Looking for a Career Change? Find Happiness! October 1st, 2010
If you are unhappy with your job, you may not be the only one in your industry. Recently, the Wall Street Journal published their Happiness Index, identifying the most and least satisfying jobs and everything in between. As it turns out, Aerospace Engineers are the happiest bunch of people with a Satisfaction Rank of 100/100 and Assisted Living Administrators are at the bottom of the scale. If you are miserable in your current place of work, now may be the best time to reconsider your priorities and find a career you are truly interested in. The benefits to finding happiness in your career can be enormous, even extending beyond the confines of the office, such as being able to lead a longer life or having healthier relationships. Since you will be spending eight or more hours per day in the office, your career is a strong determinant of future contentment.
What career is right for you? Well, if you have a Computer Science or Engineering degree, then you may be in luck. The Happiness Index reports a good number of technology and engineering positions at the top of the index. Software developers and security and program managers earn a great paycheck and are passionate about their work, so these are ideal jobs for those with a knack for computers. Aerospace and Nuclear Engineers are the most dedicated out of all the engineering fields, so make note of this when you are choosing your engineering concentration.
On the other hand, while business careers vary along the scale, healthcare industry jobs tend to be on the lower half.
An occupation ignored by this study, but cited among many others as number one on the satisfaction scale, is the clergy. They preside over all religious matters in their respective faith, conducting ceremonies, providing guidance to their members, and performing other spiritual functions.
Firefighters are America’s heroes, and as such, they have the virtues of bravery, integrity, and strength. It is the number 2 job for career satisfaction, even with the high stress of handling crises and emergencies on a spontaneous basis. When they are not extinguishing fires or controlling other dangerous situations, they are at the station, keeping physically fit, writing reports, and running drills.
Maybe it is the great deals and insider information they have access to, but even though they are usually stuck in an office, Travel Agents have the third most satisfying job in the U.S. They are experts in researching the best destinations, hotels, and restaurants and at coordinating the complexities of a client’s long-awaited vacation. If you like to go out and see the world every once in a while, this job will definitely make you a smart traveler.
The best architects tend to make a high salary, with the median at $54,079, and come up next in the rankings. Obtaining higher education is a must for this career, especially because architects build the foundations of society, ensuring that our cities are beautiful and safe to live in. There are various fields of architecture from residential to city-park to road design, so if you have creative vision and are a technical person, then consider this happy career.
One career field that surely needs passionate people is education, and special education teachers fill out the top 5 most satisfying careers. Having patience, creative energy, and a sense of humor are great characteristics to have in this position while interacting with emotionally and physically handicapped persons. Especially in working with severely disabled students, special education teachers find it necessary to undergo extensive specialized training to know how to handle every situation. Although this job is not for everyone, these teachers find their careers highly rewarding and fulfilling.
Psychologists have found that people who are happy in their jobs contribute to greater productivity in the office, attain more advanced positions, and earn higher incomes. It makes sense that happiness brings positive energy and more motivation for success into a person’s life, which can translate into better physical fitness, high self-esteem, a richer social life, and strong coping abilities. Overcoming obstacles and enjoying the rewards you receive are important parts of life, and finding happiness in a career will put you in a good position to do just that.
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