No one would blame you for thinking that jobs like a sports car test driver, luxury hotel reviewer or toymaker would be the happiest job roles out there. The good news is that the most joyous professions are far more accessible than we think. In fact, tradies are one of the happiest professions according to UK Economist and Behavioural Scientist Paul Dolan.
So what is it that makes the trades rate so high on the happiness scale?
Researchers believe that to be truly happy; we need a ratio of positive to negative emotions of at least 3-1 and jobs in the trades certainly deliver.
Aside from the social aspect and having a laugh with mates, there are plenty of opportunities to experience a sense of pride each day, recognising each other’s efforts and physically seeing progress throughout the course of a project.
In many cases the work is outdoors and active which naturally boosts mood thanks to the happy hormones that are released when we exercise. Research has shown that being more active leads to improved brain health and in turn makes us happier.
You can get lost in the task
Working in a trade allows you to get in the zone, lost in the moment and fully emersed in the activity which is known in psychology as “being in a state of flow” or fully engaged in a task. During these times you are less likely to think about your worries, your internal chatter is reduced and things like hunger, aches and pains even seem to go unnoticed.
According to researcher Dr Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, when we are in the zone, we are likely to experience a heavy, pleasant sense of concentration, sense of clarity, lack of obstacles, good feelings and a sense of happiness and fulfilment.
Hang with your mates
One of the best parts of working in a trade is the mateship that follows. Working as a team to get the job done while enjoying a laugh and banter is a sure way to make a workday enjoyable and fun. According to a study in the Journal of Happiness Studies, around 34 per cent of the happiest employees on a job site said their colleagues helped with their workplace satisfaction.
Not only do you get to enjoy each other’s company, you can also collaborate, generate ideas, problem solve and complete tasks together to achieve an outcome – the same type of teamwork you are likely to see on the sporting field.
Having a great set of mates is a form of social connectivity, which we know has a significant impact on mental wellbeing and our overall happiness.
Your work matters
Working every day and knowing you are creating and building something brings a whole new meaning to your workday. It's easy to stay connected to what you're doing because you can physically see it being built before your eyes.
Many trades feel a sense of accomplishment when they help a client, complete a task or handover a completed project. In many cases where something has been built such as a building, boat, car or other piece of engineered equipment, that project lives on for many years as a reminder of what has been achieved.
Your passion is what makes your job enjoyable, as they say, "If you love what you do, you'll never work a single day in your life," and while no job is easy or enjoyable 100 per cent of the time, trades get very close!
If you are open to new opportunities, contact a recruitment agency like Trojan Recruitment Group and receive advice from the experts in labour-hire, permanent and contract staff.