With the amount of stress in today’s world, everyone needs a hobby… you know, something that makes them forget about everything. Let’s face it, anyone that runs around without a hobby is aging themselves a year per month. I am a firm believer that you should never grow up. If you don’t have a little piece of a child in your heart, well… it's time to be that old geezer that sits on their porch, screaming at the kids to get off their lawn. I figured that I’d touch on a few hobbies… you know… to spark a little conversation of what we like to do when we have our quiet time. (get your towels and lay your heads down)
NewsVine/ Facebook/ Twitter - Obviously we are all Viners, but stepping outside of that box… I’ll admit that I rarely go to the others. I know other people can live on those sites… just floating along, chatting, leaving messages, reading walls, etc, etc… Yes, I have a FB account. No, none of the info that I made the account with is actual. I’ve only made that account for a couple people, and they know it is me, so I don’t need my actual info. Plus, my preferred form of online communication is IM (instant messaging). I’m impatient when to comes to chatting… I don’t know where that came from to tell the truth, but I like it way more than dropping a message on a board and then waiting for a reply. I used to do that decades ago with the old BB systems.
Shopping - I will admit that it can be fun, but it is all how you do it. Women are like hunters and I will bow down before their skill in that respect. I call Black Friday (the day after Thanksgiving Day) a safari, and I ALWAYS wish the women that I know who go out, “Good luck on your hunt!” I have been out there and it isn’t for the faint of heart!! As for me, I purchase the bulk of what I get… online. I used to buy a lot from eBay, and it is more than a little addictive. As the last few minutes tick down, your pulse quickens a little due to the excitement of winning the bid. Heaven forbid that you get into a war where you have to keep raising the price to win… and you lose sight of the value of what you are buying… JUST to get that victory. I avoided that most of the time by being a sniper. Yes, I am that ass that would swoop in at the last second and steal an item out from under your nose. Don’t worry… I’ve missed ‘em also. What that does is not give me a chance to keep bidding! Something that I need… if you couldn’t guess. :D
Sins – hmmm… got your attention, huh? Couldn’t think of a way of putting it down here without laying out a HUGE list. It came to me by taking the word TAX off of the category of sin tax that they want to charge everyone to have fun. You know… smoking, drinking, gambling, etc, etc… Truthfully, I don’t see all of the “sins” keeping you young, but I’m quite sure that some of them will be “touched” upon in the comments below. I don’t know, some of them… gambling jumps to the front of the line… would seem to bring on more stress. I just don’t see how it could be relaxing, but then again, I'm not a real gambler either.
Exercise – From what I understand, some people exercise to relax and blow off steam. Sorry, it is work to me. There isn’t any fun in most of the exercise out there, and the exercise that I enjoy doing… well, that falls under the “Sin” category. I would be remiss if I did not mention it here, tho.
Gaming – Yes, I left the best for last. This covers such a large field that I might do another article on just this later on. What I’ll concentrate on at the moment is the video gaming side of this category. I know that it probably seems silly that adults play video games, but... not to pop any bubbles… adults far outplay kiddies in the vid world. Stretching from World of Warcraft and all of those type games, to basic computer games… where it all started, and encompassing consoles (X-Box, Wii and PS3) to handhelds… the turn of the century brought on the Age of the Geek. All of those guys that used to get made fun of, blow the bell curve in HS, and play role playing games… like Dungeons and Dragons, now run the world. Bill Gates was a huge nerd that played D&D… just as a small example. The number of guys that could be called up as examples are scary. I know how most non-gamers don’t see the value of any of the games, and that is simply because they are uneducated or never really put any thought to it. All gaming requires at least some bit of problem solving. The game has a goal… there is an obstacle keeping you from it… you must figure out how to overcome said obstacle. Sure, it is packaged in a pretty game, but the skills being learned at the controls are inspiring. The hand eye coordination is much high on a gamer than your average non-gamer. Reaction speed is also sharper. Have you seen the controls to the Predator and Raptor UAVs? They look like video game controls. Hey… I think I made my point, but I never got to the relaxing part. Truthfully, playing the games aren’t always relaxing. Getting to a particularly tough part, the frustration level is easy to elevate. Some gamers have cheat codes so they can just blow off steam and run around and do whatever.
In conclusion, I guess it all depends on how seriously that you take your particular hobby as to how much stress that it will relieve. Some do it naturally, while others seem to only increase it. In the end, our hobbies are what make us the people that we are, so enjoy them to the fullest. What may seem stressful to one person may put the next one at ease. Soooo... what hobbies help you refocus?