price for it. When I travel, I trade the cost for memories and experiences.

So I’m looking for hobbies, but not just any hobby. I want a hobby that is 1) fun, 2) that I can get something out of it, and 3) is not too effort-intensive. Now finding something that satisfies those 3 factors doesn’t seem too difficult, although there is no defined definition of fun, rewarding or easy.

Of course if it were only so easy. I’ve realized that there’s another factor besides return-on-investment (ROI) for starting new hobbies, and that is fear. There’s fear in a couple of ways. First, there’s the fear of change. Why start a new hobby when I get a reasonable amount of fun out of the effort I put into playing games? This is easily surmountable by peer pressure. There’s also the fear of making bad investments. Your (hobby-)time is limited so you don’t want to make a bad choice and pick up lawn bowling. Or maybe you want to keep your options open in the event that your friends decide to pick up movie making. In any case, what I think this means is that you only end up starting new hobbies that are overwhemingly favorable. For example, niche blogging is incredibly profitable for the amount of time I put in.

So what does this all mean? Well I have a bunch of hobbies that I don’t really enjoy as much anymore, thus I don’t spend as much time on them as I previously did. So, I figure I should find some new hobbies to replace them; but I can’t seem to pick up any hobbies because I don’t think they are worth it. What sort of hobbies you say? Well, I will let you in on them in the next part.