To be happy and content, you need to have a reason for your existence. An avocation can help give you this reason. Avocation is different from vocation in that it’s an occasional occupation that fills your spare time enjoyably. It is a choice, made by you, of some activity that gives you a sense of purpose and meaning plus a direction in your life. Your avocation brings you a sense of self-importance, self-respect and the feeling of belonging to the whole of society.
Sometimes our vocations bog us down in endless routine and don’t give us much self-esteem. Avocations can help regain a favorable opinion of ourselves. You feel good about yourself because you are engaging in an activity that you have a burning desire for. It supplies you with ego food!
In many instances an avocation can turn into a vocation, especially after retirement. For example, a person doing woodworking finds that the items made fetch a good price, and it flowers into a small business. Or someone writing short stories or novels, finds there is a market for their brand of fiction. The opportunities for profit are there for many avocations enthusiastically followed.
The idea of avocation turning into vocation becomes very important in the middle years. Between the ages of 50 through 65, you need to devote some time to avocation preparation. You need to develop an interest over which you could exercise complete control. An activity where no one can sack you or give you orders. The preparation and eventual accomplishment of this avocation will guard against deteriorating mentally and physically later in life.
Having an enjoyable avocation can also combat middle-aged cynicism. This malady is a disillusionment with life and a lack of faith. The hopes and ideals of youth may not have been fulfilled completely. So, in these middle years, you need to re-evaluate your goals and keep them realistic and achievable. Hopefully, the establishment of an avocation will come out of this re-evaluation and faith in life will be renewed.
Life requires growth, and through your vital interest you will gain personal growth and well-being. You will move forward and enjoy your present moments, which are the essence of life.
We all need an interest which gives us a sense of purpose and meaning. It’s a very personal thing. Some find it in woodworking, others in writing or in many other endeavors. This feeling comes from within, and when you have it, you feel happy and content. I, myself, feel personally satisfied in writing this article.
So, get busy and get that interesting avocation that can be turned into a vocation. Take that step now to fulfillment and a reason for your existence.
Next month, April, I will begin oil painting. I will not turn it into a vocation. I just finished what may be my last stage performance. I loved it but it’s harder to stand and move on the stage. Maybe they’ll let me sing sitting down on a stool. In that case, I may not retire from retirement. I may just begin retirement all over again.
Keep writing Dave. You’re my hero.
I totally agree with you Dave. At the moment I’m working on some academic pieces, physics, philosophy and my head is done in by it. So I balance things out with a little Downton Abbey and some South Park.
Life is a balancing act, you got to keep your balls in the air!
New word to me ,Dave !
I have a no of #Avocations :  Genealogy
 Social media
My Avocation is my new web site
though I am still learning how to
work with it. I am not at ease with
the day to day operation of running
it. And you are right it is also my
vocation. As I learn to work and feel
comfortable with it I will continue to
go forward. Thanks for helping me move
in the right direction.