Wondering what women's hobbies are most popular? The more important question is whether women feel they have any free time for personal hobbies. The idea for this article came from trying to write an article about women caves, e.g. how and where women spend time relaxing at home (our version of the man's cave).
Women spend as much time working as men (men 45.6 hours; women 45.2 hours). The problem is when we get home, women are still spending significantly more time on household chores than men. According to the Pew Research Center, women spend roughly 6 more hours on household work and 3 extra hours on child care (from Men vs women: How much time spent on kids, job, chores? in USA Today).
What's sad is parents after all that work, don't feel they have enough time to spend with their children. And if they don't have enough time for their children, it's no wonder women are spending little or no time re-energizing with a hobby at home or anywhere.
How Much Leisure Time for Women's Hobbies?
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics' American Time Use Survey, we've got a lot more free time than I recognize … and curious about your reaction. They say:
On an average day, most (96%) people participate in some type of leisure activity. The numbers don't add up for me – men 6.0 hours and women, 5.2 hours? Assuming a 40 hour work week, here's how much time I think I have?
- 45 hours at work.
- 10 hours commuting to and from work.
- 14 hours bathing and dressing (2 hours per day).
- 20 hours on household chores and childcare.
- 56 hours sleeping (8 hours per night).
- … leaving 23 hours per week for leisure which is just 3.3 hours per week.
Maybe my definition of leisure time is different than what the survey used. As an entrepreneur working from home, my day blends together work and leisure time. When I'm on Facebook or Pinterest, it's a little bit of both and that's probably a good thing.
Women's Hobbies Blending Work, Family & Friends
If we don't have enough time to do all the things we want to accomplish, maybe it's time to combine activities. We're all too busy, I get that. It's been on my mind since only half the people I invited to girl's night out responded to the invitation and I decided not to send out a second email, that we'd have a great time regardless of who did or didn't come. Maybe it's time to rethink women's hobbies and find those that let us combine multiple goals?
Now I'm smiling as I don't know exactly how many things I accomplished with one activity. My idea for a holiday decorating party started last year when I wrote the article, Holiday Decorating Party Saves Money, and then didn't have enough time to host the party. Looks like I accomplished quite a bit while having fun with friends.
- Cleaned out cabinet over the refrigerator, to find vases and more that never get used.
- Friends recycled 4 of my glass vases (I used a bamboo vase) and oops, there were 4 or 5 leftovers … for next year?
- Cooked up a big batch of chili, enough for the party and two more meals this week … and I rarely cook.
- Spent time relaxing with friends – talking, laughing and listening to Christmas music.
- Everyone made holiday decorations to take home and extras for a local nursing home.
- Friends of mine finally got to meet each other, e.g. my graphic designer got to meet a realtor friend who she designed a new logo for, more than a year ago.
- We had 2 young girls with us, making their own decorations and cookie dough cookies … making this a family affair.
- Great photos and stories for my website at Home Tips for Women.
Ideas for Spending More Time with Your Family
Not being a fan of television, it seems like it's the easiest activity for everyone to engage in … unless we plan other family activities. Mothers need to lead the change as they're the ones spending more time with their children (13.5 hours a week versus 7.3 hours for fathers). Here are just a few ideas to start the conversation about ways to accomplish multiple goals with a single activity.
- Involve your children in planning and cooking meals.
- Pick more child-friendly leisure activities and bring your children along.
- Host more gatherings with other families, to model how to include your children in these activities.
What are your favorite hobbies?