Ultimate List of Self Care Hobbies: 32 Ideas You've Gotta Try - Ambitiously Alexa (2024)

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Last Updated on January 7, 2024

The frustrating truth of the matter is that being an adult seems to = basically no free time! Of course, that can make anyone neglect self-care and activities they once loved.

But don’t let that be an excuse! Hobbies are more important than you think. Hobbies bring fulfillment, purpose, and joy to our leisure time. If all you do is work, come home, scroll your phone, and let the day slip away until you’ve gotta go to bed and do it all over again, you won’t be happy.

This feeling of self-fulfillment + having things to look forward to outside of work help us lead rich, satisfying lives. So choosing a new go-to hobby is 100% worth it!

Table of Contents

Is self-care considered a hobby?

Hobbies are what we do to unwind, enjoy ourselves, and help us thrive mentally. Self-care definitely fits that description.

Think about some common hobbies people have. Knitting, reading, crafting, collecting, for example. Now, think about the positive emotions people feel as a result of these hobbies. There’s a sense of accomplishment, enthusiasm, passion, and, of course, fulfillment!

This list of self care hobbies will give you tons of relaxing, rewarding ideas for how you can target self care and fun at the same time. Let’s dive in!

Ultimate List of 32 Self Care Hobbies You’ve Gotta Add to Your Routine

Ultimate List of Self Care Hobbies: 32 Ideas You've Gotta Try - Ambitiously Alexa (1)

(Make sure you pin these hobby ideas to refer back to later!)

Relaxing Hobbies

1. Embroidery

Embroidery is one of those peaceful activities where you slowly get to see your work come to life in front of you. It’s also fairly straightforward to learn unlike some other hobbies such as knitting, so super beginner-friendly!

Here is a convenient embroidery kit for beginners with a beautiful floral design that has everything you need to get started.

Ultimate List of Self Care Hobbies: 32 Ideas You've Gotta Try - Ambitiously Alexa (2)

2. Reading fiction

The biggest hurdle to reading is starting and actually finishing the books you pick up. This is why if you want to read more, you’ve gotta find books that you’ll fall in love with and feel eager to finish!

Feel free to explore all the different genres too. Romance, sci-fi, coming of age, mystery…there’s something out there for everyone!

3. Jigsaw puzzles

Different people have different opinions on jigsaw puzzles being “relaxing” haha, but I certainly think they are. Sorting out the pieces and watching everything come together is just sooo satisfying!

If puzzles ever frustrate you, I recommend starting with a lower number of pieces, like 250 to start.

4. Knitting or crocheting

Perhaps a little more popular than embroidery is knitting and crocheting! There’s a lot of mixed debate on which one is easier, and it’s largely up to personal preference. I say just pick one and give it a go!

Here is a solid beginners knitting kit and beginners crocheting kit. Check them out and compare and contrast what suits you best!

5. Paint by number

I actually got sooo into paint-by-numbers in the last couple years! I’ve finished two, and I find them so enjoyable. Maybe you will too. My last one was of this absolutely gorgeousss landscape of Venice, Italy! You can grab it down below or right here.

Ultimate List of Self Care Hobbies: 32 Ideas You've Gotta Try - Ambitiously Alexa (3)

6. Crafting

This is where you can follow your wildest Pinterest dreams! Pinterest has so many adorable crafting ideas and tutorials. You can build and paint a birdhouse, make bracelets, or create decorations for holidays. And hey, a good ole trip to Michael’s or your local craft store feels like self care in and of itself!

7. Scrapbooking

Scrapbooking is another fun one I got into in the last year. Recording all my favorite memories and photos of our little (guinea pig) family has been such a joy!

You can grab a gorgeous scrapbook like the one below (it has space for multiple photo sizes–huuuuge plus!!), scrapbook paper, and (my personal fave) scrapbook stickers.

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8. Coffee shop hopping

Going on a mission to find the best, coziest, yummiest coffee shop in town? Count me in! If I’m spending too much time cooped up at home, it feels good to step away and bring a good book or my laptop with me to grab some coffee.

This is one of those perfect solo self care hobbies you can do to practice enjoying your own company!

