To Start and Quit or to Never Have Started At All: A Lifetime of Hobbies

I’ll be the first to admit that I have a problem. Every so often, when life is less than exciting and I find myself bored with the shows I have queued up on Netflix, I pick a new hobby. I already paint, crochet, and read, but I have a mental list of all of the other things I think would be cool to know or to do, normally things I’ve read in books or seen on TV, and I choose one. I do some Google searches, learn the basics of my new hobby, and talk my husband’s ear off about how cool it’s going to be to know how to *insert random hobby here*. I buy my supplies, work really hard at it for a few weeks, and then drop it like a hot potato.

In the past few years alone, I’ve purchased too many yards of fabric to count because I wanted to make my own skirts, a $50 ukulele, all of the necessary supplies to cross stitch, and a cello. (Now, the cello has actually been a lifelong interest that I’m just now realizing, but that doesn’t change the fact that I bought an entire cello to fit into my 700 sq. ft. apartment on somewhat of a whim.)

The outcome: I didn’t make even a single skirt. I know a lot of chords on the ukulele, but still can’t sing, play the chords, and strum at the same time. I did start and finish one Doctor Who cross stitch pattern, and it is now proudly displayed on my bookshelf. I’ve racked up roughly 15 hours on learning the cello, but haven’t played it at all in the last two weeks, though I still have every intention of learning it in my lifetime.

What does this mean? Should I not try new things because my track record shows I probably won’t follow through? Is the result more important than the process?

Honestly, I’m not sure. It probably isn’t great that I start and quit things so easily, and I can only hope my children take after my husband when it comes to things like this. (He has several hobbies he devotes himself to entirely, and he works hard until he masters them. If only we could all have his patience, am I right?) However, it also isn’t great to not try anything for fear of not being successful. Not many of us have the luck of finding what we are passionate about at a young age. I could still discover a love of river dancing at the age of fifty or a passion for candle making at the age of seventy!

The point is, I will never discover my passions if I don’t try new things. So, again, I’m trying out a new hobby. I’ve decided it would be cool to know American Sign Language, so I’m following along with a YouTube video series by Bob Vicars to learn. Sure, I may get bored and never move beyond knowing how to ask where the toilet is, but I could also decide I really love it and become fluent with a lot of hard work and practice.

What hobby or skill have you always wanted to learn? What has held you back? What hobbies have you tried and given up on? Let me know in the comments!

So Long,

Mallory