Renaissance Ranch

How Hobbies Can Help You Avoid Substance Use

Jan 28, 2023

What would you say if someone asked, “What are your hobbies?”? As adults, it can be difficult to identify or even make time for hobbies. Schedules are busy, and responsibilities are abundant. Yet, hobbies are important for a variety of reasons. For example, if you are striving to avoid substance abuse, hobbies can help you stay busy and focused on more positive things. 

Before you can use hobbies as a tool for coping, you will need to know what your hobbies are. They may be things you do regularly, or they could be things you really enjoy but never really make time for these days. So let’s dive a little deeper into hobbies and how to identify them. 

What Are Hobbies?

Hobbies can be anything you enjoy doing outside of your typical obligations. It could be something you like to do on the weekends. For example, maybe you enjoy playing golf or shooting hoops with friends. A hobby could be something you do for wellness, such as yoga or Crossfit. Hobbies can also be activities that are somewhat built into your daily routine, such as cooking or even organizing. 

Identifying Hobbies

Think about it. Let’s say you have a spare few hours over the weekend. What would you choose to do with that time? You might consider everything you need to get done, such as mowing the lawn or catching up on laundry. If your mind goes there first, you might just be a bit more productive than many. What might you choose But, if you want to spend the time doing something enjoyable? Here is a list of things that could be considered hobbies:

  • Painting
  • Drawing
  • Hiking
  • Playing an instrument
  • Trying new foods
  • Fishing
  • Video games
  • Reading
  • Board games

Often, hobbies are the things we choose to do when we have some free time. Sometimes, they may be the things we choose to do instead of doing something we don’t enjoy. Insert your least favorite chore here. For example, you might enjoy shopping or taking a walk in the park on a nice day. Some prefer to enjoy hobbies with friends and work to coordinate activities with others. This could include trying new restaurants, exercise groups, or even meeting up to kayak or go for a hike. 

Benefits of Hobbies

Hobbies, especially in adulthood, are beneficial for a variety of reasons. They can offer socialization, help improve wellness and provide opportunities to meet new people and try new things. If you are working to avoid using drugs or drinking alcohol, having hobbies to keep you busy can be especially helpful. 

Substance abuse can be incredibly difficult to cope with and navigate. Whether you are working on getting clean and contemplating treatment or are already in recovery, hobbies can help you occupy your time in fun and healthy ways. Cravings and temptation can strike at any moment, so it is important to be proactive and maintain a busy schedule in order to avoid providing time and opportunity to give in to cravings. 

Developing Hobbies Through Treatment

If you are someone who is struggling to get clean, it may be time to consider the many benefits of seeking treatment. Aside from the most obvious and important advantages that treatment offers, getting involved in a program can also introduce you to new hobbies that you may decide to carry with you into recovery. 

For example, you will have the opportunity to try many new activities through experiential and recreational therapy. Instructors will show you how to use fun activities to support your sobriety and help promote healing. Online resources can provide more information about recreational therapy and experiential therapy. These activities could include things like hiking, camping, exercise, role-playing, working with music, or creating art. You are bound to find something you enjoy and may even discover skills you didn’t know you had. 

Maintaining Hobbies in Recovery

Looking ahead a bit, you will want to stay active and involved in positive things throughout your recovery. These positive things can include therapy, support groups, wellness activities, and hobbies. The hobbies you develop in treatment are likely to help you form bonds with others in your program. You may find that these bonds evolve into lifelong friendships. 

It is not uncommon to stay in touch with others from treatment. You might even establish a consistent meet-up revolving around hobbies discovered during treatment. You might decide to start a small group or join a gym together. As mentioned earlier, it is critical to keep yourself busy during treatment and in recovery. 

Hobbies are a small but important part of having a fulfilling life. While there are many other pieces to the puzzle, making time for things you enjoy can add great value to your life. 

Hobbies can be anything you consider to be enjoyable. This could include cooking, exercising, reading, singing, painting, etc. Staying busy as you strive to overcome addiction can be very beneficial. You want to be sure to stay busy and keep your schedule full, as too much downtime can increase the chances of relapse. At Renaissance Ranch, we introduce clients to a variety of therapeutic and meaningful activities that they can choose to incorporate into their routines even after treatment. Our Band of Brothers alumni group aims to do just that. If you are battling addiction, we would love to help. To learn more about our programs and services, call Renaissance Ranch today at (801) 308-8898.