Self Care Hobbies You Can Do at Home

9. Baking

Baking can surely be trickier than cooking, I’ll give you that, but who doesn’t loveee the reward of home baked desserts?! Whether you want to try your luck at baking a recipe from scratch, or even boxed cake mix (I don’t judge, it’s reliable!), baking is a blast.

10. Candle making

I’ll be the first to admit I’m obsessed with buying candles, but shoot, they can get expensive! The best way to get the most bang for your buck and create the candle scents of your dreams is to try candle making.

This complete DIY candle making kit has got you covered and even offers 5 different wax options. Start there!!

11. Cooking

Cooking is actually one of the best self care hobbies for busy people because hey, you gotta cook dinner to eat anyway! If you’ve slipped into the routine of cooking the same 3 dinners on repeat, make it a point to try at least one new recipe every couple weeks.

12. Home DIY Projects

The possibilities are endless with home DIY projects. Even if you don’t own your home and can’t do a whole heck of a lot to it, you can start with things like painting furniture! I painted my office desk neutral brown and white and I absolutely love it. And painting it was so fun.

13. Home Decor

Your daily environment is a powerful influence on your mental health. Decorating your space in a way that makes you thrive and feel happy is actually very important!

I’ve gotten so much more into home decor in the last couple years. I know it can get expensive, so my best suggestion is to go room by room. You don’t even have to make major purchases like furniture.

I started by focusing just on my home office because that’s where I spend like 80% of my day, so it’s pretty crucial that it’s a space that makes me happy!

Something as simple as little desk decorations or practical improvements (mouse pad, wrist cushion, space heater) can make all the difference in your comfort and pride in your place.

14. Gardening

You don’t even need to own a giant yard to do gardening! There are options for everyone, no matter your living space. You can always start small by growing things in potted plants. This is especially ideal for small herbs like basil!

15. Start a blog

Starting my blog has been one of the most rewarding, empowering things I’ve ever done! If there’s literally any topic you’re passionate about and can’t shut up about, I highly recommend creating your own blog.

If you don’t know how, I have an entire guide on how to start a blog and make money with it! Not that you have to do it to earn money, especially if it’s just a fun self care hobby. But if money comes along the way, who’d complain?!

16. Curate the heck out of your Instagram feed

I’m starting to realize that Instagram is quite the hobby for a lot of people, and kinda deserves some recognition on this list of self care hobbies.

Organizing the perfect aesthetically-pleasing collection of pictures, trying new filters or editing tools, coming up with witty captions…it’s all such a fun way to showcase yourself and have control over what you put out into the world.

Ultimate List of Self Care Hobbies: 32 Ideas You've Gotta Try - Ambitiously Alexa (5)

(Don’t forget about these hobby ideas! Pin them for later)

Hobbies for Self Love

17. Journaling to curate the perfect self care routine

Journaling is absolutely crucial for your mental well-being and can truly inspire self love!

When you have a solid self care plan in place, self love often follows. Problem is, a lot of us wait until we’re narrowly approaching burnout to fix our habits!

If you feel like getting “me-time” is basically impossible these days, you’ve gotta check out my printable Self Care Journal for Busy Women. It walks you A-Z through creating the perfect self care plan that’s unique to you! Grab it below.

Life too hectic for self care? Not with The Busy Woman’s Self Care Journal!

Made by a busy woman, for busy women,the goal of this journal is simple:to make an effective self care plan that works for your unique needs. No matter how crazy life gets!

Get step-by-step guidance to create your personalized self care plan by…

  • Identifying which self care works best for you
  • Creating specific self care goals
  • Daily journaling to stay on top of your self care needs


RELATED: Journal Prompts for Anxiety: 42 Prompts When You’re Overwhelmed

18. Strengthen one of your skills

Maybe there’s something you already like to do, or have dabbled in at a beginner level, that you could take to the next level. I grew up doing competitive dance but still have a lot of skills I could work toward, so I love to work on that when I can!

19. Try a new physical activity or form of movement

Being active and moving your body can make you feel amazing both inside and out. It’s rewarding to see yourself get stronger and improve with time! Check out what your area has to offer for dance classes, yoga, weight training, swimming, or whatever floats your boat!

