Top 10 Low-Stress Jobs for Baby Boomers

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Selena Dehne, JIST Publishing

There's no denying it: America's shaky economy has U.S. workers worried. In the midst of this uncertainty, baby boomers, in particular, are feeling more torn than ever. Many want to retire, but have significant doubts as to whether or not they can afford to withdraw from the world of work.

One solution to this dilemma that is becoming increasingly appealing to baby boomers is to stay in the workforce, but scale back from the demands of their current career. In doing so, many are opting to search for new jobs that are less stressful, while still providing the security needed to weather the current economic climate.

Career expert Laurence Shatkin identifies many rewarding, low-stress occupations in his recently-released book "150 Best Low-Stress Jobs."

"Many of these occupations have a high concentration of older workers because their low level of stress permits them to avoid burnout and postpone retirement. Some of these jobs might be good choices for baby boomers planning a career change late in life, perhaps in retirement," Shatkin says.

After determining which jobs were associated with the least amount of stress, Shatkin identified the best occupations for people age 55 and older, according to a combined score based on each job's annual earnings, percent growth and annual openings.

Here are Shatkin's top 10 low-stress jobs for baby boomers:


1. Civil engineers

Annual Earnings: $68,600

Percent Growth: 18.0 percent

Annual Openings: 15,979


2. Construction and building inspectors

Annual Earnings: $46,570

Percent Growth: 18.2 percent

Annual Openings: 12,606


3. Bus and truck mechanics and diesel engine specialists

Annual Earnings: $37,660

Percent Growth: 11.5 percent

Annual Openings: 25,428


4. Industrial machinery mechanics

Annual Earnings: $41,050

Percent Growth: 9.0 percent

Annual Openings: 23,361


5. Maintenance and repair workers, general

Annual Earnings: $31,910

Percent Growth: 10.1 percent

Annual Openings: 165,502


6. Mobile heavy equipment mechanics, except engines

Annual Earnings: $40,440

Percent Growth: 12.3 percent

Annual Openings: 11,037


7. Curators

Annual Earnings: $46,300

Percent Growth: 23.3 percent

Annual Openings: 1,416


8. Librarians

Annual Earnings: $49,060

Percent Growth: 3.6 percent

Annual Openings: 18,945


9. Water and liquid waste treatment plant and system operators

Annual Earnings: $36,070

Percent Growth: 13.8 percent

Annual Openings: 9,575


10. Farm, ranch and other agricultural managers

Annual Earnings: $52,070

Percent Growth: 1.1 percent

Annual Openings: 18,101


Next: Best Cities For Retirees >>

Selena Dehne is a career writer for JIST Publishing who shares the latest occupational, career and job search information available with job seekers and career changers. Her articles help people find meaningful work, develop their career and life plans, and carry out effective job search campaigns.

Copyright 2008 JIST Publishing.

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