What do introverts like doing in their free time? How do they have fun? A friend once asked me what I do for fun, and I replied, “read books.” They were shocked – actually shocked, I tell you – that I read to have “fun”.
They were extroverted, they thought fun involved lots of energy, noise, and excitement.
Not in my case, however!
As an introvert, not only do I dislike the first two, but my definition of excitement differs strongly from that of an extrovert.
So today, let’s discuss the subject of hobbies for introverts. Whether you’re an introvert looking for a new hobby, or an extrovert trying to understand an introverted friend, this article will have a few tips and things for you.
Reading is the introverted hobby. It’s perfect in every way – it requires no social interaction, can be done anytime, isn’t energy-intensive, and is very, very entertaining!
Personally, one of my favorites.
Different people might prefer different formats, for example, books, magazines, newspapers, articles – but there’s no beating the fact that introverts enjoy reading.
How about you, do you enjoy reading?
Novels are a popular format, and if you want to know more about your introvert, ask them what type of books they like to read! I can literally spend hours at my local used-books store or on Amazon searching for used books under $8 to add to my small collection.
Puzzles or games
Introverts enjoy hobbies that provide mental stimulation. Puzzles and games are great in this regard.
Yeah, I still play with my LEGO®.
Nowadays, jigsaw puzzles are back in fashion, with adults buying puzzles as big as 8×10 feet, and spending months on it – a few minutes at a time.
Games like crosswords and chess are mentally invigorating. After a tiring day at work, while extroverts would love to hang out with friends and have a chat, introverts would enjoy winding down with a game that distracts them from the stresses of the day.
Nature should feature heavily on a list of good hobbies for introverts, because I think introverts and nature go really well together. Nature is exciting but peaceful, and that makes the perfect combination!
Birdwatching is another nature-based hobby that’s great for quiet, shy people who enjoy the outdoors.
The best thing about birdwatching is that once you get to know the different types of birds, you start to see how they all have different personalities.
Examples? I’m glad you asked 🙂
Kingfishers are noisy, orioles are playful, barbets are bold, drongos are silly, bee-eaters are chatty show-offs, and magpie-robins are friendly. I completely lose track of time watching them.
I love birds.
Embroidery or crochet
Although it’s mostly popular among a specific demographic (women aged 30-60), it’s something we recommend to introverts everywhere. Needlework isn’t everyone’s thing – especially if you’re afraid of needles and/or have poor eyesight, but if those aren’t problems you’ll probably enjoy it!
Embroidery and crochet are relaxing, slow hobbies, and there are a variety of small starter kits.
You could also try your hand at knitting, which is great because you may actually get to use the things you make! It’s very satisfying using something you made yourself. I once knitted a scarf as a young girl, and wore it for years until I (unfortunately) lost it.
Observing and photography
Observing is one of the top introvert hobbies. It may sound a little boring, but it’s like people-watching. It helps them think, and when you see, really see things closely, you often notice things you’ve never noticed before. I, for instance, like watching water. The way it moves, the way it shimmers in the sun or slowly soaks into the earth.
Photography is similar. Introverts often like photographing nature, wildlife, and landscapes. One great thing about it is that it allows you to get away from the bustling city and sit quietly for extended periods of time, waiting for the perfect shot.
Plants are an introvert’s friend. From botany to gardening to herbology, introverts love plants. Whether it’s a full-fledged veggie garden, a patio with flower pots, or a herb garden – you’ll often find introverts have plants in their home. Plants are like pets, except they give you tangible returns, don’t make a mess, and don’t bark!
Plants also have kind of a romantic aura around them. They’re delicate and pretty, for example, and have an air of mystery about them.
You get to make tasty food, look after your health, work quietly in the privacy of your home, and give back to your loved ones. What more could an introvert ask for? With cooking implements and tools making the job easier, more and more people are starting to realize just how cool of a hobby it is.
