Retired life often brings along with it more free time than we are used to. While having time to do things you always dreamed of doing and to just take life slow seemed like a dream when you were working for a living, raising kids and dealing with a mortgage. There never seemed to be enough time to do anything.
As is the case with many of our “dreams”, the reality of that lifestyle doesn’t always live up to our imagination. Now that you are a senior citizen, sometimes you are not able to motivate yourself to get out there and accomplish those things you have been putting off for decades. For one thing, you may not know how to write the great American novel or take on some other big ambition. Big jobs require time to get your stamina and abilities up to the challenge. So what you need are some smaller scale accomplishments to jump start the process.
This is where crafts come in. While you may feel like you have sold out to the life of just passing time doing crafts, the truth is if you want to become a great painter, you will have to learn to paint every day. And by doing prepared crafts or learning to make things with your hands, you can include your painting ambition in that plan. When you sell your first great pieces of art to a gallery in New York, you don’t have to tell them you got your start doing paint by numbers sets at the senior citizens center.
But there is a method to your madness at making crafts a big part of your lifestyle as a senior citizen. You can use crafts as a means to an end to accomplish some other goals in your retirement life. This is part of the craftiness of crafts that by becoming a member of a creative community, you also reap the benefits of “community” which are worthwhile goals whether you make anything worthwhile or not.
From a mental health point of view, crafts are a great way to keep your mental atmosphere in good shape. It’s undeniable that just the act of creating something does a world of good for your feelings about life in general. And if you love crafts as so many do, you can start a whole new passion late in life which you can finally afford to give in to with abandon because many of the “cares of life” are behind you now.
A more crafty byproduct of doing crafts is the good it does for one of the biggest problems of senior citizen life which is loneliness. Your retirement center or local senior citizens center may sponsor craft session routinely. There other creative people in your peer group come out pass happy hours at a crafting table. By becoming a regular at those crafting tables too, you can forge new friendships and maybe meet a new friend of the opposite sex while you’re at it. Nothing wrong with that.
But probably the most crafty thing about becoming a grandma or granddad who makes crafts is your home will become a creative playground. And who likes playgrounds? Grandkids love playgrounds. You can stock your crafting closet with paints, crafting supplies and all the fun accessories that go with it. Then when your grandkids find out that going to grandma’s house means making fun things, they will bug mom and dad to death for more time with you.
It’s tricky but it works and it’s a totally legitimate way to make your home a place where the little ones come to be. You get to see them more, you get more friends at daily craft sessions and your self esteem goes up every day. That is what I call one great hobby.