4 Reasons Your Teen Needs a Hobby

Texting doesn't qualify as a hobby.

Get involved in a hobby with your teen.
Roger Charity / The Image Bank / Getty Images

In today's digital world, encouraging your teen to develop a hobby might take some time and effort on your part. Most teens spend their free time using their digital devices. But scrolling through social media and sending text messages don't qualify as hobbies.

If your teen is into sports, she probably stays pretty busy outside of school. But finding a hobby for a teen who isn't particularly interested in baseball or soccer can be more of a challenge.

Here are four reasons why you should help your teen find at least one hobby:


  1. Hobbies help build your teen’s confidence. By finding an area of interest, a teen can build competence and skill. This leads to positive results. The more your teen is able to master a skill, the more confident he'll become.  


  2. A hobby helps your teen have a sense of his identity. Throughout adolescence, your teen may struggle to answer the question, who am I? A teen who has very few interests or activities will struggle the most. When your teen has a hobby, he'll be able to say, "I'm someone who enjoys music and I'm good at playing the piano," or "I'm someone who really likes the outdoors and I enjoy fishing."


  3. Hobbies will keep your teen from getting bored. Boredom is like the plague to a teen – and it can have the same type of devastating effects. Bored teens look for things to do and are more apt to get involved with negative peers. Helping your teen develop a hobby could be instrumental in keeping him out of trouble. 


  1. Hobbies will give you a reason to praise your teen. When your teen is involved in a hobby, you have easy access to something to praise him about. You can use your teenager’s hobby to keep balance in your communication with your teen when things have been tough or to just increase positive interaction with your teen.


    Hobby Ideas for Teens

    Of course, telling your teen to get a hobby is only half the battle. Actually finding something your teen wants to do can be a challenge. 

    In fact, if you ask your teen to name 10 hobbies, you might find he can't do it. So it's important to introduce your teen to the many opportunities and activities that are available to him. 

    Here are a few ideas for hobbies that your teen might enjoy:

    • Woodworking
    • Rock climbing
    • Hiking
    • Bird watching
    • Gardening
    • Photography
    • Painting
    • Sewing
    • Blogging or vlogging
    • Reading
    • Building robots
    • Making cartoons
    • Archery
    • Fishing
    • Baking
    • Remote control objects
    • Pottery
    • Drawing

    Explore Hobbies with Your Teen

    If you don't have any hobbies, it's likely your teen won't have any either. So be a good role model. Make time to engage in a hobby or two as well.

    Be willing to explore hobbies with your teen. If your teen wants to try something new, educate yourself too. Find out how he can get started and be willing to learn with him. 

    Working on a hobby together can be a great way to bond. And it can be something that you bond over throughout your teen's life. 

    Updated by Amy Morin, LCSW.

    Continue Reading