According to the most comprehensive study on wellbeing conducted by the Gallup organisation, only 7% of the world’s population can claim, with a high level of certainty, that they feel completely happy and fulfilled. The study also shows that there are 5 aspects of our lives that will determine whether we will suffer or struggle in this lifetime, and these are as follows: 1) Career Wellbeing 2) Social Wellbeing 3) Financial Wellbeing 4) Physical Wellbeing and 5) Community Wellbeing.  The 7% that claim total happiness, actually have top scores in each of these 5 categories.

The study also stated that 66% of the world’s population feels satisfied in at least one of the five categories, but according to the researchers, in order for a person to be completely satisfied with her life, she would need to earn top marks in each of the 5 categories. Fortunately, there is now a very clear and detailed roadmap that shows us the way and delineates the actions that we need to take in order to achieve total wellbeing in each of these key areas of our lives. In this article, I would like to briefly focus on arguably, the most important of the 5 wellbeing categories: Career wellbeing.

Career wellbeing is defined as liking what you do everyday. This activity could be a profession, occupation or vocation. Therefore, in order to thrive in career wellbeing, it is not necessary to be employed or earn money.  Full-time mothers, farmers, volunteer workers, priests, students in addition to entrepreneurs and employees can all potentially excel in career wellbeing.  Given that we spend 1/3 of our lives engaged in our main activity or occupation, your career will influence your happiness significantly.

Now then, one of the many things that we need to take into account to achieve high levels of career wellbeing, is the use of our personal strengths. A strength is defined as the ability to consistently provide near-perfect performance in a specific activity.  To develop a strength, you need to identify your innate talents and acquire the specific knowledge and skills pertinent to that activity.

For example, for a school teacher to be regarded as a great teacher, she will need to know the subject matter she is teaching quite well (knowledge) learn how to effectively manage and engage a group of students (skills) and spark the desire to learn in her students (talent). If this teacher can gracefully combine these three elements, then teaching will be consider her strength and she will be on her way to have a thriving career wellbeing.

Unfortunately, the research shows that 72% of the world’s population are struggling and suffering in career wellbeing, and this mainly because people are not using their strengths in their main activity.

Are you using your skills in your main activity or occupation? If this is not the case, you need to be aware that the other 4 areas of your wellbeing will be negatively impacted if you are struggling in career wellbeing, including your physical health.

Your career will influence your happiness, so when it comes to choosing what you do for a living, do not conform. You were born with specific talents that will allow you to make the most out of your work or main occupation.  If you manage to turn your talents into strengths, you will love what you do every day and will you be on the road to live a happier life.

César Gamio
Chopra Center Master Educator
Senior Advisor to the Global Center for Conscious Leadership