Essays About Dream Jobs: 6 Essay Examples Plus Prompts

If you are writing essays about dream jobs, read our essay examples and topic ideas to give you some inspiration.

What are the typical dream jobs that our friends say when we are young? “I want to become a successful actor!” or “I want to be a doctor to help people!” It might be painful to hear these words more often than not, but dreams are just dreams. Some will surely make it, but some will not due to several factors.

We’ve encountered people who shared their stories of determination and perseverance to achieve their goals. Some individuals choose to stop pursuing their dream job for their family or personal reasons. The most heartbreaking ones are those who realize that their dream job is not how they imagined it.

If you are writing an essay about dream jobs, here are 5 essay examples to help you write an insightful piece.

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1. The Secret To Happiness At Work by Arthur C. Brooks

They find this statistic surprising because, like so many of us, they generally assume that to be satisfied, you must hold your dream job—one where your skills meet your passions, you make good money, and you are excited to get to work each day. No way 89 percent of people have this, right?

In his piece published by The Atlantic, Brooks questioned the concept of equivalence between having your dream job and being happy at work. He finds that satisfaction in an occupation boils down to three things – a sense of accomplishment, recognition, and work-life balance.

2. 10 Things I Wish I Knew Before Pursuing My Dream Job by Erin Sullivan

Passion and drive will never fully soften stress or worry. It’s still work, and as a result, it still feels like work. When you do what you love, you’ll work many days in your life– it’ll just be more enjoyable.

Professional photographer Erin Sullivan reminds us that having your dream job doesn’t mean that everything will be easy. It will still require an amount of work and dedication. Believe it or not, there will still be challenges you have to overcome to succeed.

3. Can A Dream Job Become A Nightmare? by Daisy Buchanan

“I was still depending on someone else – my manager – to validate me and grant me eternal happiness, just like that perfect grade had been supposed to. Eventually, I quit that coveted role, having recognised that even in our biggest and best dreams, we can feel powerless and unhappy.”

Daisy Buchanan shares two stories – one from personal experience and another from her friend, Lizzie – which relays how being passionate about your dream job can increase being exploited at the office. Thankfully, the essay has a happy ending for both of them, as they can venture out into different roads and find that dreams are about more than work.

4. A Moment That Changed Me: I Lost My Dream Job – And Found Unexpected Success by David Barnett

“I was devastated, as if a partner I had devoted myself to for more than a quarter of a century had suddenly told me they didn’t love me any more. I felt a crashing sense of impostor syndrome. Had I been fooling myself all these years? Was I not as good as I thought? Had I finally been found out?”

For an award-winning journalist like Barnett, losing his dream job after 26 years in the industry felt like the world’s end. As an unemployed 45-year-old with bills to pay and a family to provide for, the future looked terrifying. However, he was still good at writing, and an opportunity to utilize that came knocking at his door, which gave him a shot to pursue his dream job once again.

5. Even With A Dream Job, You Can Be Antiwork by Farhad Manjoo

“It’s just that I now have space in my mind for a truth that my pre-pandemic workaholism never allowed me to consider — that even a dream job is still a job, and in America’s relentless hustle culture, we have turned our jobs into prisons for our minds and souls. It’s time to break free.”

Written in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic, this New York Times opinion essay by Manjoo tackled how the pandemic transformed the American workforce’s way of thinking when it comes to jobs. Suddenly, a new opportunity for workers to get better compensation is at hand, and they quickly realize that there’s more to life than toiling day and night at work.

6. When You Have To Quit Your Dream Job To Pursue Your Dream by Laura Yan

“Anger wouldn’t work, but silence wouldn’t, either. I thought about what I always valued: being honest, true to myself, my values. Speaking up even when it was hard. I was a bold and ambitious journalist, but in this office, that part of me had gone silent. I couldn’t let it be silent anymore.”

Everything was going well for Yan. She got her dream job with great pay, which allowed her to get a nice residence in New York and buy furniture for the first time. Everything clicked until it didn’t. In this piece, Yan chronicled how her seemingly perfect career turned into a nightmare and how she managed to cope after leaving it all behind.

Essay Prompts About Dream Jobs

Here are some essay prompts about the topic that might assist you in composing your piece.

1. What Is Your Dream Job?

Essays About Dream Jobs: What is your dream job?
In your essay, share what you aspired to become when you were young and try to look back on when you realized it

You might be the one who was able to pursue the career you’ve been aiming for your whole life or the one who held it off either because of personal priorities or several other factors. In your essay, share what you aspired to become when you were young and try to look back on when you realized it. Finally, discuss how it influenced your life as you grew older.

2. How To Land Your Dream Job?

You’ve managed to land your dream job and want to share the things you’ve learned to the new or up-and-coming graduates. Share the actions you undertook to increase their chances of joining you in the field. Did you build your network by attending conferences and talks, or by excelling during your internship? Talk about the attributes they should be looking for in a company, and consequently, what information should they include in their resume if they plan to apply. You can also include how to negotiate for the right compensation. Create a step-by-step instruction in essay form.

3. Challenges In Landing Your Dream Job

There are many reasons for a person to consider not pursuing their dream job. Is it because of financial constraints? Is it because of social and environmental factors? Ask yourself why some people stray off course in pursuing their passion. Discuss these challenges and obstacles and put in your two cents on how they’ll be able to overcome it.

If you’re stuck picking an essay topic, check out our guide on how to write essays about depression.

4. What Do You Want To Accomplish In Your Dream Job?

You pursued your dream job because you wanted to achieve something in the field. For example, did you become a doctor to be the first to cure cancer, or perhaps a lawyer who wanted to champion the poor? Talk about your primary motivation in getting your dream job and trying to insert what the future of your industry holds.

5. Social Challenges When Pursuing Your Dream Job

Trace your steps from when you’ve decided to go for your dream job. Write an essay sharing how your parents took this information. Did they support you or receive pushback? Share what you felt the first time you took a step into college surrounded by colleagues with the same aspirations. Was the competition friendly or fierce? Additionally, try to weigh the efficacy of joining a study group or studying alone. 

If there are any, go through the time when you encountered pressure from family or peers and share a lesson or two on how to control those moments of hesitation.

6. Dream Job Vs. High-Paying Job

Consider writing an argumentative essay based on this dilemma. For example, try to talk to people who have chosen passion over money and vice-versa and dive into their level of contentment. Were they happy with the choice they made? Were there moments of regret, and would you have chosen differently? By the end, assess your situation and decide where you’ll stand if you were given this option.

Tip: If you liked this article and want to put these ideas into practice, check out our round-up of storytelling exercises.

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