We all have those days where we wonder what our lives would be like if we did a different kind of work. Some people make good on those thoughts, and indeed, job-hopping is more mainstream these days. This kind of moving around is healthy, and some people argue that even three years is too long to stay at a job — or at the very least you should look for new challenges after that period of time.
Usually, we move into new jobs that utilize skills we already have, and we hope to gain some new ones. But if what we did something that's the complete opposite of what we do now? How much more could we learn?
The New York Times has a fun tool that could help you think about the concept, called "What is Your Opposite Job?" It's based on the Department of Labor's statistics and records about what each type of job requires.
"Some of them are physical: trunk strength, speed of limb movement, the ability to stay upright. Others are more knowledge-based: economics and accounting, physics, programming. Together, they capture the essence of what makes a job distinctive," the Times reports.
It's fun to see what your opposite is. For writers and authors, my opposite is a mobile home installer. (My first thought: "Wow, I wonder what that's like? Maybe I could try it for a day and write about it!" Hmm, guess I'm not willing to give up writing just yet.)
I was hoping that the flip-it-round-and-reverse-it version of my partner's new job as a lawyer might be yoga teacher or baker, because he had those jobs in the past, but the tool says his opposite job is an agricultural grader. (That's someone who, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, sorts and grades "unprocessed food and other agricultural products by size, weight, color, or condition.")
I have several friends who are teachers: The opposite job to a kindergarten teacher is a physicist! And my old job in geology? Turns out the opposite is being a model. So maybe I should combine my two former careers and hang my shingle out as a mobile home model? (Um, no.)
While this all seems a bit silly on one hand, it has certainly opened my mind up to all the jobs there are in the world. It's always worth asking yourself, what else would you like to do in your life?