(1) You like what you're doing.
(2) The work is intellectually challenging -- real WRITING and EDITING, not just dumb-ass letter-typing, filing, and/or educational-publishing copy editing.
(3) You make enough to afford to live in a bigger-than-one-room apartment in an area where you want to live.
(4) You can wear whatever you want to work (i.e., no 275-lb dumb-ass executive assistant telling you that you need to "dress better" because your linen shirt that you put on that morning has become wrinkled a couple of hours later).
(5) You can go to lunch whenever you want (i.e., no dumb-ass admin assistant insisting you go precisely at noon for no reason).
(6) You come home from work tired in a GOOD WAY, because you've been WORKING and THINKING, not because you're just mentally drained from all of the phony idiots you've had to deal with all day.
I like my job. I like the work, and I like the people I'm around every day. This is the best job, and the best-paying job, I've EVER had.
I landed on my feet after the 7-year free-fall. And I ultimately landed a step UPWARD from where I left off back in 2007 when I moved to New York and embarked on my odyssey. I'm fucking lucky.
For instance, two women where I work now are in long-time secretarial positions --- one has a Master's in Physics (!), one has a Master's in Biology and has actually published work in her field. But they're secretaries. And I would have been a secretary had either of the two jobs in 2012 and 2013 that I was so upset at the time about losing "worked out" for me. I mean, I WEPT PROFUSELY when I found out I didn't get either of those... Had I gotten either, though, I'd today be someone with a bio on a company website reading how I had a Master's in English... but was an Admin Assistant.
Did I mention how extremely lucky and grateful I feel right now? I am FULLY aware of how differently things could have turned out.