Scarlett Austin
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A Different Look at Leisure

It has been suggested that the desirability of leisure would be easier if it was looked upon more an an opportunity for learning and service, rather than forced time in shallow pastimes of amusement, even aimlessness.

That relates to the idea of mass leisure, which is probably as real as compulsory happiness. Leisure could be thought of as "that part of life that comes nearest to allowing us to be free in a regimented and conforming world".

Credit: for a job

Unemployment could be seen as leisure time, enforced as it is. The unemployed have time on their hands, not all of which they are expected to use to look for work, but that is no reason to be envious, for excessive free time can be as detrimental as insufficient free time.

Leisure and recreation for women has a particular skew which is not always obvious. They are affected in various limiting ways preventing them taking recreation as freely and easily as men. Certain recreational activities are closed to all but the most determined females, most clubs and organizations being regarded as male strongholds. Women's recreational interests usually play second fiddle to recreational interests of the family or husband.

For some, leisure doesn't necessarily correlate with free time. They feel that leisure is an attitude of mind which can pervade any activity. One individual could obtain the same amount of pleasure from flying a hang glider as another from driving a truck.

It is worthwhile to consider some of these approaches and then identify your own criteria for recreation.

Physical activity is often part of a recreational experience and for most people provides a marked contrast to a sedentary office job. It has for example, been suggested that a high proportion of hang glider pilots work in banks.

You might discover that taking up golf or an active sport is more relaxing and beneficial for the mind than watching television or going to the pub.

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