Ultimate List of 150+ Hobbies and Interests for Your Resume
As you work through all of the “must-have” sections on your resume, you may find yourself getting to the end and thinking, “Have I given the hiring team any information or insight into my personal interests in my free time and who I am as a person?”
Enter: the “Interests” section of your resume.
How do you add your interests and hobbies for resume details without drawing attention away from the most important details? And, what should you even include? Read on for helpful resume tips on all of the above, in addition to 150+ creative hobbies you can use as inspiration throughout your job search.
3 takeaways you'll get from this article
- Listing relevant interests and hobbies on your resume can help give a glimpse into who you are as a person and the cultural addition you could be to a company.
- 150+ categorized examples of hobbies and interests
- How to list hobbies and interests professionally on your resume
Is it unprofessional to list hobbies and interests on a resume?
Highlighting hobbies and interests on resumes can help candidates stand out and demonstrate their personality, creativity, and unique strengths. Rather than being unprofessional, listing hobbies and interests on a resume can be a way to showcase the whole person and not just their work experience or education.
While there may be some cases where listing hobbies and interests on a resume may not be appropriate or relevant, in many cases it can help candidates stand out and showcase their unique qualities and abilities. As long as the hobbies and interests are presented in a professional and relevant manner, they can be a valuable addition to a resume.
Why you should list hobbies and interests on your resume
People often make mistakes when crafting their resume and leave important details off. The interests section of your resume is an opportunity to show a potential employer a little bit more about who you are and what you do in your spare time, as they relate to the job description, in a few critical ways:
1. They show you as a multidimensional person.
We're more than our work experiences and skills, and including your unique hobbies and interests on your resume will present a more well-rounded idea of who you are as a person.
Let's say a hiring manager is making a decision about the last candidate they'll bring in for an interview. They're deciding between two people with the same level of experience and the same skill set — you and another applicant. You've included a few details about your interests. Suddenly, you're a person with a personality and a bit of depth — a small addition that got you to the next round of the hiring process.
2. They give employers and recruiters a better sense of company culture fit.
There are many companies on the lookout for applicants with unique character or personality traits. Listing hobbies and interests on a resume is an easy way for hiring managers, recruiters, and potential employers to get a glimpse into who you are as a person and how well you'll relate to the company's work culture.
3. They help support a resume with limited professional experience.
If you don't have much experience under your belt, or you've just graduated and are on the lookout for your first role, listing your hobbies and interests can help to fill in the blanks of any limited skills. If some of these hobbies include community involvement through volunteering or being a part of an association or networking group, they could speak to you being a team player and highlight your leadership skills.
What kind of hobbies should you put on your resume?
The simple answer: include hobbies and interests that show your value and are relevant to the job you're applying for. Here are a few tips on what kind of hobbies and interests to include:
- Look for hobbies and interests that align with the job requirements and highlight your strengths.
- Show a range of interests by including a mix of personal interests that demonstrate different aspects of your personality and skills.
- Think about the company culture and values and choose hobbies and interests that fit with them.
- Be mindful of the hobbies and interests you include and avoid ones that may be controversial or could be perceived as inappropriate.
- While including hobbies and interests can be a great way to stand out and showcase your personality, it's important to keep it concise and relevant.
What do your hobbies and interests say about you?
One of the main benefits of including personal interests on a resume is that it can help create a more well-rounded picture of the candidate. Your hobbies and interests can reveal a lot about your personality, values, and strengths.
For example, mentioning an adventure hobby such as hiking may reveal a candidate's passion for the outdoors. It may suggest that you are curious, open-minded, and have the ability to push through challenges.
On the other hand, mentioning a creative hobby, such as painting or playing a musical instrument, may showcase that you have a strong imagination, en eye for aesthetics, a desire to express yourself in unique ways, and discipline.
If you enjoy reading, learning new skills, or taking courses in your free time, it may suggest that you are intellectually curious, motivated, and enjoy expanding your knowledge and understanding of the world. You may also be detail-oriented and have a love for precision and accuracy.
Another advantage of including hobbies and interests on a resume is that it can help candidates demonstrate soft skills that are highly valued by employers. For example, a candidate who lists participation in team sports as a hobby may be perceived as disciplined, goal-oriented, and good team player with strong leadership and communication skills.
Listing volunteer work and community service can show transferable skills and interpersonal skills such as empathy, compassion, and the desire to make a positive impact on the world. Likewise, a candidate who mentions traveling may be seen as adaptable and culturally aware, which can be important in a globalized and diverse workplace.
