Alternatives to Doom Scrolling: Hobbies Interests and Activities to Enjoy Instead

Have you ever found yourself mindlessly scrolling through news articles and social media without actually retaining any of the information? It’s become a common habit to check out the latest happenings and get up-to-date with the world; however, doom scrolling is a habit that takes away the joy of finding out what is happening.

Luckily, there are various activities, hobbies and interests that can be enjoyed instead of doom scrolling. Let’s explore some fun and interesting alternatives that can break the habit of doom scrolling and bring enthusiasm and joy back into our lives!

  • Reading a book
  • Writing a journal
  • Learning a new skill
  • Doing puzzles or brain teasers
  • Exploring nature
  • Creating art
  • Playing a musical instrument
  • Meditating or practicing yoga
  • Cooking a meal
  • Exercising

Definition of Doom Scrolling

Doom scrolling is a term that has entered the vernacular to describe the habit of incessantly reading bad news online, usually from a variety of sources, as if “doom” itself is being monitored. It can also refer to the reinforcement of our own negative thoughts and feelings when we get caught up in a cycle of doom scrolling. We consume more and more information without taking action or considering context, which can lead to feelings of helplessness or paralysis.

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At its core, doom scrolling is not just an unhealthy habit – it often involves partaking in what experts call rumination, which describes an intense focus on burdensome experiences or possibilities. This kind of rumination leads us deeper into an anxious loop and increases our sense of anxiety and despair. By mindlessly scrolling through various news outlets or social media platforms looking for the latest details about current events or traumas that we experience individually or collectively, we often don’t find solace—but rather become overwhelmed by feelings that evoke a sense of hopelessness.

Reasons for Doom Scrolling

The habit of incessantly reading bad news online and the unavoidable feeling of distress that often follows is commonly known as ‘doom scrolling’. As this anxious behavior seems to have become a prevalent occurrence, it is important to first understand the reasons why people may lean on doom scrolling instead of avoiding such triggering material or using other outlets for news and updates.

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Though it varies from person to person, many find themselves seeking out bad news due to some of these common factors:

  1. Fear – People may regularly engage in doom scrolling out of genuine concern for their safety or that of their loved ones. Modern society has made us very aware of the dangers in our world, and staying informed about current threats can be a way to help us feel secure.
  2. Curiosity – It can be tempting to click on every headline, video clip, or link coming across your feed in order to stay up-to-date on developing stories and trends. Moments like these encourage immediate viewing and shape our feeling that learning must happen in real time rather than digesting information more slowly at our own pace.
  3. Comfort – Many people might find solace in remaining informed even when it means engaging with troubling content — telling oneself that one is better informed than those around them is a comforting thought when facing hard realities online but may ultimately just lead an individual down a path of anxiety caused by overloads of negativity (and ‘zombie swiping’).

Replacing Doom Scrolling with Hobbies

It’s becoming increasingly hard to avoid doom scrolling these days. With the constant stream of bad news and global crises, it’s easy to get stuck in the habit of incessantly reading bad news online. But what if there was an alternative to doom scrolling? What if there were other activities and hobbies you could enjoy while still staying updated on the latest news and events?

Let’s explore some of these options and see how you can follow events without doomscrolling:


If you’re someone who enjoys creating something with their hands, crafts are the perfect way to break free from the habit of doom scrolling.

There are so many options for crafting; some easy ones include knitting, crocheting and sewing. For instance, knitting can be as simple as looping yarn together to make a cozy pair of socks! If you’re an experienced crafter, try your hand at a quilting or macrame project. The options are limitless and allow for a great distraction from doom scrolling news.

Crafting is also an effective way to clear your mind of any negative thoughts that may pop up while doom scrolling as it requires your full attention and focus. It’s also a great pastime if you’re living alone in isolation during the pandemic; creating something with your own two hands can provide comfort and joy during these trying times.


Gardening is one of the best hobbies you can pick up if you’re looking to replace doom scrolling with something that not only brings pleasure but also allows you to have a tangible impact on your environment. Whether it’s enjoying the fresh air while tending to your garden plants or sharing your harvests with loved ones, gardening can offer a great deal of personal satisfaction.

The beauty of gardening also lies in its versatility – whether you grow herbs, zucchini, pumpkins, flowers or other plants, there’s something for everyone. Plus, it’s easy to get started. Before long, you can create unique floral arrangements and designing a lush vegetable garden. Gardening offers the opportunity for creative expression and allows you to express care and love for nature.

So why not try it?


Do you often reach for the phone to check the news, only to feel drained afterwards? You’re likely doom scrolling – a habit of incessantly reading bad news online. To avoid this destructive pattern and restore your sense of calm, consider creating a new coping mechanism: cooking!

