Hobbies can be an important part of a person’s overall happiness. They give us something to do when we’re on our own or to share with friends or loved ones. The allow us time away from romantic partners every once in a while, and they make for interesting dinner conversations. It seems like it should be easy to pick up a new one, right? It’s often not that simple for many people. We’ve pulled together 10 tips for picking up a new hobby.

Examine Your Envy

Who do you look at with just a little bit of envy and why? Are they doing something that you’d like to try? Might be a good opportunity to invest some time in a new hobby!

Lose the Preconceived Notions

Hobbies for some people seem like hard work to others, and vice versa. Just because your friend enjoys cross-stitching inappropriate slogans for bathrooms doesn’t mean you need to enjoy it, too. And even though some people think hitting the slopes sounds exhausting doesn’t mean you shouldn’t give it a try.

Examine the Cost

You likely can’t pick up expensive hobbies while you’re trying to save your money (unless you get creative!).

Solo or No

Do you want a hobby where you can go it alone or one where you do it with others? Some people want to spend more time with their significant other or friend and some would prefer to go it alone for a bit.

What’s Been Buried

Do you have any parts of yourself, like a creative side, that you’ve been burying? Get ready to dig them out.

Activity Level

Are you already active at work? Think about whether you really want to spend your free time running around.

It Doesn’t Have to Be Intellectual

You don’t have to spend all your free time on self-improvement! You get to choose mind-numbing hobbies to your heart’s content, if that’s what would make you happy.

Finding the Time

If you have a long commute, consider hobbies that you can do while driving (like listening to a lecture) or on the bus.

Join Someone

Try out joining a friend in their hobby to see if this is something to do together.

Avoid the Stress

Don’t beat yourself up if you end up not liking a new hobby or not finishing something! You don’t have to stick with it just because you started.