80 Examples of Enjoyable Activities To Do After Work

Updated February 16, 2023

After finishing the workday, you likely want to relax and take your mind off the day's stresses or responsibilities. There are plenty of things you can do with your free time, and these activities can offer numerous advantages, including boosting your mood, productivity or general well-being.

If you're unsure what to do after you're done with work each day, you may benefit from exploring a list of different ideas to consider. In this article, we discuss why it's important to do activities after work and provide examples of 80 things you can do.

Why is it important to do activities after work?

Planning and participating in activities after work is important because it enables you to spend time focusing on yourself. You can choose to use this time however you'd like. During this time, you don't necessarily have to worry about work-related responsibilities and deadlines, unlike during the day. Here are some of the benefits of having after-work activities:

You get an opportunity to relax

When you encounter challenging situations at work, you can plan and participate in activities after work to help you relieve stress. There are many ways to find relaxation, such as practicing mindfulness techniques like yoga, meditation or journaling. Mindfulness is an effective method of caring for your mental and physical well-being because it enables you to concentrate on calming your mind and reducing feelings of stress and pressure.

You can also relax by participating in any activity that you enjoy that takes your mind off work, such as watching your favorite TV show, spending time with friends and family or working on a personal hobby. By taking time to relax after work, you allow yourself to regain energy after a challenging day. As a result, you may feel more prepared and confident to handle the next day.

You can develop your skills and knowledge

Another benefit of doing activities after work is that they can help you pursue personal and professional development. While your work responsibilities and projects can offer similar benefits, performing activities outside of work allows you to focus on building hard and soft skills with less interruption. For example, you can take online courses to boost your skills using particular software to make you more efficient at work.

You can also participate in activities or workshops that improve soft skills to improve your work performance. For instance, taking public speaking workshops can help you make more confident presentations or learn how to lead others. Other resources, such as seminars, articles or podcasts, can help you expand your knowledge about current events and your industry. You can implement what you've learned through skill- and knowledge-building activities into your daily work. If supervisors and colleagues take notice, it might help you gain opportunities to advance your career.

Read more: How To Develop Your Skill Set to Advance Your Career

You can pursue a passion

If your work isn't directly related to your passions in life, you can use this after-work time to explore them more deeply. For example, you may have creative passions, such as photography or painting, that you can practice during your off-hours.

Alternatively, you may have a cause you feel passionate about and can promote it by participating in volunteer activities after work. When you feel passionate about something, you enjoy the time you spend performing it or pursuing it. As a result, these activities can help you relax or improve your mood.

Another benefit of pursuing your passions after work is that you get to spend time practicing your relevant skills or knowledge about the topic. For example, if your passion is photography, the more time you spend practicing it after work, the more your skills improve.

Eventually, you may find opportunities to turn these passions into a way to make additional income or pursue a full-time career. Depending on your passion, you may also join relevant classes and organizations or attend events that allow you to meet and develop connections with like-minded people.

You can engage in new experiences

Depending on your job, you may perform the same tasks each day. If you find your job somewhat monotonous, you can use your after-work activities as something to add more excitement to your days. For example, if you enjoy traveling, you can plan mini-trips or adventures to fulfill that interest despite having limited time. You might visit a nearby town or an attraction in your city or area you haven't seen before.

Besides enjoying yourself, you might these experiences beneficial in other ways. The experiences you choose can help you feel more relaxed or learn something new. When you have something to look forward to after work, it may help keep your morale up during the day. You might even consider inviting colleagues with similar interests to your plans, helping you build stronger relationships at work.

Related: 7 Tips for Getting Out of Your Comfort Zone

80 ideas for what to do after work

When deciding what to do after your workday ends, you have numerous options to choose from based on your interests. Here are several categories of activities to consider, with examples for each:

Activities with friends or family

Maintaining a balance between your personal and professional lives is essential for your well-being and productivity. Spending time with the people that you feel closest to after work can help you relieve some stress and build stronger connections with them.

