What does it mean to follow your interests? According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, following your interests is “to do what you like to do : to pursue the activities that you enjoy.” When it comes to developing yourself professionally, there are a lot of benefits that come from following your interests.
Benefits of Following Your Interests
There are many benefits that come from following your interests. A few of these benefits are increased career satisfaction, improved job performance, more opportunities for growth and development, greater professional networking opportunities, and a chance to pursue passions beyond resume-building activities. Let’s take a closer look at each of these benefits:
1. Increased Career Satisfaction – When you enjoy what you do, it shows in your work. You’re more likely to be motivated and invested in your job if you actually like doing it. Additionally, you’re less likely to feel burnt out or bogged down by the day-to-day tasks associated with your job.
2. Improved Job Performance – Not only will you be more satisfied with your job, but you’ll also likely perform better when you follow your interests. When you’re interested in what you do, you pay more attention to detail and are more likely to catch errors. You’re also generally more productive when you enjoy what you’re doing.
3. More Opportunities for Growth and Development – When you have a genuine interest in the work that you’re doing, you’re more likely to want to learn more about it and grow in your knowledge and skillset. This can lead to additional opportunities for growth within your company as well as externally through professional development courses or conferences related to your field.
4. Greater Professional Networking Opportunities – By pursuing activities that interest you outside of work, you have a greater chance of meeting other professionals who share those same interests. These connections can be valuable when it comes time to look for a new job or expand your business ventures.
5. A Chance to Pursue Passions Beyond Resume-Building Activities – When all of your extra-curricular activities are directly related to building up your resume, it can start to feel like everything revolves around work. However, when you follow your interests outside of work as well, it gives you something else to focus on and can make work feel less like “work” and more like something that is just a part of your life.
6. Becoming a Better Problem Solver and Leader – When you step outside of your comfort zone on a regular basis and put yourself in new situations, it makes you better equipped to handle difficult problems and challenges that come up both at work and in life in general. Additionally, taking risks and pursuing new endeavors can make you a better leader by teaching you how to handle setbacks and motivate others through tough times.
7 Improved Self-Confidence and Self-Awareness – Trying new things regularly can help boost your self-confidence by showing yourself that you are capable of overcoming challenges and expanding your skillset. Additionally, taking the time to develop yourself professionally can help improve your self-awareness by giving you clarity on what kind of work makes you happy and fulfilled.
8 Achieving Personal Fulfillment Through Professional Pursuits – At the end of the day, we all want to find ways to achieve personal fulfillment through our professional pursuits . By following our interests instead of just chasing after titles or money, we increase our chances of finding long-term career satisfaction .
Tips for Pursuing Your Interests Professionally
Now that we’ve gone over some of the benefits of following your interests professionally , let’s talk about some tips for actually pursuing them:
1 Pay Attention to Those Around You – Use Them as Resources and Guides -One way to get started on pursuing your interests professionally is by paying attention to those around you who may already be doing so . If there’s someone at work whose career path intrigues you , ask them about their experiences . Use them as a resource to help guide your own pursuit of similar interests .
2 Change Things Up When Necessary To Avoid Getting Too Comfortable -It’s important not to get too comfortable in any one situation , especially when pursuing new interests . If something isn’t working out the way , don’t be afraid change things up until find what does .
3 Invest In Yourself By Constantly Learning New Skills And Knowledge -Investing in yourself is one key way pursue passions beyond simply resume-building activities . Consider taking courses or attending workshops related fields which interest learn more about them . Not only will this give experience working with new concepts , but also show employers that ‘re always looking ways improve professionally .
4 Make Sure Your Pursuits Create Value , Not Just Hobby Time -When evaluating whether not should pursue certain professional interests , ask yourself if they will create value not just provide hobby time . There’s nothing wrong with enjoying what do , but important balance between fun leisurely activities meaningful pursuits which directly impact career goals .
Overall, there are many benefits that come from following our interests both inside and outside of work . Taking the time develop ourselves professionally can lead increased satisfaction with our careers , improved job performance , chances for growth development , stronger networking relationships , leadership skills , self-confidence , self-awareness ,and feelings personal fulfillment . There steps we take make sure our pursuits result value not just hobby time getting too comfortable one situation . Paying attention those around us who share similar interests asking questions about their experiences can helpful getting started down right path . Finally investing ourselves learning new skills knowledge takes us beyond simply building our resumes shows employers ‘re always looking ways improve professionally .