hobbies http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/3340/all en-US Flashback Friday: 54 Frugal Hobbies You Should Try Immediately http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-54-frugal-hobbies-you-should-try-immediately <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/flashback-friday-54-frugal-hobbies-you-should-try-immediately" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_smile_knitting_18439316.jpg" alt="Woman trying new frugal hobbies immediately" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>The next time you're bored on a weekend or during your free time, you might want to consider taking up a new hobby. Your first thought might be, <em>I can't afford to pay for lessons to learn a new skill</em>. I get that mindset, I do. But there are plenty of cheap or free hobbies that are also fun. Here are 54 frugal hobbies you should try immediately.</p> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/iStock_000034444570_XXXLarge.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-fun-hobbies-you-can-take-up-for-free?ref=fbf">10 Fun Hobbies You Can Take Up for Free</a> &mdash; While learning how to play golf or ski like a pro sounds fun, those activities can suck the life right out of your budget. So instead, take up a new hobby for free, and you'll be even prouder once you've mastered that skill.</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-best-hobbies-for-introverts?ref=fbf">8 Best Hobbies for Introverts</a> &mdash; Introverts love new hobbies, especially if they require deep focus and zero social interaction. Spending hours practicing something, learning something new, and doing it all in silence? Yes, please! So if you, too, are a fan of solo fun, give these activities a try!</p> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/woman_traveling_paris_000017104925.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/3-hobbies-that-pump-up-your-resume?ref=fbf">3 Hobbies That Pump Up Your Resume</a> &mdash; What's better than learning something new just for your enjoyment? Doing so and then making more money because of it. Blogging, is just one hobby that can enhance your resume and overall success &mdash; and it doesn't cost much!</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-awesome-money-making-hobbies?ref=fbf">10 Awesome Money-Making Hobbies</a> &mdash; Gardening, sewing, gaming, and many others are relaxing and fun hobbies you can do in your spare time that can also earn you some extra cash. And when you make money by having fun, it never feels like work.</p> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/iStock_000036662410_Large.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-more-hobbies-you-can-start-for-free?ref=fbf">10 More Hobbies You Can Start for Free</a> &mdash; There are cheap hobbies, and then there are <em>free </em>hobbies. What's better than that? Well, there is one thing: the peace of mind you gain having a good time without spending any money.</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/pick-up-one-of-these-frugal-hobbies-this-weekend?ref=fbf">Pick Up One of These Frugal Hobbies This Weekend</a> &mdash; Looking for something to do this weekend? Look no further. Origami, thrifting, baking, etc. are surprisingly exciting hobbies and they'll keep you busy all weekend long!</p> <p><em>What are some other frugal hobbies worth trying? Share with us!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/chrissa-hardy">Chrissa Hardy</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-54-frugal-hobbies-you-should-try-immediately">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-59-skills-frugal-people-need-to-master">Flashback Friday: 59 Skills Frugal People Need to Master</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-143-fun-and-frugal-ways-to-spend-your-weekend">Flashback Friday: 143 Fun and Frugal Ways to Spend Your Weekend</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-63-best-cooking-hacks-for-busy-people">Flashback Friday: 63 Best Cooking Hacks for Busy People</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-62-creative-uses-for-your-favorite-condiments">Flashback Friday: 62 Creative Uses for Your Favorite Condiments</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-49-smartest-amazon-hacks-that-will-save-you-big">Flashback Friday: 49 Smartest Amazon Hacks That Will Save You Big</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Frugal Living Entertainment best hobbies fbf flashback friday free hobbies free time frugal hobbies frugal living hobbies spare time Fri, 09 Sep 2016 10:00:15 +0000 Chrissa Hardy 1788936 at http://www.wisebread.com Ask the Readers: What Is Your Favorite Hobby? http://www.wisebread.com/ask-the-readers-what-is-your-favorite-hobby <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/ask-the-readers-what-is-your-favorite-hobby" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_painting_art_89873585.jpg" alt="Woman sharing her favorite hobby" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p><em>Editor's Note: Congratulations to <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ask-the-readers-what-is-your-favorite-hobby#comment-795219">HC</a>, Jeff, and Natasha for winning this week's contest!</em></p> <p>We all know it's important to maintain work-life balance. One great way to make sure you have fun regularly is to pick up a hobby!</p> <p><strong>What is your favorite hobby?</strong> What supplies, equipment, or fees are involved, and how do you keep costs low? Are you making any money with your hobby, or do you do it just for fun?</p> <p><strong> </strong></p> <p>Tell us about your favorite hobby and we'll enter you in a drawing to win a $20 Amazon Gift Card!</p> <h2>Win 1 of 3 $20 Amazon Gift Cards</h2> <p>We're doing three giveaways &mdash; here's how you can win!</p> <h3>Mandatory Entry:</h3> <ul> <li>Post your answer in the comments below. One commenter will be randomly selected to win a $20 Amazon Gift Card!</li> </ul> <h3>For Extra Entries:</h3> <ul> <li>You can tweet about our giveaway for an extra entry. Also, our Facebook fans can get an extra entry too! Use our Rafflecopter widget for your chance to win one of the other two Amazon Gift Cards:</li> </ul> <p><a class="rcptr" href="http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/79857dfa259/" rel="nofollow" data-raflid="79857dfa259" data-theme="classic" data-template="" id="rcwidget_hmv8z26q">a Rafflecopter giveaway</a> </p> <script src="https://widget-prime.rafflecopter.com/launch.js"></script></p> <p>If you're inspired to write a whole blog post OR you have a photo on Flickr to share, please link to it in the comments or tweet it.</p> <h4>Giveaway Rules:</h4> <ul> <li>Contest ends Monday, August 29th at 11:59 p.m. Pacific. Winners will be announced after August 29th on the original post. Winners will also be contacted via email.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>You can enter all three drawings &mdash; once by leaving a comment, once by liking our Facebook update, and once by tweeting.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered, or associated with Facebook.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>You must be 18 and US resident to enter. Void where prohibited.</li> </ul> <p><strong>Good Luck!</strong></p> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-blog-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Tell us about your favorite hobby and we&#039;ll enter you in a drawing to win a $20 Amazon Gift Card! </div> </div> </div> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-jacobs">Ashley Jacobs</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ask-the-readers-what-is-your-favorite-hobby">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-54-frugal-hobbies-you-should-try-immediately">Flashback Friday: 54 Frugal Hobbies You Should Try Immediately</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/take-our-reader-survey-for-a-chance-to-win-one-of-five-amazon-gift-cards">Take Our Reader Survey for a Chance to Win One of Five Amazon Gift Cards!</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-35-best-ways-to-spend-your-free-time-frugally">The 35 Best Ways to Spend Your Free Time (Frugally)</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/25-awesome-useful-gifts">25 Awesome, Useful Gifts</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ask-the-readers-200-giveaway-what-is-your-top-question-about-personal-finance">Ask the Readers $200 Giveaway: What is Your Top Question About Personal Finance?</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Giveaways best money tips hobbies Tue, 23 Aug 2016 10:00:11 +0000 Ashley Jacobs 1775197 at http://www.wisebread.com Beat Stress With These 28 Inexpensive Pastimes http://www.wisebread.com/beat-stress-with-these-28-inexpensive-pastimes <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/beat-stress-with-these-28-inexpensive-pastimes" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/father_son_fishing_70352103.jpg" alt="Father and son beating stress with inexpensive pastimes" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Expensive activities are stressful for me because paying for them weighs on my mind. I enjoy cheap or free pastimes, and even some pastimes that make money. Here are some inexpensive pastimes that you can enjoy to stay blissfully preoccupied without spending much money.</p> <h2>Exercise</h2> <p>The payoffs for regular exercise are immense, not least is the relaxation.</p> <h3>1. Bicycling</h3> <p>Bicycling can be a very inexpensive hobby. I picked up a cheap used bike for $28, rode it for five years, and then sold it for $35! In addition to a bike, there are a few other things you&rsquo;ll need to get started: a bike helmet and a bike lock to keep yourself and your bike safe. If you buy an older bike, you may need to change the tires and inner tubes, but you can do this yourself for only a few dollars. A cheap bike provides transportation, exercise, and entertainment.</p> <h3>2. Walking</h3> <p>Even if you don&rsquo;t have any money at all, you can still enjoy walking. Walking is a convenient way to spend time outside and enjoy the seasons with no special equipment or planning required. When the weather is bad, I enjoy walking indoors in shopping malls.</p> <h3>3. Hiking</h3> <p>Sometimes I like to go to go hiking in a park or trail away from roads and sidewalks. Hiking takes a bit more effort than simply going for a walk near your home or workplace, but provides more opportunities to get close to nature. Most hiking trips are free, but I recently paid $10 to go for a five-hour hike among the redwoods in Muir Woods National Monument while visiting San Francisco. This was the most entertainment I have ever gotten for $10!</p> <h2>Cerebral Activities</h2> <p>After you've worked your muscles, challenge your noodle.</p> <h3>4. Reading</h3> <p>Reading can be free if you get books at a public library or find free classics to read on your electronic devices via sites such as <a href="https://www.gutenberg.org/">Project Gutenberg</a>. It seems like there is a nearly endless supply of new books coming along, plus the old classics to catch up on.</p> <h3>5. Writing</h3> <p>Writing has been a great pastime for me. It is exciting to see my work published, and I have even been able to make some money along the way from writing books, articles, and through advertising on my blog. If you are not ready to publish your work for the world to see, writing a journal for yourself or stories to share with your friends and family is a great way to get started writing.</p> <h3>6. Crossword Puzzles</h3> <p>Crossword puzzles help keep your mind sharp and some people seem to really enjoy doing them. I have tried doing crossword puzzles a few times, but it is too much like doing a homework assignment for me to enjoy. Maybe I need to find some easier crossword puzzles to build up my skills.</p> <h3>7. Brain Games</h3> <p>I have tried brain games on my computer, such as the free trial version of <a href="http://www.lumosity.com/">Lumosity</a>, and I sometimes play Math Blaster on my Android device. There are all kinds of free brain games that exercise your skills and help you stay sharp as you try to beat your high score. Some games even allow you to compare your scores with others.</p> <h3>8. Educational Videos</h3> <p>You no longer need to wait until Sunday evening for NOVA to come on PBS. You can get a wide selection of educational programs any time on Netflix ($8 per month) or YouTube (free). I like to find TED Talks on YouTube to find interesting perspectives on everything from physics to social sciences.</p> <h3>9. Online Courses</h3> <p>There are all kinds of online courses you can take for free, including subjects such as computer programming, statistics, and science. Here are some places to check for online courses that interest you:</p> <ul> <li><a href="http://ocw.mit.edu/index.htm">MIT OpenCourseWare</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.coursera.org/">Coursera</a></li> <li><a href="http://www.openculture.com/freeonlinecourses">Open Culture</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.khanacademy.org/">Khan Academy</a></li> </ul> <h3>10. Jigsaw Puzzles</h3> <p>Some people get excited about doing jigsaw puzzles and like to receive them as gifts. Jigsaw puzzles can provide many hours of entertainment for not much money, and you do get a sense of satisfaction &mdash; or relief &mdash; when the puzzle is complete. You can pick up used jigsaw puzzles at garage sales for a dollar or two that provide hours of entertainment, but you might find out that there are missing pieces.</p> <h3>11. Ancestry Research/Genealogy</h3> <p>You can make a serious hobby out of researching your ancestry. It is easier than ever to research family history and find links to your family&rsquo;s past. You can get a long way without spending much money and produce research on your family history that will be invaluable to future generations.</p> <h3>12. Learn a Foreign Language</h3> <p>When you learn a foreign language, you learn more than just a bunch of foreign words. You learn about another culture and open up opportunities to meet and learn about new people.</p> <h2>Nature/Outdoor Enjoyment</h2> <p>When you tire of puzzles and brain games, re-connect with nature.</p> <h3>13. Camping</h3> <p>Camping can be a great way to get away and see things from a fresh perspective. You can find places to camp for free, but even if you pay to stay in a campground, you can find places to pitch a tent for around $20 per night.</p> <h3>14. Fishing</h3> <p>Basic fishing equipment doesn&rsquo;t cost a lot of money. You can get an inexpensive rod and reel good enough to catch your dinner for around $25. I still have a lot of the same fishing tackle I used when I was growing up. The price of a seasonal fishing license varies by location. I paid about $20 and was able to go fishing whenever I wanted all summer.</p> <h3>15. Bird-watching</h3> <p>It is hard not to watch the birds at my house. I have seen orioles, blue jays, cardinals, robins, hummingbirds, geese, and even bald eagles. I put out bird feeders to attract birds near my house for easy observation. Even if you don&rsquo;t put out bird feeders, you can probably find interesting birds to watch and enjoy. Binoculars are useful to be able to observe birds high in trees or too far away to see easily.</p> <h2>Food-Related</h2> <p>While you don't want to use food as a coping tool, lots of the activities around food prep are satisfying and relaxing.