How to enjoy your leisure activities more

How to enjoy your leisure activities more

Malkoc recommends that if you have to schedule leisure, do it only roughly. Say you’ll do it “after work” rather than “at 6 p.m.” Allowing a little wiggle room alleviates the restriction one feels.

Avoid hard stops. Don’t schedule something to do immediately after a leisure activity – even if it is another enjoyable event.

“You’re always looking at the clock and feel like you have less time to enjoy the first activity. You are dreading the fun ending and having to do the next thing on your schedule,” she said.

In one study, for example, participants expected a desirable activity (a massage) would be less enjoyable if it occurred before another scheduled activity (meeting friends).

Focus on the now. Even when there is no time pressure, the mere knowledge of upcoming activities may lessen your enjoyment of what you’re doing now.

“Your mind wanders to the next event,” Malkoc said. “What you’re doing now can be seen as just a way to get to the next activity, and not as fun in itself.”

For instance, participants in one study enjoyed a comedic video less when they knew they would watch another enjoyable video, compared to those who didn’t know what they were doing afterward.

“The key to enjoying your leisure activities is to live in the moment as much as possible. Be spontaneous and don’t live by the calendar,” she said.

Source: Three research-based ways to maximize the fun of leisure activities

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