Ask a room full of people what hobby they have and you will
get as many answers as there are people. Others will
confess that they don't have a hobby. They probably do; but
just don't label it as such. By definition, a hobby is an
activity or interest pursued outside one's regular
occupation and engaged in primarily for pleasure.
Whether flying, stamp collecting, chat rooms, trains,
softball,scrapbooking, golf, reading, painting, tap
dancing, yard work, crafts, auto mechanics, music, hunting
down garage sales, sewing, fishing, cooking, boating,
furniture refinishing, javelin tossing or a plethora of
other activities or interests the key element is balance.
You must find balance between your family life and your
Too much of a good thing turns bad. Everyone should have an
outlet and a special interest that they enjoy doing for
themselves. Self indulgence, to a point, is quite healthy.
Escaping from day to day grinds to take some time to devote
to your flying hobby or concentration is therapeutic.
You've all heard, "if Mamma ain't happy, no one's happy."
It doesn't matter if your role is father, mother, husband,
wife, boyfriend, girlfriend, son, daughter, brother or
sister, if you're just going to work or school and have no
real outside activities, you're probably not always the most
friendly person to be around.
Conversely, if you bury yourself and it seems to others that
all you care about or all you ever want to do is fly all day
(or hang around the airport), you're setting yourself up or
prolonging discontent. People deal with depression in many
ways. Some sleep all the time. Others want to do nothing but
read,read, read. Still others will spend hours upon hours
downstairs building a bigger, faster widget, just to avoid
the real cause of their frustrations. Hobbies are supposed
to be a healthy outlet, not a catalyst to ignore issues that
Likewise, hobbies can get very expensive. Sure, flying, snow
mobiles, motorcycles and ski equipment are obviously
expensive. But sometimes those seemingly low cost
activities can add up. You start out with trying to budget
for the weekly flying lessons. Then you need (or want) the
unnecessary (but fun) goodies that we all "need" to pursue
our passion. "Let's see, do we pay the mortgage this month,
or get that (fill in the blank) that you just have to have?"
If your flying hobby is doing more harm than good, if it's
dipping into the family budget and time allocation, more
than you can or should be spending, it's time to
reevaluate. Not stop the flying, mind you, just make sure
it's appropriate for you and your family and its lifestyle.
Yvonne Volante, webmaster for http://www.fixairplanes.com, is a big fan of flying and flight travel. She operates a web site that is devoted to flying and aviation resources. Email her at email@example.com