We regularly discuss budgeting in terms of needs and wants, with a primary focus on prioritizing “needs.” However, this month, we want to highlight how having space for your “wants,” like hobbies, is still essential. While they seem like just fun and games, research shows that hobbies can have mental health benefits such as reducing stress, easing anxiety, and lowering depression. Hobbies motivate us to take time for ourselves and provide the satisfaction of learning a new skill or completing a project.
Unfortunately for many of us, there are two significant barriers to hobbies: how much it can cost and the time commitment necessary to learning a new skill. Thankfully, the internet has made learning a new hobby cheaper than ever. If you’ve been looking for a new hobby to get into, try one of these free or inexpensive ones listed below!
No matter where you live, you can still enjoy the satisfaction of watching your houseplants grow. After the initial purchase of a plant, a pot, and some soil, houseplants are a cheap and relatively uninvolved way to bring the beauty of nature into your living space. If you’ve tried growing plants before and had bad luck, check out this list of easy-to-care-for houseplants.
Not only is meditation free, but it’s incredibly beneficial for your mental health. Setting aside ten minutes a day to sit quietly with your thoughts can reduce stress and create a more positive mindset. There are thousands of guided meditation videos on Youtube, and free apps, such as Headspace and Calm, provide daily mindfulness prompts.
Though it might make you think of your grandmother, the art of embroidery is coming back in a big way. For the low cost of fabric and thread, along with short video lessons, you can let your creativity run wild. Try and create a beautiful piece of art to hang in your home or give to a friend!
Even if you’re not a computer technician or an engineer, there are many reasons to learn to code. And, best of all, there are plenty of free resources for learning to code! Beyond tutorials on Youtube, online platforms like CodeAcademy provide short, simple lessons for several different coding languages.
Learning how to bake is a great cost-effective way to get your sugar fix! You can make dozens of baked goods using ingredients that cost about as much as your favorite Starbucks dessert. Baking is also not very time-intensive, as the longest part of most recipes is waiting for your items to bake.
Money Management E-Newsletter: April 2021