10 Unique Hobbies to Learn in the New Year

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If you ever get tired of talking about work during social situations, it might be time for you to develop unique hobbies. You know how the conversation goes – someone asks, “And what do you do?” You grimace and start talking about your job… again.

While some hobbies can bring in extra money or help you develop and grow as a person, others exist for pure enjoyment. They’re a fun way to spend your free time, build community, and invest in yourself. 

Here are ten fun and unique hobbies you can learn in the new year: 

1. Go Hiking

Hiking is a great way to explore local nature and get your body moving. Spending time outdoors can help you wind down after a long day at work and even increase your mental wellness. Time in nature gives you time to process and also invites discovery – you never know what plants, animals, or people you may meet on a hiking trip. 

2. Learn the Ukelele

If you’re interested in music, try taking up the ukulele. This instrument sounds similar to the guitar, but it’s more portable and easier to learn. Many musicians learn basic chording on the ukulele so they can play along while they sing. If you find you really enjoy this instrument, you can decide to take your musical journey further and learn the guitar or even the violin. 

3. Take Self-Defense

Learning self-defense can increase your confidence and improve your level of physical fitness. Working out will also increase your mental wellness, upping focus and productivity levels at work. Self-defense courses are a great way to meet new people and expand your community. Plus, defense training will give you insider knowledge the next time you watch an action movie!

4. Study Opera

If you have some free time and enjoy music and acting, consider becoming an opera aficionado. Most operas are written in foreign languages and have close ties to the historical events that dictated their times. Learning about opera will give you insight into history and a way to continue learning from the past. The opera world is still alive and thriving, and you can enjoy live performances of your favorite operas in many major cities.  

5. Journal It Out

Journaling has many benefits for your mental and emotional health. However, most people struggle to journal regularly because it takes more time to unpack their thoughts than they planned for. By journaling as a hobby, you can devote enough time to this activity to enjoy it and reap its benefits. Journaling is a fantastic hobby to start the new year with!

6. Investigate Climbing

Climbing is an exciting physical activity that grows muscle, improves endurance, and challenges you to push yourself beyond your comfort zone. Most climbers start in a gym with safety equipment before trying outdoor climbs. Climbing is a progressive sport, with various grades of difficulty. Some different types of climbing include bouldering, top rope, and free solo climbing. 

7. Brush Up Survival Skills

Studying survival skills is a fun way to expand your knowledge base while learning practical skills you could use while camping or in a disaster situation. Skills to consider include foraging, fire-starting, navigation, gardening, canning, hunting, shelter-building, water purification, and first aid. You can use many survival skills to enrich everyday life as well as to prepare for extreme adventures. 

8. Start a YouTube Channel

If you’re interested in video production, consider starting a YouTube channel. This hobby will give you experience with filming and editing and help you connect with like-minded individuals through the platform. Many YouTubers focus on sharing a niche talent or hobby, while others produce lifestyle content that shares their day-to-day activities. Eventually, this hobby could become a side hustle and allow you to impact hundreds of people. 

9. Become an Herbalist

Herbalism is a valuable but neglected art that can give you insight into your health and inspire connection with the world around you. Herbalists use plants and natural remedies to support healthy physical functioning and reduce stress in the body. If you want to officially practice herbalism, you can pursue training and certification. However, many individuals simply enjoy making their own tea and foraging for life-giving herbs in their area for personal use.  

10. Try Drawing

Most art forms are based on foundational drawing skills. If you’re interested in watercolor, acrylics, or graphic design, taking some drawing lessons or finding a good book on the subject can help you get started. Drawing is fun, relieves stress, and is another great way to connect with community. Anyone can learn how to draw with enough practice, so don’t be daunted if you think this is outside your skillset. 

Developing Unique Hobbies to Learn for Life

Hobbies continue your learning journey and can enrich your life in many unexpected ways. Investing in hobbies can increase your confidence, reduce stress and anxiety, teach you more about the world around you, and lead to new friendships. In addition, unique hobbies are a lot of fun. Use this list to get started on your next learning adventure!

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