If you love what you do, then it does not feel like work – or so the saying goes. If you can find a way to make your hobby your job – some way to make a financial return off something you love doing – then you will not feel like you are working. While it is true that turning a hobby into a profession makes it a job, loving your work makes it easy.

You do not need special training or advanced education to turn your hobby into your work, though classes in your chosen field can certainly help you succeed. You might consider taking classes in management to help build your business, or courses in promotion and marketing to help increase exposure. The Internet makes it possible to do what you love from anywhere in the world; you no longer have to move to Los Angeles to be in entertainment or live in New York to be a writer.

In fact, the Web and e-mail make it possible for you to turn your hobby into work without having to rent a physical office or storefront. Create a mailing list or circles of potential customers on social networks to stay in touch with people. Let them know about your products and services unobtrusively with opt-in and opt-out options. Update only when you have something to say but maintain regular contact so that your business stays fresh on peoples’ minds. Create a newsletter or website and offer free services, products, or tips on your hobby to draw potential customers and co-workers.

Social networking can become an important tool in this regard, and it makes it easy to find others who have similar interests. Creating or joining a network of like-minded hobbyists adds to your credentials as a professional in your field. Write articles for others to improve your standing and exposure. If newsletters, mailing lists, and websites are above your technical know-how, consider starting a blog using any number of free and simple platforms. Promote your blog through social networks and by working with others who enjoy your hobby. By offering free articles and samples of your work, you are giving potential customers something they want while showcasing your knowledge of your chosen hobby.

Turning your hobby into your job takes time and work, but it can be done. Consider training in business areas to make your hobby a job.

How to Incorporate Your Hobbies and Interests into Your Resume

Although you may think incorporating your hobbies and interests into your resume is silly, this section can actually be a very helpful addition to showcasing who you are, your personality and your capacity for work. Potential employers will see and appreciate that you put in the extra effort to tell them a little bit more about who you are as a person. Hobbies and interests can show off that you are a well-rounded person, so do not skip over this section when creating your resume.

What to Include

  1. Remember that your hobbies and interests can very well relate to the job you are seeking. Be sure not to include every activity that interests you but do add ones that come across as a positive and fun use of your down time. For instance, if you enjoy playing poker, it shows that you like to be mentally engaged and utilize strategy. Sports are also a great hobby to include, as it shows you are active, like to exercise and are a team player.
  2. Do not leave the hobbies and interests section on your resume black, as potential employers can view this negatively. It says to an employer that you are not very well-rounded, don’t like to open up personally and may not be a good asset to their team of employees. And with a resume, you want to leave a favorable first impression.
  3. Don’t be shy about what interests you! If the job you are seeking, and your hobbies or interests coincide, don’t be afraid to add it and even play that factor up. For example, if you are applying to a restaurant for the job as a chef or even a cook, list that you are passionate about cooking and food and devote a lot of your spare time to the kitchen. The more you tell a possible employer about yourself, the better odds that your resume will stand out among others and that you’ll be contacted for an interview — and then go on to possibly being hired.
  4. Remember to keep this section short and to the point. Your resume is your only chance to make a first impression, so you don’t want to bore the employer by going on and on. Keep it short and sweet yet informative — this could be the difference between getting your foot in the proverbial door or getting your resume filed with a ton of others.

Here are some hobbies and interests that you can include but remember to be honest — don’t just list things to try and impress a potential employer. If you end up interviewing or getting the position, this may come back to bite you if you were dishonest.

Reading

This shows you like to be mentally stimulated and have an imagination.

Traveling

Listing traveling tells an employer you are not afraid to venture out into the world and experience new things.

Music

Music is something that everyone has in common, so it’s a no-brainer to include it in the hobbies and interests section of your resume.

Computers/Internet

Internet and computer skills are a must-have in today’s day and age, so be sure to say if you have any skills that others may not have — this makes you stand out as a job candidate and shows you are tech savvy.

Most people do not list their hobbies and interests on their resume, so by doing this, you put yourself in the 4% — the other 96% skip this section. This alone makes your resume stand out from the crowd. You’re marketing yourself to a business and opening up topics of discussion if you are contacted for an interview.

Tips

  • Be passionate about your hobbies and interests. If it interests you, your eyes will light up when you talk about it and employers will take notice. If you love rock climbing, share it on your resume. Not only is it athletic and impressive, but it highlights your sense of adventure and willingness to take risks — something that a future employer may appreciate.

I don’t have time for hobbies. At the end of the day, I treat my job as a hobby. It’s something I love doing.

David Beckham

  • Be unique if it’s possible. Instead of saying reading is an interest, be specific about what you love to read, whether it is a specific author or time period. For instance, don’t just say that you enjoy Shakespeare – be specific about which works move you the most.
  • Be able to discuss and demonstrate your interests. This may sound cliché but be ready to show off your skills if asked. If you listed reading, be able to talk about the last few books you’ve read and share your thoughts with potential employers.
  • Make your hobbies and interests relatable when possible. Choose the ones you think a potential employer will relate with the most, and this may need to change from employer to employer.

Your Passion Will Turn Your Hobby into A Job

A hobby is something that you do simply because you are passionate about it. Say you like playing video games and have done so since you were a kid. You wouldn’t worry about how much money you make right off the bat or worry about the number of hours you have to spend working your way up. You would love your job and be willing to start out wherever you have to. What you would want to do is to start playing in tournaments or organize your own tournament to showcase your skills. Even though the hours are long, if you are good at what you do, it will start to make you money and become your primary source of income.

Turning a Volunteer Job into Your Source of Income

Perhaps you wrote for your school paper and had a lot of fun with it, or maybe you helped out with Habitat for Humanity and built houses for disadvantaged people. Why not use the connections you made, and the skills you learned, and turn your hobby into a job? Start your own housing business or start writing for a real newspaper instead of the job that you have now.

Create a New Position at Work

Is there an aspect of your job that you really enjoy doing? Say you work as a part-time social media manager for your company. Perhaps you really enjoy using the Internet and you realize that there is an opportunity at work to benefit yourself while benefiting your company. Approach your boss and explain the situation and how it could be mutually beneficial. A happy employee, and a profitable idea, go hand in hand.

Your hobbies should always be something that you consider looking at when thinking of job opportunities. As long as you can sell your idea to others, make some money off of it and have the skills to pull it off, there is no reason you can’t turn a hobby into a job. At the very worst, you could take some of the things you enjoy and turn it into at least part of your job.