Now that I work from home, I spend more time in my apartment than I ever thought possible, and TBH, I struggle to separate work from pleasure. My life has become one blue-light blob of working at my computer before winding down by scrolling TikTok and watching the newest show on a streaming platform. While I love vegging out on the couch after work just as much as the next person, all screens all the time isn’t ideal, so I started to think about other ways I could spend my evenings. If you’re like me, and you’re looking for ways to break the doom-scrolling cycle and be intentional with your “me” time, it might be time to start thinking about picking up some new hobbies.
Thankfully, there are plenty of hobbies to pick from that you can do in the comfort of your own home that (brace yourself) don’t involve scrolling everything the apps on your phone have to offer every night, and we are sharing them ahead.
Hobbies You Can Start at Home
1. Learn calligraphy
I don’t know what it is about calligraphy that is so mesmerizing to me, but I feel like I must learn it in this life in order to feel fulfilled. Cue me buying a beginner practice book and brush pens on Amazon, and cut to scenes of me sweating while scribbling lowercase e’s all over my planner for practice. It’s a great hobby that can help get your creative juices flowing and, even better, it’s a cheap hobby too!
2. Work out online
It feels like a lifetime ago when we were all doing burpees in our living rooms thanks to the pandemic, but one of the greatest things that came from that time was the plethora of online fitness platforms. If you are interested in incorporating some movement into your day from the comfort of home, Tone It Up, Beachbody, Obé, P.volve, YogaWorks, and Pilates Anytime are just a few of the many online-based programs with free trial periods, so you can save money while keeping active in your own home.
3. Learn how to cook
Listen, I’m all for living off of buttered noodles and red wine, but there’s something about mastering a new recipe and switching up your routine to make you feel full-bellied and accomplished. If you’re new to cooking, go easy on yourself and have a backup plan in case something catches on fire (speaking from personal experience here). If you’re already a pro, branch out and tackle that one recipe you’ve been eyeing for months now, and do some wine-tasting while you’re at it!
4. Practice meditation
I’ve said it once and I’ll say it again: Meditation has significantly improved my life. Once I realized that you don’t have to sit cross-legged with your eyes closed and woke up to what meditation actually can be, I found it to be a great way to step away from the chaos of life and check in with my bad self. The best part about meditation is that you have all of the tools to get started already within you. You can do it anywhere you’d like, and it’s free!
5. Pick up needlework
Q: What sort of hobbies can get me away from my screen and keep my hands busy? A: Knitting, crocheting, or punch needle embroidery. The difference between the types of needlework lies in the techniques and tools used. To my grandmother’s disappointment, I have never taken part in either activity, but even watching YouTube tutorials is extremely satisfying. I’ve been itching to make one of the Pinterest-worthy chunky yarn blankets (which employs a hand-knitting technique), and this feels like the perfect time to make my dreams a reality.
6. Learn an instrument
Bust out your recorder from elementary school, because it’s time for your musical talents to shine with this fun hobby. Fun fact: I learned how to play Baby by Justin Bieber on the piano via YouTube in high school, and it’s my favorite party trick to date. There’s no better time to connect with your musical side, and YouTube has a plethora of videos to help you start playing an instrument.
Channel your inner Frida Kahlo and get to painting, my friends. You don’t have to be an artist to pick up a paintbrush and get busy. If you want to go freehand, grab a painting kit with everything you need to get started. If you’re like me and would like some direction (and a guaranteed pretty result), a paint-by-numbers set is a must-have. Put on some of your favorite tunes, grab a glass of wine, and get artsy.
8. Make your own soap, candles, you name it…
It’s time to level up your crafting. Soap is always a household necessity, and you can never have too many candles, so why not try making your own? Order yourself some supplies, watch a few how-to videos, and get going. Bonus: You now have handmade gifts on deck for the next birthday or special occasion.
9. Learn how to apply your makeup
Why are makeup tutorials so entertaining? Everything I’ve learned about makeup I’ve learned from my favorite YouTube beauty icons. I love a good before and after, trying out new techniques (mastering a winged eyeliner, for instance), and getting the 411 on new product reviews. (Be careful, once you watch one, it’s easy to fall down a YouTube beauty tutorial rabbit hole.)
10. Learn to code
OK, so hobbies don’t generally revolve around being as productive as possible but hear us out. Coding is a real transferable skill that can mean big things for your career, whether you’re hoping to make a job switch or you’re just interested in broadening your knowledge base. There are tons of online courses that can teach you to code from your couch, so you can add a brand-new skill to your resume in no time.
