Ask 10 different people what a hobby is, and you will no doubt get 10 different answers. It is also possible that all 10 answers are correct!
Several factual sources were consulted to define a hobby.
The library dictionary defines a hobby as "a pursuit outside one's regular occupation engaged in for relaxation."
An online dictionary calls it "an auxiliary activity (synonyms: avocation, by-line, sideline, spare-time activity)."
A popular online encyclopedia gives this definition: "a spare-time recreational pursuit."
A hobby is therefore an activity you perform in your spare time for pleasure or relaxation.
However, none of those definitions say anything about money.
How Much Is Your Hobby Costing You?
You will have to spend some amount of money in order to enjoy most hobbies. If you collect coins, you have to spend paper money in order to gather enough change to collect. A funny headline
collection requires a newspaper subscription. Even cloud watching might have expenses if you choose to photograph your subjects and collect the
pictures in albums.
The title of this section, however, is not meant to inquire about the cost of performing your hobby. Instead, it is meant to
spur you into looking deeply at your hobby to see if any money-making opportunities exist.
Perhaps you are performing your hobby in a unique way that could benefit others with the same interest. The internet makes it easy to compile your hobby secrets into an
information product and offer it for sale.
How To Uncover Your Special Opportunity
The number and types of hobbies are as varied as the number and types of people who perform
them. Here are three examples of how you can start looking for hidden income in your hobby.
1. A hunter decides to raise hunting dogs. This breed of dog excels at hunting squirrels, but is known for its
poor performance in identifying other small game as prey. One day,
while leaving the hunting section of the local department store, he
walks through the toy section.
The collection of stuffed forest animals gives him an idea. He buys a collection of small stuffed forest animals and a
bottle of squirrel scent. Soon his dogs are hunting all kinds of prey like champions. He receives hundreds of requests for more information after
he posts his success on a popular online hunting forum.
This is a perfect opportunity to write a how-to ebook about training this breed of dog to
hunt more than squirrels. There is obviously a niche market rabid for this information. He could also start a paid membership forum to complement
2. A college student graduates and enters into a job market that is highly competitive with a high turnover rate. After each successive
layoff due to downturns in the industry, she is forced to upgrade her resume over and over again in order to re-enter the same industry.
Friends and family begin asking her for help with their own resumes, and are successful with the resumes she writes for them. Everyone hates writing
resumes, so this is an excellent opportunity for a part-time resume writing business.
3. A cat owner notices his cat's natural tendency to enter small, dark spaces. He
incorporates the cat carrier into his cat's play time, and soon has his cat is trained to enter the cat carrier almost on
command. Anyone who has tried to shove a terrified cat into a cat carrier for a vet trip would gladly pay for this secret.
How Do You Get Started?
Examine your hobby as described earlier. Do people always ask you about it? Do they need help getting started with the same activity? Do your
friends tend to invite you over only when there's a problem with their computer or car?
If you answered yes to any of those questions, there might be untapped money hidden in your hobby. All you have to do is think of a way to package and sell your knowledge.