By Emily Allen, Deputy Head Girl
I will admit that I have never been the person to stick to the same things. Growing up I tried a range of sports and clubs, but I have never stuck to them. However, that is not always a bad thing; your time at school is the perfect time to start trying new things as whether it’s your first year at Barr Beacon or even your last, there is still time to get out of your comfort zone and experience new things. The list of hobbies is endless; use this time at school or even during the holidays to expand your list of tried things. From testing a lot of sports, I have finally concluded that I love to play tennis, whether it is playing it or just coaching. Without the experience of the different hobbies, I wouldn’t have found something that I love. Use spare time to find your passion. My example of sports is just the beginning of the list. There is no age limit to going out and experiencing new things, it has taken me this long to find out what I enjoy, and I am in Year 13. Even when you have left school and go to university, an apprenticeship or get a job, there is still time for you to go out and try new things. However, this time at school is a great time to start trying out new things.
The benefits of having a hobby are endless. Here are just a few that comes to mind:
- It helps you to relieve any stress by keeping you engaged in something you enjoy.
- Hobbies can increase your social life and create a bond with others.
- They bring a sense of fun and freedom to life that can help minimise the impact of chronic stress.
- Helps you keep motivated.
From experience, I know how hard it is to maintain motivation at home. Having to look after my two dogs sometimes makes it hard to stay concentrated on my schoolwork. But from having to deal with this throughout lockdown I came up with a solution that helped both myself and the two pups: having a small break from my work to take them to the park and get some exercise walking them finally allowed me to concentrate as they fell straight to sleep when we got back. Not only did it benefit the dogs, I also benefitted from going outside and taking a break from my work. Therefore, I have made a habit to stop being lazy and go for little walks whenever I can. Getting out into the fresh air revived my energy and gave me motivation to go back and finish my work. Hobbies do not just include exercising; the list is endless. Whether you are into collecting Lego, engaging in astronomy, baking, or even just reading a book. A hobby can be anything.
At this point of school, we are just getting back into everything and getting our heads around new routines. Even with the Covid measures in place, our school has found a way of continuing with after-school clubs, such as badminton and there are still hundreds of hobbies you can take part in that does not involve contacting others. A great example of this is learning a new skill. I am hardly at a professional level, but I learnt the alphabet in sign language. This was a little while ago. And at that time it felt so good to have learnt something new and it made me want to continue learning and trying out new things. Perhaps I should pick it up again?
I am sure most of you are spending quite a lot of time online, whether it is on YouTube, TikTok or other forms of social media. However, you could use this time for trying new things. Even using a fraction of that time that you would have spent on your phones and doing something else instead would be extremely beneficial for your mental and physical health. Even if you do not fancy going out to explore the hobbies that are available to you outside of home or school, you can even make a hobby out of your phone or laptop. Start a blog maybe? Use your time to make a positive change online.
Do not think that it is too late to start something new: you’ve got your whole life ahead of you, so try new hobbies, meet new people and have fun.