11. Take care of your plants
If you too have acquired more plants over the last couple of years, you probably know full well that plants need regular attention and care. But if you’ve already witnessed the demise of at least one, you may wonder if you really have what it takes to grow your plant collection. To ease yourself into it, opt for easy-to-care-for plants until you feel more comfortable. Dive into resources about a new-to-you plant. Does it need a ton of light? Sparse water? A certain temperature or humidity level? There’s so much to learn, but there are so many resources to help you become a houseplant pro.
12. Take up photography
Dust off that DSLR you swore you were going to use on your trip abroad, and let’s get to learning! If you’re using your DSLR in “auto” mode, you’re doing it wrong. Even though your pictures might turn out OK, you’re probably not using your camera to its fullest potential.
That being said, DSLR or not, learning the groundwork of photography can help you to up your game and take better pictures in the future. Watch YouTube videos to learn about photography basics (aperture, exposure, shutter speed, and ISO), tips and tricks, and mistakes to avoid to better understand the camera you already have or inspire you to invest in one. A good book on photography is another great place to start small!
13. Learn a new hairstyle
If you tend to wear your hair the same way most days because of a lack of time to do anything you’re not quite as familiar with, now is the time to branch out and learn something new. Watch tutorials on YouTube or Instagram, gather any tools or supplies you may need, and give it a try. Practice makes perfect, after all.
14. Practice journaling
If you’re not already journaling, now is the ideal time to begin. Writing about the day’s happenings or whatever is weighing on your heart can be therapeutic, but the art of journaling doesn’t end there. Last year, I got bored writing about myself, so I turned to bullet journaling to help me tap into new areas of my brain. Grab your favorite pen and a notebook, and you’re set.
15. Prioritize your financial health
Financial planning should always be at the top of our list of things to do, but let’s be honest: When life is hectic, many of us (myself included) put finances on the back burner. There’s no better time than the present to take control of your money. Dealing with finances is no easy feat, but you’re not alone! A good place to start? Check out our finance archives or pick up a money-themed self-help book to kickstart the process.
16. Make a vision board
Making a vision board is the perfect way to get crafty while also setting your sights on the future. It can help to have a visual aid to remind you of who you want to be, where you want to go, and what you want to accomplish. All you need is a canvas/poster board, a printer, some magazines, glue, scissors, and markers, and you’ll be visualizing your dreams in no time. Bonus points if you invite a friend to join you and pop some champagne while doing it—friends that set goals together stay together, am I right?
17. Give your old furniture a refresh
That old coffee table in your living room could use some updating. Depending on what you want to do (and what the furniture currently looks like), you’ll need sanding and scraping supplies, some plastic sheeting (to work on), and some new paint. Transform the whole look of your space in no time at all.
18. Foster an animal
Fostering animals is an incredibly awesome way to spend your time. Reach out to your local animal shelter and see how you can get involved to help furry friends in need. Not only may it result in a cuteness overload, cuddles, and kisses, but it’ll help prepare the animal for future adoption and free up room in the shelter, allowing the shelter to take new animals in. Get some puppy (or kitty) lovin’ without the long-term commitment, and thank me later.
19. Tackle your TBR pile
If you have a large stack of books just waiting to be read, consider taking some time and diving in. You may not be able to jet off on a beach vacation this year, but that doesn’t mean you can’t get some quality reading time in. Bonus points if you start a book club!
20. Teach yourself a new language
I downloaded Duolingo to brush up on my Spanish (really wish I would have paid better attention during my high school language course), and it’s one of my favorite pastimes. It’s great for beginners, portable, and free, which is always a plus. Make it a daily habit to start learning a new language so you can confidently book that trip overseas and refine your skills.
21. Start a blog
Do you love to cook? Are you obsessed with finding fashion deals? Does teaching others how to do yoga light you up? No matter what your interests are, starting a blog is a great way to channel your passion and share it with others. And it’s not as complicated as it sounds to do so—all you have to do is decide on your niche, start a website through platforms like WordPress or Squarespace, and start sharing!
22. Channel your inner mixologist
Ordering a cocktail out these days is pricey as all get out, so why not learn to make your favorites at home for when you want to host your next dinner party? There are dozens of online courses you can take that can teach you how to make a cocktail for any mood or occasion.
23. Learn to read tarot
Has tarot card reading ever intrigued you? Do you simply want to know how for the sake of a party trick? Learn how to read tarot cards at home so you can gain insight into the past, present, and future of your life and whoever else is brave enough to do a reading with you!
24. Do puzzles
There is something so therapeutic about working on a puzzle—especially a big one—and it’s such an easy, no-pressure hobby to pick up. Pick one out that you think is cool (you can thrift these a lot of the time) and work on it for a little bit at a time after work to unwind and take your mind off of the stressors of work and life.
25. Start coloring
Channel your inner child by coloring in a book or on free printouts as a hobby. It’s so creatively freeing and relaxing, and you can choose whatever type of pictures you want to do. This isn’t and never will be a hobby that is just for kids!