Whether you are getting ready to retire, or are looking to reinvent yourself, I’m sure you’re already wondering what it is you could be doing in your spare time. This list of hobbies will fill those gaps and provide you with a broad selection of activities to fill up your days, many times while enriching the lives of others.
Even if some of these don’t appeal at first glance, try them all out once you retire. For example, you may think you don’t like to cook, but it may just be that you never liked the pressure of having to get a meal on the table at a certain time. Retirement can actually help turn tasks that were once tedious into fun-filled, relaxing events you actually look forward to.
Doing volunteer work can enrich your life, while making a drastic difference in your community. Find something you enjoy doing, and use it to benefit others. Perhaps you love children and your kids haven’t given you any grandchildren yet, perhaps volunteering at a daycare center or library would be extra fulfilling. Look for opportunities to make a difference at local establishments, as well as schools, hospitals, and nonprofit organizations.
Try new artistic and creative endeavors, making something with your bare hands can be incredibly rewarding. Perhaps in place of buying a gift, you use your newly found hobby to gift your work to others. Some ideas for arts and crafts activities to try include:
Cross-stitch, embroider, or knit
Quilt or sew
Learn basket-weaving or chair-caning
Make stained glass projects
You can be in the audience, join the players onstage, or the theater staff in taking tickets and running lights, getting involved in the performing arts can be exhilarating. Want to try your hand at acting? Call some local community theaters and community centers to see what opportunities exist. If you’d like to enjoy the hard work of others, start a “meetup” group in which you and your friends go see a performance once a month or once a week.
Take up a low-impact exercise routine; for example, go for a morning walk or an afternoon swim, or take up a daily yoga or tai chi practice. Staying fit doesn’t mean running marathons, it just means getting up off the couch.
Baking and cooking can be lots of fun if you take the time to enjoy them. Read cooking books or magazines, watch cooking shows on the television for inspiration, and then try out the recipes that appeal to you. When you make something you can’t wait to eat for dinner, you enjoy it that much more.
Reconnect with Mother Nature
Travel on an open trail, take a light hike, bird watch or take up nature photography. The sun releases an energizing burst while enjoying your surroundings.
Adult education programs are frequently looking for part-time evening instructors for these types of courses, and while they don’t produce a full-time income, teaching these types of classes can be a perfect activity to meet others with the same interests.
In the years leading up to retirement, it’s important to find time to do what speaks to you. Adventures, hobbies or volunteering will give you insight into things you can do when you take the plunge into retirement.