</p> <h3>16. Gardening</h3> <p>You get to enjoy planning your garden, watching it grow, and then harvest lots of free vegetables. Gardening can be very inexpensive if you start your own seeds and make your own compost to use for fertilizer. Even if you don&rsquo;t have a yard, you can grow vegetables in pots on a patio or deck. If you don&rsquo;t want to rototill a traditional garden, you can grow vegetables in straw bales or build raised beds for easy access.</p> <h3>17. Cooking</h3> <p>Cooking is a great pastime since it reduces the probability that you will spend money on expensive restaurant food. Watch some cooking shows or videos to learn cooking techniques and get ideas for recipes you want to try out. You can get started cooking with only a few pans and utensils.</p> <h3>18. Canning Food</h3> <p>If you have a successful garden, you&rsquo;ll need to do something with all of those vegetables. The first thing I remember canning was salsa we made with tomatoes, onions, peppers, and cilantro we grew in the garden. It was messy and a lot of work, but it was fun to make those cans of salsa to save for winter and to give to friends. If you have a freezer, you can use an inexpensive <a href="http://amzn.to/1Y6gll8">vacuum sealer</a> to pull the air out of plastic bags and seal up your produce to freeze without getting freezer burned.</p> <h3>19. Grilling</h3> <p>You can start grilling with a $20 charcoal grill. If $20 is too much for you, you can even make a grill for free! My kids build a kebab pit for free using concrete blocks they found and it works great. I also have a gas grill which is more expensive, but very convenient. Grilling outside is one of my favorite activities, followed closely by eating the food that I grill.</p> <h2>Creative Activities</h2> <p>Nothing is as satisfying as zoning out while making something. The doing is its own reward &mdash; but you'll also be rewarded with some of your own handiwork.</p> <h3>20. Wood shop</h3> <p>One of my favorite pastimes is working in my wood shop. I like to repair things, build small projects, and just spend time in my shop organizing my tools and thinking. A wood shop does not need to be expensive. I built one of my workbenches from a kit and others using recycled kitchen cabinets and countertops. Many of my tools were used tools that people gave me.</p> <h3>21. Photography</h3> <p>You can take surprisingly good photos with a cellphone or cheap digital camera, especially in outdoor lighting. A quality digital SLR camera with a zoom lens runs around $300 and will allow you to take your photography to the next level, providing more control over the camera settings.</p> <h3>22. Musical Instruments</h3> <p>You can pick up cheap used musical instruments on Craigslist or at consignment or pawnshops. Of course, buying the instrument is the easy part &mdash; learning to play it well takes work and practice.</p> <h3>23. Sewing</h3> <p>With a sewing machine, fabric, and a pattern, you can make your own clothes. Collecting bargain fabrics is part of the fun of sewing.</p> <h2>Social Activities</h2> <p>It's a fact of life that other people can be the cause of so much stress. It's also a fact of life that other people are often the cure.</p> <h3>24. Volunteer Work</h3> <p>There are lots of opportunities available to volunteer some of your time working for a good cause. Volunteering can be a good way to do something you enjoy and meet other people with similar interests. Some ideas for volunteering: animal shelter, food pantry, political campaign, church organizations.</p> <h3>25. Visiting</h3> <p>If you get bored hanging around your own house, try going to someone else's house! Visiting friends or family is a cheap way to get out of the house and do something different for a change of pace. Having people come over to visit at your place can inspire you to get cleaning and projects done.</p> <h3>26. Playing Cards</h3> <p>Playing cards is a classic cheap pastime, as long as you aren&rsquo;t placing bets. Poker, bridge, and euchre are some popular card games that allow you to play competitively with others.</p> <h2>Cheap Entertainment</h2> <p>Finally, it's okay to be a couch potato from time to time.</p> <h3>27. Sports Fan</h3> <p>Some people spend a lot as sports fans, paying big money for tickets to games and buying team jerseys and other paraphernalia. But being a sports fan doesn&rsquo;t have to be expensive. I don&rsquo;t subscribe to any TV service, but I can find many of my Iowa Hawkeye football games for free, either on over-the-air TV or on radio broadcasts. Sometimes I can find a free video stream of the game on the Internet.</p> <h3>28. News Junkie</h3> <p>I listen to National Public Radio (NPR) for about an hour every day to keep up on news and world events. When I miss my chance to listen to the news for some reason, I feel out of touch and usually end up going on the Internet to check news stories I am following. Keeping up with the news is a cheap pastime and makes it easy to have an intelligent conversation with anyone you meet.</p> <p><em>What are your favorite cheap pastimes?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/dr-penny-pincher">Dr Penny Pincher</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/beat-stress-with-these-28-inexpensive-pastimes">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-35-best-ways-to-spend-your-free-time-frugally">The 35 Best Ways to Spend Your Free Time (Frugally)</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/25-fun-frugal-things-to-do-tonight-besides-watch-tv">25 Fun, Frugal Things to Do Tonight Besides Watch TV</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-54-frugal-hobbies-you-should-try-immediately">Flashback Friday: 54 Frugal Hobbies You Should Try Immediately</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-awesome-money-making-hobbies">10 Awesome Money-Making Hobbies</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-amazing-board-games-you-can-diy">8 Amazing Board Games You Can DIY</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Frugal Living Entertainment crafts exercise fun games hobbies learning leisure pastimes projects things to do Thu, 16 Jun 2016 10:30:09 +0000 Dr Penny Pincher 1728607 at http://www.wisebread.com Flashback Friday: 143 Fun and Frugal Ways to Spend Your Weekend http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-143-fun-and-frugal-ways-to-spend-your-weekend <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/flashback-friday-143-fun-and-frugal-ways-to-spend-your-weekend" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/couple_walking_park_51967000.jpg" alt="Couple finding fun ways to spend their weekend" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>It's almost the weekend and you have no plans. That can be exciting, or also a little scary. Because when weekend plans aren't mapped out ahead of time, it's easy to default to the pricier activities like shopping &mdash; or to just skip it and stay home (again).</p> <p>So instead of leaving the fate of your savings hanging in the balance, try one of these fun and frugal ways to spend your weekend. And walk into work on Monday fully relaxed and not totally broke.</p> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/couple_gardening_000053678990.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/19-fun-cheap-projects-to-try-this-weekend?ref=fbf">19 Fun, Cheap Projects to Try This Weekend</a> &mdash; Why spend all of your cash on a crafty item you can just make yourself? Enter the beautiful world of DIY and give these fun projects a try.</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/make-your-escape-with-these-14-affordable-weekend-getaways?ref=fbf">Make Your Escape With These 14 Affordable Weekend Getaways</a> &mdash; A last-minute weekend getaway to Paris would be a blast, sure, but have you explored all of your local and regional nooks and crannies yet? Because with any of these affordable weekend getaway ideas, you'll feel like a tourist without spending money like one.</p> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/woman_reading_hammock_000044042996.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-12-best-weekend-activities-for-introverts?ref=fbf">The 12 Best Weekend Activities for Introverts</a> &mdash; Introverts don't need much in terms of outside entertainment, and they would prefer a 48-hour period of minimal social interactions. So if you're in the mood to hibernate and relax like a pro, here you go.</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/18-awesome-things-you-can-do-this-weekend-for-under-10?ref=fbf">18 Awesome Things You Can Do This Weekend for Under $10</a> &mdash; It doesn't take much these days to spend $10. I mean, one bottle of pressed juice can cost more than that, in some places. So these cheap weekend plans are especially inspiring, and also a ton of fun!</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/pick-up-one-of-these-frugal-hobbies-this-weekend?ref=fbf">Pick Up One of These Frugal Hobbies This Weekend</a> &mdash; If you haven't given origami or geocaching a try, you are seriously missing out. Along with these other 11 frugal hobbies, your future weekends will be budget-friendly and extremely fulfilling.</p> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/kids_summer_water_balloon_fight_000062702582.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/20-cheap-fun-things-to-do-with-kids-this-weekend?ref=fbf">20 Cheap Fun Things to Do With Kids This Weekend</a> &mdash; Keeping the kids busy without spending much money can seem like an impossible magic trick. But quality time with the kiddos shouldn't cost a thing, and it doesn't have to with these 20 activities.</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/47-cheap-fun-things-to-do-this-weekend?ref=fbf">47 Cheap, Fun Things to Do This Weekend</a> &mdash; Do not underestimate the enjoyment you'll get from watching a sunset or baking a pie. They're simple ways to spend your time, but aren't simple things actually the best things?</p> <p><em>What are your plans for the weekend? Share with us!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/chrissa-hardy">Chrissa Hardy</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-143-fun-and-frugal-ways-to-spend-your-weekend">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-54-frugal-hobbies-you-should-try-immediately">Flashback Friday: 54 Frugal Hobbies You Should Try Immediately</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-72-brilliant-ways-to-stretch-20">Flashback Friday: 72 Brilliant Ways to Stretch $20</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-the-119-best-fitness-hacks-for-busy-people">Flashback Friday: The 119 Best Fitness Hacks for Busy People</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-70-brilliant-ways-to-beat-the-heat-this-summer">Flashback Friday: 70 Brilliant Ways to Beat the Heat This Summer</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-the-76-best-life-lessons-you-should-learn-by-30">Flashback Friday: The 76 Best Life Lessons You Should Learn by 30</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Frugal Living Entertainment Lifestyle fbf flashback friday free things to do frugal activities fun things to do hobbies outdoors weekend weekend activities weekend fun Fri, 03 Jun 2016 10:00:10 +0000 Chrissa Hardy 1723164 at http://www.wisebread.com 10 More Hobbies You Can Start for Free http://www.wisebread.com/10-more-hobbies-you-can-start-for-free <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/10-more-hobbies-you-can-start-for-free" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock_000036662410_Large.jpg" alt="she&#039;s taking up a fun hobby for free" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>In a 2014 time use survey, the Bureau of Labor Statistics uncovered that Americans &mdash; on average &mdash; spend <a href="http://www.bls.gov/news.release/atus.nr0.htm">2.8 hours watching television</a> each day. That's a lot of time staring at a box, right?</p> <p>Well, instead of straining your eyes and allowing your brain to transform into mush, maybe it's time for a new hobby. Here are a bunch <em>more</em> cool hobbies you can start today for free! (Related: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-fun-hobbies-you-can-take-up-for-free?ref=seealso">10 Fun Hobbies You Can Take Up for Free</a>)</p> <h2>1. Cooking or Baking</h2> <p>Learning to make better dinners or desserts doesn't have to cost anything outside of your normal grocery budget. There are millions of recipes you can access for free online. To make sure you have the right ingredients and don't go over budget, try meal planning. All you have to do is find recipes that look good, write down what you'll need, and head to the store. You might not be able to make something special every night of the week, so start by cooking on a weekend when you might usually go out.</p> <h2>2. Nature Identification</h2> <p>Take out some books from your local library on nature identification. You can focus on birds, plants, insects, stars, or whatever else interests you most. Then step into your backyard and take a look around. I used to collect leaves so I could figure out the exact type of trees that we had growing in our neighborhood. Now that my daughter is older, she can join me on the adventure.</p> <h2>3. Weather Reporting</h2> <p>Are you always watching the precipitation or other weather events in your area? Your local branch of the National Weather Service likely runs free training sessions on how to become a weather spotter through the <a href="http://skywarn.org/about/">SKYWARN volunteer program</a>. After you've taken the class, you'll work to identify and describe severe weather in your area and report back to your local station.</p> <h2>4. Drawing</h2> <p>I've never been good at art, so I was delighted to find <a href="https://www.drawspace.com">Draw Space</a>. This corner of the web offers free tutorials and instruction on drawing and other art for beginners all the way to advanced artists. Focus on contours, shading, composition, or any other area that interests you.</p> <h2>5. Photography</h2> <p>Yes! You can take up photography for free, provided you have an iPhone (or other cell phone with camera capabilities). And though you might not believe me, you can shoot DSLR-quality photos with your phone and a little knowledge. The <a href="http://iphonephotographyschool.com/iphoneography/">iPhone Photography School</a> has a number of tutorials on everything from &quot;making the most of light&quot; to photo editing.&nbsp;</p> <h2>6. Whittling</h2> <p>Whittling is a relaxing craft that also happens to be free if you have an old pocket knife. According to The Art of Manliness, <a href="http://www.artofmanliness.com/2011/12/12/a-beginners-guide-to-whittling/">softwoods work best</a> (you can find basswood, pine, and others at your local craft shop), but backyard twigs work just as well. Make sure your knife is sharp, learn the basic cuts, and get creative. Your library might have books with ideas for projects.</p> <h2>7. Vlogging</h2> <p>If you're not into writing or blogging, considering heading over to YouTube and starting your own vlog. Creating an account is free and &mdash; if you get popular &mdash; you may even make some money on the side if you link up your channel to Adsense. You can take videos and upload them in no time using your cell phone. What you talk about is up to you, so long as you follow the <a href="https://www.youtube.com/yt/policyandsafety/communityguidelines.html">community guidelines</a>.