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It’s unbelievable. While it seemed that life was about to finally get back to normal with the gradual opening of states, all of a sudden an uptick in COVID-19 cases has hit the country like a tidal wave. While many governors have vowed not to completely shut down states again many are still not fully opened. And, to…

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Learn something new: 18 really interesting skills and hobbies

Hobbies you do in your free time fill you with passion and joy. It's the things we don't do to earn money but to put our mind to ease while immersing ourselves in a joyful activity that boosts our energy level.

It's true that we never truly stop learning - there are so many skills we don't know and they are within our reach if we choose to develop them. learning new skills keeps our mind youthful, improving our cognitive abilities and keeping us interested. It's the new things that get us moving through life.

So, if you are considering taking up a new hobby or developing a new skill, how about one of the following unexpected suggestions?

1. Speed Reading

Just think about how much you could accomplish if you were able to read one-third of your usual time. What about only half of that time?

Speed reading is actually a skill where you learn about the fundamental principles of our visual system. This knowledge allows you to eliminate inefficient methods you use in your reading, which leads to quicker reading and improved memory. Even if you manage to reduce your reading time only slightly, it will still have an enormous effect on the overall time you will save. Still, the majority of people notice a huge improvement in their reading speed after developing this skill.

2. Carpentry

First of all, carpentry is an incredibly useful and practical hobby. It could also lead to some job opportunities - you never know what the future brings. It may take a lot of time and hard work but you will have many benefits, including improved mathematical and mechanical skills, critical thinking and even computer skills. You will develop an eye for details and be able to build basic items necessary around your home. Start with a beginner's project and see how you like it.

3. Birdwatching

This is a lovely hobby for those who admire the natural world around them. Becoming a birdwatcher will make you aware of bird movements, the different sounds they make and various types of birds living in your surroundings. You could simply go out in your neighborhood and watch the birds there but the most exciting way to watch them is away from the urban environment. In the natural environment, birds feel safer so you are more likely to spot more species.

4. Drawing

Drawing is a skill we were all born with, unlike writing or reading. Drawing has been the human way of communication since the dawn of civilization, so no wonder why we still feel the need to express our thoughts and feelings through drawings. A drawing course will teach you how to perfect your drawing skills and express your creativity in the best possible way. There are many techniques you can learn, which will allow you to find the appropriate form of expression for you.

5. Geocaching

This hobby may have seemed lame when you were younger but college students and older adults find it incredibly fun. The modern times have made it all so simple with their GPS and similar technological advancements. It takes specific knowledge to read a map, and few people know how to do it. Geocaching will teach you not just that but also how to use a compass and solve problems. You will also learn how to use GPS to hide and look for treasures at locations given through coordinates. If you join a geocaching club, you'll even get bonus points. You simply need to get a cache that comes in a waterproof container and a logbook. The cache contains things like CDs, books, etc.

6. Restoring old furniture

Being able to refinish or reupholster an old piece of furniture and make something new and modern out of it is an amazing feeling. You can easily turn an ugly wooden piece into a lovely cabinet or a chair. You simply get a cheap piece of furniture from an antique shop, clean it up, and then get on to work. After you're done, you can either keep it or sell it and earn some extra money. Many people throw away furniture that's actually still usable and perfectly functional. Their junk can be your hidden treasure and a source of many hours of joy.

7. Basic Car Repairs

Car repairs are quite expensive but some of the basic ones can be done by you and save you some money. Even if you think you don't have the technical skills necessary for this hobby, you can still learn how to change oil and alternators or fix fuel filters. There are useful video channels online where you can start learning about basic car repairs and also learn more about problem-solving.

8. Photography

Taking photographs is a relaxing hobby. It makes you go on an adventure, exploring your surroundings or unknown territory, Photography makes you see things differently, from an unexpected angle. It's so easy to pick up a camera and make a lasting memory of a unique moment or a beautiful scene. The photography course will sharpen your skills you need to use the best from the camera. It will help you gain confidence with the equipment but also in editing the photos. You can even put your photographs on sale and find pleasure in other people admiring and buying your photos.

9. Art of origami

Origami is a heap hobby but incredibly addictive. You can do it on your own or play with your kids. You just need a pair of scissors and a sheet of paper and you're on your way to make tiny, beautiful creations. If you love art and math, this may be your next favorite thing to do. As you make progress, you will slowly learn how to fold sequences without even needing instructions. Once you become skillful, you can use this skill to make cards, envelopes, ornaments and even doll clothes.

