Just because something is fun for someone else doesn’t mean it is fun for you

Like Gretchen Rubin’s Secrets of Adulthood this is something I’ve only really learnt recently. Even now I have to remind myself of this. I have writen in the past about being a “scanner” and the main tenet of this is a constant desire to try new things. Activities I have tried in the past include: ballet (I lasted one class), belly dancing, ice skating (last time I went I ended up with a black eye after breaking a fall with my face), book group (I started my own at university), knitting (I’m a terrible knitter but it did lead to me the wonder that is crochet), Zumba (and more recently Aqua Zumba), roller derby, and, of course, blogging.

I could have been a figure skater. You know, if it wasn’t for all the falling over.

Very few of these activities have had enduring appeal for me. For a long time I just assumed I lacked commitment and tenacity. I feared I was never going to be good at anything unless I could see it through. Some of these activities I get very passionate about and want to continue my interest. I have looked into becoming a yoga teacher, a breast feeding counsellor. For a few years I wanted to become an interpreter but then a got a C in my Spanish A level (in my defence I completed it in just one year). My blog name kind of gives the game away on this.

There’s a passion out there for everyone. Doesn’t mean it’s the right one for you.

Reading Barbara Sher’s What Do I Do When I Want To Do Everything? opened my eyes to the possibility that I just crave novelty. I definitely think that is one aspect, and it helps me to be ok with my choices. But the other part is that I generally have life envy. I want to do things because other people are doing them. The whole way though university when people told me what course they were doing I’d think “That’s great, why didn’t I chose Linguistics and Croatian instead of boring psychology?”

I sometimes wonder why I am not spending my time rock climbing, silversmithing or watching film noir. Then I have to remind myself it’s because I don’t want to. I don’t have to share every interest of everyone I know. Yes, I still try new things, but I am more careful about what I take on, and do things that interest me rather than things I feel I should be interested in. That means I will be running crochet classes in a couple of weeks, but I won’t be taking on an allotment again.

What about you? Does your hobby cup runeth over? Or are you in a leisure pursuit prairie land?