Cooking can be calming and stress-releasing. Although it requires effort, such as prepping ingredients and following recipes, it is an enjoyable experience once you start exploring different flavors and recipes. It’s also an opportunity to be creative with what you have in your fridge or cupboard. Prepping ingredients can also serve as a form of mindfulness and slow living – take your time in the kitchen and focus on the task at hand. Watching your dish come together while being mindful of the process creates a tranquil atmosphere that few other activities can give in comparison.

Cooking healthy meals doesn’t have to be pricey or complicated either! There are many websites with delicious recipes that can fit into various budgets and dietary restrictions such as veganism, vegetarianism, gluten-free dishes, etc. Why not try out potato dumplings with different vegetables or something unique, like biryani, for an Indian twist? Get creative with whatever you have in your pantry and treat yourself after a long day of doom scrolling (you deserve it!).

Outdoor Activities

Getting out of the house and engaging in physical activities is a great way to get your mind off doom scrolling. From hiking, cycling and camping, to more extreme sports like rock climbing and snowboarding, there’s an abundance of outdoor activities for you to take up.

Whether it’s a peaceful stroll around the block or an overnight expedition in the mountains, taking time to appreciate nature can be incredibly rewarding. Connecting with our environment while exercising can provide some much-needed respite from doom scrolling. Nothing beats taking a deep breath of fresh air while leaving behind all your stress and worries on your way up that mountain path!

You don’t have to travel far when getting out into nature. There are plenty of interesting wildlife sightings that can be had while exploring parks and trails near you. Birdwatching is a particularly pleasant activity; as it involves sitting still and actively looking for birds, it’s perfect for unwinding after hours spent passively doom scrolling online in search of information and updates about current events.


Reading can be a great antidote to doom scrolling. When you’re stuck in a news cycle of overwhelming updates that leave you feeling helpless, take a break and immerse yourself in a good book. Reading is an easy way to shift focus from whatever’s causing anxiety, as diving into fiction opens the doors to other potential worlds.

Whether it’s a thrilling novel, an instructional guidebook on gardening, or just some lighthearted poems, reading can transport you away from the endless barrage of negative news stories.

Get creative with your reading material! Read books on topics that apply to today’s state of affairs but still provide entertainment; perhaps dystopian fiction that gives you insight into your current political culture, or a historical account of how grassroots protests sparked a positive change in the past. If you enjoy literature more than research-heavy non-fiction pieces, dig into classic novels or biographies written by authors whose stories resonate with yours. Whichever type of book paints the picture that speaks to your interests and condition— let it take you away from entering down newsworthy rabbit holes online and explore instead through an enriching literary journey!


Writing can be a wonderful escape from doom scrolling. Creative writing projects – like making a story or poem – express thoughts and feelings while targeting an emotion or idea. On the other hand, expository writing develops argumentative skills and helps to create interesting essays or articles. Whether it’s memoir, fiction, or non-fiction, writing provides outlets for both personal expression and the opportunity to learn about different topics. Many people find that composing webpages or blog posts is a way to build an online presence and share opinions with others.

Writing can also be used as an enjoyable hobby without even having to share the work with anyone else: some people keep personal journals filled with snippets of their life while others make scrapbooks of sorts featuring what they are learning along the way. Learning how to write articles and manuscripts through:

  • research
  • fact-finding missions
  • interviews
  • editing practice

… Opens up more doors than ever before in the past – it is possible to find new stories not only at libraries but also in independent bookstores and newspaper stands all over the world!

Replacing Doom Scrolling with Interests

We’re all familiar with doom scrolling – the habit of incessantly reading bad news online. It’s easy to fall into a loop of checking the news multiple times a day, getting sucked into tragic stories that are both heartbreaking and hard to look away from. And maybe you’re ready to find a way to break the cycle, while still staying informed on current affairs.

That’s why it’s important to find activities to replace your doom scrolling habit with. Whether it’s a hobby, special interest, or skill set, there are loads of activities that can replace the doom scrolling habit. Read on to find out more.


Music is a great way to replace doom scrolling and turn time-consuming, anxiety-inducing news consumption into an enjoyable, creative outlet. Whether you’re a fan of classical piano music, rock and roll nirvana, high-energy EDM tracks or just about any other genre – there’s something special about moulding chaos into something harmonious. It holds true for musicians as well as those who listen to their work; there’s something therapeutic and fulfilling in tuning the noise around you out in favour of taking the course of creating music that stirs your soul.

