Five hobbies that can help your career

Want to get a head start in your career? Get a new hobby! Discover five activities you can do in your free time to help boost your professional prospects.

What activities do you get up to in your free time? Having a hobby can be great for reducing stress, learning new skills, meeting different people and for general peace of mind and wellbeing.

But, pick your hobby wisely, and it can also help you in other ways too – including boosting your career.

Five hobbies that can help your career

Jenny Winslow Senior Marketing Executive at Intouch Accounting reveals the top five hobbies every woman should consider and the professional benefits they can provide.

1) Travelling to destinations off the beaten track

We’re not talking about all-inclusive trips that cater to your every need, but those journeys that create memories you’ll never forget. It’s those experiences that broaden your mind, expose you to new cultures and makes you learn new things about your personality.

Not only is travel a fantastic way to learn and grow, it also showcases to clients and organisations that you’re confident, inquisitive, open minded and engaged.

It’s not just about going on holiday, but actually travelling to a location that’s going to give you more than just a good time. So arrange that trip of a lifetime – what better excuse do you need?!

2) Photography

These days everybody has a camera in some shape or form, be it a professional DSLR, a simple point and shoot, or even the camera in your smartphone.

Photography can showcase to employers a whole host of skills. Regardless of the quality of the pictures you take, the hobby can develop your discipline, patience, persistence and creativity. These skills all translate into helping analyse problems, progress projects and develop ideas within the workplace.

Plus, you could get some really fantastic shots and plenty of fresh air. So what are you waiting for? Grab your camera and take it on your next ramble or day trip.

3) Blogging

In today’s world our minds move at a million miles an hour, and on average we have 50,000-70,000 thoughts per day. But how many of those thoughts do we actually write down?

Blogging can develop your communication and writing skills, which in turn help you articulate and communicate your position and goals at work. Plus if you blog about your career, it can give you a greater understanding of your industry and showcase the passions you have for what you do.

(Want help to get started? Read our top 10 stories on starting a blog.)

4) Amateur dramatics

Now this one can take guts, but the rewards can be great. Joining an amatuer dramatics group can boost your confidence levels, improve public speaking and overall make you feel more courageous in your day to day professional life.

This can especially be useful when presenting your ideas to clients or colleagues, winning your next contract or big project, or even just looking to make a connection with a colleague.

It also shows employers that you can adapt to different situations and work in a whole range of environments, without being fazed.

5) Giving something back

Imagine a hobby that improves your health, well being and overall happiness.

Volunteering can do all this and so much more, but how can it help you professionally? By giving your time freely, you’re showing employers that your passions are worth more to you than financial gain and that you’re willing to put in effort for something you truly believe in.

You are also able to showcase your project management skills if you manage a volunteer project from start to finish. (Read more about why volunteering could be the perfect career choice for mums.)

Which hobby will YOU choose?

So there you have it, five fantastic hobbies that will not only enrich your personal life, but your professional life too.

What’s your experience of hobbies? Have any given you skills that have helped to progress your career?

Jenny Winslow works for Intouch Accounting, the expert contractor accountancy for Limited Company contractors.