Getting a retirement hobby is easier than you may think. If you are asking yourself how do I get a retirement hobby, there are four main steps:
- Self-evaluation – Get to know you!
- Brainstorming – Gather ideas.
- Planning – Make contact and gather the resources you need.
- Action – Start your new retirement hobby.
How Do I Get a Retirement Hobby?
Perhaps you are already retired and bored? Perhaps you have just retired and are already worrying that you have no retirement hobbies to keep you busy? First steps are always the hardest to take. Follow our simple 4-point plan and you will soon be enjoying your choice of retirement hobby.
Step 1 – Self-Evaluation
The first step is to get to know yourself! Don’t just think about now but think back to the past when you were younger. Think about your likes, interests and passions by asking yourself these questions:
- What do I enjoy doing now?
- What did I use to enjoy doing?
Once you’ve done that, think about any big dreams you have harboured over the years. We all have big dreams we never pursue. There are plenty of reasons why: lack of time, family commitments, money and confidence to name a few. Ask yourself:
- What have I always dreamed of doing over the years?
- What did I want to do but never did?
Finally, think about all those conversations you’ve had with family, friends and colleagues over the years. Recall those times when you heard yourself saying, “I’d love to do that one day!” It might have been an exciting travel journey or an interesting hobby.
Make a note of your initial thoughts and keep them safe. They will help you during the next phase of how to get a retirement hobby.
Step 2 – Brainstorming Retirement Hobbies
Before you start brainstorming possible retirement hobbies, it’s important to think about why you want a retirement hobby. Ask yourself:
- What is the purpose of getting a retirement hobby?
- What do I want to gain from my retirement hobby?
Some of the main purposes of getting a retirement hobby include:
- Social contact
- Boredom relief
- Health benefits
Use these ideas to create headings. These headings will help you to identify different hobbies in each category.
What are Good Retirement Hobbies?
Start your list of retirement hobbies with the useful notes you made during your self-evaluation in Phase 1. These ideas have been generated by you and your close family, friends and colleagues. They will make good retirement hobbies as they have come direct from your likes, interests, passions and dreams.
Even if you now have a list of retirement hobbies, it is good to find additional inspiration. Keep searching and you may find a new interest or passion that you want to explore! Retirement is the perfect opportunity for new beginnings.
Use the following tools to find inspiration and widen your choice of hobbies:
1. Search the Internet
Using the internet is a great way of getting a retirement hobby. You can use a search engine to research:
- retirement hobby ideas online
- organisations which offer advice
- groups which you can join
If you are looking for a comprehensive list of retirement hobbies, save time by checking out our useful article called What are Good Retirement Hobbies.
2. Contact National Charities for Older Adults
National charities for older adults like Age UK are a great place to contact for advice and ideas. For over 60s, they offer places to meet and have a range of classes you can join.
3. Contact Your Local Leisure Centre
We are all aware of the benefits of staying fit and healthy in retirement. Your local leisure centre is a rich source of information about the many different activities you can try out at reasonable prices. There are usually dedicated activities and classes for older adults.
4. Contact Your Local Library
Local libraries are often an underused and undervalued community resource. Of course, we are all aware of the benefits of borrowing books, CDs and DVDs from our local library. However, do you know what other services your local library may offer?
Local libraries are a great way of pursuing your interests and increasing social contact in retirement. In addition to expert library staff, volunteers often work in the library to support members of the local community with various interests.
For instance, if you enjoy reading, most libraries have a reading group that you can join, or they can put you in touch with local book clubs. Alternatively, if you are interested in local history or want to join a local history club, the library has many archives of resources.
Similarly, if you are passionate about researching your family tree, your local library can help you start. Free internet access will help you access national archives and dig deeper!
If you don’t have basic computer skills, your library may even offer sessions run by volunteers to give help and support in the basics. They may also run buddy sessions for more advanced skills including social media.
How to Find a Hobby in Retirement?
Use the four resources outlined above (internet search, charities for older adults, leisure centre and library) to create a long list of potential retirement hobbies. As you conduct your research, don’t forget to think about the reason why you want a retirement hobby. This will help identify relevant organisations and groups:
Social Contact Face-to Face
Use the internet to identify national charities for older people (eg. Age UK) and search for groups you can join. Contact local organisations and charities (eg. RSPB) to meet other like-minded enthusiasts. Joining a group will enable you to make the most of your interests and share your passions!
There are many groups you can join including:
- book clubs
- film clubs
- amateur hospital radio
- rambling associations
- local pub quiz teams
- local history group
- environmental groups
Follow your existing passions or branch out and discover something new and exciting!
Social Contact Online
If you are unable to leave the house owing to limited mobility, there are a number of online groups you can join. The internet has many social media groups and online forums which enable people to meet through the internet. Lists of local forums can be accessed by charities like Age UK. If you aren’t confident in using technology, contact your local library and see if they can help!
You can also use the internet to identify charities which you can help from home. For example, Postpals is a small charity which asks volunteers to send letters, cards and small gifts to seriously ill children. Your good wishes, time and a stamp will make a huge difference to others.
There are many hobbies that you can do at home to relieve boredom in retirement or if you have limited mobility. The internet or library is a great place to research new retirement hobby ideas. Websites such as Pinterest are full of craft ideas and brain teaser games.
If you enjoy the outdoors, there are many inexpensive hobbies for retirees that will get you out of the house. The beauty of searching for these retirement hobbies is that you can do them on your own or with a friend for company. Your research may identify:
- Metal detecting
Staying active in retirement is a big reason to get a retirement hobby. Contacting your local leisure centre is perhaps the quickest way of finding out about affordable fitness classes and activities on offer. As mentioned above, leisure centres often run classes for older adults and are home to a number of sports clubs.
However, the sky is the limit and the internet will be able to help you locate the nearest groups for any sports or health activity you may wish to pursue. Your local library or community centre may also have an information board or leaflets about local classes and groups for the sport or activity of your choice.
Don’t forget the benefits of walking for health. Joining a local walking group is a great way of combining exercise with a love of nature and socialising. You can use the internet to join a walking group or find contact details via your local library.
The internet is also a useful resource for finding free online games which will keep your brain healthy and active. You will also find free online mindfulness and meditation sessions.
Retirement hobbies that will get you thinking and lead to self-improvement are beneficial to your mental agility and health. There are many retirement hobbies which will keep your mind active and fit, plus fill the void left by work.
Once again, the internet and your local library can be a rich source of information about retirement hobbies that will get you thinking. Ask yourself what skills you want to learn or improve. Perhaps you will learn a new language or research your family tree?
Step 3 – Planning Your Retirement Hobby
Once you have your retirement hobbies list, it is time to make a plan. You will need to gather or purchase any resources you need for your retirement hobby. This could be craft supplies or sports equipment.
If you have decided to join a local group, this is the time to make contact and join the group. This can be daunting for some people but remember that you are not alone. The benefits of joining a group will last forever. You will soon be part of a new community!
Step 4 – Action
The final step is to start your new retirement hobby. This is the most exciting step as it marks a positive change. You have worked hard to get a retirement hobby and now is the time to enjoy it! We hope you find it rewarding!