Such hobbies can help recruiters and hiring managers understand what motivates the candidate beyond their job and academic qualifications, and how they might fit into the company culture.
150+ hobbies and interests to put on your resume
Need a bit of help remembering your own hobbies and interests list? We have a tool, the Interests Workbook, to help you map out the things you’re excited about.
Use these general hobbies and interests examples below and personalize them by adding your own specifics:
- Creative activities
- Creative writing
- Flower arranging
- Furniture building
- Furniture restoration
- Restoring Furniture
- Essay writing
- Fan fiction
- Fiction writing
- Memoir writing
- Poetry writing
- Travel writing
- Bullet journaling
- Calendar syncing
- Digital organizing
- DIY projects
- Event planning
- Feng Shui
- Home organizing
- KonMari method
- Meal planning
- Organizing local meetups
- Personal inventory
- Attending literary events
- Book clubs
- Book collecting
- Book reviewing
- Book swaps
- Literary analysis
- Reading challenges
- Reading different genres
- Reading for education
- Translating books
- Action figures
- Comic books
- LEGO sets
- Record albums
- Sports memorabilia
- Vintage collectibles
- Animal rescue
- Community gardening
- Disaster relief
- Elderly support
- Fundraising events
- Habitat for Humanity
- Homelessness support
- International service
- Literacy support
- Teaching assistant
- Youth sports coaching
- Content creation
- Creative writing
- Data analysis
- Reading marketing books
- Social media
Music, Movies & Performing Arts
- Composing music
- Playing a musical instrument
- Magic tricks
- Standup Comedy
- Bargain shopping
- Computer programs
- Learning languages
- Participation in investment clubs
- Reading financial news and market reports
- Volunteer work
- Building relationships
- Cold calling
- Networking events
- Persuasion and influencing skills
- Practicing negotiation
- Role-playing games
- Team sports
- Window shopping
Playing Sports & Outdoor Activities
- Car racing
- Fantasy football
- Fantasy baseball
- Individual sports
- Martial arts
- Mountain biking
- Mountain climbing
- Rock climbing
- Scuba diving
- Whitewater Rafting
- 3-D Printing
- App Building
- Artificial Intelligence
- Computer Programming
- Social media
- Virtual Reality
- Web Design
- Web Development
- Building models
- Car restoration
- Community activities
- Cooking classes
- Historic preservation
- Learning languages
- Networking groups
- Personal development
- RV traveling
- Sign language
- Stamp collecting
- Vintage shopping
How soft and hard skills relate to hobbies and interests
Hobbies and interests can play a significant role in developing both soft and hard skills. Soft skills, or interpersonal skills, are the personal qualities that help individuals work effectively with others, while hard skills are the technical abilities required to perform a specific job.
The relationship between hobbies and interests and soft and hard skills can be quite strong, and many people find that their hobbies and interests have helped them develop the skills they need for success in their careers.
When it comes to soft skills, hobbies and interests can provide opportunities to develop and improve them. For example, if you're passionate about team sports, you might have developed communication, collaboration, and leadership skills. Or if you're interested in volunteer work, you may have honed your problem-solving, empathy, and conflict resolution skills. These skills are essential in the workplace, and they can make a significant difference in your success.
Hard skills can also be developed and enhanced through hobbies and interests. Many hobbies require technical skills, such as programming, graphic design, or data analysis. These skills can be valuable in a variety of professions, and they can help you stand out from other job applicants. Even if your hobby isn't directly related to your career, the skills you develop can be transferable to other areas of your life.
Ultimately, hobbies and interests can provide a valuable avenue for developing both soft and hard skills. They allow you to explore your passions and interests while developing skills that can benefit you both personally and professionally.
When it comes to your career, showcasing your hobbies and interests on your resume or during an interview can demonstrate your skills and make you a more compelling candidate for the job. So, if you're looking to develop new skills, consider exploring a new hobby or interest that aligns with your career goals.
4 tips on how to list interests on your resume
1. Use space wisely
Consider putting your unique interests on another piece of professional real estate — your optimized LinkedIn profile's “About” section, for example. That way, when a recruiter or a hiring manager takes a look at your profile, they'll see them and potentially strike up a conversation in an interview about your personal activities.
