Back when I was working at Best Buy, I once had my supervisor come up and ask if I was okay with covering a co-worker’s shift that would put me into overtime. I said I was, and he smiled and said given the chance he’d work overtime too, because he loves extra money, and he loves his job.
I couldn’t help but feel a little jealous, because I’ve never come close to loving any job I’ve ever held. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve enjoyed Best Buy and Amazon more than my vet tech jobs, but they certainly aren’t my dream job.
So I started thinking about what makes a dream job. My answers come from a combination of studying people like that supervisor who enjoy what they do, and looking inward at what I would need from a job in order to say I really loved it. I realize everyone’s answers are going to be different, and I’d like to hear what you think makes a great job in the comments below. Here’s what I came up with though…
- You need to be truly interested in what you do. Everyone has good days and bad days, and most likely some facets of the job won’t be as enjoyable as others, but overall it’s gotta be something you enjoy doing, and something you don’t tire of doing. My interest level in what I do at work is pretty low, so I don’t spend more than the minimum amount of time improving at it, which leads me into the next point: proficiency.
- I think a dream job is going to be doing something that you’re good at. This will happen through a combination of natural talent, and skill acquired by studying it, and actually doing the work. Being good at what you do is a very satisfying feeling and I think crucial for a dream job.
- Some people may not think of this as an important job requirement, but it is for me. Besides liking what I do and having the satisfaction of doing it well, I want to make a difference. To genuinely feel like the work I’m doing is helping others.
- The job environment also has to be good. In this category I include things like liking your boss and coworkers, a positive upbeat atmosphere, and the job not being ridiculously far from where you live.
- Lastly, making enough money to support yourself comfortably is also an important requirement of a dream job.
These are all things I see as being key for me. But now honestly, I don’t think there is one traditional job that I could see as meeting all these requirements. I think I’m going to have to make it up for myself.
Let me try to explain a little better. Working temp jobs like I have been pays the bills and allows me to travel which I’m very thankful for. Most of the people I’ve worked with I’ve liked, but these kind of jobs all noticeably lack in point #3. They also pin me down to one area, even if only for a few months at a time. And the places I get to travel to are dependent on where I’m able to find work. Finding what most Americans would consider a Dream job doesn’t work for me either, because it would almost certainly take me off the road, and only let me travel on vacations, no thanks.
This is why I’m working on projects like the ebook. I get the satisfaction of working on something I’m interested in and will help others. Yeah, it won’t pay all my bills, but the more little things like this I can piece together the less reliant I become on finding temp jobs as I travel.
So I think my ‘dream job’ will end up being a combination of several different projects that collectively meet these 5 points even if not every single one does. I can’t tell you exactly what my Dream Job would be yet, because I’m still working on it. But I think I’m heading in the right direction. What does yours look like?
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On a related note, I think a lot of you would probably like a post with more details about working while traveling, and I do fully intend to write one. It’s just that this part of RVing I’m still discovering for myself, and I don’t feel comfortable telling people to do this or that until I have experience to draw from. This is one part of RVing where I fell more under the “make it up as you go” category and less in the “planning” category. In time though, in time.
Image courtesy of Tax Credit