When we first started paying off our debt, we really reined in any spending in the entertainment category.
At first, it felt like all we were doing was saying “No” and depriving ourselves. And then we realized that there were so many things we could do for fun that didn’t cost much money at all. I started paying attention to what the seniors were doing in my community. Not only were they participating in low-cost things, they were enjoying those hobbies well into their 80s. Some of them were even turning those hobbies into extra cash.
If you’re on a tight budget, don’t deprive yourself of fun. Check out this list for some inspiration!
7 Lifelong Hobbies You Can Enjoy on a Budget
Fitness. Moving your body isn’t just good for your physical health, it’s good for your mind, too. Activities like walking, swimming and yoga are easy on the joints and don’t require much equipment. You can do them just about anywhere, and they’re fun, too.
Vegetable gardening. Start a garden from seeds and watch them become food for your family. You’ll enjoy fresh, organic produce and get to spend time connecting with the outdoors.
Cooking and baking. Everyone needs to eat! You don’t need to spend a lot of money to learn how to make delicious meals and treats. You don’t even need to buy cookbooks! Learn to shop with coupons, pick up some quality cookware on clearance or at estate sales, and get cooking! If you have your own garden, this becomes an even more practical hobby.
Reading and writing. All you need to enjoy these hobbies is a library card and a notepad and pen. Both reading and writing are great for keeping your mind sharp and are cathartic for the soul. Check out reading materials from the library or find free books online. Keep a journal or write fiction.
Crafting. Learn to create art from things you have around the house. Re-purpose old wood or upcycle worn-out t-shirts. Develop your photography skills or learn how to do digital scrapbooking. You’ll find plenty of inspiration on Pinterest. Use your knitting and sewing talents to create meaningful gifts. You may even be able to turn this hobby into a money-maker by selling your creations at craft sales, flea markets, or online at Etsy.
Playing Games. You can find great deals on a wide variety of board games at thrift shops, estate sales and garage sales. You can pick up a couple of new decks of cards for cheap at your local discount store. There are hundreds of computer games to play for free online, or you can score great deals on video games at pawn shops. The best part about playing games as a hobby is that you can share it with friends. Invite your friends over, play some games, and create some great memories.
Making music. Work on improving your singing voice or learn to play a musical instrument (You can find deals on instruments at secondhand shops or on Craigslist). You’ll find the practice to be relaxing and with time, the end result will be quite enjoyable for others, too!
You don’t have to spend a ton of money to enjoy yourself in your spare time. And once you realize that, you’ll see just how many wonderful things there are for you to do throughout all the stages of your life. Check out more posts on happiness, hobbies and money at Women’s Money Week.
Your turn: What kinds of frugal lifelong hobbies do you enjoy?