Family first for everyday New Zealanders.
Spending time with loved ones was the most popular response in a nationwide survey which quizzed everyday Kiwis about their favourite pastimes.
Twenty per cent of respondents to the "What Kiwis Love" survey - which was commissioned by Vodafone and conducted by Nielsen - listed family time as their No 1 priority.
Watching and participating in sport was the second-most popular activity, backed by 10 per cent of respondents, while travel, both locally and internationally, was the third-most popular pastime.
Prominent psychologist Sara Chatwin said she was encouraged that family time had come out on top in the extensive survey.
"Over recent days, weeks, months and years we have seen a lot of interesting and sometimes really alarming things about families and family dynamics, parenting or lack of it," Chatwin said.
"So it is nice to know that, perhaps, people are putting more time into their families, into their parenting, into relationships with their children and their partners."
The What Kiwis Love survey - which was conducted online - received 1500 respondents aged 15 years and older.
Chatwin said she was not surprised that playing and watching sport had factored so highly.
"We are a nation who appears to define ourselves quite strongly with our sport," she said.
"We are a nation of achievers in that arena. We enjoy it and we watch it. I think sport is a really good healthy pastime, it is something that most of us should have in our lives to destress... I don't think it is unhealthy as long as it doesn't become an obsession and as long as it doesn't come before everything else."
The high placings of family and sport showed that some stereotypes were true in New Zealand.
Kiwi blokes were twice as likely as women to choose sport as their favourite pastime, 14 per cent compared to 7 per cent.
Women were more likely to want to spend time with family, 23 per cent against 17 per cent.
Despite many New Zealand sports clubs and community organisations being built on volunteering, just 0.8 per cent of survey respondents said giving up their own time for free was their favourite pastime.
Chatwin said that could be a reflection on the busier lifestyles, including greater work demands, more and more New Zealanders were living.
"It is really difficult to commit to added extras," she said. "Many people view volunteering as an add-on in life. A lot of us wear a lot of hats. In regard to volunteer work, it is hard to make that commitment when they have a lot of other things going on."
One per cent of respondents to the "What Kiwis Love" survey also said that work was what they loved the most.
"It doesn't surprise me. I think Kiwis are doers and I think a lot of people define themselves with their work," Chatwin said.
"But again, the extreme of the continuum is that if you are a workaholic... it is stressful and not great for the health. There are a lot of people for whom work is a huge part of their life."
- © Fairfax NZ News
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