10. Coffee making

If you are a coffee lover, then you know that each cup of coffee is unique in its taste and smell. It also depends on which part of the world coffee came from, namely where the plant grew. Whether the cherries were stripped or picked will also influence the final taste.

The art of coffee making is a skill that takes time, patience and above all love for this warm beverage. You can learn how to decorate your coffee with latte designs, learn about different ways of brewing coffee and different ingredients you can add to it to change and enrich its flavor.

11. Horseback Riding

Back in the days, horse riding was a basic skill necessary for everyday life. Nowadays, it seems that people see it as a prestigious hobby only for the chosen ones and don't even consider it. Too bad, because not only is it a great sport but it has also been proven that horse riding has positive mental benefits for the rider. In other words, it's highly therapeutic. yes, you will have to go through extreme training but you will improve your strength, balance, and coordination. Not to mention the deep, loving connection you will create with the horse.

12. Learn how to forage

It's incredibly interesting, as well as practical, to learn which plants are edible and which are poisonous. It's great when you know which plants you can pick from the park, or any other public area or your garden, and use it for preparing a meal. Wild mushrooms or berries are the most common types of food people learn how to recognize. It's important to do thorough research and a sufficient amount of reading to be sure what is edible.

13. Make your own jewelry

You can have a unique style if you learn how to make jewelry. It's a creative hobby that allows you to express your style and even earn some money if you choose to sell some pieces online. You can buy a book or watch some tutorials online. You will enjoy every step - coming up with the design, buying materials and using your hands to create something beautiful.

14. Learn Basic Self-Defense

It's a great feeling to be independent, whether in financial, emotional or physical terms. It is incredibly rewarding and self-assuring to be able to physically defend and protect yourself in case of a threating situation. A self-defense class is not reserved for women and children only - it is a skill that everyone should learn and feel more confident. You just need to find martial art you enjoy most and devote some time for classes.

15. Gardening

Gardening is possible, no matter which country you live in. You only need to adapt to weather conditions in terms of plants you will grow and the care you will provide to them.

Gardening brings many physical and mental benefits, and the best thing is that you don't need to have a green thumb to enjoy a garden. there are always easy-to-grow plants even for beginners.

First of all, gardening is a form of physical exercise, helping you burn out up to 300 calories per hour. It's also a great way to reduce stress levels and to unwind after feeling strong pressure brought by everyday problems. Finally, it will allow you to become at least partially self0sufficient in terms of providing food for your family, depending on whether you'll grow fruits, vegetables or herbs.

16. Reading

Reading is a cheap hobby with a lot of benefits. You focus on something other than your problems, something meaningful. It can serve as a way of escape from the stress but it can also be a source of great inspiration and joy. In case you choose to read non-fiction, you'll also learn a new skill or a useful fact along the way.

In case you are not a fan of flipping pages, try listening to an audiobook. Some people find it less distracting and more effective than regular reading. You can even listen to them while you're on the move.

There's no need to buy books - you can support the local library by joining it and borrowing books from there. There's even the possibility to borrow audiobooks as well. It's also possible to find free ebooks, although most of them are older.

Keep in mind that mental stimulation that reading books provides you with is improving your cognitive skills, expands your vocabulary and improves your analytical skills.

17. Declutter Your Home

Maybe you think it's weird to think of decluttering your home as a hobby but there is even a book called Kon Mari Method of Decluttering that turns the act of decluttering into a form of useful skill. The book was written by Marie Kondo, a Japanese businesswoman who came up with this method in order to help people turn their homes into a peaceful, inspiring place. A decluttered home is a home that's free of stress, and this is what you are aiming for. You can choose either reading the book or watch a video on its organization training, as many of the methods are sometimes difficult to follow in the book.

18. Playing Games

Playing games in our nature - we enjoy having fun, solving puzzles and riddles, and getting competitive when playing with others. Carefully chosen games improve your cognitive skills and make you more attentive to details. Not to mention you can have a great game night with friends or family.

Board games are worth the money because a $30 game can be played at least 10 times before it gets boring or repetitive. Most of them are timeless, meaning you can always reach out for them from time to time when you need a bit of fun with your loved ones. Alternatively, some board games have an online version, allowing you to play them with friends or members of your family who are in a different location. It's a great way of staying in touch with them even if you don't get to see them very often.

Final words

There's an almost endless list of hobbies and skills you could focus on. It's only a matter of your personal preferences and passions. Whatever you choose, you will rip the benefits simply because you are enjoying it.

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