With the job market becoming increasingly competitive, you need to find ways to stand out from the crowd. One great way to do that is to include your hobbies and interests on your resume to signal some additional skills and traits, which may tip the scales and help you land the job you want.
While traditionally considered second-grade information, interests and hobbies can signal personality traits, skills, and accomplishments that might be relevant enough for some positions to help you edge out your competition.
Listing them can add a personal touch to a resume and give an employer a glimpse of who you are as a person.
Keep reading to find out how to include and format interests on your resume for the best results!
- Including interests and hobbies on your resume can show your personality and add depth to your professional profile.
- Relevant hobbies and interests can demonstrate skills, qualities, and accomplishments that can be transferable to the job.
- The main difference between a hobby and an interest is that a hobby is something you enjoy doing in your free time, whereas an interest is something you enjoy learning about.
- Some interests and hobbies that you can be relevant on your resume are volunteering, writing, photography, and team sports.
Should You Put Interests on Your Resume?
If the interests you want to include are relevant to the job you’re applying for, then you should definitely include them.
Including interests on your resume is a great way to provide insight into your passions and interests outside of work and help the interviewees understand your character a little better.
If you’re applying for a graphic design job, for example, and you mention that you enjoy photography, this adds to your good eye for design and shows that you have many creative skills.
On the other hand, if you’re applying for a finance job, listing that you love hiking likely won’t increase your chances of getting that job.
Interests vs. Hobbies
The main difference between interests and hobbies is that interests are the things that you enjoy learning about or being involved in, whereas hobbies are activities that you like to do in your free time.
Interests and hobbies are two similar concepts, but there are quite a few differences between them. Interests include activities such as sports, art, music, cooking, reading, and volunteering. These interests are often the result of certain passions and values.
On the other hand, hobbies can include painting, knitting, hiking, or playing instruments. These are often more focused than interests, as they require a specific skill or expertise.
When it comes to resumes, both interests and hobbies can be listed to provide more information about your personality, values, and skills.
12 Interests And Hobbies To Put on Your Resume
Interests and hobbies on your resume are a great way to add some depth to your profile. Certain hobbies can develop skills that are sought after in various industries as well.
Here are 12 interests and hobbies you should consider including on your resume:
#1. Volunteer Work
Volunteer work can sometimes be considered a type of work experience if done in a niche that’s relevant to your profession.
However, if it’s something purely altruistic, like working in a local soup kitchen, including that on your resume can show employers that you are committed to giving back to your community and that you have at least practiced skills like teamwork and communication.
This interest is a great option for those seeking a job in the non-profit sector or social work. When highlighting volunteer work, make sure to include the name of the organization, your role, and the duration of the work.
Writing can give employers an idea of your imagination and attention to detail, which are traits that are transferable to jobs in content creation, marketing, or public relations.
Whether you write professionally or as a hobby, it can show your ability to articulate ideas and convey information creatively and effectively.
To add this hobby to your resume, mention any experience that might count, such as contributing to a blog, writing a short story, an article, or an essay. You can also mention skills such as editing, research, and proofreading if you’ve dabbled in any of these areas.
Photography signals your creativity, attention to detail, and visual story-telling skills. It can also show your ability to capture images that tell a story or convey a message.
If you’re applying for graphic design or journalism positions, this interest is a great addition to your resume. When you add it, mention whether you’ve ever taken any photography classes, or perhaps if you’ve ever taken photographs for a private event or any publication.
If you have one, you should also include a portfolio that demonstrates your photography-related skills, like photo editing and color correction, no matter how amateur your approach is.
Playing team sports shows that you are a team player, able to communicate effectively, and can work in a team to reach a common goal. It’s a great option for managerial or teamwork roles.
Sports-related hobbies can also signal that you know how to set goals and overcome difficult challenges. To add them to your resume, mention any team sports you’ve participated in and whether you’ve won a tournament.
If, by any chance, you’ve coached a youth team or a fitness class, be sure to mention the leadership skills you’ve gained through those experiences.
Practicing yoga can show commitment to personal health and wellness, as well as self-discipline and focus. It can improve balance, flexibility, and mental clarity. Yoga is relevant to jobs in the health and wellness industry or any job that prioritizes self-care and stress management.
However, these advantages can also be beneficial in stressful work environments such as sales and finance, so in that case, make sure to include these interests on your resume as well.
Traveling is a great way to highlight flexibility and the ability to adapt to new situations. It also shows that you understand and respect different cultures and have no problem communicating with people of different backgrounds.
Traveling can also indicate that you have problem-solving, planning, and budgeting skills. That’s why this hobby is relevant in the travel industry, international business, or positions that require a global perspective and cultural sensitivity.
