How meaningful work improves veteran health

As a veteran, finding a job you love is vital to your overall health. Here’s what the research shows.


After serving their country, veterans return home to civilian life and face many challenges. Among these challenges is finding meaningful employment that suits their skills and interests. Employment is not only important for financial stability, but research shows it can also significantly impact the overall health and well-being of veterans.

That’s why the RSL Veterans’ Employment Program supports veterans and their families into not just work, but fulfilling, meaningful work. In this article, we will discuss how meaningful employment can benefit veterans' health and why it is crucial they’re supported in their job search.


Work provides a sense of purpose


One of the primary benefits of meaningful employment is that it provides veterans with a sense of purpose. When individuals are employed, they feel a sense of belonging and purpose in their lives. This is especially important for veterans who have dedicated their lives to serving their country. Meaningful employment can help them transition to civilian life and provide them with a sense of fulfillment and purpose.


Boosts self-esteem and confidence


Meaningful employment can also boost veterans' self-esteem and confidence. Finding employment that aligns with their skills and interests can give them a sense of accomplishment and pride. This can lead to increased confidence and self-worth, which can positively impact their mental health.


Improves mental health


A study published in the Journal of Occupational Rehabilitation found that employment was associated with improved mental health outcomes among veterans, including reduced symptoms of depression and anxiety.


Reduces social isolation


Social isolation is a significant problem among veterans, and meaningful employment can help combat this issue. When veterans are employed, they have the opportunity to interact with co-workers and build social connections. This can help reduce feelings of loneliness and isolation and improve their overall mental health.


Improves physical health


Meaningful employment can also have a positive impact on veterans' physical health. When individuals are employed, they tend to lead more active lifestyles and have better overall health outcomes. A study published in the Journal of General Internal Medicine found that employed veterans were more likely to receive preventive health services compared to those who were unemployed.


Reduces the risk of substance abuse and suicide


Unemployment is a significant risk factor for substance abuse and suicide among veterans. A study published in Military Medicine found that veterans who were employed were less likely to engage in substance abuse and had a lower risk of suicide compared to those who were unemployed.


Overall, research suggests that meaningful employment is crucial for veterans' health and well-being. It can provide a sense of purpose, boost self-esteem and confidence, reduce social isolation, improve physical health, and reduce the risk of substance abuse and suicide.


How the RSL Veterans’ Employment Program helps

At the RSL Veterans’ Employment Program, we know it’s essential to provide free support to veterans in their job search and ensure they have access to meaningful employment opportunities to promote their health and well-being. Reach out to us for expert, one-on-one career coaching today.