</p> <h2>8. Dancing</h2> <p>Could your moves use some work? Check out <a href="https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCl5BOPEjOB6kR8IxzWy3bWg">Club Dance Lessons</a> for free videos on hip-hop, electronic, salsa, and all other types of dance. Whether you're looking for twerking lessons, dance seduction moves, or freestyle grooves, you're covered. Plus, dancing is great exercise if you hate going to the gym.</p> <h2>9. Couponing</h2> <p>I still haven't gotten into coupons, but some of my friends swear this ever-popular hobby saves them tons of cash. You'll likely want to get the Sunday paper, and scour the web for digital deals, but the savings you'll see is most usually worth the few dollars you'll spend. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/score-coupons-for-every-online-store-even-the-ones-that-dont-have-coupons?ref=seealso">Score Coupons for Every Online Store</a>)</p> <h2>10. Meditating</h2> <p>Sure, your body might be fit and active, but what about your mind? Try meditating to relieve stress, lower blood pressure, improve circulation, and more. Gaiam offers a wonderful (and free!) start-up guide for <a href="http://life.gaiam.com/article/meditation-101-techniques-benefits-beginner-s-how">How to Meditate</a>. Start by sitting and closing your eyes. Breathe naturally. Focus your attention on your breath and work up to concentrating in this way for two to three minutes. From there, work your way to longer periods of time.</p> <p><em>Did we miss any cool free hobbies? Let us know in the comments!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-marcin">Ashley Marcin</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-more-hobbies-you-can-start-for-free">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-35-best-ways-to-spend-your-free-time-frugally">The 35 Best Ways to Spend Your Free Time (Frugally)</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-54-frugal-hobbies-you-should-try-immediately">Flashback Friday: 54 Frugal Hobbies You Should Try Immediately</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/beat-stress-with-these-28-inexpensive-pastimes">Beat Stress With These 28 Inexpensive Pastimes</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/learn-all-the-frugal-skills-you-need-with-these-9-great-video-tutorials">Learn All the Frugal Skills You Need With These 9 Great Video Tutorials</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-personal-finance-skills-everyone-should-master">12 Personal Finance Skills Everyone Should Master</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Frugal Living activities free fun free hobbies hobbies learning resolutions skills Fri, 05 Feb 2016 16:00:05 +0000 Ashley Marcin 1649860 at http://www.wisebread.com 8 Best Hobbies for Introverts http://www.wisebread.com/8-best-hobbies-for-introverts <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/8-best-hobbies-for-introverts" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_camera_photo_000054266132.jpg" alt="Woman trying out best hobbies for introverts" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>As an introvert myself, I find it challenging to engage in many aspects of life. I'm not one for big gatherings, competitive sports, or taking weekly classes filled with people I don't know. If <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-everyday-situations-that-introverts-ace">you're introverted too</a>, or know someone who is, this list of eight hobbies is well worth checking out.</p> <h2>1. Take Up Origami</h2> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0486432920/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=0486432920&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=XMYLKHJ5MGUUSTSG">Origami kits</a>, which include starter paper, can be bought very inexpensively on Amazon or from your local discount bookstore. You can also find thousands of patterns online, and YouTube is filled with instructional videos that take you step-by-step through the process. Put on a little relaxing music (or head-banging rock, if that's your thing), and enjoy a hobby that relieves stress and results in some wonderful paper sculptures.</p> <h2>2. Make YouTube Videos</h2> <p>While being a famous celebrity may not be ideal for an introvert, becoming a YouTube personality might be. These days, all you need is a webcam, some very basic video editing software, and&hellip;an original take on an idea! If it becomes big enough, you can do your hobby full time, and make millions. Yes, millions. Here's a list of the <a href="http://www.tvguide.com/galleries/youtube-stars-make-more-1089689/">biggest YouTube stars</a>, and as you can see, they do pretty well for themselves &mdash; and it all started by doing something they love, at home. If you don't like to be on camera, consider <a href="http://www.alistdaily.com/news/ion-ranks-youtube-s-biggest-unboxing-stars">unboxing videos</a>, or even <a href="https://www.youtube.com/user/PewDiePie">gaming videos</a>. Do it well, and you can retire!</p> <h2>3. Learn Magic</h2> <p>You don't have to become a magician to learn magic, and you don't have to go big when you first start out. In fact, all you really need is a deck of cards, and access to YouTube or any other site you find that hosts free magic lessons. Once you master sleight of hand, you can move on to bigger tricks. It can take months, or even years, to get a trick right. But the satisfaction you get when you finally nail that first trick is well worth it. Master a few of these, and you'll always have something to do at parties besides feeling awkward!</p> <h2>4. Play an Instrument</h2> <p>With access to free lessons online, and resources like Craigslist and Facebook for private, one-on-one tutoring, it has never been easier to learn to play an instrument. Your library is also a great resource for these kinds of books and videos, and it's free. If you can't afford to buy the instrument you want immediately (for instance, not many of us have a piano), you can find alternatives. Perhaps start with an <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00UN8O5VO/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B00UN8O5VO&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=XRJVENGIA3GFMOT2">inexpensive keyboard</a> (some instruments are even available for rent). And there's always eBay!</p> <h2>5. Write</h2> <p>Some people blog as a hobby, and have thousands of followers. Others write screenplays for TV and the movies (and if you get good at it, it could launch a new career). Stephen King's book <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1439156816/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=1439156816&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=TII5U5RFGMTXBY7E">On Writing &ndash; A Memoir of a Craft</a> is an excellent place to start if you've never written anything before. They also say everyone has one novel in them, so why not try coaxing yours out?</p> <h2>6. Photography</h2> <p>As a professional photographer, you need excellent social and people skills to do your job. But as a hobby, photography is perfect for introverts. These days, everything is digital, and you can find some good quality digital SLR cameras on eBay. If you prefer, you can go the old fashioned route and try film cameras (although getting a hold of film is nowhere near as easy at it used to be). Whichever way you try, keep a blog or online gallery of your favorite photos, and share them with the world.</p> <h2>7. Learn a Language</h2> <p>Or several languages. You can find many of the tuition books and videos you need online for free, or a small price. <a href="http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=as_li_ss_tl?_encoding=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;field-keywords=rosetta%20stone&amp;linkCode=ur2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;url=search-alias%3Daps&amp;linkId=N5UZSK4DKT7ADP6U">Rosetta Stone</a> gets rave reviews, but has a higher upfront cost of several hundred dollars. With the Internet, you can also watch foreign language TV and movies, and even engage in chat rooms, anonymously if you wish, to hone your skills.</p> <h2>8. Build Movie Prop Replicas</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/Screen%20Shot%202015-10-23%20at%2012.10.53%20PM.png" width="605" height="372" alt="" /></p> <p>I've made everything from a Bane vest to an Iron Man arc reactor. My latest two props are from Ghostbusters &mdash; a proton pack and a ghost trap. Everything you need to build movie props, like these, can be found in hardware stores, thrift stores, and on eBay. You don't have to spend a lot; for example, all of the parts used in my ghost trap came to less than $40. Instructions for almost any prop you want to build can be downloaded from a fan site. You can use them to Cosplay, to dress up at Halloween, and to decorate your house or office.</p> <p><em>Are you an introvert with an interesting or unusual hobby? Tell us more about it.</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/paul-michael">Paul Michael</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-best-hobbies-for-introverts">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/25-easy-ways-to-make-your-life-more-interesting">25 Easy Ways to Make Your Life More Interesting</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-35-best-ways-to-spend-your-free-time-frugally">The 35 Best Ways to Spend Your Free Time (Frugally)</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/free-videos-offer-stress-relief-and-relaxation">Free Videos Offer Stress Relief and Relaxation</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/getting-by-without-a-job-part-2-boost-income">Getting by without a job, part 2--boost income</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/make-a-crafty-airbrush-out-of-old-junk">Make a crafty airbrush out of old junk</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Life Hacks activities crafts hobbies introverts photography shy people YouTube Mon, 26 Oct 2015 15:15:35 +0000 Paul Michael 1598469 at http://www.wisebread.com 10 Fun Hobbies You Can Take Up for Free http://www.wisebread.com/10-fun-hobbies-you-can-take-up-for-free <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/10-fun-hobbies-you-can-take-up-for-free" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock_000034444570_XXXLarge.jpg" alt="friends beach guitar" title="friends beach guitar" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>In the new year, many of us choose to take up new hobbies to fill our free time and extend our skills. I recently looked into taking a pottery class, for example, but the $600 price tag sent me scrambling elsewhere to find some less expensive fun. Sure, a good number of fulfilling activities cost a pretty penny, but there are plenty of others you can start for free.</p> <h2>1. Exercise</h2> <p>Forget gym memberships. All you need for a great workout is yourself (and maybe a pair of shoes). You can walk or jog around your neighborhood. The web has a wealth of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-online-workout-videos-for-free-or-cheap">free workouts</a> you can perform in your living room. Also investigate the gyms and fitness clubs around you to see if they run free weeks or classes you can try before you buy.</p> <h2>2. Read</h2> <p>All you need to become a frugal bookworm is a card to your local library. Even if your local stacks don't hold all the books you want to read, you can usually request to get most anything you want through interlibrary loans. So, sign up for <a href="https://www.goodreads.com">Goodreads</a>, research some books in whatever genre appeals to you, make a list, and slip into your reading glasses.</p> <h2>3. Write</h2> <p>If you'd rather write than read, look around the web for different <a href="https://dailypost.wordpress.com/dp_writing_challenge/">writing challenges</a> that &quot;push your boundaries&quot; and allow you to explore different topics and styles. You might also start a blog to share your words with the world (or keep it private, or for friends-only). Many regions also have writers' groups that allow you to meet up with like-minded people and get feedback on your work. Check your library, bookstore, or community calendar for details.</p> <h2>4. Play an Instrument</h2> <p>Venture into your attic and find your trumpet from high school marching band. Stop singing only in the confines of your car. There are a number of community groups &mdash; bands, orchestras, choruses, and other ensembles &mdash; that allow you to re-learn your instrument and perform in concerts. I was a member of a local philharmonic for years, and I loved having an excuse to play my violin after a 10-year hiatus.</p> <h2>5. Act</h2> <p>The same goes with community theater. Audition for lead roles or hang out with the extras in the chorus. Whatever part you play, acting allows you to meet new people, explore your creative side, and just have a lot of fun. You don't even need experience! Just search &quot;community theater&quot; and the name of the city where you live to find groups near you.</p> <h2>6. Learn a Language</h2> <p>Have you ever wanted to speak another language? I mean, beyond those few years of Italian you were required to take to graduate college? I sure have. A few years ago I taught myself French using an app and some <a href="http://livemocha.com">free online language resources</a>, and I was surprised how much fun it was (and useful, too!).</p> <h2>7. Listen to Podcast</h2> <p>Move over, TV and books, I've become seriously obsessed with podcasts since Sarah Koenig's <a href="http://serialpodcast.org">Serial</a> came out. Now I've moved on to This American Life and other free radio programs and podcasts I can stream or download. I love how these programs teach me things about myself and the world around me. I can listen to them while I lay in bed or go for a jog and change subjects to suit my mood.</p> <h2>8. Volunteer</h2> <p>Doing good feels good and is certainly a thoughtful hobby to take up and enjoy. You can serve food at your local soup kitchen, help build houses, or visit the elderly. The need is great and the opportunities are endless. To find volunteering gigs near you, try sites like <a href="http://www.volunteermatch.org">VolunteerMatch</a> that sort by location and interest.</p> <h2>9. Explore</h2> <p>Take a hike &mdash; literally. Pack yourself a lunch and head out on a local trail. A friend of mine in the Adirondacks tries to reach the summit of a new mountain every couple weeks. You can also <a href="http://www.geocaching.com/guide/">try geocaching</a>, which allows you to hunt for different objects or locations using GPS coordinates.</p> <h2>10. Begin Again</h2> <p>Then there are those hobbies of years past &mdash; you have all the stuff sitting in a box somewhere. For me, it's knitting. I have countless skeins of yarn and a few different sizes of needles, assorted books, and other supplies. All I need to do is use what I have and pick up where I left off. For you, this might mean dusting off a chess set, unearthing oil paints, or rolling out that old yoga mat.</p> <p><em>Do you pursue and free or frugal hobbies? What do you do?