Free time. It’s both precious and important as part of our natural life balance. It’s also the perfect outlet to help expand our knowledge – knowledge that we can then apply to other aspects of our lives. The We Love Digital team is full of multi-talented people; crafters, artists, amateur scientists, musicians, carpenters, geo-cachers and photographers to name but a few. And the truth is, we probably all have more than a single hobby each. So how can we manage these creative urges to be more productive for ourselves?

I remember reading a blog on life balance some time ago, and I still refer to it to this day.

 

number one

have a hobby that you do for knowledge

Learning never stops. Even by reading an quick article or a piece of news we learn, and that thirst for knowledge should always be unquenchable. For example, if something’s broken, don’t replace it, try and fix it. Learn about it. Question why it could be broken? Discover how it works and you may actually be able to salvage rather than replace it. Sweden have a fantastic initiative rewarding people who repair, rather than replace, their items.

This doesn’t just apply to repairing your broken radio or that table leg that’s had folded paper under it for the last six months, it can apply to anything. The beauty of the internet is that the ‘learning’ is available pretty much everywhere you look, with people sharing their knowledge in tutorials and ‘How to’s’ which give step-by-step guides to follow. Electronics, DIY, cooking and even minor car repairs are becoming more and more accessible to us thanks to digital platforms and content creationists.

Recently James @ We Love Digital built his own Steampunk Ghostbuster outfit, complete with flashing lights and a spinning doll head blow torch, learning the simple beauty of circuity from blogs and forums.

James during the craft process
number two

have a hobby that generates revenue

It’s always nice to have a few extra pennies to put towards the pounds, and if you can do something you love that earns you a little income, do it. If you play an instrument, offer some private lessons. Do you make beautiful paintings? Or design interesting clothes? Sell them on sites like Etsy.com where shoppers seek out that unique and personal touch.

Websites like ZOEN and Artist Works give direct access to talented musicians all over the world, meaning that even obscure instruments are catered for and can be taught and learned.

Use the internet to learn new skills

It’s about understanding how your skill/s can be utilised by an audience. Bring your talent to where the demand is. Take what you know, and use it as another string to your bow. People will see the value in what you can do, and will pay for the outcome.

 

number three

have a hobby you do, just for you

We all have that one thing we do which is personal to us. Whether it’s playing vinyl records,reading, travel, visiting a gallery or doing a little bit of gardening, they all work as a reward to our inner self.

 

 

With increasingly busy working lives it’s important to give yourself some personal space and time doing what you love. I like to think of this one as the ‘shower thoughts’ hobby. Those moments when your isolation provides you time to think, or time to switch off – either way it’s just for you.

These hobbies make us more feel more optimistic, fulfilled, rewarded, and focused, contributing to a more healthy state of mind. If we’re happy, the people around us will be happy. We will approach challenges and problems in our daily lives more logically and make more sensible choices, producing great ideas which in return, reward us. Hobbies also make you more employable, giving businesses and potential employers an immediate understanding of the type of person you are, a chance to see your proactive desire, and to imagine you as part of their team.

Some of the We Love Digital craft highlights

applying this in your day-to-day

The benefits to this are simple. Subconscious learning and subconscious application. If we learn to fix something that’s broken, we’ll better understand how to approach problems, we’ll get to the root of the issue, and we’ll know how to suggest improvements. Teaching something to another person perfects your communication and ability to analyse, making it easier to orchestrate ideas and insights to colleagues and clients. Living a happier and more productive life helps to open and broaden your mind. It makes you a better thinker as well as a better doer. And that can only be a good thing.

The benefits to this are simple. Subconscious learning and subconscious application. If we learn to fix something that’s broken, we’ll better understand how to approach problems, we’ll get to the root of the issue, and we’ll know how to suggest improvements. Teaching something to another person perfects your communication and ability to analyse, making it easier to orchestrate ideas and insights to colleagues and clients. Living a happier and more productive life helps to open and broaden your mind. It makes you a better thinker as well as a better doer. And that can only be a good thing….

it’s never too late to start over. if you weren’t happy with yesterday, try something different today. don’t stay stuck. do better.

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