14 Screen Free Hobbies to Help You Unwind and Relax

by The Violet Journal
screen free hobbies

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With computers being so fundamental to modern life, it’s important to get some time away from your screens every once in a while. Having a few screen free hobbies is important for your mental and physical health, especially if you need to use a computer every day for work.


14 Screen Free Hobbies To Help You Unwind and Relax


screen free hobbies


1. Reading


It’s completely normal if you don’t read as much as you’d like to, but reading is one of the best screen free hobbies there is.

Books are cheap – especially if you buy them second hand – and you can also read for free as a member of your local library. Reading is fantastic for your general brain health and happiness, so you have no excuse not to be reading often. 


2. Scrapbooking


Scrapbooking is a lot of fun, and you can get lost for hours cutting out different photos and textures and perfecting the way they look on your page.

You may want to add personal touches like photos or journal entries to your spreads, or you may want to design them more like a vision board. This is your own creative expression, so there are no rules you need to follow.


3. Thrift Flipping


Thrift flipping is where you take old clothes and do them up so that they look or fit a little better. You buy cheap, second hand clothes from a thrift store, before completely transforming them with a little imagination.

You can find a lot of sewing, embroidery, and thrift flipping tutorials and inspiration online – my favorite places to search are Instagram and YouTube.


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4. Drawing and Painting


Drawing and painting are brilliant hobbies, even if you’ve always thought of yourself as someone who “can’t draw”. Anyone can learn to draw or paint with some time and effort – all you need is a good teacher and a willingness to learn. 

If you want to get into art, I’d recommend taking an online course on YouTube or SkillShare. There are some brilliant teachers who can teach you the basics, so that you can then go out and let your creativity run wild.


5. Paper Crafts


Crafting things out of paper is a fun yet inexpensive way to spend your time. Origami is a good example, but there are hundreds of different styles that you can get stuck into.

There are thousands of good tutorials that will teach you how to make cute paper sculptures, and you could even start coming up with your own designs once you get more comfortable with the mechanics.


6. Cooking and Baking


Cooking and baking are fantastic skills to have, and your friends and family will love you for it. 

If you’re already a regular baker then you can challenge yourself by adapting one of your existing recipes for a vegan or gluten-free diet in case you ever need to cook for someone with an intolerance.


screen free hobbies knitting and crochet


7. Knitting/Crochet


Knitting and crochet are two of my favorite screen free hobbies since you can make them as mindless or as challenging as you like. Once you’ve mastered the basics, knitting a scarf requires minimal brain power, so you can do it while zoned out listening to an audiobook or podcast. 

But if you’re up for a challenge, you can really challenge yourself with complex designs that are out of your comfort zone. 


8. Writing or Journaling


Many of us use a computer to write, which makes sitting back with a pen and a notebook a welcome change. You could let your creativity run free and write prose, poetry or songs, or you could also keep it simple by writing in a journal.

If you’re unsure of where to start, check out  how to start a journal for beginners


50 journal prompts for self discovery


9. Learning an Instrument


Whether you’re a beginner or advanced learner, learning an instrument is fun, satisfying, and one of the best screen free hobbies there is.

Once you get comfortable with the basics you can even start jamming and coming up with your own songs. Knowing how to play an instrument is a great skill with a lot of versatility, so it’s one of the best ways to spend your time away from a screen.


10. Walking and Hiking


Walking is a great way to get some exercise in, and it’s also highly therapeutic. Try taking a walk around your town or city if you’re looking for some screen free ways to spend your time. You could listen to an audiobook or podcast while you explore, or simply just wander and meditate.

If you’re lucky enough to live near some hiking routes, make sure to get into nature every once in a while. Hiking is a great form of exercise, and the stunning views are sure to improve your mood. 


screen free hobbies embroidery


11. Embroidery


Embroidery is a relaxing way to spend a screen free afternoon, and it’s also relatively inexpensive. All you need to get started is a hoop, a needle, some thread, and some fabric (old sheets or pillowcases are perfect for this).

You can embroider in hundreds of different styles, from line art to portraits to lettering. If you’re unsure of where to start, try browsing SkillShare for some high-quality beginner lessons. There are artists creating lessons on all sorts of different styles, so there’s something for everyone on there.


12. Language Learning


Programs like Duolingo are fantastic, but they’re not the only way to learn a language. In fact, language learning can be entirely screen-free.

Textbooks and podcasts are both great ways to learn a language, and are available for learners from beginner to advanced. You can also book in some lessons with a language tutor if you want to delve deeper into the language.

Once you get strong enough you can also start reading novels in your target language. Finishing your first book in a foreign language is a huge milestone, and a feeling you can’t replicate.


self care sunday ideas


13. Gardening


Growing plants from scratch is incredibly satisfying. Taking care of something every day to watching it bloom into a healthy plant is one of the best feelings there is. You could grow some beautiful flowers, or even fruits or vegetables to use in meals.

Anyone can get stuck into gardening – even if you don’t have a garden. Growing herbs or house plants is just as satisfying as outdoor plants, and considerably less messy.


14. Soap and Candle Making


Soap and candles are a must for any household, and they’re actually pretty easy to make at home. All you need to do is order some supplies, watch a few video tutorials and you’re off. 

You can dye your soaps and candles any color you want, and you can use your favorite scents for a more personal touch. Homemade soap and candles make for great gifts, and you could even sell them online on Etsy or your own website.


Comment and Subscribe!


Do you make it a priority to spend some time away from your computer? Let me know in the comments what your favorite screen free hobby is. 


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