Extroverts might find it boring working at home, even if they’re with friends, but it definitely makes it to the list of hobbies for introverts. Chopping, peeling, cleaning, frying, stirring – it’s so satisfying! If you’re impatient, however, we’d suggest you stick to popular recipes instead of experimenting. You don’t want to give up on cooking because your experiments didn’t go well!
I can’t actually explain this one, but I’ve always felt drawn to astronomy.
From binge-reading Wikipedia pages to actually observing stars at night, I can’t get enough of this hobby. I thought it was a personal preference, but during my research, I found it’s a popular hobby among introverts!
There’s a ton of information for beginner’s online of course, but I also found very affordable telescopes on Amazon that can get any introvert immersed in the experience of exploring the sky.
There’s something about the universe that’s really intriguing. Perhaps its magnitude, the fact that so much of it is unknown, the fear and respect it evokes, or maybe it’s another way for us to philosophize – because everyone knows that introverts love to muse, and tend to get rather philosophical when they’ve been doing it for a while.
Creating written content is one of the best hobbies for introverts. Since they tend to be overthinkers, this will help them put their thoughts to paper. The advantage that offers is, when you’re in the habit of writing, if you come up with a useful bit of insight, a plan or a tip, you’ll immediately write it down and remember it later. Others would forget it.
Introverts may enjoy creating poetry, fiction, or non-fiction such as essays, memoirs, plays and more. If you’re new to writing, always remember that every piece will need at least 5 rounds of editing. Go over it again and again (with long breaks in between) till you’re satisfied with it.
Introverts do need company sometimes, and a pet provides it without requiring actual social interaction. You can be comfortable with your pet. You can wear what you like, say what you like, and be yourself in general. They’re straightforward creatures and easy to communicate with.
As Anatole France once said: “Until one has loved an animal a part of one’s soul remains unawakened.”
Whether it’s a dog, a cat, a bunny or a reptile, pets are good for one and all – introverts being no exception.
As Andy Rooney famously said, “Everyone wants to live on top of the mountain, but all the happiness and growth occurs while you are climbing it.”
Hiking and biking are ideal hobbies for introverts. They’re practiced outdoors in the wild, and don’t encourage much conversation – you can’t strike up a chat if you’re breathing hard! Often, people prefer to go hiking/biking in a group due to safety concerns, but if they’re familiar with the area and have emergency communication options, introverts would much rather hike alone.
Who doesn’t like music? Catchy tunes, haunting lyrics and energetic artists are hard to resist. Introverts enjoy music too. You’ll often find them wearing earphones, listening to music during transit. Not only does it make the experience better and help kill time, but it also reduces the chances of someone striking up a conversation. From classical music to pop to metal, introverts have a very wide taste in music.
Traveling helps introverts explore the world, observe different people and cultures, see the flora and fauna of exciting new places, and collect memories and photographs.
Nowadays, with remote work being increasingly popular, many introverts are choosing to work part-time and travel for the rest. This allows them to go completely off the grid without worrying about work or any other stresses. Sounds nice, doesn’t it? Lying on a bed in the middle of the woods reading, with nothing to worry about all week (except dinner).
Painting or drawing
Painting and drawing are among some of the best hobbies for introverts. Painting has been compared to meditation. It involves focus, silence, and steady work till the finished product is ready. Curious how to start painting? It’s easy!
“All you need to paint is a few tools, a little instruction, and a vision in your mind.” – Bob Ross
And here’s another great reason why introverts should try painting, in the words of Pablo Picasso: “Painting is just another way of keeping a diary.”
While meditation isn’t something introverts usually enjoy, it’s something to look into if you want to try activities that are good for you. It doesn’t exactly classify as a hobby, so let’s call it a healthy practice. Since introverts tend to overthink, meditation is useful because it gives them the ability to stop their own thoughts when they need to.
These aren’t all, though! There will always be exceptions. I, for example, am a Grade A introvert with mild social anxiety, but I thoroughly enjoy watching sports. In fact, I tend to cheer rather loudly (that’s a euphemism; I completely lose my mind and scream myself hoarse when the game gets exciting). But yeah, if you want to ask your introverted coworker out on a date, maybe don’t suggest a party.