5 Low Key Jobs for People Who Hate Stress

We all know people who really seem to thrive in high-profile, high-stress stress occupations. They're the ones who voluntarily come in early and stay late, those who don't ever stop talking about work, and the people who seem to eat, sleep, and live for their jobs.

And then there are the rest of us.

I don't know about you, but I don't love to work. When I have to do so because I need the money, I try to find jobs that are cool in some way and don't leave me all stressed out at the end of the day. Sound like you? Here are five low-key jobs that pay the bills, and probably won't leave you a ball of nerves at the end of your shift.

A note to remember: While these jobs are often fairly low-key, they too, like any other job, demand a strong work ethic and your ability to handle stressful situations should they arise. 

1. Teach English Abroad

In many countries, but especially in China, there aren't terribly high standards for someone who wants to teach English. Sometimes the only requirement is to be born and/or educated in an English-speaking country. As long as you have a good reputation, you can often choose your clients and your hours (so sleep in every day — why not?), and you can make enough to live a a pretty decent lifestyle.

2. Become a Security Guard

If you can land the right gig, being a security guard can be fun while not requiring a ton of energy, especially if you're guarding a posh country club or a gated neighborhood. You might get to sit in a guard shack monitoring camera feeds, walk through areas looking for people acting inappropriately, or drive around a neighborhood periodically. While there is a lot of training involved to teach you how to react in certain dangerous situations, luckily it's pretty rare — and you can get the police involved if need be.

3. Be a Professional Foreigner

In some countries, having white skin bestows status, all on its own. This means that — believe it or not — some companies will recruit white people to dress in a suit and represent them at formal functions, even if that person doesn't actually hold any official job in the company. You might have to give speeches, buy official clothes, attend parties, or hold a meet-and-greet. But you can make $1000 a week, just for standing around and looking like yourself.

4. Video Game Tester

Love to play video games? It's good for you, then, that "video game tester" is a job that actually exists. Your salary will probably start low — between $10 and $18 per hour — but since you won't have to buy work clothes or eat out, your expenses will also be low. And, after six years or so, you could make over $70,000 annually. For someone who has gamed all their life, it could be the best career you've ever had. Just keep in mind that when it's "crunch time," it can require a lot more of your time and energy.

5. Power Plant Operator

Operating a power plant, especially for the government and if you're willing to work the night shift, often means a 12-hour shift with as few as two hours spent actually working. And you can make up to six figures with a few years of experience, simply because you have the right knowledge and you are there in case something gets out of whack. (Which, on second thought, may be a pretty stressful day!)

Do you have a job that is both cool and not a lot of work? What do you do and how did you get into it?

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Guest's picture

Are you kidding me that these are "low stress"?

Imagine every time your computer hasn't acted how you want it and you've gotten angry. Now imagine you have to replicate that so you can report on it and figure out what exactly is causing the problem. That's what being a video game tester really is. You don't get to just go play a video game how you want, you have to repeat the same tasks over and over with different settings to make sure it works in all instances. You get in trouble if you didn't find or report significant issues.

And a security guard is a low stress job? Having to potentially deal with burglars or other criminals? Drunk people? High people? People who are mentally unstable? Even if you've called the police, there can still be a threat you have to deal with.

Guest's picture

Getting paid to be white. Now I've heard it all.

Guest's picture

Omg lol I'm sorry but the official requirements to work as an English teacher in China (under a work visa) have changed as of late 2013. Unless you want to work there illegally, you need at least a BA and a TESOL/TEFL certificate. I would not recommend anyone to teach overseas who isn't serious about teaching. I taught in Linyi, China for a year and half the teachers there were lazy assholes/idiots. All they were doing was wasting the students time and the parents money. And it was one of the most stressful jobs I have ever had, the most stressful! More research and interviewing needed for this article. Cheers ^_^