New Year New You

If you’re stuck in a rut, why not try something new in 2019 and take up a new hobby?

Whether you want something challenging or relaxing, take a look at our guide to finding your new passion this year.

Arts and Crafts

Expressing yourself through art can be one of the most therapeutic, and rewarding, activities you could possibly do.

Writing is a brilliant way to pass the time and to make sense of your thoughts and experiences. It's the perfect hobby if you're on a budget, since it's free and you can do it absolutely anywhere!

Get started by reading: How to Be A Writer.

Maybe words aren't your thing. Drawing and painting are brilliant hobbies for flexing your creative muscles.

Have a look at: Artists & Illustrators Magazine, available to library members, or The Encyclopaedia of Drawing Techniques for tips and techniques.

Crafts are perfect for those who love doing things with their hands. Crafts offer escapism: you can throw yourself into them for hours and truly lose yourself. At the end, you can enjoy the results, whether it's a new pattern you have sewn or a sweater you've knitted.

A popular hobby across the world is: cross stitch, or how about card making?

Sewing is an incredibly useful skill to have, so why not try designing and making your own clothes? Have a look at: The Beginners Guide to Dressmaking: Sewing Techniques and Patterns to Make Your Own Clothes to see what designs you could whip up.


It's never too late to learn to cook. There is a huge amount of satisfaction to be found in mastering mouth-watering dishes and desserts. You'll certainly become very popular among your family and friends!

Dip your toe in the water with Jamie Oliver’s straight forward book: 30-Minute Meals which guides you through British classics to more exotic cuisines.

Then you can start experimenting with the recipes in BBC Good Food Magazine or stick with the classics with the pride of Britain, Mary Berry’s Absolute Favourites


It's no surprise that taking up a sport can help you get fit, but it is also a brilliant way to meet new friends. Being a part of a team is incredibly rewarding, so its worth looking up your local sports clubs.

Why not try football or even Five-A-Side for a couple of hours after work every week? Brush up on your techniques and find out the latest about the beautiful game with: Match of the Day Magazine and World Soccer Magazine.

Tennis is a brilliant social game which is ideal for getting out in fair weather. Combining fitness, skill and tactics, tennis is the perfect game for those who want to pick up a sport that needs as much brain power as brawn. Take a look at: Tennis: Skills - Tactics - Techniques to get ready for that big first match.

Cycling became incredibly popular in the UK following the success of the Great Britain team in the 2012 London Olympics, and it remains popular to this day. Cycling is something you can do anywhere, so long as you have a bike and helmet. Cycling lets you get some fresh air, get fit, and discover new places. If you need inspiration, read: Chris Hoy's Autobiography, OR take a look at renowned British cyclist: Bradley Wiggin’s Memoirs. Then get on your bike!


If you really want to impress your friends and strengthen your brain power, what about mastering something like poker?

Learn poker and hundreds of other games to play with your family and friends with our collection: A Complete Guide to Playing the World's Best 250 Card Games.

Cards offer hours of fun and are a great social activity any time of year. Bridge is a popular favourite, or if you want something requiring intense brain power, why not make 2019 the year you master chess?

If All Else Fails, Learn Magic

No one can pretend they’re not impressed by magic tricks. If none of the above is your cup of tea, why not make 2019 the year you learn magic? Check out: The Practical Encyclopaedia of Magic for absolutely everything you need to know.




Interested in becoming a member to make the most of these events and collections? Find out how to join the British Council Library.

Did you enjoy this article? Why not read: Succeed at anything with these essential life skills!

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