Having a hobby to help prevent burnout

Being intensely involved with something for longer time periods eventually can lead to what is commonly known as burnout.  It’s not fun but rather a stressful period where you feel like no matter how hard you try, how many problems you solve, how much progress you make eventually at the end of the day it really doesn’t matter, or you’ve gotten relatively nowhere in the process.  With the result being you throw up your hands and quit, simply tapped out and that’s it.

Of course, anyone doing the same thing over and over again will end up in the same boat.  We’re human beings, not machines, and need diversity or different environments to help us learn, grow and evolve.  If we feel like we’re not doing so, maybe it’s just our body and mind telling us in its own way to stop and do something different.  If you’re not evolving in this activity, find another where you can, either way, you need to keep going.

While a short break, nap or taking it easy for a bit can help, usually the more you can get into something completely different, likewise the more re-charged you’ll feel getting back into what you were originally doing.   And it can have complimentary benefits, such as learning a solution in one environment, that same general solution can perhaps be applied to other environments you’re involved with, evolution feedback loops you could call it.

Additionally, with a hobby you usually get a chance to try new things without the fear of failure, at least publicly.  And while you’ll probably still fail, such as with anything you’re doing that’s new, the consequences are minimal and you probably even have more fun from the experience.

Here are a few hobbies that you can try when needing to take a break from what you’re working on:


Getting into a story of another time and place can put you in that world without having to actually travel to the place or experience it.  Call it mind traveling on the cheap.  And you don’t have to just read the latest on the best seller list either, there are hundreds and thousands of books from the past that can usually be just as interesting.  After all, most of these are involving human conditions, dreams and frailties, which haven’t changed a whole lot in the short few thousand years that humans began writing.

Playing a musical instrument

Great to help get in the moment in no time, completely forgetting the past or future.   Think you’re being weird for doing so?  Not so much, you’d be surprised how many people have a musical background, sometimes getting into it, other times collecting dust but rarely does anyone regret the time they spend making music.


This doesn’t have to typical canvas of bowl of fruit.  It can be anything, paint a small canvas, a large one, glasses you drink from, cards you’re going to send and so on.  And while lessons can help, you don’t need them when you’re just having fun.  Paint anything, something you imagined, focus on trying out different colors, reflections, shadows, sunsets, there are millions of things to try and all are great as they’re unique, include your own perspective of the world around you.  Plus, once done, if you like it, you can use to cover up a blank wall in your place or replace a copy of something else.

Taking a walk or hike

Something about being in nature that has an effect of revitalizing oneself.  Maybe it’s the constantly changing surroundings, the birds randomly flying by, the trees blowing in the wind, the different colors of plants and flowers, seeing the different shades of the sky or shapes of the clouds, the smells from the plants, trees or after a rain, all sorts of little things that combined can be a sensory refresher from the repetition you’re escaping from.

Going out for a pint

In moderation of course, but sometimes casually going out to some pub to have a beer or two can open the door for a conservation you never would have expected.  Start talking about one thing, take a detour from that, another one after that and next thing you know you’re having a conversation about some pretty wild stuff and in the process completely forgetting what was stressing you out beforehand.  Going out to pub to watch a sports game would not fall into this category, it’s out of your control and what you need is to get in control.  Participating in conversations away from your normal sphere can do that.  While not your typical definition of a hobby, it can get the job done with a little extra socialization.


While ordering in or going out may be more convenient, convenience isn’t what you need.  You need to create and do something to get your learning or evolving fix, even if it’s as simple as boiling some water for noodles or rice with another side dish.  You can get creative and throw in a few spices you’ve haven’t mixed together before and occasionally be very pleasantly surprised with the results.

If looking for a private network to help organize some of your hobbies and activities, you can use an Odysen network to do so.  It’s free with the Basic plan and you can invite whomever you feel appropriate for your activities.

Learn more about having your own networks for hobbies, including using the applications, benefits, FAQs and other relevant blog articles.

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Founder and CEO of Odysen, involved with different writing and music freelancing activities, and have previously worked for larger technology businesses in the US, Europe and Asia.