By Thomas Weaverling
The sun has already begun to set before 5 pm and the cold has officially arrived, meaning one thing: seasonal depression is imminent. As we enter this difficult portion of the year, creative hobbies have never been more important.
If you are in high school or college and are active on social media, it’s likely that you have experienced the phenomenon of doom scrolling. For those unfamiliar with the term, doom scrolling refers to the action of compulsively scrolling on social media that often produces feelings of isolation or anxiety. You likely are well aware of the effects that social media can have on one’s mental health, but what can be done to avoid doom scrolling? Although well-intended actions, simply deleting social media or limiting screen time is not enough, as something is needed to replace the time that would have originally been spent online. Without a substitute for this time, the urge to doom scroll will not disappear. Thus, creative hobbies are the perfect replacement for social media.
A creative hobby can be nearly anything that involves creating something, whether it be a unique creation or something produced from a pattern. Some examples of creative hobbies are drawing, painting, crocheting, knitting, writing, even cooking. You may be intimidated by some of these activities that involve creating unique work such as painting and drawing, a feeling that I can personally empathize with. However, other hobbies such as crocheting and knitting involve following patterns, meaning no innovation is required.
I personally recommend the art of crocheting, an activity in which a hook is used to loop yarn in order to create nearly anything, primarily articles such as blankets or sweaters, although the possibilities are endless. I have been crocheting for nearly six months and have thoroughly enjoyed each and every project. Crocheting has significantly improved my own mental health as I have been able to find fulfillment in creating something that is tangible. Additionally, I have been able to make multiple gifts for friends that have all been incredibly rewarding. As the holidays approach, being able to make personalized gifts is an invaluable skill.
The best part about creating is that I am able to consume media while crocheting, whether it be listening to music or watching a show. Although it is beyond okay to watch a movie while not doing anything, for those who find contentment in being productive but also like to consume media, crafts are perfect. While crocheting, I love to listen to the H3 podcast (shoutout family) or watch movies that have been on my watch list for far too long.
As we enter the Winter, I challenge you to pick up a new hobby to fight back against the looming seasonal depression. If you are like me and have the incessant urge to be productive but are also an avid consumer of media, you should definitely find a craft and try it out!