Participating in dance classes or performances can help you develop creative, coordination, and teamwork skills. It improves physical fitness, and, as far as the mind goes, it often leads to more confidence.
Adding dance as a hobby to your resume shows your creativity, coordination, and dedication to improving your skills. Some relevant positions can include those in the arts, entertainment industry, event planning, or any other job that requires you to have good stamina.
Besides listing skills like leading a group or creating a dance routine from scratch, you can also mention if you’ve taken part in competitions or been a part of a dance group.
Including blogging as an interest likely indicates you have research and communication skills. It can also highlight your ability to create and manage digital content as well as your ability to work independently.
That’s why it’s a great idea to include it on your resume if you’re applying for content creation, marketing, or public relations jobs.
In the interests section, you can mention blogging by talking about relevant skills you have, such as writing, editing, SEO, and social media skills. You can also mention any experience you might have, like maintaining your own or someone else’s blog.
#9. Learning a Language
Learning a new language can demonstrate your desire to learn new things as well as your ability to learn quickly and adapt to new situations easily. It’s a great addition to your resume if you’re looking for jobs in international business or translation services.
Language as a hobby can also show your dedication and discipline. That’s why, when you decide to mention any language you’re learning on your resume, be sure to mention your level of proficiency and whether you’ve had the chance to use the language in a natural setting.
#10. Public Speaking
Public speaking can highlight your ability to communicate effectively, persuasively, and confidently. It’s a great option if you’re looking for interests to add to your finance resume, as it’s a great fit for jobs in sales, marketing, or public relations.
Adding public speaking to your resume can also show employers that you have no trouble with high-pressure situations and can present ideas to an audience effectively.
To include this interest on your resume, mention situations in which you’ve delivered presentations or participated in public debates. This can show your persuasion and communication skills.
Gardening can signal your patience, attention to detail, and ability to manage and plan projects. It’s a great interest to add for jobs such as landscape architecture, project management, or any other organizational or planning position.
Gardening is a great way to give your resume a personal touch. Try to also mention any planning or budgeting skills you’ve developed through gardening so that they’re relevant to a job description.
Cooking is a great way to demonstrate your creativity, ability to follow instructions, and attention to detail. This makes it a great addition to a resume for jobs in the food industry, hospitality, or event planning.
Cooking can also show employers that you’re able to multitask while still following instructions clearly. It also likely signals that you’ve worked on your time management, organizational, and creativity skills.
If you decide to add cooking to your resume, highlight any relevant experience, such as creating your own recipes, contributing to a bake sale, or even hosting a big dinner party.
Listing Interests And Hobbies on Your Resume: Best Practices
When it comes to listing interests and hobbies on your resume, there are some practices you should keep in mind.
- List interests and hobbies in a separate section. The “other” sections are there to highlight some additional relevant information. That’s why you should include a section for hobbies and interests so they can also have their moment to shine.
- Keep it concise. It’s important that a resume is easy to read and scan so it’s best to keep your list relevant and concise. Avoid listing too many interests as this will just take up precious space in your resume.
- Be specific. Rather than just listing generic interests like “traveling” or “reading”, try to be more specific and spice your resume up by providing more details. For example, “avid reader of fantasy novels”, or “traveled Europe for eight months”.
- Avoid any sensitive or controversial topics. Be mindful of the interests you choose to include. Don’t add interests or hobbies that could be inappropriate in a professional setting.
- Highlight your transferable skills. While listing interests and hobbies, try to highlight skills or qualities that are beneficial to the job. If you enjoy playing team sports, this can improve your ability to succeed in team-oriented projects as well as your ability to work collaboratively.
Professional Interests on Resume Example
Here’s a hobbies and interests example you can include on your resume if you’re applying for a graphic design position:
Interests and Hobbies:
- Enthusiast with experience in wedding, landscape, and portrait photography. Demonstrated a good eye for detail and composition.
- Worked on personal digital projects to make them user-friendly and visually appealing.
- Passionate about web design principles such as layout, color, and typography.
Sketching and drawing
- Skilled in sketching and hand-drawing, with the ability to transfer those skills into digital projects.
- Possess an understanding of traditional printmaking techniques as well as how to apply them in modern design tools and projects.
If done correctly, including hobbies and interests on your resume can add unique value to your job application. Listing relevant hobbies can signal some additional skills and traits, which many employers are looking for.
However, it’s important to choose them wisely so that you make sure they are related to the job description. To do that, pay attention to what’s listed in the job ad, keep your skill section concise and brief, and always avoid controversial or irrelevant hobbies.
By doing so, you can show employers who you are beyond your professional achievements, which might make a lasting impression on them and ultimately make you stand out.