You’re a guy’s guy and you’re looking for some activities to do during your leisure time. Back in the day, the hours after work were viewed as the time to delve into one’s passions and personal interests, a sort of outlet for activities that were exciting, challenging and fulfilling. However, modern times have made life stressful to the point where all most of us can manage to do during our “leisure time” is lie flat on the couch and watch TV. The truth is that indulging in some sort of meaningful activity is far better than spending 6 mindless hours playing Halo 4. Hobbies and daily activities bring about a sense of happiness in being able to accomplish something, and make you more interesting as a person. Some hobbies (as we’ll see) help keep the mind sharp and creative. So, without further ado, let’s get into the list of activities guys can get into that bring a sense of fulfillment that a day job may not exactly provide.
- Playing Chess
Chess has been played for thousands of years, and is attributed to improving concentration, critical thinking, reasoning and problem solving skills. It’s not all about moving chess pieces around the board. Chess requires you to figure out moves before you make them, and sometimes even be ten steps ahead of the current move. Honing such skills can work wonders for you as a person, and as a player. Benjamin Franklin was a huge fan of chess, and often posited that chess made “men ready for all occasions”. Simply put, chess makes you sharper and more strategic. We challenge you to resist donning a smoking jacket and swirling a glass of brandy while looming over your opponents; this is classy stuff.
- Reading a book
Reading is an extremely manly activity–although most guys don’t know it. Most of the great men in history were avid readers, and used this one technique to gain great thinking skills. Reading allows you to see things from other perspectives and generally makes you a more interesting conversationalist, “Did you read that book about the Mongolian warlords?” That’s an instant conversation starter. Get yourself a library card and go to town. If you have no idea what to start with, you can check out reading lists online that will offer suggestions on books that a guy like you can really get into, whether it’s about the best barbecue techniques or a collection of stories from the US’s most haunted locations.
- Play an instrument (why not the guitar?)
You’ve spent countless hours on Guitar Hero, it’s cool, we caved into the appeal like everyone else who felt like a rockstar when they were able to finally keep up with “Livin’ on a Prayer.” This is all good when it comes to providing fun and entertainment, but you are a man, and real men do real things. So put away the video game console and learn how to play the real thing. Believe us, it is a skill that will come in handy. Besides the hand-eye coordination that comes with continued use of the stringed instrument, the ability to string out melodious compositions will go down well with the women folk. Yeah, that’s right. Women dig the guys in the band.
The perks of guitars: lessons are affordable and so are the instruments themselves, the technique is relatively easy to learn and it’s very portable (nothing like lugging around a keyboard only to find there’s no outlet.) Like anything else, it takes time, so carve out a few minutes for daily practice if you can.
A lot of people assume that dancing is not an activity for guys. But maybe you do NOT have two left feet as the stereotype goes and can actually make a respectable move to the rhythm on the dance floor. Have you ever considered making a hobby out of it? Dancing as a hobby is fun, and for starters you can try out ballroom dancing. This form of dancing helps to get your self-confidence up, as well as improve your posture. It will also give you a surprising workout. Again, the ladies appreciate a man who can move around the floor (even if the only woman you want to impress is your mother or sister at a wedding this summer.) Many cities will have a dance studio or two that offers ballroom dancing lessons. Find one that’s near you and check out their reviews.
Ballroom dancing can be a fun activity for a date night, if you are in relationship. For the bachelors, this activity for the savvy guy could definitely wow a potential partner, all-around making this one of the best activities for guys we can give you.
The hard work of the self-sustaining farmer – one that provides for his family – is what got most industries off the ground. Plus the image of a farmer is a powerful one too. It sends a message of manliness, security, and independence; things we all want to personify. You don’t need a big plot to get started, a small space in your backyard will do the trick. If you are constantly cooped up in the office for long hours during the day, then gardening could be the perfect release for you. Besides being a great way to get some fresh air, exercise and sunlight, gardening gives you the satisfaction of watching your seeds grow into plants, and finally into a crop that can be harvested. And when you make your first meal with your own produce, you’ll feel an unmatched, manly satisfaction.
- Car Restoration
With modern technological advances, cars have become more reliant on computer technology, thus making the task of mechanical work a tad bit difficult. In earlier days, men relished the opportunity to go under the hood of a car and tinker with the engine for hours on end. Not so much these days. However, if you still have that itch to get your hands dirty, then restoring a classic car may be for you. With such a hobby, you will learn how to solve problems, some bit of mechanical engineering, and the sweet satisfaction of bringing the car back to life. It is an expensive hobby though, so only get into it of you have the means, and are willing to see it through.
Perceived by many to be a profession, you can pick up photography as a way to make yourself more engaged with the world around you. Photography enables you to see life through a lens; a view not many have the advantage of doing. Through this lens, you can see a different aspect of the friends, family, and environment around you. Who knows, this new view of the world might push you to do something about it (e.g. be more responsible, help the needy, care for the environment). A picture says a lot, and hopefully by being the one behind the camera, you can take charge of what is happening around you.
Blogging is a quick, accessible form of self-expression. See, as guys, a lot of us haven’t been told to share our thoughts or get all ‘touchy feely.’ But times are changing, and with technology leading the way into this new era, more people are being pulled into the blogging world. Of course if you are going to talk about yourself, say something meaningful. You can stir controversy if you want, but that would be going down a slope you may never come back from. Either way, blogging is the trend, and if you are one for keeping up with times, it’s the way to go.
Opening up doesn’t necessarily mean sharing everything. But writing about some of your experiences, especially if they are emotional, might help others who’ve had the same experience and give you a cathartic release as well. Writing can be very therapeutic, so here’s your chance to get things off your chest.
There you have it, a small list of activities you can get into–who knows, maybe you’ll invite some of your bros to join you during your next guy’s night and teach them a thing or two about chess and wooing the ladies. Sports are also great activities to get into of course, not only as a hobby but for healthy living purposes too. In the end, it is all about staying active and doing something meaningful with your life, goals all men should aspire to.