Hobbies are activities that you enjoy doing in your spare time. These can span activities such as sports, cooking, travelling or writing just to name a few.

Per chance you do not have a hobby or something specific that you enjoy doing in your spare time, feel there are check out websites with free and affordable courses such as Udemy.

There are a wide range of choices to consider where you can try an activity and adopt a hobby in almost any field.

The following are 6 reasons why hobbies are essential to your career:

  •   Self-discovery
  •   Work/life balance
  •   Networking
  •   New opportunities
  •   Personal development
  •   Resume enhancement

Let’s take a closer look at each of these.

Self- discovery

Hobbies can help you understand more about yourself as you will discover things that you like and dislike. If you are a college student, you should consider various hobbies that are closely linked to roles that you are considering.

This could be a good indication of whether you will enjoy a role in a particular sector or not. It is possible that you could save yourself lots of time eliminating a career path if the hobby that you have started is not an activity that you enjoy.

This aligns with the Self Concept Theory of Career Development developed by Donald Super in 1969. This theory recommends that individuals should utilise hobbies as a medium to explore and experiment with new things as a fundamental aspect of career development.

Work/life balance

Working can be stressful and a hobby can be a wonderful outlet where you get to recharge by focusing on something that you enjoy doing.

This can provide you with renewed energy that you require to tackle another day. Exercising is one hobby that several great leaders have maintained for their mental and physical well-being.

Nelson Mandela, the great political leader who was a key figure in the abolishment of apartheid in South Africa exercised even while in prison by jogging in his cell.

In addition, Gandhi emphasised in his book that he did not take part in sporting activities while at school but later realised the importance of exercise as a daily routine and began walking.


Hobbies are a wonderful way to meet new people and network. Certain hobbies have clubs that you can join which could broaden the people that you know outside of your industry.

Meetup.com is a site that promotes networking where you can sign up and be notified of any group that is meeting in your area. 

The beauty of joining these groups is that you already have something in common with other members so it makes breaking the ice easier.

New opportunities

Since you may meet new people, new opportunities could open which could even lead to major career changes.

There are several popular bloggers for example who started blogging as a hobby and was able to build businesses. Your hobby can easily transition into your passion which you may be able to pursue full time.

Personal development

Having a hobby can help you harness the spirit of continuous learning. This can widen the fields in which you can contribute to. Hobbies can also be used during conversations in social situations.

Reading is an example of a hobby that can add significant value to your personal development as you are able to gain knowledge on a vast number of topics.

Resume enhancement

Hobbies can be a useful way to gain work experience especially for recent graduates. As indicated above, college students should consider starting a hobby that is related his or her career path.

This could be used as an item on the resume under the hobbies/ interest section when applying for an internship or for a first job where you have little or no work experience.

For example, imagine you have a dream job is to work at a hotel as an assistant wedding planner. As a recent graduate, you can include on your resume that you have an interest/hobby in floral design or photography.

An interviewer may give your resume greater consideration over a candidate without these interests as these hobbies are closely related to your field.

If you start a blog as a hobby and you are interested in marketing, your resume may carry greater weight than another candidate who has no practical online marketing experience.

If you have pursued a hobby for two years for example and developed skills in these areas it is definitely worth mentioning on your resume. If you are interested in starting a blog, there is a free quickstart guide in our career resource library. Click HERE for free access.

Professionals with work history need not include a hobby on a resume. In some cultures however employers prefer to have hobbies/ interest included on the resume.

If you enjoyed this article, you may find the following other articles on this blog valuable. Feel free to click on the links below to explore:-

10 Top Career Development Questions To Ask Yourself

How To Identify Your Dream Job

How To Write A Resume

How To Write A Cover Letter

11 Top Strategies To Advance Your Career

10 Top Career Planning Advice For Success

Final Thoughts

Hope these pointers encourage you to continue pursuing your hobbies alongside your career choices. At times, it is easy to get busy with the demanding schedules at your work that your hobbies could fall by the wayside.

Nevertheless, let’s try to make them just as important as our career. If you found this article helpful, I will be grateful if you can share it and leave a comment. For access to our free resource library with career templates, guides and checklists, click HERE to fill in the form. Thank you in advance for your support as I grow this blog.

Why Hobbies Are Essential to Your Career

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