20. Do creative work you’re proud of

You can even think beyond painting or drawing if that’s not your thing. Think: writing a song, learning an instrument, choreographing a dance, creating a YouTube channel, learning all the best secrets to edit your Instagram photos in a way you love…the list goes on!

Creativity is so personal and can mean something so different to everyone. Honestly, just follow where your heart takes you on this one and don’t be afraid to try something new!

Pro tip: learning to release the need to be “good” at creative hobbies is also a skill in and of itself. You shouldn’t feel pressure to hit a certain metric or standard when it comes to something you do purely for the joy of it. Sure, you can strive for improvement if you’d like, but it’s not always necessary.

Self love means accepting yourself whether you’re a beginner or a seasoned pro at something! And there’s no need to assign labels (being good vs. bad at something) to your hobby abilities anyway.

21. Makeup

I don’t know about you, but taking time out of my day to do my makeup is one of the best moments of “me time” I get. Learning new techniques, finding new products, and testing different colors can be so creative. Doing your makeup just for you and your own benefit is a wonderful feeling!

22. Meditating

I try really hard to include meditation into my morning routine as often as possible. It doesn’t always happen, but when it does, it makes a big difference in easing into my day instead of waking up feeling rushed and in a go-go-go mode.

If you can set aside just 5 minutes of your morning (that’s all I do!) for either a guided meditation, or your own meditation, you give yourself a precious moment of peace to ground yourself in a life of busy chaos.

As a beginner when I first started meditating, I decided to use Headspace. It’s like, probably the best meditation app out there!! I never had productive, focused meditation sessions until I tried Headspace, and let me tell you it was a game changer.

They have guided meditations for any goal of yours, from sleep, to de-stressing, to focus, and much more! I want you to feel as wonderful as I did, so go ahead and try 14 days of Headspace for free right here!

23. Connect with a group over a shared activity

As an adult with it being so difficult to meet people, we could probably all stand to have a few more moments of socialization in our week!

This is your prime time to find an organized group activity. It could be a sport, a workout group, a quiet activity like sewing or knitting, church…the sky’s the limit.

Self care can get lonely at times, so why not make social self care part of your routine too?!

24. Volunteer

Giving to others or shaping your community in some way can be one of the most rewarding self care hobbies. Feeling good about what you contribute to the world enhances your self love too!

You could volunteer at an animal shelter, soup kitchen, library, or hospital, just for some ideas!


Ultimate List of Self Care Hobbies: 32 Ideas You've Gotta Try - Ambitiously Alexa (7)

(Look back at these hobbies when you plan your next week! Pin them now!)

Hobbies for Overthinkers

25. Turn your brain off and indulge in some “guilty” pleasures

I know, I know, it’s not that easy!! And I don’t mean to imply that it is. But what I do mean is letting go and indulging in whatever your heart tells you.

This could be some of the “less aesthetic” (aka conventionally attractive) self care activities, like turning on your favorite trashy reality show, watching compilations of influencers doing cringey things, or reading ridiculous online reviews of local stores written by Karens. Feel free to get totally creative with this one!

(And remember: your self care hobbies don’t need to look a certain way or match what you see on Tik Tok and Pinterest. Go and follow the beat of your own drum, ‘kay?!)

The goofier and more ridiculous, the better the escape from negative thought loops. This is one of those self care hobbies that the soul just needs sometimes.

26. Look up places you want to travel or move to

Alright, if your brain just won’t stop going a mile a minute, direct your energy toward something fun and exciting, like planning a trip. Or, if you haven’t found your “it” place to settle down in, start researching some potential places you might like one day.

I’m kind of a big travel and geography nerd, so getting lost in the lifestyle, climate, coffee shops, housing market, etc. of places I’m interested in is one of my fave self care hobbies! It helps me direct my attention away from the stresses of the now.

27. Bullet journaling

Bullet journaling is insanely involved! That makes it a fabulous self care hobby for overthinkers though. There is a bullet journal spread for practically anything, and you can get wildly creative with things like designing weekly planners, cute lists, habit trackers, and so on!

28. Creative writing

Pouring it all out onto a page is always therapeutic, and you can direct that same energy toward creative writing and coming up with short stories. Reading and writing are always a safe bet when it comes to taking your mind elsewhere.

