In today’s overly connected world, finding solitude has become increasingly difficult. We are all bogged down by personal commitments, job pressure, religious commitments, etc; the list is endless. More often than not, you do not have time for the most important person in your life; YOU!
There is nothing wrong with disconnecting and spending some time alone. In fact, research suggests that spending alone time lets you unwind, discover yourself, improves concentration, and increases productivity. So do yourself a favour and spend some time alone. If you have no clue what you can do in your alone time, here are some a quick and easy ideas for you.
1. A book is a dream that you hold in your hand.(Neil Gaiman) – Reading
The joys of reading are incomparable. Reading is one of the easiest hobbies you can pick and sustain. Reading improves mental stimulation, stress reduction, improves writing skills and increases your knowledge, vocabulary, and concentration. Apart from this, there isn’t much one needs to invest to pick up reading as a habit in your free time. All you need is a good book, a nice reading light and your imagination. You can read anything right from fiction, non-fiction, sci-fi and self-help books as per your liking.
2. Rock out, Chill out, Groove or just Drop the Bass! – Listening to Music
Music transcends all languages and forms of communication. It is a great mood enhancer and stimulates your senses like nothing in this world. The process of musical discovery in never ending. You can start with a song, move to the album, then the discography and finally to the genre at large. With advent of digital technologies like MP3 and MP4 players and the internet the process of acquiring and listening to music is in your hands (quite literally). You can pump your favourite tracks on your home audio systems or sit back and groove to your sublime tunes on your headphones.
3. Chords, Scales, Melodies, Bliss… – Learn an Instrument
Picture yourself with a guitar sitting by the sea or lush green meadows humming a melody that is in your head; the mere thought puts you in a better place already. Learning an instrument is one of the most therapeutic and rewarding things you could do for yourself. You could relieve your angst by beating the drums, serenade your passion with a guitar or a piano or chase the blues away with a harmonica. Also, playing an instrument in a party will always get you extra Brownie points. The choice is yours my friend.
4. To infinity… and beyond! – Star Gazing
Introspection is one of the key factors to self rejuvenation. There is nothing better than doing so while gazing at the stars. Stargazing and astronomy are a great way to learn your universe and yourself. All you need is a good telescope and keen eyes. You could also join one of the many amateur astronomers clubs like Khagol Mandal to learn and meet other like-minded people.
5. Pew! Pew! Pew! Boss Mode On – Gaming
Video Games and Toys are no longer for kinds. They have come of age. Many people don’t want to lose their inner child; you shouldn’t too. Games are good way to unwind and also have fun. Research says that Video Games help you focus and improve your decision making process. Video games have evolved from simple 8 bit graphics images and chiptunes to realistic visuals and captivating sound effects. The options for gaming are plenty ranging from PC games to dedicated gaming consoles like Sony PlayStation Series (PS2, PS3, PS4 and PSP), Microsoft XBOX Series and the Nintendo Wii. Today’s games do not force you to sit and play, motion sensors let you play games using actions and gestures.
6. But first let me take #Selfie – Photography
Photography is one of the most popular hobbies in the world. Being behind the camera is immensely empowering and rewarding. The world of Photography is like wanderlust – the more you explore, the more you love it. You can start by experimenting with simple Point and Shoot cameras and then eventually graduate to Digital SLR cameras (DSLR’s). The right use of lights, unique uses of lenses and ingenious use of filters give you endless creative possibilities. (Shameless plug, we have a great selection of (Photography gear). Don’t worry; you will definitely get to hone your skills on live subjects when the wedding season is around.
7. DIY Sorcery – Tech Exploring / Experimenting
DIY (Do-It-Yourself) is the nomenclature for anything experimental in this day and age. This generation is proud of its DIY culture. Technology is even more inventive (yet accessible) today. You can automate your home, build robots and even build a drone. Hardware technologies like Raspberry Pi, Arduino, RoboBuilder and Lego Mindstorm are a few names to help you get started. Take it from us, flying a drone / quad-copter over your neighbour’s yard is super fun.
8. Back to the Drawing Board – Drawing/Self Portrait
Drawing or Painting is an amazing hobby to take up in your free time. You don’t have to be good. It is all about expressing yourself with the help of colours and idea on a canvas. Painting is associated with expressive and clear communication skills and superior emotional intelligence among other benefits. On your path of self discover you may discover there is an artist in you. Here is an inspiration for you; in an attempt of being human, a leading celebrity turned his artistic hobby in to a NGO and eventually a fashion brand.
9. Bon Jour! Aloha! Salaam! – Learning a new Language
Learning a new language is one of the most productive ways to use your free time. It is exciting, fun and great for your professional skill enhancement as well. Learning a new language leads to increased focus, productivity and also improvements in your first choice of language. In this global society, being multi-lingual is a definite plus. You don’t even need lessons anymore; apps like Duolingo teach you new languages in the form of a game.
10. Get out there – Outdoor Activities
When nothing seems right, seek help from Mother Nature. Everyone is aware of the countless benefits the great outdoors have to offer. Head out to the country side with your hiking gear like a compass, hiking stick and a backpack to explore the wilderness. You could scout the outskirts of the city for beautiful birds and other fauna with your binoculars. The world is your playground, make the most of it.