Eight Great Ideas for Hobbies That Will Help You Be Healthier and Happier

By  //  April 12, 2023

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Do you have a favorite hobby that you enjoy during your downtime? Studies have shown that people with hobbies are often happier and less stressed.

Many people with hobbies have less anxiety and depression. There are many hobbies that provide mental and physical benefits and serve as self-care activities. Hobbies can help people to relax, feel more fulfilled, and add variety and interest to their lives. Here are some of the hobbies that have been shown to be most beneficial and have both physical and mental advantages:


Gardening is a great hobby for many people because it’s fun, creative, active, and gets people outside. Gardening has some great benefits, including physical benefits like increases in vitamin D, increased activity level, and cardio exercise. Gardening is also good for mental health as it can help people relax, give them a sense of purpose, and increase their serotonin levels by getting more sunshine and fresh air. Some people even help themselves feel better by growing their own supplements and herbs, such as cannabis (try delta-9 THC), echinacea, ginger, and yarrow. Gardening can even help reduce dementia risk. 


Reading can be a good hobby for a variety of reasons. Reading can help you to relax and can help you to stop thinking about your own problems. Reading is also good for keeping cognitive function sharp and can help prevent dementia. Studies show that people who read showed increased brain connectivity, even days later.

Reading can also help people to develop better empathy. When you read a book, you often look at life through others’ eyes and feel their feelings. This experience allows you to be more empathetic and better at understanding how other people feel and that life is different for different people.


Creative hobbies like painting, sketching, journaling, and photography are all good options as a hobby. Creative hobbies are good for helping people to feel more relaxed because they give them a way to express themselves. Whether or not someone is actually good at creating or has a talent for art doesn’t seem to matter. In addition, the person doing the art doesn’t have to create for very long to experience the benefits. An hour or so is enough to lower levels of mental health concerns like depression, sadness, anxiety, and stress. 


Cooking is a great hobby that can help to reduce stress, improve nutrition, and provide a sense of accomplishment. Many people enjoy cooking for its creative nature, while others enjoy cooking because they like eating delicious, healthy foods. Cooking can benefit mental health because it has a meditational, ritualistic quality, especially if you are cooking a traditional family recipe. It is also a good way for people to relax and welcome creativity into their lives. Finally, cooking is good for mental health because the final product provides a delicious sense of accomplishment and satisfaction.

Cooking is also beneficial for physical health. People who eat home-cooked meals several times a week are much less likely to be overweight, which can lower the risk for a number of diseases including heart disease and diabetes.


Dancing is a great hobby that people often enjoy for its social benefits. However, dancing also helps to reduce mental strain, improve physical health, and boost self-confidence. Dancing has long been recognized as a great form of physical activity. Simply put, dancing, whether ballroom dancing or performance-based dancing like ballet, is always good exercise. Dancers in general are more flexible, stronger, and have stronger hearts.

However, researchers also know that dancing is good for mental health. Dancing can reduce symptoms of dementia, possibly due to the combination of mental work with repetitive motion and music. Dancing is also good for helping people to relax and lower their stress levels.


Hiking is a great hobby because it combines physical movement with the mental and physical benefits of being outside. People who spend more time outside are less likely to feel anxious and stressed, and sunshine can help your mental health. In addition, being in nature is beneficial in many different ways. 

Hiking also has obvious physical benefits. Walking is one of the best and most natural forms of activity that humans can do, and it is good for all parts of our body. Walking, especially in natural areas with elevation changes, increases heart rate and is a good form of mild cardio exercise. It also helps to build endurance, strengthen muscles and bones, and increase your balance. 


Writing, like other creative outlets, can help to reduce stress, improve creativity, and promote self-reflection. Many people enjoy keeping a daily journal, which can lower stress and help people to deal with the problems they are facing. Other people enjoy writing as a creative outlet and write songs, poetry, and stories. Writing this way helps people have better mental health in many of the same ways as the visual arts. Having a way to express yourself is a powerful tool.

Playing an Instrument

Playing an instrument is a great hobby that combines learning a new physical skill, music, and challenging mental processes. Playing an instrument can help lower depression and reduce feelings of isolation in older people. It also provides mental stimulation, as learning to read music and play instruments is hard mental work. Finally, small motor skills are honed during instrument playing. Mental health benefits from the satisfaction of learning a new skill, the enjoyment of the sound of music, and the appreciation given by others are also important advantages of learning to play an instrument.


There are many ways people can grow and become healthier mentally, physically, and emotionally. Having a hobby that they enjoy and that provides health benefits is one of the best things people can do for themselves. Hobbies like these help people relax, escape from the stresses of work and life, and reduce their anxiety levels.

Many of these hobbies also help people feel more fulfilled, increase their level of physical activity, and make social connections. If you don’t have a hobby that you enjoy, consider trying something new today.