Most of us don’t really choose our hobbies. We bike, hike, or homebrew beer because, well, that’s just what we like to do.
But it’s worth giving some thought to our hobbies, because they’re not all created equal. Take running and bourbon, for instance.
Serious running and bourbon connoisseurship are both rewarding. Both relieve stress, are social, and are easy to take up. And you can spend a whole lot of time and money on either (trust me).
But running will improve your overall health, give you more energy, and boost your chances of a long, healthy life. Drinking a lot of top-shelf bourbon may not trash your health, sap your energy, or hasten your demise. But it might, and it’s definitely pushing the odds in the wrong direction.
I’m not arguing that no one should drink nice bourbon. Here’s my point: whatever it is you like about a given hobby, there are probably other hobbies with that same characteristic—that produce that same good feeling for you. So if a hobby is a little problematic, you might consider swapping in some other activity that provides the same sense of satisfaction without the downside.
“Do I enjoy this?” is a good question. Here’s a good follow-up question: “Where will this hobby take me in 10 years?”