25 high-paying jobs for people who don't like stress

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Jobs That Pay $100,000 or More

Think there's no such thing as a high-paying, low-stress job? Think again.

With help from career-information expert Laurence Shatkin, Ph.D., we combed through the Occupational Information Network (O*NET), a US Department of Labor database that compiles detailed information on hundreds of jobs, and looked at salary data on the US Bureau of Labor Statistics website to find jobs with that perfect combination of high pay and low stress — and it turns out there are plenty.

O*NET rates the "stress tolerance" for each job on a scale from zero to 100, where a lower rating signals less stress. (Note: We are not saying these jobs are "stress free" – they just tend to rate lower than other professions.)

To rate each job, O*NET looks at how frequently workers must accept criticism and deal effectively with high stress at work.

Here are 25 jobs that pay more than $70,000 a year, on average, and earned a stress tolerance rating of 70 or lower, in order from highest to lowest stress score.

Audiologist

Stress tolerance:70

Average annual salary:$77,420

What they do: Assess and treat people with hearing and related disorders. They may fit hearing aids and provide auditory training, and sometimes perform research related to hearing problems.

Education requirements: A doctoral degree and license.

Optometrist

Stress tolerance: 70

Average annual salary:$115,750

What they do: Perform eye exams to check for vision problems and diseases. They prescribe eyeglasses or contact lenses as needed.

Education requirements: Bachelor's, four-year doctor of optometry program, and a state license.

Art director

Stress tolerance: 69

Average annual salary:$101,990

What they do: Art directors are responsible for the visual style and images in magazines, newspapers, product packaging, and movie and television productions.

Education requirements: Bachelor's degree or previous work experience.

Technical writers

Stress tolerance: 69

Average annual salary:$73,350

What they do: Write technical materials, such as equipment manuals, appendices, or operating and maintenance instructions.

Education requirements: Bachelor's degree is typically required (experience with a technical subject, such as computer science, web design, or engineering, is important).

Computer hardware engineer

Stress tolerance: 67

Average annual salary:$114,970

What they do: Research, design, develop, or test computer or computer-related equipment for commercial, industrial, military, or scientific use.

Education requirements: Bachelor's degree from an accredited program.

Orthodontist

Stress tolerance: 67

Average annual salary:$221,390

What they do: Examine, diagnose, and treat dental misalignments and oral cavity anomalies, design appliances to realign teeth and jaws.

Education requirements: Bachelor's degree, four-year dental school, and two to three years of residency training.

Hydrologist

Stress tolerance: 66

Average annual salary:$83,440

What they do: Study how water moves across and through Earth's crust. They can use their expertise to solve problems in the areas of water quality or availability.

Education requirements: Master's degree.

Applications software developer

Stress tolerance: 65

Average annual salary:$102,160

What they do: Develop, create, and modify general computer applications software or specialized utility programs.

Education requirements:Bachelor's degree and strong computer programming skills.

Computer and information systems manager

Stress tolerance: 64

Average annual salary:$141,000

What they do: Help determine the information technology goals of an organization; responsible for implementing the appropriate computer systems to meet those goals.

Education requirements: Bachelor's degree.

Actuary

Stress tolerance: 64

Average annual salary:$110,560

What they do: Analyze the financial costs of risk and uncertainty.

Education requirements: Bachelor's degree and a series of exams to become certified.

Operations research analyst

Stress tolerance: 63

Average annual salary:$84,180

What they do: Use advanced mathematical and analytical methods to help organizations investigate complex issues, identify and solve problems, and make better decisions.

Education requirements: Many entry-level positions are available for those with a bachelor's degree, but some employers prefer to hire applicants with a master's degree or Ph.D.

Law teacher (postsecondary)

Stress tolerance: 63

Average annual salary:$126,230

What they do: Teach courses in law.

Education requirements:Bachelor's and law degrees.

Geoscientist (except hydrologists and geographers)

Stress tolerance: 63

Average annual salary:$105,720

What they do: Study the composition, structure, and other physical aspects of the Earth.

Education requirements:At least a bachelor's degree, and in several states geoscientists may need a license.

Astronomer

Stress tolerance: 62

Average annual salary:$110,220

What they do: Observe, research, and analyze astronomical phenomena to increase basic knowledge or apply such information to practical problems.

Education requirements:Ph.D. for most research jobs.

Economics teacher (postsecondary)

Stress tolerance: 62

Average annual salary:Stress tolerance: 70

What they do: Teach courses in economics. Includes teachers primarily engaged in teaching and those who do a combination of teaching and research.

Education requirements: Typically need a Ph.D. to teach at the college level, but a master's degree may be enough.

Physicist

Stress tolerance: 61

Average annual salary:$118,500

What they do: Conduct research into physical phenomena, develop theories on the basis of observation and experiments, and devise methods to apply physical laws and theories.

Education requirements:Ph.D. for most research jobs.

Biomedical engineer

Stress tolerance: 61

Average annual salary:$91,230

What they do: Analyze and design solutions to problems in biology and medicine, with the goal of improving the quality and effectiveness of patient care.

Education requirements: Typically need a bachelor's degree in biomedical engineering from an accredited program. Alternatively, they can get a bachelor's in a different field of engineering and then either get a graduate degree in biomedical engineering or complete on-the-job training in biomedical engineering.

Materials engineer

Stress tolerance: 61

Average annual salary:$94,690

What they do: Evaluate and develop materials, machinery, and processes to manufacture materials for use in products that must meet specialized design and performance specifications.

Education requirements: Bachelor's degree in materials science or engineering, or a related field.

Political scientist

Stress tolerance: 61

Average annual salary:$103,210

What they do: Study the origin, development, and operation of political systems.

Education requirements: Bachelor's degree, followed by master's or Ph.D. in political science, public administration, or a related field.

Agricultural engineer

Stress tolerance: 61

Average annual salary:$78,490

What they do: Apply knowledge of engineering technology and biological science to agricultural problems concerned with power and machinery, electrification, structures, soil and water conservation, and processing of agricultural products.

Education requirements: Bachelor's degree, preferably in agricultural engineering or biological engineering.

Statistician

Stress tolerance: 59

Average annual salary:$84,440

What they do: Use statistical methods to collect and analyze data and help solve real-world problems in business, engineering, the sciences, or other fields.

Education requirements: Typically need a graduate degree.

Economist

Stress tolerance: 59

Average annual salary:$109,230

What they do: Economists study the production and distribution of resources, goods, and services.

Education requirements: Bachelor's degree.

Geographer

Stress tolerance: 58

Average annual salary:$74,920

What they do: Study the nature and use of areas of Earth's surface, conduct research on physical aspects of a region, and conduct research on the spatial implications of human activities within a given area.

Education requirements: Master's degree for most positions; some entry-level jobs in the federal government require only a bachelor's.

Mathematician

Stress tolerance: 57

Average annual salary:$112,560

What they do: Conduct research in fundamental mathematics or in application of mathematical techniques to science, management, and other fields; solve problems in various fields using mathematical methods.

Education requirements: Bachelor's or master's degree for those who want to work in government, and a doctorate may be required to work for private companies.

Materials scientist

Stress tolerance: 53

Average annual salary: $94,940

What they do: Research and study substances at the atomic and molecular levels and the ways in which substances react with one another, use knowledge to develop new and improved products.

Education requirements: At least a bachelor's degree; a master's degree or Ph.D. is needed for many research jobs.

See Also:

SEE ALSO: 10 ways successful people cope with stress

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