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The 7 Jobs That Offer the Highest Meaning

You don't need to get fulfillment from your job: sometimes, a decent salary is enough. But if you know you're a person who can't be happy unless their days are spent doing something meaningful, these occupations might be a place to start your hunt for your next career.

You don’t need to get fulfillment from your job: sometimes, a decent salary is enough. But if you know you’re a person who can’t be happy unless their days are spent doing something meaningful, these occupations might be a place to start your hunt for your next career.

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(Photo Credit: francisco_osorio/Flickr)

Note that salaries vary widely, here, as do stress levels and sense of job satisfaction. Some of these occupations also require a significant investment on the education front, so you’ll want to research each thoroughly, before you start making plans to change careers.

Do You Know What You're Worth?

1. Clergy

High Meaning: 97 percent

Salary: $45,400

Typical Education: Masters (non-MBA)

High Satisfaction: 89 percent

High Stress: 68 percent

2. Directors, Religious Activities and Education

High Meaning: 97 percent

Salary: $35,900

Typical Education: Bachelors

High Satisfaction: 88 percent

High Stress: 61 percent

3. Surgeons

High Meaning: 94 percent

Salary: $299,600

Typical Education: Doctors of Medicine (MD)

High Satisfaction: 82 percent

High Stress: 79 percent

4. Education Administrators, Elementary/Secondary

High Meaning: 93 percent

Salary: $75,900

Typical Education: Masters (non-MBA)

High Satisfaction: 87 percent

High Stress: 85 percent

5. Chiropractors

High Meaning: 93 percent

Salary: $58,700

Typical Education: Doctorate (Ph.D.)

High Satisfaction: 65 percent

High Stress: 52 percent

6. Fire Fighters

High Meaning: 93 percent

Salary: $43,500

Typical Education: Associates

High Satisfaction: 84 percent

High Stress: 78 percent

7. Radiation Therapist

High Meaning: 93 percent

Salary: $69,800

Typical Education: Bachelors

High Satisfaction: 80 percent

High Stress: 64 percent

To see PayScale’s full list of 450+ jobs, and how each compares for job meaning, salary, stress, and satisfaction, go here.

Tell Us What You Think

What’s more important to you when it comes to choosing a career: money or meaning? We want to hear from you! Leave a comment or join the discussion on Twitter.

Jen Hubley Luckwaldt
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5 Comments on "The 7 Jobs That Offer the Highest Meaning"

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Mike Mac
Guest

Chiropractors are 1 of the 3 physicians recognized by licensure and insurances

Medical Doctor

Doctor of Osteopathy

Doctor of Chiropractic you stated the education was a Ph.D it is not;Like any physician it is a Doctorate in the chosen Medical discipline.

tawster
Guest

Clergy. If you know any clergy… what they openingly state and what they how satisfied they actually are… are generally two different things.

Nick_In_Detroit
Guest

The top 2 are religious?  Why not a horoscope writer or other form of self-deception?  This is disgusting.

John the Revelator
Guest

Dear Jen, 

Explaining the method of selection here would be essential. Clergy? What are you smoking? Add witches then. Fireman? C’mon.Schoolmasters – whoa! Chiropractors, surgeons? Mein God! Despicable places to get into

 

 

Taranto
Guest

Interestingly, I think that Clergy, Directors of Religious Education and Chiropractors belong in the least meaningful list.  

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What Am I Worth?

What your skills are worth in the job market is constantly changing.