As a result, you can re-energize after a busy workday and feel more productive for the next day. There are many enjoyable activities you can participate in with friends and family. Try the following:

  1. Go to a concert.

  2. Have dinner at a restaurant or at home.

  3. Watch a movie or TV show.

  4. Visit an exhibit or gallery.

  5. Explore your city or town.

  6. Go camping.

  7. Host a game night.

  8. Have a picnic.

  9. Go bowling or participate in another group activity.

  10. Host a virtual meet-up or activity.

  11. Attend a sporting event.

  12. Cook a meal.

  13. Spend time at a park or beach.

  14. Have a scavenger hunt.

  15. Visit a local festival.

  16. Make crafts.

  17. Play sports or outdoor games.

  18. Have a yard sale.

  19. Host a party.

  20. Do karaoke.

Related: Ultimate Guide to Work-Life Balance

Skill- or knowledge-building activities

You can also use your time after work for personal and professional development. Whether you choose formal or informal education and training options, being a lifelong learner offers numerous benefits. You can develop skills and knowledge that provide career advantages, helping you improve your performance at work or pursue more advanced roles and responsibilities.

Otherwise, you can spend time learning about other topics that interest you, allowing you to pursue new hobbies or otherwise keep your mind active. Here are some examples of skill- and knowledge-building activities you can try:

  1. Read books and magazines.

  2. Attend a workshop or seminar.

  3. Watch a documentary.

  4. Listen to podcasts.

  5. Review the day's news.

  6. Work on jigsaw, crossword and other puzzles.

  7. Take classes or online courses.

  8. Write a blog, short stories or other content.

  9. Volunteer as a tutor or mentor.

  10. Join a professional association.

  11. Listen to audiobooks.

  12. Watch online tutorials.

  13. Learn and practice an instrument.

  14. Go to the library.

  15. Do an art project.

  16. Visit a museum.

  17. Find a new hobby.

  18. Participate in online groups or discussion forums.

  19. Join a book club.

  20. Take a language course.

Related: Lifelong Learning: What It Is, Benefits and Habits

Activities for your mental and physical well-being

If you experience challenges in the workplace, you can use activities after work to reduce feelings of stress or anxiety. When you feel good, it can improve your mood at home and at work. Taking time to look after your physical and mental health can help you feel re-energized and more prepared to handle the next challenges you encounter.

Some companies even develop wellness programs to promote healthier habits and keep the workforce more engaged. Here are some examples of activities you can perform to boost your well-being:

  1. Take a walk or hike.

  2. Meditate.

  3. Give yourself or get a spa treatment.

  4. Practice yoga.

  5. Go for a run.

  6. Take an exercise class.

  7. Get a massage.

  8. Relax outside.

  9. Create a gratitude journal.

  10. Walk or play with a pet.

  11. Volunteer in an outside activity.

  12. Take a bike ride.

  13. Research and make healthy recipes.

  14. Develop a bedtime routine.

  15. Write a list of positive affirmations.

  16. Call a friend or family member on the phone.

  17. Go for a swim.

  18. Practice deep breathing exercises.

  19. Take a dance break.

  20. Work on a coloring book.

Related: 10 Benefits of Wellness Programs in the Workplace

Activities for productivity

Even after the workday ends, there are numerous activities you can perform to maintain your sense of productivity. When you take time to plan for personal or professional reasons, you may feel more confident about the future.

After work, you don't have the distractions of your typical duties, giving you more time to focus on yourself and your needs. Finding ways to be productive can also be rewarding for some people because it keeps you busy and helps you achieve goals. Here are some activities you can try to stay productive and organized:

  1. Research career opportunities.

  2. Write a to-do list.

  3. Clean your home.

  4. Develop a list of career or personal goals.

  5. Update your resume.

  6. Organize your workspace.

  7. Plan a vacation or trip.

  8. Volunteer with a local organization.

  9. Research your family tree.

  10. Start a DIY project at home.

  11. Plan and prepare meals for the week.

  12. Write thank you notes or letters.

  13. Work on a garden.

  14. Create a scrapbook.

  15. Develop your social media profile or professional website.

  16. Clean up your computer or email inbox.

  17. Reach out to members of your professional network.

  18. Create a professional portfolio.

  19. Run errands.

  20. Gather and donate belongings you don't need.


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