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-marcin">Ashley Marcin</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-fun-hobbies-you-can-take-up-for-free">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-35-best-ways-to-spend-your-free-time-frugally">The 35 Best Ways to Spend Your Free Time (Frugally)</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/kill-boredom-with-these-34-fun-and-productive-projects">Kill Boredom With These 34 Fun and Productive Projects</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/18-awesome-things-you-can-do-this-weekend-for-under-10">18 Awesome Things You Can Do This Weekend for Under $10</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-143-fun-and-frugal-ways-to-spend-your-weekend">Flashback Friday: 143 Fun and Frugal Ways to Spend Your Weekend</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/life-without-tv">Life Without Television</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Lifestyle cheap fun entertainment free fun hobbies pastimes Thu, 29 Jan 2015 16:00:14 +0000 Ashley Marcin 1283628 at http://www.wisebread.com 11 Hobbies That Aren’t Worth the Money http://www.wisebread.com/11-hobbies-that-aren-t-worth-the-money <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/11-hobbies-that-aren-t-worth-the-money" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/confident-golfer-517248733-small.jpg" alt="confident golfer" title="confident golfer" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>You work hard for your down time, but what if the activities that help you relax and have fun cost more than they're worth? If any of these are your favorite pastime, you may want to consider a hobby that's a little less financially draining (napping, for example, is big these days!). (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-awesome-money-making-hobbies?ref=seealso">10 Awesome Money-Making Hobbies</a>)</p> <h2>1. Boating and Sailing</h2> <p>Boats aren't cheap to buy, and there's a lot of other costs including insurance, taxes, docking fees, maintenance, and &mdash; if you don't get a sailboat &mdash; gasoline. It's been suggested that <a href="http://www.bloomberg.com/consumer-spending/2012-05-15/the-real-cost-of-owning-a-boat.html">you should set aside 10% of a boat's annual value</a> to upkeep. The next time you're near a marina, take a stroll along the dock and see how many boats are for sale. Chances are you'll see plenty. Now you know why.</p> <h2>2. Horseback Riding</h2> <p>You don't necessarily have to buy a horse to ride one regularly, but getting access to one from a stable can cost you hundreds of dollars. Lessons and equipment will cost hundreds of dollars more. If you actually want to purchase a horse, be prepared to pay at least $2,000 and possibly more than $10,000 for a horse with good health and attitude. Boarding a horse can run between $500 and $1,500 or more each month. If you want to care for the horse yourself, expect to pay between $2,000 and $3,200 monthly on food and other necessities. (Ahem, look up &quot;manure management.&quot;)</p> <h2>3. Collecting</h2> <p>Everyone dreams of getting rich off that rare Honus Wagner tobacco card, or that Inverted Jenny postage stamp. But these items cost a lot to acquire, and often don't rise in value the way buyers expect. (For proof, I have about 3,000 worthless baseball cards from the 1980s that I can show you.) Big collections require space to store, and valuable items may require insurance. And if you have a sizable collection, it can become burdensome to your family due to the possible inheritance taxes.</p> <h2>4. Skydiving</h2> <p>It may be a tremendous thrill, but it's over pretty quick. A tandem skydive might run you about $250, depending on the location, and a typical descent lasts no more than 90 seconds. That's a little less than $3 for every second of freefall time. That's not a lot of bang for your buck.</p> <h2>5. Cars</h2> <p>Let's face it, collecting cars is really a hobby for those with gobs of disposable income. Classic cars themselves cost tens of thousands of dollars, and you'll probably shell out thousands of dollars on restoration and maintenance each year. Of course, once you've amassed a half-decent car collection, you will need to invest in a decent place to store them. Consider that former presidential candidate Mitt Romney <a href="http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/politics/2012/05/mitt-romney-ordered-55000-phantom-park-car-elevator-designer-says/">shelled out a reported $55,000 </a>for a car lift at his San Diego mansion.</p> <p>If you like racing cars, you may not have to spend as much money on storage and elevators, but you'll have other costs associated with race entry, mechanical work, and repairs. Even autocross, a sport that let's you race any old car around a track, will set you back at least $50 each race. And that's for just a few loops around a course (not to mention, it's hard on your car.)</p> <h2>6. Golf</h2> <p>It pains me to say this, because I adore golf and would play it every day of my life if I could. But if I am being honest, it's not a sport that offers the best value for your dollar. A set of clubs will cost you a couple hundred bucks minimum, and greens fees on a decent course can run you at least $30, often well north of $50. (And don't even get me started on club membership costs.)</p> <p>If you want to improve your game, a package of lessons is another couple hundred. It's a lot of money, especially for a sport that's challenging enough to be frustrating.</p> <p>The good news is that there are ways to enjoy golf without getting too crazy, cost-wise. When I was in my early 20s, I taught myself the game using an old set of clubs on a $9 Par 3 course across from my first apartment. No one says you need top-of-the-line equipment, and no one says you have to play Pebble Beach every weekend.</p> <h2>7. Scuba Diving</h2> <p>Many a person has come back from a Caribbean vacation eager to repeat the fun of their first Scuba experience. But if you truly want to take it up as hobby, prepare to open your wallet. Certification will cost you a few hundred, and you'll need to spend hundreds more in proper equipment.</p> <h2>8. Gambling</h2> <p>It's not much of a secret that when you bet at a casino, the house has an edge in every game. Sure, you might have hit a small jackpot once during a trip to Atlantic City. But don't delude yourself into thinking you can consistently walk away a winner.</p> <p>In gambling's defense, there are some games, including blackjack, where the house edge is small enough to allow a skilled (or lucky) gambler to play for long stretches of time on relatively small amounts of money. And for many gamblers, the simple pleasure of just being in a casino is worth at least some cash outlay.</p> <h2>9. Model Railroading</h2> <p>An old college roommate of mine was a model train enthusiast, and I recall watching in amazement as he bid hundreds of dollars on eBay for a single Lionel train car. This can become a pricey hobby, especially when you factor in the cost of setting up broad, interactive displays.</p> <h2>10. Exotic Fish</h2> <p>I have a good friend who enjoys raising <a href="http://www.liveaquaria.com/product/aquarium-fish-supplies.cfm?c=830+834">discus fish</a>, which are well known as colorful fish from the Amazon River basin. He spends hundreds to maintain the health of these fish in multiple tanks. (It also seems like a lot of work to take care of these delicate fellas.) To his credit, my friend has not completely lost his mind by constructing unusually large, custom-made aquariums <a href="http://www.animalplanet.com/tv-shows/animal-planet-presents/videos/most-outrageous-largest-home-aquarium.htm">like this guy</a>.</p> <h2>11. Flying</h2> <p>It seems like it'd be cool to go up in the sky and pilot your own plane. But be prepared to pay up. You can rent a plane for under $100 per session, but that won't let you go too far. Lessons at a flight school will also cost you thousands of dollars. The actual purchase of a modest airplane could set you back more than $100,000. Actor John Travolta is a certified pilot and even reportedly lives in a house with two runways for his private plane. But he has <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001AQT0Z4/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B001AQT0Z4&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=FPUCURYOZPEVKMT2">Pulp Fiction</a> and <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000GBEWHA/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B000GBEWHA&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=Q4OWCZSOYN7KYHPG">Grease</a> money at his disposal.</p> <p><em>Do you enjoy any of these pricey hobbies? How do you justify the expense?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/tim-lemke">Tim Lemke</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-hobbies-that-aren-t-worth-the-money">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-54-frugal-hobbies-you-should-try-immediately">Flashback Friday: 54 Frugal Hobbies You Should Try Immediately</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-watch-sports-without-cable-tv">How to Watch Sports Without Cable TV</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/free-and-cheap-things-to-do-in-seattle">Free and Cheap Things to Do in Seattle</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-143-fun-and-frugal-ways-to-spend-your-weekend">Flashback Friday: 143 Fun and Frugal Ways to Spend Your Weekend</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/beat-stress-with-these-28-inexpensive-pastimes">Beat Stress With These 28 Inexpensive Pastimes</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Entertainment hobbies recreation saving sports Thu, 13 Nov 2014 18:00:09 +0000 Tim Lemke 1254109 at http://www.wisebread.com 6 Things You Might Do on Your First Day of Retirement http://www.wisebread.com/6-things-you-might-do-on-your-first-day-of-retirement <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/6-things-you-might-do-on-your-first-day-of-retirement" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/retirement-469546153-small.jpg" alt="retirement" title="retirement" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="167" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Besides saving, planning, and being practically prepared for when you end the working phase of your life, how will it actually feel? What will you be thinking? What will you <em>do</em>?</p> <p>Most of us who start planning early, though we're diligently preparing for that time, can't fathom what it will be like to actually hang up our careers and have time to &quot;putz&quot; around the house.</p> <p>Ending such a large part of your life, your work, is almost sure to bring about some predictable feelings and emotions.</p> <p>Here's a taste of what those thoughts might revolve around, and what you might do.</p> <h2>1. Get a Part-Time Job</h2> <p>If you haven't already made plans, this is likely to be the first thing on your to-do list.</p> <p>Having free time is something that is often longed for by those who have little or none of it. Yet the reality we face as adults is that free time is deceptively attractive, yet tends to let us down. Once we get it, we're restless and in need of something to keep us busy.</p> <p>A part-time job with easy hours, possibly in something you're already experienced with can be a great way to ease out of the workforce and into your retirement.</p> <h2>2. Spend Time (and Possibly Money) on Your Hobbies</h2> <p>One of the best perks of retirement is the opportunity it affords you to do something you love.</p> <p>A loose schedule, fewer demands on your time, and a predictable budget will have you thinking about whatever it is that you've always wanted to do but only got to enjoy in small portions during your working years. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-awesome-money-making-hobbies?ref=seealso">10 Awesome Money-Making Hobbies</a>)</p> <p>Fishing rods, hunting gear, mountain bikes, cookbooks, a full bookshelf, a garden, or whatever else you've longed to spend your time on will finally get some attention.</p> <p>Your first day of retirement could spent, at least in part, planning how to engage these activities more often.</p> <h2>3. Miss the Routine of Going to Work</h2> <p>It sounds strange, but even the most difficult jobs can have a kind of comforting routine to them and will often cause sadness or frustration when they're gone.</p> <p>What's more, if you liked your job and have just left for good, then you'll almost certainly experience some disappointment on that first day. You'll miss going to work.</p> <p>Isn't that part of most life changes though?</p> <p>Even if the change is good and you have all this new time for yourself and for the things you love, not going to work will be tough at first.</p> <p>Yet you'll adjust and acclimate and won't be able to imagine going back.</p> <h2>4. Start Exercising More Often</h2> <p>You might have long prepared yourself to face the reality of old age, as you aren't likely to be younger than 55 (probably older) by the time you retire.</p> <p>But that isn't likely to stop you from spending some <a href="http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/exerciseforseniors.html">more time maintaining your health</a>.</p> <p>According to what your body permits, regular exercise will be far more appealing with extra time to spare and the leisure to get to the gym or your local health club. Particularly if you were an active person before retiring, your health can be a hobby in itself.</p> <h2>5. Keep a Tighter Budget</h2> <p>Depending on your streams of income, retiring means your available spending money will be fixed and predetermined. Thus living expenses will need to be more closely watch and monitored so that you don't run short. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/just-saving-isnt-enough-how-cash-flow-allocation-helps-you-retire?ref=seealso">How Cash Flow Allocation Helps You Retire</a>)</p> <p>That alone can be a completely new feeling, as you're relying on income that you've either already earned, or that you're getting in the form of social security or a pension.</p> <p>How can you stretch it then?</p> <p>You stretch it by managing your expenses and keeping a cap on what you pay out. Just because you aren't working doesn't mean you're not managing money.</p> <h2>6. Feel a Sense of Relief</h2> <p>Despite all the difficult emotions and the changes, having your entire working career behind you will undoubtedly be visited by a sense of relief; a deep and relaxing exhale.</p> <p>You've finished a major portion of life's race and the rest is mostly a cool down phase.</p> <p>Life still moves, but at a much slower pace.</p> <p>This should be a relief to you, both in a physical sense and an emotional sense, making your life far more relaxing than it had been previously.</p> <h2>Mixed Emotions</h2> <p>Some people look forward to retirement, even from a young age. Others find it scary, intimidating and an unfriendly reminder of the quickness by which life passes.</p> <p>But like all stages and changes life brings, it has both benefits and drawbacks; pros and cons.</p> <p>Thus your first day of retirement is going to be a complex set of mixed emotions. Some of these will be positive and joyful, while others will be negative and hard to process. A lot of it depends on your personality, health and how you feel about what you accomplished.</p> <p>You can look forward to the positive and be prepared for the negative.</p> <p>We're privileged to live in a time when we don't have to work ourselves into the ground to survive.</p> <p>So the opportunity of retirement itself is worth being thankful for.</p> <p><em>Have you retired? What were some of the thoughts that ran through your head when it was all new to you? Please share in comments!