Wednesday, March 21, 2007

What hobby helps you relax?

Over on the ACFW loop, I saw an interesting idea. Someone asked what hobbies we do in our non-writing time to help clear our minds to write (or something to that effect.)

So...What do you do that helps you clear your mind?

Does it help you let go of the everyday grind and lessen your stress?

Want to know a secret? I rotate my hobbies. It depends on my mood. I have more than one or two:-) Why? I'm easily bored.

Today, I shopped. Oh I know, it's so cliche'. But it's mindless:-) I needed mindless.

Here's my little list of hobbies that help me relax so I can clear my mind and relax.

1. Volunteer as a barista at my daughter's high school coffee cart. I LOVE this! (It's also a ministry to the teachers and kids.)
2. Read
3. Synchronized swimming
4. Walk my dog
5. Bake
6. Blog (I know, I know, but I just write without rules.)
7. Talk to my friends and family
8. Travel
9. Go to the movies (alone when no one knows where I am, lol.)
10. Sing
11. Bible Study w/my regular group
12. Ride my horse (not very often anymore since we both have arthritis, lol.)
13. Use an elyptical machine
14. Daydream
15. Journal (I am sooo a writer...)
16. Play board games w/family. I don't lose Sequence very often, :-)
17. Email
18. Plunk on my piano when absolutely no one is around
19. Read recipe books
20. Okay, okay...and shop, but don't tell. This one I really prefer as a loner thing too. Except I think I need one of those make-over people to help me pick shoes. I'm terrible at it. They all look so weird to me.

Here's hobby #10, singing with 3 of my kids at Christmas:-D

Now, the question is not only how does it clear your mind and then help your writing, humor, or sanity...but how could the actual hobbies you do translate to deepen a character's life with your real-life knowledge, a way to help someone else, or enrich your personal sense of self. What's your list?



  1. I read, ride my bike, walk on a nature trail, (shop!!!), watch a movie, just go somewhere. I also work on my genealogy.

  2. I love to shop, but there's this annoying little thing called money:-( Shopping just isn't as much fun without it. I like to decorate, which sometimes involves shopping, but not always. I like to cook/bake. I especially like to make my famous chocolate chip cookies and pawn them off on other people, like my friends at Sonic (who often give me my daily fix of a Rt. 44 Diet Coke for free) and my buddies at the police department. Bubble baths, reading, and time alone rate right up there too. What can I say? I have 5 kids. Time alone is a rare commodity:-) Right, Ang?

  3. These sound like terrific ways to clear your minds:-) And you are so right Mindy! Personal time is a premium around here:-D

  4. I don't think I'm meant to comment on this post! I've tried twice and they disappear! So here's a quick list, then I won't try again:

    shopping (window shopping mostly--a tough art to learn)
    reading--cookbooks, too, Angie!
    surfing the web for fun (not work)
    watching the Food Network
    going to movies with friends
    date night with hubby (not often enough)
    going to the mall and movies with my kids
    eating out! :)
    reading magazines and clipping recipes

    I'm sure I wrote more yesterday, but I don't want to push my luck and have another screen disappear!


  5. Good post, Angie! But I'm getting exhausted looking at your list - you are such a motivated woman!

    Hmm, to clear my mind or destress, I take a drive - anywhere. Could go 2 miles or 10 miles! I'll take a power walk. I love to watch movies or cozy up with a good book, usually romance. I love to watch Food Network and I like the show Room Service on the Fine Living channel. I like to day dream that I could design a room or make a meal like those folks do!

    But as for the last question, I'm not sure how the hobbies I have translate to deepen a character's life. I will admit I'll have my character take the same actions I would, however I try not to do that, because I'm not writing about me!!! One of my characters is a chef and one is an artist. I think those are 2 interesting careers.