Show Notes

Episode 140: Hobbies (Redux)

Two years ago (almost to the day), we published an episode on hobbies, which has been one of our favorites. Hobbies are so important to self-care and so prone to falling prey to perfectionism that wanted to present it again.

Perfectionism can get in the way of starting or enjoying hobbies. This week Shannon and Janine talk about  their hobbies (and attempted hobbies) and share strategies for getting past perfectionism so you can enjoy your hobbies.

Discussion topics include:

  • How every hobby Shannon’s had has been marred by perfectionism
  • How perfectionism can get in the way of starting and enjoying a new hobby
  • The fact that new hobbies usually have to be bad before they can get good
  • How Shannon inspired Janine to start knitting fourteen years ago (spoiler alert: only one of them is still knitting)
  • Process versus results in doing hobbies (like knitting)
  • Janine’s 12-year adventure with Barbara Walker’s Learn-to-Knit Afghan
  • Why starting a hobby by shopping can be a mistake
  • How Shannon is managing to stick with her latest hobby: Learning Portuguese
  • How guided lessons can help provide structure to make learning a new hobby fun
  • Figuring what counts as engaging in your hobby when you’re starting out
  • How frequent practice can make learning a new hobby easier


P.S. During the episode, Shannon asked Janine what she was knitting. The answer, which Janine couldn’t share at the time, was that she was finishing a cat bed for Shannon’s cat, Cleo! She used the leftover yarn from the afghan and sent it to Shannon and Cleo as a surprise.

Thankfully, Cleo loves the bed. And we love her. So we just had to share a couple of pictures.

Shannon's cat Cleo enjoys her new bed

3 thoughts on “Episode 140: Hobbies (Redux)”

  1. I see your “ancestral home” is Spartanburg, South Carolina. Hope you had an enjoyable trip– we have a great public library/local history department. I am from Pennsylvania, myself, although we migrated through New York and the midwest for a couple of centuries. I have been here (in Spartanburg) for 30 years now. I was very sorry to hear of your mother’s passing. — mgk

  2. HI- I love your Podcast, it’s inspiring and fun to listen to – especially now during the pandemic, insurrection and deep winter in Vermont. I’m also a knitter, postcard writer , YWA fan, (& a bee keeper, gardener)…I guess I do have some hobbies! BUT – hand lettering as been on my list of things to try for a long time. Can you recommend some easy products as a starting point for a beginner? I saw the pens Janine uses in the blog, anything else you might suggest? Many thanks.

    1. Hey, Suzanne! This is Janine. We have so much in common! I am absolutely loving the Daily Mindful Lettering book from Lisa Funk at Hand Lettered Design. (I went with the binding on the top.) There’s an affirmation each day that you practice with and there’s a video tutorial for those who buy it. I’m mostly tracing, but the muscle memory makes it easier and easier and my lettering is getting better. It comes with two pens and I’d recommend some tracing paper so you can use the book over and over. Here’s the link: (And here’s the tracing paper I bought a few years ago:

      Thanks for listening to the podcast!

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