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/mikey-rox">Mikey Rox</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-things-you-might-do-on-your-first-day-of-retirement">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/30-great-side-jobs">30 Great Side Jobs</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-tell-if-your-401k-is-a-good-or-a-bad-one">How to Tell if Your 401K Is a Good or a Bad One</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-incredible-places-to-retire-abroad-that-anyone-can-afford">5 Incredible Places to Retire Abroad That Anyone Can Afford</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-great-retirement-jobs">6 Great Retirement Jobs</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-many-benefits-of-diy">The Many Benefits of DIY</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Retirement hobbies retirement side jobs Fri, 13 Jun 2014 09:00:22 +0000 Mikey Rox 1142649 at http://www.wisebread.com The 35 Best Ways to Spend Your Free Time (Frugally) http://www.wisebread.com/the-35-best-ways-to-spend-your-free-time-frugally <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/the-35-best-ways-to-spend-your-free-time-frugally" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/reading-482436757.jpg" alt="woman reading" title="woman reading" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="167" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Wise Bread readers are masters at saving more and spending less. You know how to shop smart, how to stretch a budget, and how to find the best deals on just about anything.</p> <p>But what about when you want to cut loose and relax?</p> <p>Life, after all, is about balance and having some hobbies is a key component of living a happy, healthy life. If only those hobbies weren't so expensive.</p> <p>Fortunately, there are plenty of ways to stay true to your frugal principles and still have a good time in the process. Here are 35 ways to enjoy yourself without breaking the bank. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/20-free-or-really-cheap-ways-to-relieve-stress?ref=seealso">20 Free Ways to Relieve Stress</a>)</p> <h2>1. Reading</h2> <p>Too obvious? Maybe, but it's cheap, cheap, cheap, and if you enjoy doing it, you'll never run out of new material. Find an endless supply of stuff to read on the Internet, pick up used books at garage sales and thrift stores, or take advantage of your free library card and gain access to everything from the old classics to the latest best-sellers.</p> <h2>2. Journaling/Writing</h2> <p>Writing offers a number of benefits, not the least of which is learning to write better by constructing your thoughts on paper. Work through your issues by journaling or leave something memorable for your descendants by writing your memoirs. If you're not yet ready to put your life on paper, try writing about someone else's life instead, or write about a cause or event that you think is important.</p> <p>Or just make the whole thing up. One of the great things about writing fiction is that you have control over how the story develops. Not sure where to start? Let this handy <a href="http://writers-den.pantomimepony.co.uk/writers-plot-ideas.php">online plot generator</a> start for you.</p> <h2>3. Writing Poetry</h2> <p><em>There is an art to making words rhyme,</em></p> <p><em>A rhythm that requires those words to keep time,</em></p> <p><em>But master it and you will see,</em></p> <p><em>There's nothing quite so creative as poetry.</em></p> <p>Where to start? Turco's <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0874513812/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=0874513812&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20">The New Book of Forms</a> and Hollander's <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0300088329/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=0300088329&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20">Rhyme's Reason</a> are classic introductions to English rhyme and verse, with clear explanations and plenty of examples.</p> <h2>4. Performing Slam Poetry</h2> <p>If traditional rhyme isn't your thing, consider <a href="http://nps2013.poetryslam.com/">slam poetry</a> instead. Meant to be spoken, slam poetry is much more visceral in content, often used as a means to vent about political issues, humanitarian injustices, and personal milestones. It's also much more flexible when it comes to style and syntax. You can use rhyme if you want, but it's not required; in fact, the only real &quot;requirements&quot; of slam poetry is that it's passionate, and if you're going to compete, your poem must be three minutes or under.</p> <p><img width="605" height="303" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u784/hobby-482059289-ggnoads.jpg" alt="" /></p> <h2>5. Sewing</h2> <p>When I was in elementary school, my mother made matching outfits for me and my best friend. They featured faux suede vests and skirts with cream-colored satin shirts, and since this was the '70s, we were hot stuff in those outfits to say the least.</p> <p>I never really got into sewing after a dress-debacle in my 8th grade Home-Ec class, but now, with a daughter of my own, I've pulled out mom's sewing machine, and I'm slowly but surely learning how to make my own garments. My only regret is that I didn't do it sooner. Sewing is a wonderfully creative outlet and the perfect way to fashion a custom wardrobe for a fraction of what you'd spend buying off the racks. Plus &mdash; and this is my goal &mdash; if you get really good at working with patterns, you can start working on your own designs. Move over, Jaclyn Smith!</p> <h2>6. Walking</h2> <p>Despite the obvious cardiovascular benefits, walking is a great way to clear your head, let off some steam, and just enjoy the outdoors. You can walk the trail at your local park or just walk your neighborhood after dinner. The benefits are the same, and it's free. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-surprising-benefits-of-a-10-minute-walk?ref=seealso">Surprising Benefits of a 10-Minute Walk</a>)</p> <h2>7. Gardening</h2> <p>When we moved out of the city some seven-plus years ago, I wanted to fully experience the whole &quot;country-lifestyle,&quot; so I promptly tilled up an area for a small garden. It was one of the best things I've ever done. Not only do you get to commune with nature, but if you grow edibles, you can cut down your grocery bill to boot. And just let me say, there's <em>nothing</em> like homegrown tomatoes. Plus, you don't need lots of space to enjoy this hobby &mdash; <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/get-a-great-container-garden-started-with-this-guide">container gardening</a> works well even in the smallest of spaces &mdash; and if you grow heirloom plants and harvest your seeds, you'll only have to buy your starter plants once.</p> <h2>8. Bird-Watching</h2> <p>When we moved to said country home, we noticed a mud nest on our front porch. Hubby wanted to tear it down&nbsp;<span style="font-size: 13px;">&mdash; and</span>&nbsp;I wanted to know what lived in it. As it turns out, that nest belonged to a pair of <a href="http://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/purple_martin/id">Purple Martins</a>, birds known for eating their weight in mosquitoes. And because they come back every spring, I've never had to buy a can of repellant. The moral of this story? Learning more about the birds in your backyard might be worth your time.</p> <h2>9. Painting</h2> <p>Years ago, my girlfriends and I decided to try our hand at painting. We began with oils, which I loved as a medium, but they were a little pricey and a pain to clean up. Then I discovered acrylics. Water soluble and much, much cheaper, they have been my go-to medium ever since. You can find canvases and brushes &mdash; also inexpensive &mdash; at most craft stores, and there's an endless supply of how-tos on the web.</p> <h2>10. Drawing</h2> <p>If painting isn't your thing, try drawing. Sketchbooks are relatively cheap and easy to tote, so you can take your hobby with you wherever you go. And like painting, you can self-teach using books, online instruction, and lots of practice.</p> <p><img width="605" height="303" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u784/hobby-482330273-ggnoads.jpg" alt="" /></p> <h2>11. Cooking</h2> <p>Forget about prepackaged mixes and store-bought cans &mdash; there's something about cooking and baking from scratch that feels almost spiritual. Maybe it's the creative aspect of pulling it all together, tasting and adjusting along the way to be sure your recipe is just right. Maybe it's the satisfaction of seeing your creation turn out well, a manifestation of all the love and intention that went into making it. Maybe it's the presentation, with all the little drizzles and sprinkles that turn your dish into art.</p> <p>Or maybe it's just that it tastes better.</p> <p>Depending upon what you have in your cabinets, you may need to purchase certain spices and staples, but I've found that it's not too hard to keep a well-stocked kitchen, and it's definitely cheaper than eating out. Plus, it's nice to get a craving for something and know that I have the ingredients to make it, meaning fewer spontaneous trips to the grocery store.</p> <p>Where to start? Pick a cuisine or style you like, and decide to master its ingredients and recipes. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/cooking-for-beginners-10-recipes-for-kitchen-newbies?ref=seealso">10 Recipes for Kitchen Newbies</a>)</p> <h2>12. Genealogy</h2> <p>I can't tell you what got me started in genealogy. But I can tell you that once I started digging, I was forever hooked. There's something absolutely fascinating about tracing your past, learning where you came from, and even (occasionally) stumbling upon photos and stories of ancestors you never met. I have an ancestor who was a Revolutionary War Patriot, for example, and there's a memorial built in his honor in his hometown.</p> <p>I have another ancestor who was knighted by Queen Elizabeth and he, too, is remembered in a memorial, this one placed in an Abbey in Somerset.</p> <p>Not all of my ancestors have notable stories, of course, but following their trail is interesting nonetheless. You can splurge for an <a href="http://www.anrdoezrs.net/click-2822544-10456885">Ancestry.com</a> membership or you can begin by exploring the free genealogy websites online and the genealogy section at your local library. If you're just getting started, try <a href="http://www.cyndislist.com/categories/">Cyndi's List</a>.</p> <h2>13. Become an Expert</h2> <p>When I discovered that I had an ancestor with ties to Queen Elizabeth, I couldn't help but learn more about that particular era. Between the assassination attempts on the Queen and all the betrayal and beheadings during her father's (King Henry VIII) reign, there's more than enough information to keep my interest piqued. And in the process, I've become a bit of an expert on this topic.</p> <p>Now, think about something that interests you. Are you a history buff? Fascinated by science? Passionate about climate change? Dig in deeper and learn everything you can. In a world where we're bombarded with information 24/7, it's a nice change of pace to cover more than just a few fleeting details. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-ways-to-learn-something-new-every-day?ref=seealso">11 Ways to Learn Something New</a>)</p> <h2>14. Jewelry-Making</h2> <p>If you've got kids, then you've probably seen the rubber-band bracelets that are all the rage. My daughter loves making them, and has even branched out to woven friendship bracelets using string and cord. Helping her figure out new techniques and patterns reminded me of how much fun those smaller craft projects could be and while the rubber-band variation isn't really my thing, wire jewelry offers some great possibilities.</p> <p>There are literally hundreds of websites where you can get ideas and inspiration, along with step-by-step tutorials to walk you through a complete project. You can find wire at most craft stores, but you'll pay less if you order from some of the jewelry-supply websites, such as <a href="http://www.firemountaingems.com/">Fire Mountain Gems</a>. Beads can be found at most of these sites as well, or you can order them in bulk from Amazon.</p> <p>And if you find that you're especially good at jewelry making, you can sell your stuff on Etsy for extra cash. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-etsy-can-help-start-your-small-business?ref=seealso">5 Ways to Launch a Small Business With Etsy</a>)</p> <p><img width="605" height="303" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u784/hobby-481199535-ggnoads.jpg" alt="" /></p> <h2>15. Guitar</h2> <p>Of all the musical instruments you could play, the guitar is probably the most practical &mdash; easy to take with you, and if you buy it used, you can get one relatively cheap.</p> <p>There's also plenty of free lessons to be had. <a href="http://justinguitar.com">Justin Guitar</a> and <a href="http://guitarlessons.com">GuitarLessons</a> both offer free instruction as do many other websites. Or, you can just head over to YouTube &mdash; you'll find both generic lessons as well as instructions for specific songs, meaning you can finally learn how to play that 80s tune that you love so much.</p> <h2>16. Card Tricks</h2> <p>Who hasn't seen a card trick and wondered, <em>&quot;How did they do that?&quot;</em> Well, here's your chance to find out! The beauty of learning card tricks compared to other types of magic is that you can buy a deck of cards for a dollar &mdash; one dollar, and you have everything you need to start learning new tricks.</p> <p>Granted, some are more complex than others, but many are relatively easy and if you add a <a href="http://magic.about.com/od/Card-Magic-Tricks/ss/Learn-Shuffle-Card-Magic-Tricks.htm">fancy shuffle</a>, you'll look like a pro when you perform your trick.</p> <p>Cards not your thing, or a dollar to high a price to pay? How about <a href="http://www.goodtricks.net/coinmagic.html">coin tricks</a>?</p> <h2>17. Play Cards</h2> <p>Want to stretch that dollar even further? Learn to play Texas Hold 'Em or Five Card Draw or Bridge for that matter. Playing cards is a fun and easy way to relax and unwind, and it's also a great option when the Internet mysteriously goes down and you decide to reinvent family time.</p> <h2>18. Star-Gazing</h2> <p>There is something magical about looking out at the night sky, even if you don't have a telescope. Learn to spot the different constellations with one of the many astronomy apps available (I use <a href="https://itunes.apple.com/en/app/star-chart/id345542655?mt=8">Star Chart</a> &mdash; it's <em>free</em>!) and subscribe to some of the astronomy websites (such as <a href="http://astronomy.com">Astronomy Magazine</a> and <a href="http://skyandtelescope.com">Sky and Telescope</a>) to learn more about space and upcoming celestial events.</p> <h2>19. Fishing</h2> <p>You'll need a place to fish obviously &mdash; a lake or a stocked pond, for example &mdash; but that's about the biggest challenge you'll find with this hobby. Fishing requires patience, but it can also be a great way to get outside and clear your head. It's also a great way to take care of dinner.</p> <h2>20. Photography</h2> <p>No need to spend lots of money on expensive cameras; many smartphones can now take some really nice pictures and you can always upgrade later. If you've got an eye for photography, you can sell your images on sites like <a href="http://www.istockphoto.com/">iStockphoto</a> and make a few extra bucks in the process. