Find Personal Hobbies As a Parent

Finding time for yourself as a parent can sometimes feel impossible. However, maintaining a regular hobby as a parent is a healthy practice that will help you feel good. If you can carve out the time in your schedule, include your family in the hobby, and figure out what you want to do, finding and enjoying a personal hobby as a parent is not an impossible task.


Narrowing Down Your Hobby Choices

  1. Make a list of things that interest you. Write down a list of all the passions that you had when you were younger or things that you'd like to do more or learn more about. When writing down your list, make sure that the hobbies are things that make you happy.[1]
    • If you enjoy the outdoors, you can hike, fish, or landscape.
    • If you enjoy art or music you can pick up your old instrument or take up painting.
    • Other hobbies include painting, biking, cooking, photography, embroidering, yoga, or joining a community sports team.[2]
  2. Choose a hobby that you can do in the house. As a parent with limited time, choosing a hobby that you can do in the house will cut down on time wasted commuting to your hobby and will make it easier to do it whenever you have surprise downtime. Think of hobbies like reading, gaming, or exercising that are fairly easy to do at home.[3]
    • Reading, painting, writing, and learning a new language are all things you can do in the house.
  3. Pick a hobby that matches your budget. Some hobbies that require a lot of travel or equipment may become expensive. If you are already on a tight budget, find a hobby that is affordable or free. If you can spend the money, consider taking a class or going to special events.[4]
    • Some affordable hobbies include writing, gardening, discovering new music, knitting, drawing, and starting an online blog.[5]
  4. Don't choose a hobby that takes too much of a commitment. As a parent, there may be unexpected scheduling restraints from your children or partner. For this reason, it may be better to choose a low-commitment hobby that isn't critically important to others or requires you to invest a lot of your time. Think of lower stress hobbies that you can do independently if your schedule is hectic.
    • Some low commitment hobbies include hiking, reading, journaling, volunteering, and cooking.[4]

Making Time For Your Hobbies

  1. Limit your cell phone use when at home. Time wasted on the cell phone or surfing the web can be used to enjoy your hobby instead. Instead of looking at things on your phone, use the time to practice your hobby.[6]
  2. Take advantage of times when your children are occupied. When children are at school, sleeping for the night, playing video games, or hanging out with their friends, it gives you time to enjoy your personal hobby. Use this time as time off from your children to enjoy your hobby.[6]
  3. Ask your partner to take up parenting duties to give you free time. If you need to get out of the house to do your hobby, you may need someone to look after the kids. If parenting duties and work take up the majority of your time, you can ask your partner to take care of the kids for a limited period of time so that you can enjoy your hobby.[7]
  4. Get a babysitter. You can ask a family member to take care of the kids or you can get a babysitter to look after them if you can't do your hobby at home. Getting a babysitter or someone to look after your kids is a way that you and your partner can enjoy your hobby together.[7]
  5. Write down your schedule so you know when you have time for hobbies. If you don't already have a detailed schedule, you should write it down so that you have a better understanding of when you'd be able to partake in your hobby. For example, if you work 9-5 and have a babysitter until 7, it gives you 2 hours after work to enjoy your hobby. Find other areas of downtime in your schedule.[8]

Getting Your Family Involved

  1. Share your hobby with your partner. Have a conversation with your partner on mutual interests and see if you can do the hobby together. This may help strengthen your relationship and deepen the connection with your partner. You can learn a new sport together, cycle, bird watch, hike, or cook together.[9]
    • Say something like, "I really like going hiking, being out in nature, and birdwatching. Do you think you'd enjoy doing that with me sometime?"
  2. Involve your children. You can involve your children when doing your hobby to strengthen the bond with your child and improve their self-esteem. Think of age-appropriate ways that you can incorporate your child in what you are doing. If you love playing music, try teaching them how to play an instrument. If you enjoy art, give them a paintbrush to see what they can create.[10]
    • You can also involve your kids with cooking, art, video games, sports, model making, puzzles, or woodworking.
  3. Go on family trips that include your hobby. If you enjoy fishing, hiking, or being in nature, a trip to a park is an excellent way to get the entire family involved in your hobby. As you do what you enjoy, your family can become engaged with the things that interest them the most. Traveling with your family gives everyone the chance to do what they want in a fun environment while giving your time to enjoy your favorite activity.[11]
    • If you like taking photos, you can take your family on trips to historic sites or places in nature.
    • Bike riding, horseback riding, and swimming are all activities you can do together as a family.

Sources and Citations

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