If you are looking for a simple definition of a vocation, the literal meaning of the word is a "call." But a vocation is more than an ordinary call, but rather a call from God, and anyone who has felt God's call knows that the process is anything but simple. While most people think of a vocation as what they are called to do in life, it is important to understand that the first and most important call from God is the universal call to holiness.
Your vocation is not the same as your career or profession. However, there can be an overlap between a vocation and a profession. This distinction between a call to holiness and a call to a specific vocation - single person, married life, consecrated life or ordained ministry - is important. The universal call to holiness is rooted in our baptism. It is a call to know, love and serve the Lord.
Each vocation, if it is lived generously and faithfully, will then involve times of lasting happiness and reward but also suffering and sacrifice. Finally, it is important not to compare the value of different vocations but to appreciate the value of each one and to discover which one is right for you.
Adapted from Catholic Vocations—Archdiocese of Melbourne