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Check out the various dictionary definitions of “passion,” and you’ll find words like “powerful, compelling, a strong fondness, liking or desire” and “an intense, driving feeling or conviction.”

Passion is all of the above. And while it’s awesome to have passion for your work, it’s equally important to pursue your dreams away from the job. There are numerous research-based reasons why what you do outside of work can significantly impact your professional success and personal well-being. Here are some of those proven benefits:

Improved Performance

A recent study at San Francisco State University shows that some form of creative passion outside of work can improve your on-the-job performance by 15 to 30 percent.

Better Resilience and Work/Life Balance

Research also suggests that pursuing a passion is beneficial for your overall well-being, as long as it doesn’t become obsessive. When you commit to a hobby or personal interest, you’re actively choosing to spend time on it – an option that’s not always available at work, but is critical to psychological ease.

  • As reported by Inc., the more roles a person sees themself in, the more resilient they are. This is true because if you encounter a setback in one area, you have another one to help boost your self-esteem. You are reminded of your strengths and, as a result, able to bounce back more quickly.

Increased Confidence

Higher confidence levels also tend to go hand in hand with following a passion, as long as whatever hobby or interest you follow is dissimilar from your work. The resulting confidence boost comes from a feeling that if you can succeed in one area, you can also overcome challenges in other aspects of your life.

Amped Up Brainpower

The right hobby gives your brain ongoing boosts as you master it and learn from it. For example, playing video games has been shown to improve working memory and the ability to make decisions under pressure.

Stronger Mindfulness

Mindfulness meditation can be beneficial in increasing mental focus and decreasing stress. Your hobby can be your mindfulness practice, as it demands a continuous presence of mind.

As described by Guardian writer Oliver Burkeman, “deep down, we know that we need this kind of present-moment focus, so we find ways to make it happen.” This mindfulness will often spill over into your work as well.

Career Development

When you’re passionate about something, you naturally want to learn more about it. Once you decide to pursue a dream outside the workplace, you may be surprised by how many unexpected skills you develop. These often include transferable traits, which can be utilized in a variety of roles and situations.

  • Be prepared for the future. Ensure that the learning, relationships, and experience gained through your hobbies and interests are broad, flexible, and personally satisfying.

Don’t hesitate to pursue your passions and see where they lead you. They may open doors to personal or professional growth that you never thought possible. For expert guidance as you explore these new pathways, consider partnering with PrideStaff Modesto. Get in touch with us today to access our experienced coaches, career development counselors and networks, and much more.

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