Hobby or Job?

Following up on yesterday’s post (two days in a row, how do you like that?), I finished Hugh MacLeod’s book last night. Lots to think about.

In chapter 35, he raises an interesting question, essentially suggesting that if your hobby becomes your job, you no longer have a hobby.

I’ve always looked at it the other way: If your hobby becomes your job you no longer have a job.

What do you think? Is making a living doing what you love a blessing or a curse?

6 thoughts on “Hobby or Job?

  1. Rick Falls

    Hi Michael.
    Thanks for sharing your thoughts with us.
    Like most things it depends on how we see it as individuals.
    I tend to side with you “If your hobby becomes your job you no longer have a job” and as a result I think we’re both happier campers than the self proclaimed experts of the day.
    Anyone who thinks that earning a good living doing what they love to do isn’t a blessing, probably has some unresolved issues.
    Thanks Michael.

  2. Mark Brownlow

    When people ask me about my hobbies, I’ve always answered “my job” and considered it a blessing.
    I’ve not read the book but is he simply suggesting that if your hobby is now your job, you need a new hobby. In the sense that you need an activity that gets you away from your “job” now and then?

  3. Michael Katz

    Rick and Mark —
    The chapter opens with the following, intriguing quote: “When a man marries his mistress, he immediately creates a vacancy.” He then goes on to tell the story of someone who got his “dream job” and took up drinking, presumably as a way to make up for the lost hobby.
    Personally, I find that as I get closer to joining the two – in my case, humorous, first person writing (the hobby) with E-Newsletter consulting (the job), I just spend more time on the hobby-job. So it doesn’t seem, at least in my case, to open up any void.
    (Maybe I need a mistress?)

  4. Jean Gogolin

    I think finding (or creating!) a job you love as much as a hobby is a life’s work – and if you do it, you’re blessed.
    Cheers, Michael.

  5. Taina Ketola

    I think you are right that if your hobby becomes your job then you no longer have a job. If it turns out the other way around, the concept that “work” has to somehow entail struggle or difficulty has probably entered the mix – which also probably means the person will be less successful. He or she probably works hard, not smart. Keep playing at a hobby and add the new hobby of making money to the mix instead!

  6. Margaret

    I recently came across your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I don’t know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I will keep visiting this blog very often.


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