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-awesome-money-making-hobbies?ref=seealso">Awesome Money-Making Hobbies</a>)</p> <h2>21. Chess</h2> <p>You can get a cheap chess board at Walmart, or you can play online for free (plus pick up tips and strategies) at <a href="http://chess.com">Chess.com</a>. In addition to being a great way to challenge yourself, chess is actually good for you. It exercises both sides of the brain, can help prevent diseases like dementia, and has even been shown to raise IQ.</p> <p><img width="605" height="303" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u784/hobby-461263895-ggnoads.jpg" alt="" /></p> <h2>22. Whittling</h2> <p>All you need is a knife and a piece of soft wood; the rest is nothing but your own creativity. There are plenty of tutorials online to get you started, and there are even some whittling magazines out there as well. And if you're wondering what you could possibly make by whittling, <a href="http://www.pinterest.com/search/pins/?q=whittling">take a look at these</a>.</p> <h2>23. Puzzles</h2> <p>Puzzles are cheap. Puzzles are easy to find. And depending upon your level of patience, puzzles can be a wonderful way to spend a quiet evening at home. Don't care for the jigsaw variety? Then try crossword puzzles or <a href="http://www.sudoku.com/en">Sudoku</a> &mdash; both help improve concentration, memory, and critical thinking.</p> <h2>24. Coding</h2> <p>Not everyone welcomes the idea of deciphering code, but for those that do, there are plenty of free resources to keep you busy. <a href="http://codeacademy.com">Code Academy</a> offers free lessons in several scripts and languages, including PHP, Ruby, HTML, and Java. Become proficient, and you can charge for your skills on sites like <a href="https://www.upwork.com/">Upwork</a>.</p> <h2>25. Dancing</h2> <p>Besides being a wonderful form of exercise, dancing is intensely expressive, allowing you release your tension while you work up a sweat. Learn specific dance styles, such as Salsa, Latin, or Hip Hop on YouTube or at sites like <a href="http://learntodance.com">LearntoDance</a> and <a href="http://www.thedancestoreonline.com/ballroom-dance-instruction/index.htm">The Dance Store Online</a>, or just turn on your radio and go freestyle.</p> <h2>26. Scrapbooking</h2> <p>If you buy all the ready-made scrapbooking kits, you can easily spend a small fortune. So don't do that. Instead, make your own scrapbooking accents with cheaper alternatives such as construction paper, coloring book pages, free printables off the Internet, and pictures cut out of magazines.</p> <h2>27. Pinterest</h2> <p>I've just recently started using <a href="https://www.pinterest.com/">Pinterest</a>, but I can definitely see the appeal. You create &quot;boards&quot; devoted to whatever topics you choose and then &quot;pin&quot; related items that you find on the Internet. Think of it as digital collecting, and you're on the right track. For me, it's like window shopping online &mdash; I have a board for shoes, one for recipes, one for wire jewelry, another for astronomy pics, and yet another for gardening ideas. It's a free and fun way to share the stuff you find online and follow others who share your interests.</p> <p><img width="605" height="303" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u784/hobby-481194329-ggnoads.jpg" alt="" /></p> <h2>28. Raise Chickens</h2> <p>I currently have eight chickens &mdash; four that are full-grown and keep me well stocked with fresh eggs, and four new chicks, about three weeks old and currently living in a tub in my dining room until they're big enough to live outside.</p> <p>Getting chickens was one of the first things I did when we moved out of the city, and I have to tell you, I am in love. Chickens are easy to keep, funny to watch, and if you get the right breeds, sociable. My girls follow me around the yard, they keep the grasshoppers under control, and as I said, they keep me and my neighbors well stocked in eggs. If you decide to breed, you can sell your chicks to feed stores or direct to the public for $2 to $3 apiece. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-raise-backyard-chickens?ref=seealso">Raising Backyard Chickens</a>)</p> <h2>29. Homesteading</h2> <p>Homesteading is actually a broad term that covers a variety of activities and practices, all devoted to living self-sufficiently. Canning falls under homesteading for example, as does making your own wine and cheese. You don't have to go completely off the grid, but if making your own jerky sounds appealing, or if you've often thought about keeping bees, crafting elixirs, growing your own crops, or just &quot;going green,&quot; homesteading might be for you. And with the right planning and preparation, even a little homesteading can be very friendly to your pocketbook.</p> <h2>30. Papier Mache</h2> <p>Not only is this hobby extremely creative, it's also a great way to recycle all that junk mail and old newspapers. Visit <a href="http://www.ultimatepapermache.com/">Ultimate Paper Mache</a> for recipes, tutorials, and inspiration.</p> <h2>31. Origami</h2> <p>The art of paper folding, origami, dates back to 17th Century Japan. It uses a series of folds to create sculptures out of flat pieces of paper, no glue or cutting allowed. To start your origami adventure, try <a href="http://www.origami-instructions.com/">these projects</a>.</p> <h2>32. Whistling</h2> <p>Yes, whistling. I can whistle one note &mdash; one sad, little note that's barely audible, but I love the idea of being able to whistle a tune, or even just whistle for my dog. Those that can do it typically take it for granted, while those that can't would love to learn. And as with everything else, practice makes perfect. <a href="http://www.wikihow.com/Whistle">Here's some tips to get you started</a>.</p> <p><img width="605" height="303" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u784/hobby-478115241-ggnoads.jpg" alt="" /></p> <h2>33. Singing</h2> <p>Everyone &mdash; <em>everyone</em> &mdash; likes to sing along to their favorite songs. So, why not improve that singing voice and share it with the rest of the world? There's plenty of singing tutorial videos on Youtube or you can take free lessons from <a href="http://free-singing-lessons.com/">Free-Singing-Lessons</a>.</p> <h2>34. Make Recycled Art</h2> <p>We've all seen those news stories about people who made impressive works of art from what might otherwise be considered as trash or junk. The <a href="http://kylebean.co.uk/portfolio/whatcamefirst">chicken made from egg shells</a> for example, or <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/nickgentry/sets/72157634425010430/">the paintings created from floppy disks</a> &mdash; the possibilities are endless, and what better way to recycle your trash?</p> <h2>35. Blogging</h2> <p>After you've mastered some of these other hobbies, write a blog about it! You can blog for free on sites like <a href="http://blogger.com">Blogger</a> and <a href="http://wordpress.com">Wordpress</a> or, if you want something more custom, you can download the <a href="http://wordpress.org">Wordpress</a> platform for free and install on your own domain. Domain names can be had for about $10 a year (I use <a href="http://www.kqzyfj.com/click-2822544-11757863">Namecheap</a>) and hosting for under $10 per month, depending on the package you choose (I use <a href="http://www.dpbolvw.net/click-2822544-10408508">Hostgator</a>).</p> <p>Blogging about your hobbies and interests allows you to continue improving those writing skills and connect with others who share your interests.</p> <p><em>Now it's your turn&hellip; what's your favorite frugal hobby?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/kate-luther">Kate Luther</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-35-best-ways-to-spend-your-free-time-frugally">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/beat-stress-with-these-28-inexpensive-pastimes">Beat Stress With These 28 Inexpensive Pastimes</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-more-hobbies-you-can-start-for-free">10 More Hobbies You Can Start for Free</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-54-frugal-hobbies-you-should-try-immediately">Flashback Friday: 54 Frugal Hobbies You Should Try Immediately</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-earn-money-on-etsy-no-craft-required">How to Earn Money on Etsy — No Craft Required</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/learn-all-the-frugal-skills-you-need-with-these-9-great-video-tutorials">Learn All the Frugal Skills You Need With These 9 Great Video Tutorials</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Frugal Living crafts hobbies pastimes skills Sun, 06 Apr 2014 02:45:22 +0000 Kate Luther 1134343 at http://www.wisebread.com Ask the Readers: Do You Make Money From Your Hobbies? http://www.wisebread.com/ask-the-readers-do-you-make-money-from-your-hobbies <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/ask-the-readers-do-you-make-money-from-your-hobbies" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/hobby-83493472.jpg" alt="knitting" title="knitting" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="167" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p><em>Editor's Note: Congratulations to <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ask-the-readers-do-you-make-money-from-your-hobbies#comment-744120">Catseye</a>, Amanda, and Tabathia for winning this week's contest!</em></p> <p>A great way to earn some side income is to monetize your hobbies by selling the things you make, helping others with a task you enjoy doing, or even teaching a skill to someone and charging a fee for the lessons.</p> <p><strong>Do you make money from your hobbies?</strong> What challenges have you come across so far? Do you plan on eventually making it your primary source of income?</p> <p>Tell us about your money-making hobbies and we'll enter you in a drawing to win a $20 Amazon Gift Card!</p> <h2>Win 1 of 3 $20 Amazon Gift Cards</h2> <p>We're doing three giveaways &mdash; here's how you can win!</p> <h3>Mandatory Entry:</h3> <ul> <li>Post your answer in the comments below. One commenter will win a $20 Amazon Gift Card!</li> </ul> <h3>For extra entries:</h3> <ul> <li>You can tweet about our giveaway for an extra entry. Also, our Facebook fans can get an extra entry too! Use our Rafflecopter widget for your chance to win one of the other two Amazon Gift Cards:</li> </ul> <p><a id="rc-79857d81" class="rafl" href="http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/79857d81/" rel="nofollow">a Rafflecopter giveaway</a></p> <script src="//d12vno17mo87cx.cloudfront.net/embed/rafl/cptr.js"></script></p> <p><strong>If you're inspired to write a whole blog post OR you have a photo on flickr to share, please link to it in the comments or tweet it.</strong></p> <h4>Giveaway Rules:</h4> <ul> <li>Contest ends Monday, March 17th at 11:59 p.m. Pacific. Winners will be announced after March 17th on the original post. Winners will also be contacted via email.</li> <li>You can enter all three drawings &mdash; once by leaving a comment, once by liking our Facebook update, and once by tweeting.</li> <li>This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered, or associated with Facebook.</li> <li>You must be 18 and US resident to enter. Void where prohibited.</li> </ul> <p><strong>Good Luck!</strong></p> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-blog-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Tell us about your money-making hobbies and we&#039;ll enter you in a drawing to win a $20 Amazon Gift Card! </div> </div> </div> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-jacobs">Ashley Jacobs</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ask-the-readers-do-you-make-money-from-your-hobbies">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ask-the-readers-200-giveaway-what-is-your-top-question-about-personal-finance">Ask the Readers $200 Giveaway: What is Your Top Question About Personal Finance?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ask-the-readers-whats-the-biggest-item-in-your-budget">Ask the Readers: What&#039;s the Biggest Item in Your Budget?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ask-the-readers-should-kids-get-paid-for-doing-chores">Ask The Readers: Should Kids Get Paid For Doing Chores?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ask-the-readers-what-is-your-new-years-resolution">Ask the Readers: What Is Your New Year&#039;s Resolution?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ask-the-readers-how-did-you-spend-your-first-paycheck">Ask the Readers: How Did You Spend Your First Paycheck?</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Giveaways Ask the Readers hobbies Tue, 11 Mar 2014 11:36:40 +0000 Ashley Jacobs 1130385 at http://www.wisebread.com 25 Easy Ways to Make Your Life More Interesting http://www.wisebread.com/25-easy-ways-to-make-your-life-more-interesting <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/25-easy-ways-to-make-your-life-more-interesting" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/bicycling-1851891-small.jpg" alt="bicycling" title="bicycling" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Variety is more than just the spice of life; it expands our experience and makes our lives more fulfilling. Unfortunately, many of us are bound to tight, overwhelming schedules that leave little room for novelty or adventure. The good news is that making your life more interesting is easy if you are willing to make small departures from the norm. Here are 25 simple ways you can make your life more interesting &mdash; starting today. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-benefits-of-changing-your-routine">Reasons to Change Your Routine</a>)</p> <h2>1. Greet the Dawn</h2> <p>Even if you&#39;re not a morning person, plan to watch the sun rise. Prepare for this moment by picking out a view point and determining when the weather in your area will be clear enough to usher in a beautiful day. Brew some strong coffee and bring a friend along. As the sun rises, remind yourself of all the possibilities that a new day holds.</p> <h2>2. Take a Different Path</h2> <p>Give yourself some extra time to take the scenic route to work. Try side streets instead of the freeway. Make a conscious effort to change your routine travels once-in-a-while and discover new places and new people.</p> <h2>3. Plan a Mini Roadtrip</h2> <p>Explore new vistas right around the corner. Search the web for nearby points of interest or comb the countryside for vegetable stands and garage sales. You don&#39;t have to travel far or spend a lot of time (or money) to make the most of the miles you roam. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/make-your-escape-with-these-14-affordable-weekend-getaways">14 Affordable Weekend Getaways</a>)</p> <h2>4. Move to the Beat of a Different Drummer</h2> <p><img alt="" src="http://static1.killeraces.com/files/fruganomics/u784/inting-4040854-small-ggnoads.jpg" style="height:303px; width:605px" /></p> <p>Tired of listening to the same old song? Applications like <a href="https://www.spotify.com/us/">Spotify</a> allow users to preview different artists and listen to entire albums for free. Spotify can also make suggestions for other music based on the genres you enjoy most. Who knows, your quest for variety might reveal a whole new musical interest!</p> <h2>5. Turn Off Your TV</h2> <p>Watching TV is a passive activity at best. Why not turn it off for a day and actively search out your news and entertainment elsewhere? Read a newspaper, enjoy a play at a community theater, or simply revel in some rare silence.