29. Hiking

When you’re overthinking everything, the obvious goal is to clear your mind. Going on walks helps with this, so why not take it to the next level and get into hiking? You don’t even have to do any crazy advanced uphill trails. Simply walking in nature brings plenty of peace on its own!

30. Dive into a new interest

I love finding a new area of interest to hyperfixate on for the next several months, lol! Learning all the ins and outs of a certain interest can help you focus on something that is outside yourself.

I’ve spent a lot of time looking up things like my heritage/nationalities, weightlifting, personal finance, and psychology/human behavior. That’s just me. It can be something that provides practical value to your life, or something purely for joy and leisure!

RELATED: 60 Journal Prompts to Find Your Purpose When Stuck

31. Expand your music taste

Aside from the obvious that music is awesome, it may even result in lowered anxiety and depression. Music elicits so many different emotions and memories, and getting lost in it is ideal for overthinkers.

Next time you’re on Spotify (or wherever you listen to music), go outside your comfort zone and see what new music you like! Something I love to do is look at the top 50 charts for Germany and France. German pop is the coolest.

32. Video games

I used to spend waaayyy more time on video games as a child. Now, I can’t remember the last time I picked one up, and I don’t like that!

Now, of course, video games often require a lot of thought, strategizing, and quick decision making. However, being so occupied with navigating a video game can reorient your mind away from your stressors!

Let me know in the comments:

What activities do you do for self care?

A few self care hobbies that I personally use in my own self care routine include:

  • Journaling (of course! It wouldn’t be a self care journaling blog if I didn’t love to journal.)
  • Meditating, even just for 5 minutes in my busy morning. (Trust me, I know the struggle.)
  • Turning my brain off and catching up on my “watch later” playlist on YouTube
  • Doing jigsaw puzzles
  • Working from a coffee shop for a fresh change of scenery (working from home can be a bit monotonous if I don’t do this.)

Feel 100% free to copy my own self care hobbies if you wish! Whatever you choose, I hope these self care hobby ideas gave you plenty of relaxing, fulfilling activities to carve a little bit of balance back into your life.

Also, before you go, grab yourself a free self care check in sheet below!!

Ultimate List of Self Care Hobbies: 32 Ideas You've Gotta Try - Ambitiously Alexa (8)

Psst…make self care quick and easy by downloading my (free!) printable daily self care check in! Grab it to start adding a little self reflection into yourmorning + night routines.

More Hobby Ideas You’ll Love

How to Start a Blog and Make Money: Everything I Learned My First Year Blogging

70 Easy and Fun Journal Prompts for Beginners

21 Fun Self Care Activities for Groups That Adults Will Enjoy


Ultimate List of Self Care Hobbies: 32 Ideas You've Gotta Try - Ambitiously Alexa (9)
Ultimate List of Self Care Hobbies: 32 Ideas You've Gotta Try - Ambitiously Alexa (2024)


What are 10 ways to take care of yourself? ›

10 Small Ways to Make Taking Care of Yourself Just a Little...
  1. Get personalized vitamins delivered right to your door. ...
  2. Start the day with a clear mind. ...
  3. Go through some positive affirmations. ...
  4. Use a guided meditation app. ...
  5. Schedule workouts in your calendar like meetings. ...
  6. Write in a journal every night.

What are some examples of self-care? ›

Here are some self-care tips:
  • Get regular exercise. Just 30 minutes of walking every day can boost your mood and improve your health. ...
  • Eat healthy, regular meals and stay hydrated. ...
  • Make sleep a priority. ...
  • Try a relaxing activity. ...
  • Set goals and priorities. ...
  • Practice gratitude. ...
  • Focus on positivity. ...
  • Stay connected.

What is a self-care hobby? ›

Hobbies such as drawing, painting, or even quilting are an excellent example of using your mind productively. Additionally, there are other hobbies such as coding or even playing an instrument that involve using the mind to problem solve or learn patterns in a way that is relaxing.

What are the 7 pillars of self-care? ›

Each method of self-care fits into one of the seven pillars: mental, emotional, physical, environmental, spiritual, recreational, and social. A well-balanced self-care routine involves each of these, so avoid restricting yourself to just one or two pillars.

