More than half of all Americans get a sense of identity from their work


Americans who are highly educated and earn higher than average salaries often see their jobs as more than a way to keep the lights on, a new study has found.

More than half of all employed Americans (55 percent) get their sense of identity from their jobs, a new poll has revealed. Less than half (42 percent) of U.S. workers feel their job is something they must do for a living, according to Gallup.

An even bigger majority of college graduates, 70 percent, feel jobs are more than just a way to put food on the table. The numbers are a virtual split among those who have no college degree.

Nearly two-thirds (63 percent) of people with an annual household income of $50,000 or more see their job as life-defining. Only 43 percent of those making less feel the same way.

These numbers have remained virtually constant since 1989, Gallup said.

The pollsters surmised these results stem from educated, more wealthy households tend to have two income earners and the less educated and lower earning homes often have only one person employed.

Sense of identity from work held surprisingly well even across generations.

Fifty-two percent of respondents aged 18 to 44-years old saw their jobs as more than meal tickets. Nearly 60 percent of those over 45 felt the same way.

A divergence came when gender came into play. Only half of all men felt their jobs defined them compared 61 percent of women.

Political affiliation played no role in sentiment.

The results came after polling more than 1,000 people across 50 U.S. states and the District of Columbia earlier this month.

Tell us how you feel. Is your job more than just a paycheck?

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