No matter what variety of instruments appeal to you – be it braying guitars, percussive drums or anything else from the wonderful world of musical instruments – playing music helps bring clarity to life along with channelling away those anxiety-inducing news updates. What’s more, it can be done alone or with friends with an already existing taste for musical instruments in hand. There are innumerable resources available online for learning anything from guitar riffs to drum beats, whether this means searching YouTube channels on how to play specific instruments (guitar solos? Check.) or relying on podcasts and performance snippets that deserve looping attention).

Learning a new instrument can seem daunting but is surely rewarding when it clicks! There are many online communities that can nurture conversations regarding instrumentation apart from providing accessibility between platforms like social media forums and specialized websites catering exclusively towards user preference when it comes to shopping or learning purposes. The joy accompanying this release of creative energy can help shift people away from recurring doom scrolling habits while bringing much needed mental rest during trying times.


Art is a creative outlet for so many people. Whether you dabble in digital artwork on your laptop, oil paints and canvas or a bit of paper craft, there’s no denying that creating something with your own two hands can be incredibly rewarding. From manga inspiration to doodling in a bullet journal, adding splashes of calming colors or setting the mood with black and white sketch, there’s no one way to express yourself through art. Even if you don’t consider yourself an artist, it’s still worth taking the time to get creative now and then as a way of indulging in some ‘me time’ away from the doom scrolling habit.

So if you’re looking for a distraction from endless refreshing new headlines and refreshed news coverage that drains your energy rather than filling it up, grab some colored pencils or watercolors and let the brush do the talking – watch the vibrancy come to life from a sheet of paper.


Photography is a great way to reawaken and revitalize your creative spirit. From landscapes, portraits, nature and animals to candid street scenes and wacky abstracts, the opportunities for photography are endless. Through photography, you can find joy in capturing minor details or large-scale wonders of the world. Whether you take a day trip to go on an adventure or decide to stay close by exploring your own community, this simple hobby will allow you to develop fresh perspectives on familiar things.

If your budget doesn’t permit it just yet, start with what you already have – a smartphone camera! With a few minor additions such as phone attachments that provide added functionality like advanced lenses, any smartphone can become a mini professional studio with just a few clicks. If you’re willing to spend some money, invest in a camera body and lens – no matter if it’s Sony Alpha 6000 or Canon EOS Rebel T6i KR – which comes with lots of amateur-friendly features. But no amount of money can replace vision and creativity – both take practice, but it’s fun discovering what works best for you!

Anyone of any age can pick up photography as a hobby – some love nature photography while others prefer street photography or portraiture – but anyone can find interest in exploring different types of photography and pushing creative boundaries. Get out into the real world inspired when browsing through recent photos from your fellow photographers: whether its animals are hidden among trees or colorful buildings overhanging tall trees – practice your newfound skill without fear! Photographers often have regular meet-ups throughout their city where they discuss tips & ideas assist each other in crafting images that ignite minds – consider joining one these for added guidance & resources – doing so will open yourself up to learning even more about photography and those passionate about it! Who knows? If you take notice of this great art form, it may eventually turn into rewarding profession full new possibilities!


Theater and stage performances have been a longstanding form of entertainment since ancient times. From thrilling musical spectaculars with world-renowned stars to heartfelt productions of classic and modern plays, the joys of theater-going can be a refreshing alternative to doom scrolling. Whether you are seeking the cathartic effects of drama, the humor of a farce, or the works of Shakespeare – there is no better way to unwind than by submerging yourself in the world on stage!

Engaging in programs such as local school performances and community theater is an excellent way to hone your own talents for performing on stage. A chance to invest your creative energy into developing characters or a dramatic story can be especially satisfying when done with others who share a love for the arts. Additionally, it can be an opportunity to join a supportive cast or crew who take pride in giving back to their city through art!

From Broadway shows found in major cities like New York all the way down to small scale productions seen at neighborhood venues and pop up stages – all it takes is one visit at any level performance hallowing theater experience and you may just find yourself hooked on this alternative form entertainment as opposed doom scrolling!


One great way to replace regular doom scrolling is to join or follow a sports team. Whether you’re a fan of your local team and want to cheer them on from the sidelines, or you’re interested in following international sporting events, it’s easy to get involved. Top level sports competitions are high-energy and thrilling, and it can be exhilarating to watch your favorite teams fight through the playoffs or work their way up the rankings.

Sports also offer opportunities for personal growth. The discipline, dedication and ambition required by top athletes serves as an excellent example for anyone looking for inspiration. If you’re looking for ways to challenge yourself, joining a team can be an excellent test of your determination and grit. Meanwhile, simply discussing sports with friends can open up new perspectives on strategy, tactics and more.

