Ever found yourself staring at your family over dinner, realizing that the conversation is about as exciting as watching paint dry? Life can get repetitive, and even with our loved ones, it sometimes feels like we’re just going through the motions. So maybe it’s time to switch it up, and just maybe, this article is exactly what you need to make it happen. After all, having a hobby as a family is incredibly important, here’s why:
Family hobbies are important since they foster shared experiences, encourage communication, and nurture bonding. Pursuing the same interest builds unity and a sense of belonging, enhancing relationships. It also bridges generational gaps, fostering a deeper connection within the family.
Family hobbies serve many purposes beyond killing boredom on a Sunday afternoon. Think of it as a Swiss Army knife of family knife, not a single-purpose tool. This article is going to be your roadmap to the wonderful world of family hobbies, specifically why they matter and we’ll even share out links to our favorite hobbies you can do as a family along the way.
What Are Family Hobbies? Definition Time
For us all to truly appreciate the importance of a family, we need to start from scratch and define what a family hobby entails. Think of family hobbies as a secret sauce to quality family time. For some, it may seem like an alien concept, especially if they haven’t had much experience with family activities growing up. But trust us on this, family hobbies hold just as much weight as your personal hobbies. They’re not just pastimes; they’re bridges connecting family members, and essential ingredients for creating lasting memories. And they come in many forms:
Family hobbies are shared activities enjoyed collectively by family members. They range from outdoor pursuits like hiking and traveling, to indoor activities such as candle-making or cheese-making. These shared experiences provide a common ground for bonding, communication, and shared learning.
The list of hobbies you and your family can get into is truly endless. A hobby is simply something you enjoy doing, and even if it’s a strange activity if your family is having a good time together doing it, then you can mark it as a hobby. Before we get much further if you’re on a mission to find a hobby (or 15) to try as a family, hop over to our list of 15 family hobbies that don’t suck.
Perhaps the part that truly makes family hobbies special is that they create lasting memories and traditions – the kind that can be passed on to the next generation. A collective history is built as a result. But we’re getting ahead of ourselves. Aside from this warm and fuzzy feeling, there’s proper science behind the benefits of doing a hobby as a family, both physical and mental.
5 Powerful Benefits Of Family Hobbies
What’s the secret ingredient that strengthens the bond between family members and creates memories that last a lifetime? Family hobbies. They are not just about passing the time or keeping everyone entertained. They form a powerful, invisible thread that connects family members, fostering communication, cooperation, and a sense of belonging.
Whether you pick a hobby geared more toward adults or child-centric, or even something more generalized, if you find something that’s fun, engaging, and fulfills togetherness, you’ve found a great family hobby. And you can expect to expect the whole family to feel these 5 powerful benefits.:
1. Strengthens Relationships And Fosters A Sense Of Belonging
Dabbling in family hobbies is a prime way for nurturing relationships and creating a feeling of belonging for each member. Imagine the whole family gathered around a board game or a DIY craft project, sharing laughs and stories. This shared experience breeds a sense of unity and belonging that’s hard to replicate. It’s like superglue for family ties, fortifying those bonds.
For children in particular, this type of activity provides safety and security, something that impacts the rest of their lives.
We’re close friends with an amazing family. Although, it was incredibly difficult to break through the mold to get to know them well. See, the parents (and even their kids) would easily be classified as “reserved” and introverted. They struggled to connect together in activities – which makes sense since introverts love to have space. But they’re still a family, and the parents recognized that something needed to be done that met their needs while also tightening their bonds.
They decided to try reading time once a week and noticed how it allowed them to spend time together, chat about the books, and look forward to that bond they now share. Since then, they have found several books and followed a similar process. They talk about how sitting next to each other for a few hours on the weekend reading in silence brings them so much joy, and they each feel safe, calm, and like they belong.
It’s not the most common hobby for a family, but it’s perfect since it works well for them.
2. Encourages Communication And Cooperation
Family hobbies are great ways to build teamwork and communication skills. Sure, the kids might argue at times, but that’s only natural, and they’ll develop skills on how to deal with others productively.
In an idyllic scenario, picture this: you’re all on a bike ride, working together to navigate the trail, or perhaps you’re all pitching in to create a family recipe.
These shared hobbies naturally cultivate a spirit of teamwork and open communication lines, fostering a healthy family environment.
3. Promotes Personal Growth And Skill Development
Although we’re talking about family hobbies, don’t overlook the chance for personal growth and skill development. Engaging in a family hobby creates a safe platform for learning and self-improvement. Whether it’s learning to play a musical instrument together or taking up gardening, family hobbies can help an individual acquire new skills, stimulate their creativity, and boost self-confidence.
For instance, when a family cooks together, kids don’t just learn recipes; they learn about cooperation, planning, and time management. When a family goes hiking, they are not just exploring nature; they are developing resilience, problem-solving skills, and an appreciation for the environment.
4. Improves Mental And Physical Well Being
Hobbies are not just about fun and games; they’re also a powerhouse for enhancing mental and physical well-being. Be it an active hobby like cycling or a more calming one like painting, they can help reduce stress, improve focus, and promote physical activity – family hobbies are a package deal for mind-body wellness.
