Image via Pixabay
By Sharon Jones

There are many different hobbies someone could choose to take up, ranging from stamp collecting to drinking as many different varieties of beer as possible, or going the mad scientist route with a kit from HumanParagon.

Some hobbies, it turns out, can be better for your overall self-development than others. Here are a few of the leading contenders.

Take up gardening

Much of what we do during the course of our daily work lives is frantic, rushed, and caffeine-fuelled. We’re running from one task to another, endlessly, while doing a poor job of focusing on any given thing.

Not only that, but there’s also the fact that we’re often quite disconnected from the fruits of our labour. In the complex 21st century business world, how many of us truly get to finish our work for the day and gaze with pride at the completed result?

Gardening is a fantastic antidote to these everyday woes. Not only does it force us to slow down and engage with the present moment in a more deliberate way, but it directly anchors us to the sense of creating, and enjoying the results of our efforts.

There’s little as satisfying as seeing your garden develop over time and knowing that it was directly due to your efforts.

Of course, gardening is also great for our health and fitness, with much-needed vitamin D from the sun, fresh air, and light exercise all working wonders for our physical and mental wellbeing.

Get your walking shoes on

It’s a big world out there, and although many of us are now experiencing more of it than ever before, in the sense of catching flights to exotic locales for our holidays, we’re also engaging with it less on a direct basis.

Walking is a great way of getting reacquainted with the world around you. It’s also great for developing your fitness and appreciation of nature, while giving your mind the space and inspiration it needs to come up with fantastic new ideas.

It’s no wonder why many of the great writers, philosophers, and inventors of history swore by regular walks as a way of coming up with their brilliant visions.

Have a go at mountain climbing

Men climb mountains to overcome themselves, the saying goes, and there’s a world of truth to that.

Mountain climbing is a hobby which will not only expose you to some of the world’s most stunning vistas, but will also give you an incredible workout, while conditioning you to push through initial resistance and stick with your challenges until the end.

Once you’ve crested your first mountain summit, you’ll know what it’s all about.

Get into chess

Chess is, firstly, a fun game to play with other people — or even solo, with the help of a computer opponent. Of course, that’s only the tip of the iceberg.

Chess is a game of immense strategy — so much so that hundreds of enormous tomes have been written on different methods and protocols which can be used to win a game.

Getting into chess as a hobby is a brilliant way of sharpening up your problem-solving skills and training yourself to view tasks from new and interesting angles.

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