Oct. 21, 2022

Hobby Burnout - Slow Down or Keep Going?

Hobby Burnout - Slow Down or Keep Going?

Winter season is a great time to take on hobbies.  It really helps if you have a place to pursue your project.  I have friends and family up north who have taken on quilting. My sister Cathie has made incredible quilts, and she loves it. My friend Christine learned to quilt in recent years and I admire her for doing that. Heck, I consider it a hobby if I sew a sock.

I also have some incredible artists in the family. My brother-in-law Kevin is an incredibly talented artist, and he does it for a hobby.  In recent years Kevin developed an online presence for his gallery. I remember when Kevin painted a beautiful northern scene for my mom. She had the picture on her wall and we ended up having a bit of a food fight when mom wasn’t around. A piece of spaghetti went flying and it just missed his picture and stuck to the wall. I remember the room went silent, we all looked at each other and said “On no, not Kevin’s painting”.  I think we had guardian angels because the tomato sauce and noodles went to either side of the painting, but not on it.  We breathed a sigh of relief and stopped our shenanigans.  40 years later and I may have to share this story with him!

I wish I could paint like that. I remember when I was a teenager and I saw my brother-in-law's paintings, I thought I would give it a try.  I created a little watercolor scene and it was not very good. I think it looked about the same as what I did in second grade. I thought the picture had gone in the garbage, and years later after my mom passed away, I discovered she had kept it.  It’s funny how sometimes we are our own worst critics.

I know of many people who have allowed their hobbies to become a source of kindness. After my mom retired, she decided to volunteer at a local elementary school. She didn’t have a driver’s license, and rode the transit bus there every week to help out. There were plenty of weeks when she rode that bus in 30 below weather. It wasn’t until years later that I learned my mom had knit mitts for an entire class.  Imagine that!  I can bet that was a least 30 pairs of mitts!  What a kind gesture.

What happens when you have a hobby and it becomes pressure? How does that happen?  First of all, if you are too hard on yourself and too self-critical, that might take the fun out of it.  By all means do your best, but don’t be hard on yourself if it’s not exactly what you hoped for.  What is most important is that you had fun, and no one got hurt.

There is such thing as hobby burnout.  It happens when someone feels overwhelmed or unable to find joy anymore in their hobby because it simply becomes too much. It’s ironic because often when you are feeing burned out, people tell you to take up a hobby.

How do you know if you have reached Hobby Burnout? Well, let’s start with interest. Are you finding yourself not wanting to do the hobby you used to love? Does participating in your hobby make you feel like you are simply wasting time?  Do you get excited and feel happy about your hobby, or does it make you feel stress?  Is it costing too much?  If the tools or supplies for your hobby are racking up your credit card bills, is it really what you should be doing?  What if your hobby starts to feel like a job?  

My podcast is a hobby.  For the most part, I love podcasting. I can be creative, keep my brain active, I’ve met some really cool podcasters from around the world and it’s my passion.  Yes, there are days when I have to remind myself I am having fun, and not to feel pressure. If I pick up side work helping people set up their own podcast, or create audio blogs, that’s a bonus.  My podcast is a hobby, and will stay a hobby.  I won’t let it become pressure, or become too self-critical like I did in earlier episodes.

If you have a hobby and it’s your passion, make sure you don’t let pressure to make money, be famous or do better take away from your enjoyment.  After all, a hobby is meant to be fun.

If you would like to hear more about this, check out my last episode titled Hobby Burnout- Keep It Fun and Not Pressure.  Here is the link:  You can also listen to it on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Deezer, Player FM and several other podcast apps.

If you have any thoughts on this topic, I would love to hear from you.  Visit my website at www.lindy' and on the right side of every page is a little button that says record a message.  Your message will come straight to my email box.  You can also email me through the Contact page on my website, or join my Facebook Group for Lindy’s Audio Café. I also have a Reviews page on my website, and it’s looking a little bare these days for this hobby podcaster. 

Have a great week everyone!  Remember that smiles come in all languages and in all colors. 


Kevin Bolstad's Art

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Image Credit: main image from Pixabay Image by Mystic Art Design.