80,000 Hours’ way of thinking about how you can contribute to creating the most happiness and least misery in the world is a great way to approach all your career and life choices.
The best people I know for helping you to have more impact with your career. I’ve signed up, and I hope you’ll join me here!
The idea could have been explained on Sesame Street, and it probably should.
We all have the responsibility to make the best use of our time on earth and 80,000 Hours helps you carefully consider your career trajectory to meet that responsibility.
80,000 hours is a really interesting idea: helping people think clearly about how best to use their lives to make the world a better place. I’m in.
What a great initiative!
Economics assumes that individuals will take as much as they can. 80,000 Hours, and Giving What We Can, ask us to give as much as we can. The reason is regard for others, but it may also be efficient, not in dollars but in well-being. Selfishness has brought our societies to the brink of disaster. We are quite generous to others through the tax system, which assures us that others will do their bit as well. It is time to try unilateral generosity: not everyone will go all the way, but some people have already done so (more than twenty a year donate kidneys anonymously, to take one heroic example), and they send a credible signal that generosity can light up our lives, and that it is a more attractive inspiration than the extremes of self-regard.
We all want fulfilment from our careers. However, it’s easy to be lazy when choosing careers and simply use salary as the sole guiding metric of expected career fulfilment. This trap may be hard to escape from in later life - 80,000 Hours is a great new concept to help prevent people falling into the trap early in their careers.
Few choices can be more important than what we will do with 80,000 hours of our time. I’m delighted that 80,000 Hours is encouraging us to consider the ethics of career choice.
This is the kind of thinking that all charity would start with on day one, if the world were sane.