The New York Times

The Case for Having a Hobby

This article originally appeared in The New York Times.

Last spring, I forgot the word for hobby. I was on a hike with friends, and I was explaining how much happier my spouse had become recently after starting a band with some friends.

“It’s just nice for them, I think, to have this creative outlet that’s not their job,” I told my friends. “It doesn’t have to be something that brings them money, just something that lets them unwind and have fun.”

My friends reminded me there was a word for that.

For many of us, expectations of an “always-on” working life have made hobbies a thing of the past, relegated to mere memories of what we in our free time. Worse still, many hobbies have morphed into the dreaded or as paths to , turning the

You're reading a preview, sign up to read more.

More from The New York Times

The New York Times5 min readPsychology
Becoming a Digital Grandparent
When it comes to warnings about limiting kids’ screen time, grandparents are, well, grandfathered in. Emerging from a theater on a recent Sunday, I turned on my phone and found a flurry of texts from my daughter. My 2-year-old granddaughter had just
The New York Times6 min readScience
Intermittent Fasting Made My Life Easier, and Happier
I could eat the foods I enjoyed and most of my regular meals, but it had to be within a short time frame of eight to 10 hours. At the urging of doctor friends and a few popular books, I embarked on a diet plan earlier this year called intermittent fa
The New York Times4 min read
6 Simple Barre Stretches to Try on Vacation
No matter where you are in the world, you can always find something to lean on so you can stretch your muscles. Traveling — even for fun — can be tough on our bodies. Hours spent in airline seats, heavy meals and long stretches of touristy walking or