Why can't Brits hold down a hobby?

They make us happier and healthier yet we still struggle to keep them up

Do you struggle to keep up a hobby despite your best efforts? You're not alone. Research has discovered that the average shelf-life of a hobby is just one year and two months.

The poll of 5,000 adults by Barclaycard found that almost half have taken up a hobby only to give it up soon after. 28 per cent of those blamed work commitments for getting in the way, while 27 per cent said a busy family life prevented them from carrying on their hobby.

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room with sewing machine and treads

(Image credit: Future PLC/Mark Scott)

Some people have chosen not to take up a hobby at all, blaming work and family commitments, as well as a lack of disposable cash to spend on extracurricular activities. Thirteen per cent of people admitted that they are just too lazy to take one up!

Having said this, eight in ten people surveyed currently do have a hobby, and 57 per cent believe they are happier for it. Around a third also believe they are healthier thanks to their hobby, and 23 per cent said that they have seen their confidence levels increase.

table with plant and painting materials

(Image credit: Future PLC/Polly Eltes)

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Andrew Hogan, Head of Brand Strategy at Barclaycard, said: 'Our research shows that in today’s often frantic world, having a hobby can have a huge, positive impact on both our personal and professional lives, as well as our overall health and wellbeing.'

'That’s why it’s so important that we overcome obstacles to getting going, whatever that may be.'

So whether it's dodgeball or drawing, yodelling or yoga, belly-dancing or baking, taking up a hobby can work wonders on your happiness, health and confidence. Basically, anything that doesn't just involve watching the TV, as tempting as that can be!