Team sports are also great for connecting with like-minded people who share similar interests – no matter whether you prefer football, basketball or golf. There may even be local leagues you can join in order to build relationships with other players in your area – so get out there ready for kick-off!

Replacing Doom Scrolling with Activities

Constantly doom scrolling can be such a hard habit to break. It’s become part of our everyday lives that we often don’t realize how detrimental it can be to our mental and physical health. We’ve all been guilty of it at least once. But it doesn’t have to be this way.

There are plenty of interesting activities that can replace doom scrolling. They can be anything from reading a book, painting a picture, to playing an instrument. We all have hobbies, interests, and activities that we can enjoy and that can replace our need to doom scroll.


Volunteering is a great way to help and make a positive impact on somebody’s life. Volunteer opportunities are available in a wide range of fields and can give you the chance to meet new people, learn new skills and gain valuable work experience. You can volunteer in your local community or get involved with a joint project that works towards a global cause. It’s also an easy way to disconnect from our doom scrolling social media habits and truly embrace the value of real success and take tangible steps towards helping people in need.

You’ll find volunteer opportunities for virtually any skill- set or interest you may have, but some more popular activities include:

  • Helping out in parks.
  • Soup kitchens.
  • Local homeless shelters.
  • Animal shelters.
  • Wilderness conservation projects.
  • Tutoring students who are going through difficult times.

The more effort you put into it the more rewarding experience you’ll have— but any commitment will be appreciated. Volunteering is an enriching experience which gives us the opportunity to focus on what really matters when reading about the world around us inevitably turns for the worst.


Traveling is a great way to get a break from doom scrolling and immerse yourself in different cultures, places, and environments. Whether you take a road trip or fly to another country – the simple act of exploring new territories can recharge both your mind and your soul. It’s an exciting activity that can provide long-lasting memories that will help take away the pain of negative news cycles.

Plus, with travel comes exposure to different people which can expand your own understanding of the world. Adventures don’t have to be hefty either – it’s all up to you! Traveling on a budget or signing up for volunteer programs abroad could make an even bigger impact; giving back is always rewarding no matter what kind of activity you choose!

Learning a New Skill

For those who don’t consider themselves overly creative, learning a new skill doesn’t have to be intimidating. Whether you want to learn a language, fine tune an old craft such as woodworking or crochet, or take up something completely new like sculpting or public speaking, the internet is ripe with resources that can help you get started. There is also an abundance of online courses and tutorials that can help guide you along the way. Setting daily goals for yourself and striving to meet them is one of the best ways to stay focused and motivated in your newfound endeavor.

Beyond practical skills, learning something theoretical can also be rewarding. Maybe you want to understand the fundamentals behind economics or astrophysics; with the right resources, these topics are surprisingly accessible too! Better yet, why not pick up your childhood hobby again? You could take some guitar lessons online or reconnect with a beloved author’s oeuvre. You never know what hidden passions of yours these activities might unleash!

Exploring Nature

Exploring nature makes for an ideal escape from doom scrolling and its accompanying feelings of anxiety and depression. Nature has a transformative power – it can be immensely calming while also invigorating you with its potential. Whether you’re simply taking a walk around the block or exploring your local park or trail, being outdoors can help reset your mindset and bring a sense of joy.

Alternatively, if you don’t have access to nature close by, consider getting crafty with plants in your home! Starting an indoor herb garden or propagating some house plants is both rewarding and enjoyable – not only will you be nurturing something beautiful, but it’s also a great way to get up and move away from screens. You could even take time to study the local flora at botanical gardens by visiting in person or virtually!

No matter your choice of activity, exploring nature is an excellent way to add variety to one’s life instead of doom scrolling. Try setting aside some time each day for activities that help cultivate a relationship with nature – watch the sunrise, go bird watching in your neighborhood, observe the stars at night – all of this will fill us with peace and help us take care of our mental health while staying apprised on current news topics without relying on doom scrolling.


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If you’re looking for ways to keep up with current events without doom scrolling, there are plenty of ways to participate and stay informed without inundating yourself with negative news. It’s important to arm yourself against the emotional exhaustion that can come from hearing the same headlines day after day.

Take time to focus on your hobbies, interests and activities outside of following news events. When you take care of your mental health, it will be easier for you to stay focused and engaged in what’s happening in the world around you.

Lastly, remember that any kind of change – personal or societal – takes time, perseverance and even subversive activities like protest or movement organizing. Stay hopeful because every bit counts!



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Chad is the co-founder of Unfinished Man, a leading men's lifestyle site. He provides straightforward advice on fashion, tech, and relationships based on his own experiences and product tests. Chad's relaxed flair makes him the site's accessible expert for savvy young professionals seeking trustworthy recommendations on living well.