All posts tagged: low-income workers

The Persistent Myth That Most Americans Are Miserable at Work

The Persistent Myth That Most Americans Are Miserable at Work

This is Work in Progress, a newsletter about work, technology, and how to solve some of America’s biggest problems. Sign up here. The typical career is about 80,000 hours long, or one-sixth of the average person’s waking life. One would love to be deliriously happy for all 80,000 hours. But, alas, we’re not. And the economic-news industry loves nothing more than to remind us of it. In fact, for the past three years, finance media have become so desperate to explain the state of workplace misery to their audience that they’ve often ignored facts, logic, or basic common sense. In 2021, finance journalism couldn’t stop talking about the “Great Resignation.” Judging by the ample coverage, it appeared that workers everywhere were smashing their laptops and machines in a bacchanal of joblessness. This was all hooey. In reality, more Americans were just breaking up with their old employers to get higher-paying jobs. In professional sports, when star athletes sign larger contracts with different teams in the offseason, ESPN doesn’t call it a “great resignation”; it calls …