Everyone who knows me knows how much I love my job.
What’s not to love? I get to meet people and talk to them, and more times than not tell their stories.
I learn things every day, which is also fun for me because I loved school and still love learning. Writing has been a passion of mine ever since I can remember, so I feel incredibly blessed to do what I love on a daily basis.
Reflecting on this, I wondered what jobs are generally considered to be as fulfilling. According to a survey by the National Organization for Research at the University of Chicago, the 10 happiest jobs are as follows:
Clergy — That’s really no surprise. Of course, they love their job. They were, after all, in most cases notified to pursue such a career by the big guy upstairs.
I love to hear stories about those who felt called and then pursued that calling in the ministry. To know you have a purpose and to be steered in the right direction is such a powerful gift.
Firefighters — I can see that. I have known a few firefighters over the years and they absolutely love their jobs. One study said that 80 percent of firefighters polled said they loved that their job was all about helping people. I think there is going to be a pattern here.
Physical therapists — Yes, they love their jobs because when you see one of these people, you are looking for serious help.
I saw one when I was pregnant with our fourth child and had excruciating back pain, all with three little kids who always wanted mommy to pick them up.
I loved my therapist and told her so all of the time. That would make someone feel happy for sure.
Authors — As an author, I agree. While we don’t necessarily make tons of money, there is great satisfaction seeing your words in print.
Even greater satisfaction when people actually read what you write and correspond with you. All writers appreciate their readers.
Special education teachers — These people are angels in human form.
I have known many of these saints over the years, and they are amazing. Patient, kind and caring are just a few words that come to mind. Of course, they are happy. They are doing God’s work.
Teachers — I have said this before: You probably don’t remember who won a gold medal in almost any Olympics, but you can rattle off the name of your favorite teacher from 40 years ago.
Mrs. Browning in third grade and Ms. Greer from high school, in case you were wondering.
Artists — I know so many artists that live to create. Their passion is so inspiring.
I remember learning about eccentric artists from the past whom we referred to as “tortured,” but none of the artists I know are anything but grateful. They all feel compelled to practice their craft.
Psychologists — That surprised me a little. I guess I thought it might be a little depressing to listen to other people’s problems all day long. Apparently this goes back to the “helping others” theme mentioned earlier.
Financial services sales agent — I guess the happy ones are those who don’t invest your money poorly.
Operating engineers — I had to read on for an explanation and found that this is the group of people ( I would think mostly men) who drive those giant bulldozers and backhoes and cement mixer trucks.
If you have boys, this doesn’t surprise you.
Our youngest had an intense fascination with all things truck/bulldozer related when he was young. I used to have to pull the car over if we passed a particularly good construction site so he could watch the giant machines at work.
His favorite books were all about building roads and buildings. I learned quite a bit about this topic from children’s books.
Finally, I think motherhood should be on this list. It is certainly a 24/7 job, and even though there are numerous challenges and obstacles, there is nothing more rewarding.
For the most part, it seems professions that involve helping others bring us the most joy. If you don’t happen to work a job that brings you joy, my advice is to volunteer, volunteer, volunteer. Nothing brings you happiness as when you give selflessly of your time and talents.
Adlen Robinson is author of “Home Matters: The Guide to Organizing Your Life and Home.” E-mail her at firstname.lastname@example.org.