</p> <h2>6. Make Something Interesting</h2> <p>Try your hand at crafting. Explore <a href="http://spoonful.com/create/recyclable-crafts-gallery">making simple recyclable crafts for kids</a> or try reconnecting with a skill you already have. <a href="http://www.pintrest.com">Pintrest</a> is a great place to search for quick and simple projects.</p> <h2>7. Find a Poem</h2> <p>Awaken your inner Shakespeare by penning a sonnet from words you find in newspapers, owners&#39; manuals, magazines, or even this blog post. For example, choose every third word from your found material and place them into a word bank. Next, choose words from your bank that fit into a Haiku format (5 syllables for the first line, 7 for the next, and 5 for the last).</p> <h2>8. Wander Down Memory Lane</h2> <p>Remember all those pictures you took at your last family reunion or vacation? What about that old diary tucked away in the shoebox? Find those memories and spend some time with them. As you wander down memory lane, reflect on what was interesting to you back then. Sparking a new interest can start by rekindling forgotten embers.</p> <h2>9. Visit With Children</h2> <p><img alt="" src="http://static1.killeraces.com/files/fruganomics/u784/inting-kid-dad-5118053-small-ggnoads.jpg" style="height:303px; width:605px" /></p> <p>Kids aren&#39;t afraid to color outside the lines or paint the sky orange instead of blue. Spending time in their company will open you up to the wild musings of your inner child. The young folks in your life will revel in the attention and sometimes, as the old saying goes, kids say the darnedest things! (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-free-ways-to-entertain-kids-for-an-afternoon">15 Free Ways to Entertain Kids</a>)</p> <h2>10. Make Your Own Value Meal</h2> <p>If you had only $2.00 to make a meal, what would be on the menu? Scrounge around your pantry first and complement your culinary findings with a $2.00 purchase (or less) at your local grocery store or farmer&#39;s market.</p> <h2>11. Play Anthropologist</h2> <p>Grab a small notebook and a pen and situate yourself in a park, at a cafe, or in the mall. Write down your observations of the people you see and make notes of the tidbits of conversation you can&#39;t help overhearing. This exercise takes you out of your own head and tunes you into the world around you.</p> <h2>12. Perform Random Acts of Kindness</h2> <p>Make your day more interesting by bolstering your positive outlook and giving someone else&#39;s mood a little lift. <a href="http://www.psychologytoday.com/articles/200607/pay-it-forward">Research in positive psychology</a> shows that doing something unexpected and kind has benefits for you, as well as others. Try holding the door for someone, send a thank you e-mail, or try composing a &quot;<a href="http://www.moreloveletters.com/">love letter&quot; to a stranger</a>.</p> <h2>13. Eat Outside the Box</h2> <p>Introduce your taste buds to a new experience. Maybe you&#39;ve noticed a new restaurant or heard about an ethnic cuisine you&#39;ve never eaten. Go ahead and give it a try &mdash; even if you only have an appetizer at first. For maximum effect, search out a recipe on your cuisine of choice and make it at home.</p> <h2>14. Have a Simple Scavenger Hunt</h2> <p>Have you ever noticed how focusing on one thing makes other things nearly impossible to see? Challenge your awareness patterns by going on a quick scavenger hunt in your home or office. Choose a simple trait to look for, like words spelled containing the letter &quot;Q&quot; or anything with the color green in it. Try to amass a collection of ten things that meet your chosen criteria. You might even find those long lost keys in the process.</p> <h2>15. Flip a Coin</h2> <p>Can&#39;t decide between two items on a menu or what to do on a random Sunday afternoon? Call one heads and the other tails and leave the decision to random whims of chance. You might be pleasantly surprised with the outcome.</p> <h2>16. Discover Treasure at the Library</h2> <p><img alt="" src="http://static1.killeraces.com/files/fruganomics/u784/inting-3061123-small-ggnoads.jpg" style="height:303px; width:605px" /></p> <p>Visit your local library and wander among the shelves. Scan the titles for something that grabs your attention and then look at the books on the shelves above and below. Because of libraries&#39; organization system, there&#39;s a good chance you&#39;ll find something related, but just slightly different from what you originally found interesting.</p> <h2>17. Volunteer</h2> <p>What better way to make your day more interesting than to be the change you want to see in the world? Consider the local groups who do good work in your community. Reach out to them and offer your time and talent. If you are unsure where to start, an online resource like <a href="http://www.volunteermatch.org">VolunteerMatch.org</a> can help connect you to the causes near and dear to your heart. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-unexpected-benefits-of-volunteering">Unexpected Benefits of Volunteering</a>)</p> <h2>18. Spend Time With Pets</h2> <p>Animals can be an endless source of interest and entertainment for the people in their lives. Treat your dog or cat to a new toy and spend a little time helping them enjoy it. Don&#39;t have a pet? Consider adopting one from a shelter or pet sit for a friend.</p> <h2>19. Revisit Your Childhood Dreams</h2> <p>What do you want to do when you grow up? Try to recall how you answered that question as a child. Did you want to be a nurse, an artist, or used car salesperson? If you&#39;re not already living that five-year-old&#39;s dream, take some time to read about the career you would have picked for yourself.</p> <h2>20. Stop and Smell the Roses</h2> <p><img alt="" src="http://static1.killeraces.com/files/fruganomics/u784/inting-garden-5271047-small-ggnoads.jpg" style="height:303px; width:605px" /></p> <p>When did you last spend time enjoying a rose bush, bed of hydrangeas, or a beautiful bouquet at the grocery store? Flowers have been evolving for over 100 million years to bring you their enchanting looks and inviting fragrances.</p> <h2>21. Don&#39;t Surf &mdash; Stumble</h2> <p><a href="http://www.stumbleupon.com">StumbleUpon</a> is a free web-based tool that helps you discover new sites, photos, and blogs. Just select what interests you, and StumbleUpon will suggest random related websites.</p> <h2>22. Repurpose Something</h2> <p>Add interest to your day, save money, and help the environment at the same time. Find an everyday object and envision another use for it. Brainstorm reuse ideas for typical throwaways like paper plates, coffee cups, and plastic bags. What new and useful creations can you make? (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/18-awesome-practically-free-upcycled-craft-projects">18 Practically Free Upcycled Craft Projects</a>)</p> <h2>23. Say &quot;Bonjour! Ciao! Hallo!&quot;</h2> <p>Learn how to greet someone in a new language. It&#39;s quick and easy to acquire a few simple phrases like &quot;How are you?&quot; and &quot;Thank you&quot; in another tongue. Once you&#39;ve mastered some pleasantries, find someone to practice them with. You might make a new friend in a faraway place!</p> <h2>24. Switch Hands</h2> <p>Most people tend to prefer one hand over the other for writing and other manual tasks. If it&#39;s safe and practical, try writing a short note or doodling a simple picture with your other hand. See if you can master simple tasks using your non-dominant hand.</p> <h2>25. Realize That Today Really Is Interesting</h2> <p>Maybe today is &quot;National Pumpkin Cheesecake Day&quot; or &quot;Take Your Teddy Bear to Work Day.&quot; <a href="http://www.checkiday.com/">Find out what&#39;s special about today</a> or learn about <a href="http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history">what happened today</a> in history.</p> <p>You don&#39;t have to do anything extravagant to experience a little variety in your life. Let go of the reins a bit and see where the ride takes you. Meeting new people, finding a poem, or a reviving a dormant talent carry benefits that extend far beyond breaking out of the mundane.</p> <p><em>What will you do to make your life more interesting today?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/kentin-waits">Kentin Waits</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/25-easy-ways-to-make-your-life-more-interesting">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-3"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-best-hobbies-for-introverts">8 Best Hobbies for Introverts</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-simple-ways-to-get-your-life-together">10 Simple Ways to Get Your Life Together</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-basic-ways-to-become-your-own-life-coach">7 Basic Ways to Become Your Own Life Coach</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-self-help-mantras-that-actually-hurt">6 Self Help Mantras That Actually Hurt</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-35-best-ways-to-spend-your-free-time-frugally">The 35 Best Ways to Spend Your Free Time (Frugally)</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Development activities crafts hobbies self help self improvement Thu, 31 Oct 2013 10:36:03 +0000 Kentin Waits 1062403 at http://www.wisebread.com 30 Great Side Jobs http://www.wisebread.com/30-great-side-jobs <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/30-great-side-jobs" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/5548053540_c5629f418e_z.jpg" alt="dog and camera" title="dog and camera" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="193" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>There are thousands of side jobs out there these days, but they aren&rsquo;t necessarily created equal. Some are better than others, especially in terms of how much work you have to do compared to how much money you earn. These are a sample of the better side jobs you may be interested in. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-side-jobs-for-stay-at-home-moms-and-dads">12 Side Jobs for Stay-at-Home Moms and Dads</a>)</p> <h2>1. Tutoring</h2> <p>If you know a particular subject well, you can find many opportunities to tutor, both through employers and on your own. The best-paid tutors often specialize in helping with test preparation, particularly for graduate and professional exams.</p> <h2>2. Medical Testing</h2> <p>While there can be some serious side effects that can go along with being a medical test subject, there can also be some decent money. Do your research before agreeing to a particular trial and make sure that it won&rsquo;t interfere with your other obligations before signing the paperwork.</p> <h2>3. Pet Sitting</h2> <p>Not all pet owners prefer to put their pets in a kennel when they travel &mdash; some prefer that their pets get to stay home. Some pet owners even need someone to handle pet sitting duties (like walking the dog) when they&rsquo;re home. If you&rsquo;re fond of furry friends, such a side job could be a good fit.</p> <h2>4. Landscaping</h2> <p>Mowing lawns and handling other landscaping tasks is hard work, but if you just do it for a few people on the side, it can be a manageable workload. For anyone willing to do gardening, landscape design, or other specialized work, there&rsquo;s more money available.</p> <h2>5. Teaching</h2> <p>For anyone with a skill or an area of expertise, teaching can be a decent option. Don&rsquo;t just look at colleges for adjunct positions, though. Many different types of organizations will bring in a teacher to offer a specific class.</p> <h2>6. Bartending</h2> <p>Food service jobs in general are often suggested for side jobs, but bartending jobs are the cream of the crop. There are usually better tips, at the very least.</p> <h2>7. Catering</h2> <p>You don&rsquo;t have to start a catering company of your own to land a side job with one. Many catering companies rely on part-time and seasonal help to staff events as needed. From waiting tables to cooking the food, caterers need lots of help.</p> <h2>8. Party Planning</h2> <p>If you&rsquo;ve got the knack for putting on a great event, you may do well as a party planner. You can plan parties on your own, as well as check into companies that are hiring part-time help.</p> <h2>9. Photography</h2> <p>While it can take a while to build up a successful photography practice, especially if you want to get into a competitive field like wedding photography, many photographers bring in assistants to help with specific shoots on a routine basis. You can work your way up to establishing yourself on your own and earn some money along the way.</p> <h2>10. Virtual Assisting</h2> <p>For those of you with a background in business administration, you can offer your skills up to small businesses that need help. If you can do it online &mdash; and there are few business tasks you can&rsquo;t do online these days &mdash; someone will pay you to do it.</p> <h2>11. Performing</h2> <p>It&rsquo;s tough to make a living as a musician, but there can be some surprisingly lucrative gigs, particularly if you aren&rsquo;t trying to put your own music out there. There are plenty of events where the organizer wants live music, and if you can perform their favorite pieces, you can get paid.</p> <h2>12. Consulting</h2> <p>For professionals who have been in the game for a while, consulting on your area of expertise with different companies can be a great source of income. If you are currently working in the same field, though, double check to make sure that moonlighting doesn&rsquo;t violate your contract.</p> <h2>13. Advertising</h2> <p>There are all sorts of opportunities to make money, provided you don&rsquo;t mind being associated with the company doing the advertising. Some companies will pay people to put ads on their cars or wear specific T-shirts, while others are looking for sign spinners. As long as you&rsquo;re comfortable with the product, it can be a good opportunity.</p> <h2>14. House Sitting</h2> <p>You have to be absolutely trusted by anyone who will hand over the keys to their house and head to the airport. <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-tips-for-landing-the-perfect-house-sitting-gig">House sitting</a> can be a good opportunity, although there aren&rsquo;t always big dollar signs attached to the job, but there are often other perks.</p> <h2>15. Transcribing</h2> <p>Despite what those ads for medical transcriptionists claim, there is skill required to become a transcriptionist. But it&rsquo;s a side job that you can train for in your spare time and, once you&rsquo;re up to speed, there are a lot of opportunities out there, especially if you specialize in medical or legal transcription.</p> <h2>16. Altering or Tailoring Clothes</h2> <p>There used to be plenty of places where you could get clothes altered to fit better. There&rsquo;s still a serious demand for such skills, especially during a time when people want to get as much wear out of their clothing as they can.</p> <h2>17. Providing Customer Service</h2> <p>Many companies rely on part-time customer service reps to handle phone calls, either from a call center or from their own homes. It may not be the most fun side job, but the work is steady.</p> <h2>18. Selling Cosmetics (or Other Products)</h2> <p>Selling Avon make up has been a way to make money on the side for years, and there are plenty of other companies that use the same methods to move their products. Serious salespeople can make a lot of money by selling these products, though it&rsquo;s not a good fit for everyone.</p> <h2>19. Caring for Children</h2> <p>From babysitting up to providing daycare, there are plenty of different opportunities out there for offering child care.