What are the 5 habits to take care of yourself? ›

5 Self-Care Habits to Improve Your Performance
  • Nourish your body. To perform at your best, you need a balanced diet that includes healthy and nourishing foods. ...
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  • Set work-life boundaries. ...
  • Take regular breaks. ...
  • Outsource or delegate.
Sep 5, 2022

What are 5 things you can do for self-care? ›

It's so important to make sure you take good care of your body, mind, and soul every day, not just when you get sick. Learning how to eat right, reduce stress, exercise regularly, and take a time-out when you need it are touchstones of self-care and can help you stay healthy, happy, and resilient.

What is the most popular form of self-care? ›

In fact, 92% of Americans make time for self-care every week, and spend an average of six hours per week each engaging in self-care activities. The most common self-care activities that Americans do are sleep, listening to music, drinking water, relaxing, and going for a walk.

What are the 8 areas of self-care? ›

Therefore, self-care is not only for your well-being but for your productivity as well. Namely, there are 8 main areas of self-care: physical, psychological, emotional, social, professional, environmental, spiritual, and financial.

What are the four basics of self-care? ›

Self-care includes all the things you do to take care of your well-being in four key dimensions – your emotional, physical, psychological, and spiritual health.

What are good self-care habits? ›

10 Self Care Habits to Practice Now
  • Drink More Water. We hear it all the time, but most of us still forget to stay hydrated throughout the day. ...
  • Eat Mindfully. ...
  • Give Thanks. ...
  • Get Enough Sleep. ...
  • Head Outside. ...
  • Connect to Those You Care About. ...
  • Unleash Your Creativity. ...
  • Take Time to Unwind.
Apr 7, 2016

What are self-care activities of daily living? ›

Basic ADLs

Feeding: The ability of a person to feed oneself. Dressing: The ability to select appropriate clothes and to put the clothes on. Personal hygiene: The ability to bathe and groom oneself and maintain dental hygiene, nail, and hair care. Continence: The ability to control bladder and bowel function.

How do I give myself a self-care day? ›

  1. Make the bed. While that may sound a little childish, making our bed is a good way to make sure we start the day on the right foot. ...
  2. Listen to happy songs. ...
  3. Move. ...
  4. Take a bubble bath. ...
  5. Pamper yourself. ...
  6. Hydrate. ...
  7. Write in a gratitude journal. ...
  8. Clean your home.

What are the 3 rules of self-care? ›

What Are The Four Golden Rules of Self Care?
  • Self-care is a lifestyle.
  • Self-care is not static.
  • Self-care sometimes involves elimination.
  • Don't compare your self-care.
Jun 22, 2017

What are the 3 R's of self-care? ›

The 3 R's of Self-Care: Reflection, Regulation, and Relaxation.

What are the 4 pillars of self-compassion? ›

Dr Neff has extensively researched self-compassion, describing the ways that self-compassion is closely related to wellbeing, and its influence on healing in psychotherapy. As part of her work, Dr Neff has identified three pillars of self-compassion: self-kindness, common humanity, and mindfulness.

What are the 4 ways of self-care? ›

Self-care includes all the things you do to take care of your well-being in four key dimensions – your emotional, physical, psychological, and spiritual health.

How can I take care of myself daily? ›

Top 10 Self-Care Practices to Incorporate into Your Daily Routine
  1. Spend time outside.
  2. Take a nap.
  3. Turn off your phone.
  4. Share a hug.
  5. Spend time with your pet.
  6. Practice positive thinking.
  7. Get moving.
  8. Meditate.
Apr 1, 2023

How do you truly care for yourself? ›

Common examples of self-care include: maintaining a regular sleeping routine, eating healthy, spending time in nature, doing a hobby you enjoy, and expressing gratitude. Self-care can look different for everyone, but to count as self-care, the behavior should promote health and happiness for you.

How to take care of yourself at 50? ›

13 Ways to Stay Healthy After Age 50
  1. Eat healthy. Choose nutrient dense foods and avoid added sugar and excess salt. ...
  2. Maintain a healthy weight. ...
  3. Build strength. ...
  4. Protect your bones and joints. ...
  5. Avoid alcohol and tobacco. ...
  6. Schedule screenings. ...
  7. Work on balance. ...
  8. Get adequate rest.
Nov 29, 2022

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