Mental, emotional, and physical well-being is a natural byproduct of hobbies. Psychological and physical health are interconnected; people are generally happier when they feel part of a community. Alone time is essential, but having people to depend on, especially family is crucial.
Younger kids and teenagers are likelier to have better mental health if they have genuine connections with their parents and siblings. Family hobbies give kids people a sense of secure bonds – leading to happier, healthier, and more successful lives.
5. Creates Memories And Traditions
Last but not least, family hobbies lay the groundwork for creating lasting memories and cherished family traditions. Imagine years down the line, reminiscing about the time you all built a tree fort or the regular Sunday pancakes you always made together. These memories become woven into the fabric of your family story, turning simple hobbies into treasured traditions.
The Art and a Science of Family Hobbies
Family hobbies can be anything – from cooking and gardening to hiking and even treasure hunting with geocaching. The crux is not what you do but that you do it together. So, is spending time with your family a hobby? Absolutely. When you engage in activities as a family, you’re not just filling hours; you’re building relationships and creating shared experiences.
While it’s certainly a bigger concept to spend time with your family than just tagging it a hobby, it’s an activity you love doing, and that’s always at the heart of a hobby.
Let’s assume you’re on the hunt to find the perfect pastime for the family, start here:
Choosing the Right Family Hobby
Choosing a family hobby might seem overwhelming at first, sort of like trying to get everyone to agree on where to order dinner from. With diverse interests and skill levels in mind, you can find a great activity just by having a simple approach and resources at hand.
To pick the right family hobby, consider factors like age-appropriateness, interests, and skill levels. Remember, the goal is to find an activity that everyone can enjoy and participate in, not just the kids or parents.
We know a thing or two about picking hobbies that fit a wide range of participants – we used to deliver new hobbies to our subscriber’s doors every month, and sometimes that meant shipping out thousands of the same hobby to thousands of different people. So how did we successfully find a common thread that kept a diverse crew engaged? Here are the tricks of the trade and how we carefully considered picking hobbies, the same logic you can apply to your family hobbies:
- Age: Considering each family member’s age is essential, especially if kids are involved. You want to pick something appropriate for their age and skill level that they can continue to learn and grow from. If you’re an older child and trying to find a common hobby to take part in with your parent, you should consider that as well, and be sure to check out our list of ideas for older adults to try as hobbies.
- Interests: Choosing a family hobby should include an activity each member enjoys or is willing to try. Making a joint decision is helpful. Put it to a vote or rotate weekly perhaps.
- Location/Resources: Look into what resources may be required or if a specific location is needed for an activity. You may need to live near snow for family skiing or buy supplies for bookbinding. You want to consider something practical, financially affordable, and readily available to your family. You can check out this article on choosing the best hobbies that suit you and your family.
Overcoming Challenges: Turning Obstacles into Opportunities
Wouldn’t it be great to have a family setup like the Truman Show and live in the perfect house with the perfect picket fence where your kids always agree with each other and are always well-behaved? At times, yes that might sound appealing, but that would become boring quickly, and it’s so far from reality that you should scrub this concept from your mind before you set out to find a hobby for the fam. Family hobbies, while rewarding, can also bring their own set of challenges.
How Do You Keep Your Family Entertained?
Spending quality time as a family doing a hobby or two doesn’t come without challenges. Everyone must be equally entertained, especially young kids.
Keeping your family entertained during family hobbies requires understanding and overcoming challenges to ensure everyone is interested, invested, and included. You must consider age-appropriate experiences and take the time to enjoy the hobby productively.
Within each challenge, here’s a look at what you may face.
- Time Constraints: Set dates and times when everyone will be available, and make it a tradition to commit to that. If some small sacrifice or compromise is required occasionally, remember that it is for family bonding. If you have a job with strange hours, you should check out our guide on how to make time for hobbies with a full-time job. The principles within it can be applied to family or individual hobbies. Time constraints can also be tackled by choosing hobbies that are flexible and can be enjoyed at any time, such as reading, gardening, or playing board games.
- Different Interests: Find an interest that each family member is willing to do. Sitting together to discuss, making lists of pros and cons, and voting are great ways to get everyone’s input and create a unified decision. Differing interests can also be addressed by rotating hobby choices, giving each family member a chance to share their passion with others.
- Different Skill Levels: A skill is something that you can learn. People don’t have to excel at hobbies. It is something to be enjoyed regardless of skill level. And remember that a little healthy competition is also a developmental skill. Flipping the script a bit, what might seem like a setback such as varied skill levels offers a fantastic opportunity for family members to learn from each other, promoting a healthy exchange of skills and ideas. The key is to approach these challenges with a positive mindset and a willingness to compromise and adapt.
Family Hobbies Are Bigger Than Hobbies
Family bonding comes in many forms, but family hobbies cultivate powerful, unbreakable bonds by strengthening the relationship, creating memories, allowing open communication, and encouraging growth and skills that benefit all members individually and as a group.