A great way to check your LinkedIn profile for optimization is to download Teal’s Free Chrome extension which includes an automated LinkedIn Profile Review. Once you install the extension, just go to your profile page and click on the Teal logo. You’ll see a list of recommendations on how best to optimize your profile and can make updates as needed.
2. Keep your hobbies and interests list short yet detailed
Choose three to five activities for your resume, and be specific if you can. For example, you can list “Active in a year-round indoor pickleball league” instead of “Playing team sports,” — or “Part of a book group focused on historical fiction” instead of “Reading.”
3. Tailor your list of interests based on the job posting you're applying for
Your collection of cookbooks may be more relevant than your love of true crime podcasts if you're applying for a role at a marketing agency that works with food and beverage brands. Interests related to musical instruments would also not be the most appropriate for that role.
Choosing relevant hobbies and experiences to highlight can reflect positively on you and help establish that you're even more of a fit for the job position you're applying for. The best resume examples always align closely with the target role, including the candidates interests.
Use Teal's AI Resume Builder to quickly compare the skills and keywords in the job posting to those in your resume. Make sure to add any relevant experience to your customized resume and to your application answers.
4. Stay away from controversial and irrelevant hobbies
It most likely goes without saying, but we'd suggest staying away from listing anything that might be considered polarizing. That could include political or religious affiliations — or potentially controversial activities of personal interest like gambling or hunting.
Unless you're applying for a very specific role where those interests are expected, certain activities might harm the perception of you as a candidate and give other applicants an advantage.
Where should hobbies and interests go on a resume?
Since these details aren't as critical to your experiences, skills, and personal summary, the ideal place for your hobbies and interests is at the very bottom of your resume. If your resume has a column format, you can put your interests in the righthand column along with your skills.
Instead of "Hobbies Section", for the actual name of the section, it's best to stick with something general, such as “Interests”. Remember, you don't want to overcrowd your resume, so don't include more than five hobbies.
If you'd like to take the guesswork out of this section, Teal's AI Resume Builder has a built-in Skills & Interests section where you can easily add your details.
There are plenty of resume experts that will tell you to leave these more “personal” details out of your resume. Here's our take, though: business is personal.
You shouldn't have to shut down your personality and the unique details that make you who you are just because you're interviewing for a new role. In fact, showcasing a few of the things you like to do when you're not working can give the entire picture of who you are as a candidate.
Once you've outlined specific, job description-related hobbies and interests on your tailored resume, you'll want to practice weaving them into your answers for when you land a job interview. Within Teal's Job Application Tracker are tips and resources to help you practice interviewing.
FAQs about hobbies and interests for your resume
What are interests?
Interests are activities, subjects, or passions that an individual enjoys or finds engaging outside of their work or academic responsibilities. They are things that make you happy or curious.
Interests can be wide-ranging and may include topics such as history, science, literature, or art. They may involve reading, attending lectures or events, or simply learning more about a particular subject. Interests can also include pursuits that involve physical activity, such as sports, exercise, or outdoor recreation.
What are hobbies?
Hobbies are specific activities or pursuits that an individual pursues in their free time for enjoyment or relaxation. Pursuing hobbies can also offer opportunities for learning, growth, and social connection.
Hobbies are typically more focused activities that a person pursues in their free time. Hobbies may involve crafting, playing a musical instrument, gardening, cooking, or other activities that offer a sense of creative expression or relaxation.
What is the difference between hobbies and interests?
Terms "interests" and "hobbies" are closely related and often used interchangeably, but there is a subtle difference between the two. Interests refer to the broader range of activities or subjects that a person enjoys or finds engaging, while hobbies are more specific activities that a person pursues for enjoyment or relaxation.
While there is some overlap between interests and hobbies, hobbies tend to be more specific and hands-on, while interests may be more intellectual or broad-based. Both interests and hobbies can provide a source of enjoyment and fulfillment outside of work or other obligations, and can offer opportunities for personal growth and skill development.
How personal do you make your hobbies and interests section?
When including hobbies and interests on a resume, it's important to strike a balance between being personal and professional. You want to share enough information to give potential employers insight into your personality, values, and strengths, but not so much that your resume becomes too personal or oversharing.
To achieve this balance, focus on hobbies and interests that are relevant to the job or that demonstrate skills or qualities that would be valuable in the position. When describing your hobbies and interests, use language that is professional and relevant to the job. Avoid overly personal or casual language, and focus on highlighting the skills or qualities that make you a strong candidate for the position.