Do stress free jobs exist?

posted 2 years ago in Career
Post # 16
Member
336 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: August 2015

Boy, I’m a college professor, and it never would have occurred to me to call my job low stress or stress free.  Eight years to get the Ph.D., two years as a visiting prof looking for a tenure track job, six years on the tenure track trying to publish and build a dossier impressive enough to get tenure (at a time when academic publishing is shrinking) while managing classes and committees in the meantime… then I finally got tenrue, and that makes me “elibigle” for all kinds of new service and administrative roles.  I love my job, I love the newfound security that I have from finally being tenured (18 years after starting down this road!), and I absolutely love that I can do some of it at home in my pajamas, but I don’t know any full time, tenure-track academics who don’t work 60 hours a week.

Post # 17
Member
1953 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: February 2016

My job is relatively low stress but it’s mostly because I don’t actually care about my job and my work pays literally no attention to what I do. I feel like I’m employed to literally tick a box, which is also part of the reason I’m looking to leave because they don’t care about my work or about me.

Post # 18
Member
1366 posts
Bumble bee

Jobs in customer service cause me intense stress. My current job is internal facing and it makes a big difference. 

Post # 19
Member
671 posts
Busy bee

Honestly, unless you work in medicine or international politics, there’s no reason for your job to be stressful. 

Any job is stress free if you don’t wrap your entire psyche into it. 

You work in customer service and a customer isn’t happy? Too bad for them, you being stressed will just make your interaction with the next customer worse and not solve anything. 

Your quarterly reports are due? Cool, finish them. You don’t need to stress about it. 

Stress can be a great motivator to get stuff done, but it often is used instead to make people feel important. 

OMG I’M SO STRESSED is often code for “look at me I do important things”. 

I’m amazing at my job, but I don’t stress about it. I also know that if I were to get hit by a bus tomorrow, my coworkers would carry on without me, and the work would get done. Maybe not the way I’d do it, but it’d get done, so why worry?

TL;DR any job is low stress if you don’t stress about it. 

Post # 20
Member
1979 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: May 2016

ive had a stress free job before i went to high stress job. And you know what, i prefer the high stress one. I found my previous job boring after a while. I had mastered everything after being there 4 years, and there was nothing left to really learn. After awhile i found it mind numbing.

i had to go through hell and high water at my current one in the beginning, looking back im glad i have stuck it out cause i have learned way more then the previous one. And there is still plenty of room for growth. 

Post # 21
Member
1979 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: May 2016

beesaredyingatanalarmingrate :  i wouldnt necessarily agree, im sure being a cop in certain situations is stressful, a firefighter im sure has some stress in their line of duty. I know for a fact an air traffic controller is the most stressful job out there today, etc. 

i dont think saying my job is stressful translates to “look at me im important.” 

Post # 22
Member
671 posts
Busy bee

Kslim13 :  Obviously by medicine and international politics I didn’t mean exclusively medicine and international politics. But unless your life or the life of someone else is in danger because of your actions, I highly doubt that most office jobs are super stressful. 

The same kind of person who gets stressed out because they have a presentation in front of their C-levels is also probably going to be the same person who is stressed out because the ice cream parlor they work at has a line out the door. It’s a personality trait more than a factor of work. 

Post # 23
Member
336 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: August 2015

beesaredyingatanalarmingrate :  I don’t agree.  Unless you work a hobby job (or perhaps for a relative who’d never fire you), if you need the job to live or your household needs the income, it can be stressful at times when your performance could lead to termination or an alteration of your contract.  Not every deadline can be anticipated far in advance and accounted for, either.

So while I agree that a  lot of people have a lot of self-generated “stress” that comes from competing in the busyness wars (“I’m so much busier and more important than you, and you can tell by my stress”), it doesn’t necessarily follow that any job where there are not lives at stake would not be stressful.  If your livelihood, but not your life, is at risk, that can be stressful.

Post # 25
Member
6403 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: February 1997

I teach. While it was semi-stressful just being around kids all day at first, I think every teacher takes a year or so to get things down. Once a person learns to handle a classroom, it isn’t nearly as difficult. But there’s always minor stress. I work in intervention, and it is sometimes clear that our interventions are not as effective as we’d like. I put stress on myself looking for the reasons and trying to find a better way to reach those students. It matters to me that they “get it”, so I will put in the extra time to see what else can be done. But I wouldn’t do it if I didn’t care, so it is stress I put on myself, not external. There is good stress and bad stress, butI cannot imagine any job could be rewarding with NO stress. But, YMMV.

Post # 26
Member
1351 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2017

When it comes to stress at a job, pretty often it’s going to be a person in the job not just the job. Environment is also so important.

 

Post # 28
Member
510 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: October 2016

earlymorningshakes :  Do you have a field you’ve researched and are interested in entering? 

I think some jobs are more intense than others which causes stress. I don’t think everyone one is trying to “appear” more important than their peers. 

In my field, I’m not stressed 100% of the time. I have some days and weeks that are more demanding… but I also have days that are less demanding. Overall I think I have a good balance of both which keep me from getting bored or feeling the corporate “burn out”. 

My input would be to find a happy medium. 

Post # 29
Member
379 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: June 2015

I agree with the ‘finding a happy medium’ concept-my field is inherently stressful (being with people/advocating for policy change/mental health stuff/dealing with traumatic issues) and I love it.  For me, the key was finding an employer that understands how stressful it can be and offers opportunities to recharge/appreciates my coworkers and I.  I’ve had terrible employers in the past that treat employees like work horses-good benefits and a positive and healthy work environment (regardless of the work being done) go a long way towards making the stress worthwhile!

Post # 30
Member
1719 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: July 2009

earlymorningshakes : I think the bottom line is that neither of us have rewarding jobs.  Neither of us come home at the end of the day thinking “I made a difference today!”  Nothing that makes the stress worth it, ya know?

I think that is the thing. You said it. The question to me is not about stress or not stress…rather, is the job fulfilling or not, does is satisfy your needs? Everyone’s needs for a job are different. 

My job includes a lot stress and responsibility for both people and wildlife, although broken up by some amazing outdoor time. But, I feel like I make a huge difference…so, it is all worthwhile. Add to that, I have no tolerance for boredom. I found a job that is never boring and constantly challenging. I’m learning every day AND I get to make an impact. To me, that is what I need. But, in my 11 years at this job, 5 other people have come and gone. The stress was just too much for them on balance with the good. We all make your own choices.

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