Revelling in our Calling

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The Cabinet Office has been looking at the relationship between different jobs and levels of life satisfaction, and publicans, it turns out, are in the unhappiest occupation of all. They are closely followed by brickies and debt collectors.

The happiest workers, the research suggests, are vicars and priests. Members of the clergy enjoy the most satisfying lives – but farmers and fitness instructors are pretty jolly too.

The government thinks people should have access to information on the relationship between the salary and the satisfaction associated with a career – part of the prime minister’s commitment to find policies that boost the wellbeing of the nation.

What emerges is that, while there is a link between earnings and life-satisfaction, some quite well-paid jobs are populated by those with low levels of wellbeing – and vice versa. For example, despite an average salary of almost £39,000 a year, quantity surveyors work in the 41st most miserable occupation out of 274 different categories

The average farmer earns £24,500, but they are a particularly chipper lot with the eighth highest life satisfaction of any job. In fact, the outdoor life does seem to be associated with greater personal wellbeing – managers in agriculture and horticulture are the third happiest and farm workers are in the top 25 too.

The people whose jobs are associated with the lowest life satisfaction include telesales workers, bar staff, rent collectors and leisure assistants.

Top five jobs

Clergy
Chief executive/senior official
Agriculture/horticulture proprietor
Company secretary
Quality assurance

from a BBC website

 

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