A hobby is a regular activity undertaken during leisure time that provides enjoyment and satisfaction. Hobbies can be activities such as collecting themed items, engaging in artistic and creative pursuits, playing sports, or other recreational activities. Many hobbies also encourage the acquisition of substantial skill and knowledge. Hobbies often reflect cultural and social trends. For example, stamp collecting was a popular hobby during the nineteenth century as postal systems developed, and video games have become a widespread pastime today as technological advances make them more accessible. Hobbies can also involve outdoor pursuits such as gardening, hill walking, hiking, cycling, canoeing, climbing, or wildlife observation (as birdwatching).
People pursue a variety of hobbies, some of which bring in income. These earnings are not considered self-employment income and do not qualify for a hobby-related deduction on your tax return. It’s important to know the difference between hobby income and other types of income when filing your taxes, as misclassifying this type of revenue could lead to delays in processing your return or even a tax penalty.
The word “hobby” comes from the Latin verb hobetus, meaning ‘to be taken up or occupied with something.’ It is believed that the term shifted from a pejorative sense to one of respectability in the 18th century with the rise of industrial society and increased leisure time. A hobby can be a positive part of a person’s life, helping to develop moral, social and creative skills.