</p> <h2>20. Freelancing</h2> <p>For a lot of creative professionals, freelancing is a logical way to make money on the side. There are many different types of freelancers, from writers to graphic designers to social media specialists.</p> <h2>21. Guiding Tours</h2> <p>Even if you don&rsquo;t live in a place known as a tourist destination, there are lots of opportunities to lead tours, especially if you&rsquo;re willing to do the research to put them together yourself. Think about variations, like ghost tours or tasting tours, to expand your opportunities.</p> <h2>22. Providing Beauty Services</h2> <p>There are lots of part-time jobs in the beauty industry, especially if you have a knack for making other people look good. Just in hair care, different people can handle cutting, <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/dye-your-own-hair-without-a-beauty-disaster">dying</a>, braiding and more. In some places, some or all beauty-related jobs require licenses, so do your homework.</p> <h2>23. Delivering Items</h2> <p>Many different types of companies need delivery drivers, from pizza to furniture. It&rsquo;s just a question of finding a job that fits into your schedule.</p> <h2>24. Cleaning</h2> <p>While typical cleaning gigs don&rsquo;t pay as much as one might like, many specialized types of cleaning can pay much more. Using organic cleaners, tackling pet stains, or washing curtains &mdash; it&rsquo;s just a question of finding a niche.</p> <h2>25. Repairing Furniture</h2> <p>If you have the skills to restore a piece of broken furniture to its former glory, there are plenty of people who will pay you to do it. Some will even pay you to build custom original furniture, if that&rsquo;s more your thing.</p> <h2>26. Computer Troubleshooting</h2> <p>Technical skills are in great demand, especially among people who need occasional help with problems that seem too trivial to take to the store. If you&rsquo;re willing to provide some basic IT support, you can wind up with a lot of customers.</p> <h2>27. Personal Shopping</h2> <p>There are plenty of people who will happily pay someone to shop for them, both for everyday purchases like groceries, and for bigger things.</p> <h2>28. Crafting</h2> <p>The rising demand for handmade items has made it easy to <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-awesome-money-making-hobbies">make money from a variety of skills</a>. You can sell everything from scrapbooking skills to scarves &mdash; and there are even some companies that will now hire you directly so they can sell your work.</p> <h2>29. Cooking</h2> <p>There are a variety of cooking jobs these days that don&rsquo;t require you to ever set foot inside a restaurant. You can work as a personal chef, cooking up a week&rsquo;s worth of meals and delivering them to a customer, for instance.</p> <h2>30. Providing Handyman Help</h2> <p>Everyone needs a little help around the house sometimes, if only for those jobs that take two people. If you&rsquo;ve got the skills to take care of a building, you can find a lot of work.</p> <p><em>Have you ever held a side job? What was it?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/thursday-bram">Thursday Bram</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/30-great-side-jobs">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-10"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-side-jobs-for-stay-at-home-moms-and-dads">12 Side Jobs for Stay-at-Home Moms and Dads</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-make-money-as-a-chat-or-forum-moderator">How to Make Money as a Chat or Forum Moderator</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-more-fun-money-making-ideas">5 More Fun Money-Making Ideas!</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-great-retirement-jobs">6 Great Retirement Jobs</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-great-side-jobs-for-book-lovers">6 Great Side Jobs for Book Lovers</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Extra Income hobbies part-time jobs side jobs stay at home jobs work at home jobs work from home Wed, 09 Jan 2013 11:36:29 +0000 Thursday Bram 961783 at http://www.wisebread.com Take One More Thing Seriously http://www.wisebread.com/take-one-more-thing-seriously <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/take-one-more-thing-seriously" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/rocks-in-ocean.jpg" alt="Rocks in the ocean" title="Rocks in the Ocean" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>When time and money are tight, it's natural to try to narrow down what you're trying to get done. I suggest experimenting with the reverse. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/reverse-engineer-the-best-time-of-your-life">Reverse Engineer the Best Time of Your Life</a>)</p> <p>You've probably done this. When you feel over-stretched, your first inclination is to pitch over a couple of things that are using whatever resource seems most burdened. Not just big things, like that volunteer gig that turned out to be way more work than you'd expected, but even things as small as a magazine subscription can find themselves on the chopping block when you're looking to free up a little money or a little time.</p> <p>It's not necessarily a bad strategy. If your problem really is that you're letting yourself be spread too thin, then it's the right thing to do. (There's good sense in the strategy of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/voluntary-simplicity-as-hedonism">voluntary simplicity</a>.) But a lot of people do this over and over again. They start with a list of the things that are supposed to be important &mdash; your family, your job, your health, your God &mdash; and then pare away anything that doesn't relate directly back to one of those priorities. And then, when their life still seems unbalanced, they do the same again. And again.</p> <p>If you've tried this a few times, and you're <em>still</em> feeling stressed and burdened, here's something to consider &mdash; maybe you're not trying to do too much. Maybe the solution to finding balance will not be found by subtracting yet another thing, but by adding one.</p> <p>Here's my suggestion &mdash; take one more thing seriously.</p> <ul> <li>Maybe it's something artistic &mdash; track down your watercolor brushes or start back up with the community theater group that used to be so much fun. Or, if your artistic inclinations are more toward appreciation than production, then go appreciate &mdash; check out the local music scene, attend a poetry slam, visit an art museum.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Maybe it's a hobby &mdash; go bird-watching, get out your old stamp collection, find out if there's a chess club in town.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Maybe it's something handy &mdash; woodworking or repairing classic cars.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Maybe it's something civic-minded &mdash; volunteering at a soup kitchen or getting involved with a community group that's working to improve the local bicycling infrastructure.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Maybe it's an activity &mdash; skiing or hiking or gardening or fishing or running.</li> </ul> <p>It should be something that fills a gap. Something that feeds your soul or exercises your body or stretches your mind in a different way than the stuff you're already doing can be regenerative.</p> <p>This is key &mdash; it needs to be <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/making-the-most-of-your-guilty-pleasures">something that's important to you</a>. Just picking some hobby at random is unlikely to help. It needs to be something hefty enough to balance the other priorities in your life.</p> <p>The point is not to have another thing you need to do or another way to spend money. The point is that when you only have a couple of priorities in life, it's hard to keep them balanced. It's like a metaphorical washing machine. If your whole load is just one or two big things, it's bound to get unbalanced. You're not going to fix that by putting in a sock.</p> <p>At some point, it becomes counterproductive to try to achieve balance by pitching out stuff that's important to you. You achieve balance by, well, keeping the things that are important to you in balance. Part of that is taking them seriously, even the ones that aren't work or family.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/philip-brewer">Philip Brewer</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/take-one-more-thing-seriously">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-3"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-best-hobbies-for-introverts">8 Best Hobbies for Introverts</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/25-easy-ways-to-make-someone-happy-today">25 Easy Ways to Make Someone Happy Today</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/pay-attention">Pay attention</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-51-easy-ways-to-live-a-happier-life">Flashback Friday: 51 Easy Ways to Live a Happier Life</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-key-to-happiness-a-case-study">The Key to Happiness: A Case Study</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Life Hacks happiness hobbies work-life balance Wed, 26 Sep 2012 10:36:41 +0000 Philip Brewer 954726 at http://www.wisebread.com 5 Tactics for Relieving Work-Related Stress http://www.wisebread.com/5-tactics-for-relieving-work-related-stress <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/5-tactics-for-relieving-work-related-stress" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/322659230_8cd3cd5c4a_z.jpg" alt="working at desk" title="working at desk" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="188" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>While money concerns usually top work stress, time spent in the cubicle and on the clock has a way of grinding away at even the most well-balanced person's gears. If your workplace anxiety and anger require more than <a href="http://www.geeksugar.com/Fun-Stress-Relieving-Bubble-Wrap-Games-7169077">a bubble wrap session</a> try these healthy stress-relieving tactics.</p> <p><a href="http://www.savvysugar.com/How-Improve-Your-Work-Life-Balance-23367160">RELATED:&nbsp;Simple Steps to Improve Your Work-Life Balance</a></p> <h3>Decode Your Stressors</h3> <p>How can you combat the <a href="http://www.savvysugar.com/Your-Two-Cents-Whats-Your-Biggest-Stresser-Work-6348952">most significant workplace tension triggers</a>? Start by decoding the elements of your day and the tasks and projects you perform that set off your stress meter and how you can change them. If you're generally content with your position, focus on the positive during moments of dread and actively try to fall back in love with your job.</p> <p>When in doubt, take a walk around the block and consider talking to your manager about changing things up to keep you motivated and growing. If you experience anxiety all day, spend some time thinking about the bigger picture, your career options, and steps you will need to take to make a larger change.</p> <p>Study more of the <a href="http://www.savvysugar.com/Tips-Combating-Most-Common-Workplace-Stressors-7514821">most common workplace stressors</a>.</p> <h3>Focus on Your Strengths and What You Do Have</h3> <p>Margaret Wehrenberg, co-author of &quot;The Anxious Brain,&quot; <a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2008/10/19/jobs/19career.html/" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">has useful advice for how to cope</a> with financial stress and says, &quot;Think about what you&rsquo;ve got in the now. Today you&rsquo;re OK. Focus on what you have instead of what you don&rsquo;t have.&quot;</p> <p>Her suggestion to &quot;worry once and do it well&quot; is perhaps overly optimistic, though conquering anxiety with productivity (like meeting with a financial planner or updating your resume) is always a good idea and a proactive approach to managing finance and career stress can only help.</p> <h3>Clean Off Your Desk</h3> <p>A cluttered desk can clutter your mind. And a dirty desk is even worse. If you feel tensions rising <a href="http://www.savvysugar.com/Need-Cubicle-Cleanup-7193673">clean off your space and kill a few germs while you cool off</a>.</p> <h3>Find an Inexpensive and Healthy Way to Unwind</h3> <p>Keeping your head clear after a rough day at work isn't easy for anyone. It's crucial to let go of the workday blues when you leave the office by taking time for yourself, but the key is to not rely on retail therapy. Try <a href="http://www.savvysugar.com/Cheap-Ways-De-Stress-After-Work-7345807">SavvySugar readers' favorite tips</a>.</p> <h3>Get Away</h3> <p>Vacations can be <a href="http://www.savvysugar.com/Travel-Therapy-Prescribes-Trips-Your-Troubles-3103162">effective for clearing your head when the stress of every day becomes overwhelming</a>, and most importantly, they allow you to enjoy life without a schedule. Can't jet to Jamaica on the fly? Take a walk around the block. Plan a no-email Saturday. Schedule in &quot;me&quot; time.</p> <h3>What's Your Work-Related Stress Relief Tip?</h3> <p>We all have our own way of fighting through the stress. What's your surefire cure?</p> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-blog-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don&#039;t let on-the-job stress ruin your day. Instead, follow these tips to help remain calm, centered, and happy, no matter what work throws at you. </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-guestpost-blurb"> <div class="field-label">Guest Post Blurb:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p style="text-align:center;"><a style="border:none;" href="http://www.savvysugar.com"><img alt="" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u4/savvysugar-300-small.jpg" /></a></p> <p><em>This is a guest contribution from our friends at </em><a href="http://www.savvysugar.com/"><em>SavvySugar</em></a><em>. Check out more useful articles from this partner:</em></p> <ul> <li><a href="http://www.savvysugar.com/Tips-De-Stress-Work-22310420">13 Ways to&nbsp;De-Stress During the Workday</a></li> <li><a href="http://www.savvysugar.com/How-Buy-Happiness-23647317">How People Are Buying Their Happiness</a></li> <li><a href="http://www.savvysugar.com/Exercise-Busy-Professionals-23464313">Exercise for Busy Professionals</a></li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/popsugar-smart-living">POPSUGAR Smart Living</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-tactics-for-relieving-work-related-stress">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-create-a-financial-5-year-plan">How to Create a Financial 5 Year Plan</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-jobs-proven-to-make-you-live-longer">5 Jobs Proven to Make You Live Longer</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-6-best-reasons-to-quit-your-job">The 6 Best Reasons to Quit Your Job</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/25-easy-ways-to-make-your-life-more-interesting">25 Easy Ways to Make Your Life More Interesting</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/you-are-what-you-do-16-ways-to-improve-your-body-language">You Are What You Do: 16 Ways to Improve Your Body Language</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Career and Income Personal Development crappy jobs de-stress hobbies relaxing Wed, 27 Jun 2012 10:36:09 +0000 POPSUGAR Smart Living 936404 at http://www.wisebread.com