I have come to believe that there are 2 main was meaningful work can manifest itself (this is quite a simplistic summary, but these are the main ones):
- Working for a business whose mission and values match yours (and ideally those of the employees/your colleagues do too)
- Creating a business around something that you care about
I have also come to believe that, in order to find meaning, purpose, fulfilment, etc. in our work, we must somehow be able to feel the way in which we are helping others.
As I have heard before, perhaps the best question to ask young people rather than “what do you want to do?” is “In what way do you wish to help others?”
(We also need a new word for “work” – its connotations aren’t always great and have come to mean something along the lines of “a necessary chore to do for ‘x’ hours each day to pay for mortgages and holidays to help us get away from the chore, and which will after years and years of it lead to a lovely payout at the end and a retirement full of joy.” – that sentence is incorrect on many levels!).
Of course, doing work that you care about in some way will do wonders for your wellbeing.