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Unconventional Hobbies - Dismantling a mass-market Stereotype

Updated: Nov 21, 2022

“You’re often a better judge of what is the best and most productive use of your time than your superior, or society” explains Malcolm Gladwell. Gladwell encourages people to trust their instincts in this fiendishly-clever read. Essentially, what he’s trying to say is that one alone has to be the judge, jury and executioner when it comes to deciding what hobby or passion is worthy of one’s time. This is critical to understand because we live in a world where everyone is getting trained to adapt to the corporate rat race. Gladwell reinforces how hobbies aren’t meant for our glowing resumes or instagram bios, but purely for joy!

Today, any discussion around hobbies or leisure automatically takes the direction of social media post worthy. “If you can’t post it, don’t bother with it” seems to be the mantra. This need to be accepted starts early in school. Remember when our teachers asked on the first day, “Tell us your name and what your hobbies are”. While some of us said a few things proudly, I remember some of my friends struggling to share their true hobbies!

How often do we meet children who love reading about astronomy? Have you imagined a boy saying he enjoys knitting? Kids who spend their time learning calligraphy or origami? How many of us know kids who have tech building or gardening as a hobby?

There are so many more unconventional hobbies that our children enjoy. How can we as a society provide them a more honest, inclusive and accepting world?

If you are a teacher, we urge you to appreciate the new ideas and hobbies coming in the class. Because hobbies can become add-on skills too! Give a shout out to these students for being courageous to try something new!

If you are a parent, try and participate in the hobby with your children. Spending time with them in an activity they love, can create a meaningful relationship that will go a long way.

If you are a young adolescent, go and try that new hobby that you have been postponing. There’s no time like the present.

Lastly, if you are a child, do what you love and love what you do!

We at Dheerya hope for a world where every child will live to their fullest potential.

Written by - Shruthi V Rao

Edited by - Parita Shah

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