Having a ‘real job’ is obviously very important to ensure you can afford to live your life. But in this time of restrictions, many people have found themselves re-evaluating their lives and reflecting on whether or not their day job is ticking all the boxes for them.

Most of us have a hidden hobby or secret skill we’ve always been curious to try out. It may involve rekindling a childhood interest, exploring something entirely different from our current skill set or be completely ‘out of character’ for our personality.

If you have you found yourself reflecting on what you’re actually passionate about, remember most new passions, start with new skills.

And with less social commitments than ever and generally more time on our hands, there’s no better time to review your interests and revisit your bucket list.

There are several Central Geelong businesses offering a broad and varied selection of short courses and dozens of free lessons and tutorials online. From the ‘just for fun’ to those that will provide you with an official certification or qualification and potentially change your career path, there are many opportunities available to help you expand your knowledge, have fun and skill up.

Tea Mastery with Teacha Tea Bar
Barista’s are a dime a dozen these days, but have you ever heard of a ‘Tea Sommelier’? These tea service professionals have the skills to work effectively as a tea connoisseur and the ability to advise, select, prepare and serve specialty tea.At Teacha Tea Bar in Malop Street, not only can you select from their huge range of over 200 specialty teas, they can also help you become an officially certified Tea Blender, Tea Master or Sommelier. Managed by the Australian Tea Masters, Teacha Tea Bar is a one stop tea shop for any tea lover and is currently offering take away sales and online orders. For more information on their online courses and tea related resources and opportunities visit their website www.australianteamasters.com.au

Dominate the Dance Floor with Ballroom Baby
Did somebody say cha cha cha?

Ballroom Baby, Central Geelong’s Ballroom and Latin Dance School is a fantastic place to get you started if you long to own the dance floor! Covering a selection of classic Latin and ballroom dances from beginner to advanced classes, plus Zumba classes and even private lessons, Ballroom Baby in Ryrie Street will help you be your best dancer, even if you’re starting out with two left feet. Visit them at www.babygeelong.com.au

And if you really want to look the part, Geelong Dance and Fairywear Supplies in Little Malop Street can supply dance gear for the first time dancer, full time professional oranything in between. Currently operating with reduced hours, their online store at
www.geelongdancesupplies.com.au stocks hundreds of products and offers free shipping.

Become Dive Certified with Geelong Dive Centre
Ready to dip your toe in the water and fulfil a SCUBA diving dream?

In addition to stocking Geelong’s largest range of SCUBA diving equipment, spearfishing, snorkelling, freediving, wetsuits, archery equipment and any accessory you could possibly want, Geelong Dive Centre in Moorabool Street can also help you become PADI qualified.
Geelong Dive Centre offers e-classroom style PADI Dive Courses from entry level, right through to Instructor. Students can learn the principles of diving at their pace and in the comfort of their own home and then complete their course with practical training.

Visit www.divein2scuba.com.au to browse their online store or find out more about learning to SCUBA dive.

Acknowledge Your Arty Side with Artworx Studio
If you’ve always fancied being an ‘arty type’ but you’re not sure where to start, Artworx Studio in Ryrie Street is the perfect place to begin your journey to artistic brilliance! From ceramics, to mixed media, oil painting to print making, Artworx Studio offers numerous courses from the beginner to the advanced.

Perhaps a good starting point is the Artworx ‘Absolute Beginner Workshop Kit’ which provides everything you need to create a stunning canvas painting from home.

Their online store is jam packed full of colour and supplies to fuel your creativity and keep an eye out for their school holiday program announcements to entertain your younger family members. www.artworxgeelong.com.au

Set a New Scene with Screen Actors Australia

If the stage or screen is calling you, Screen Actors Australia has been training actors for film and TV right here in Geelong for 25 years and offer classes for adults, teens and children. Screen Actors Australia can help you develop confidence, creativity and technique through improvisation exercises, script analysis and on camera performance. And if acting becomes your thing, Screen Actors Australia can also provide agency representation to help you secure work in the industry. Visit www.screenactors.com.au to view their courses and enrol online.

Make and Mend with Lincraft
Whether it be to make, create or mend, sewing is not only satisfying but can leave you feeling as proud as punch when you’ve whipped up a new tote bag or taken up the hem on your skirt. When it comes to crafting and sewing, www.lincraft.com.au is your new best friend. They can set you up with craft and sewing essentials and their website is jam packed with over 900 free ‘How To’ tutorials. Their blog is also loaded with ideas to inspire you.

Get Going with The Gordon
The Gordon TAFE can help you achieve a personal goal or begin a completely new chapter in your career. The Gordon has been providing education to the Geelong region for more than 130 years and offers hundreds of qualifications and short courses across a wide range of disciplines from apprenticeships, traineeships, certificates, diplomas and advanced diplomas. The Gordon’s short courses provide a great way for busy people to access quality and flexible learning programs. Visit www.thegordon.edu.au to view their instructor led or self paced learning experiences.

Put Pen to Paper with the Geelong Library & Heritage Centre
If you love putting pen to paper but have always been too shy to share, the Geelong Library and Heritage Centre is hosting the ‘Writers Aloud’ virtual event. This event will enable you to share your writing in a safe environment and meet other local writers. Join in and share your original piece of writing with a small and appreciative audience via Zoom video conferencing. Writing can be poetry, prose, travel writing - whatever you like - but should be limited to five minutes. For dates and more information, visit www.grlc.vic.gov.au