When you think about making a career choice, the idea of working in a high-pressure environment will either deter you from a role or draw you to it. Some individuals thrive when they are under pressure and find this kind of motivation to be the perfect drive for them. They get a thrill of working to tight deadlines and working on the edge. While these types of jobs can be tough, they certainly aren’t boring, and for many people, this is one of the biggest draws to high-pressure jobs.
If you are someone who has always been more attracted to a career that will challenge you and you find yourself faring well in these kinds of environments, then you might have already considered a few exciting roles. If you are yet to make up your mind, below are some examples of seven high-pressure careers that you might be interested in, along with a few useful tips to help you survive them and look after your well-being.
1. Healthcare Career
When you think about healthcare careers, the first roles that might come to mind are that of a doctor or a nurse. Both of these roles come with a lot of pressure, particularly when working in a busy environment, such as a hospital, especially in the ER department. However, these are not the only healthcare roles that come with great pressure, as even hospital management positions come with a lot of responsibility and duty of care to patients and staff within that particular healthcare establishment. Not only are healthcare careers ones that can often be in high-pressure environments, but they are also very rewarding career paths to pursue as well. Many people are attracted to these types of roles because they are also motivated by helping others and giving back to the community, as well as feeling that they can work well under pressure.
This is another role that people are attracted to if they want to help others, but it certainly comes with a lot of pressure. Some areas of law might be more challenging than others, but no matter what your specialty as an attorney, working on various cases and trying to get the best outcome for your clients is always the top priority. You will be working with many different people throughout your career as an attorney, some easier to get along with than others, but this is what can keep the job interesting in many ways. It’s also a good career in terms of salary, especially if you choose to open a law firm yourself, and that will come with the added pressure of business ownership as well as your obligations to your clients.
3. Social Worker
As a social worker, you will have a caseload that you will need to manage and be working closely with the most vulnerable members of society. You may choose to work with adults, children, or both. Some may have disabilities or mental health conditions that they need support with, perhaps finding help for suitable housing or access to other services that they will benefit from. You could also be working with families to help them build a healthier and safer living environment for children and their parents, or connecting vulnerable children with foster carers if this is the best option to keep them safe. It is certainly not an easy job, and this can take a toll on you, particularly when dealing with difficult cases. However, if you do thrive in high-pressure environments and are also motivated by the desire to help others and make your community a better place, it could be an ideal role for you.
4. Military Career
A military career is certainly not for the faint of heart, but it can provide many excellent opportunities for personal growth and the development of specific skills, which is certainly something worth considering. It is no secret that war is horrific, and this is likely the most high-pressure career you can think of. When you are a soldier fighting in a war zone, it is a case of life or death, and not just for you, but for your colleagues and civilians around you. While a military career is not one to be taken lightly, for those who are looking for a sense of purpose, have the drive to protect others, and would like to push themselves in ways that no other career can, this may be the perfect path to pursue.
5. Police Career
Similar to the military, working in the police requires you to be disciplined, fit and healthy, and to be able to work well as part of a team. There are various career paths you can follow in the police force, with different departments to work in, so finding a role within these establishments that feels right for you should be relatively easy. However, there is also a lot of pressure that comes with this role. Not only are you responsible for making sure that the laws are upheld, but you are also there to support citizens who need your help when they are victims of a crime or are feeling threatened. You can also find yourself in difficult scenarios, having to make quick decisions under a great deal of pressure. It can be a very rewarding job and you will certainly have a special bond with your colleagues, but this career is certainly not for everyone.
6. Firefighter Career
This is another career where you will find yourself in situations where you will be putting your life at risk. It can also be very traumatic, particularly when you are at the scene of a raging blaze where there may be fatalities and people with severe injuries. You might also find yourself having to assist with rescuing those who are trapped in fallen buildings and structures after a fire or another disaster. Firefighters might also be asked to attend scenes of car collisions to help remove people from vehicles and put out fires that might have started due to the crash. Just like the army and police force, working for the fire department as a firefighter can be one of the most challenging, high-pressure careers around, but if you are someone who thinks you can handle that kind of environment and would love to help save people’s lives, it could be the ideal role for you.
7. Teaching Career
Although teaching might not seem as dramatic as the previous few career options listed, it is certainly a job that comes with a lot of pressure. It can be very rewarding to play a vital role in the education of children and see them thrive and start to understand more about the world. This is why many people are attracted to a teaching career, and it can provide a variety of options for you. For example, you can work with teenagers in high schools or more mature students in college-level education if this would be preferable to you. Working with older students might be considered easier to some, but no matter what age group you teach, being responsible for someone else’s education is important and comes with a lot of pressure. For teachers in elementary and high-school settings, you might also find your workload overwhelming and trying to keep the kids engaged in your lessons a challenge. It might not always seem like a tough career, but the reality is that teaching and working in education can be a lot more pressure than people realize.
How to Survive in These Kinds of Jobs?
Even if you are someone who likes to work in high-pressure environments, these kinds of jobs can still take a toll on you if you’re not careful. It is important to make sure you are taking steps to look after yourself; some examples of how you can do this can be found in this guide to self-care for social workers, for example, and some of those tips will also apply to the other roles listed here. You will also need to make sure you have done plenty of research into the role that you are interested in to see if it would truly be the right career for you. Staying updated with the latest developments and news regarding your career and the industry you work in is also a good way to help you survive and keep up with inevitable changes.
Being a strong team player can also help you to survive in these challenging roles, and bonding with your colleagues can make the toughest days a little bit easier to get through. This kind of support will be essential to surviving some of the more high-pressure careers out there, and you may even want to consider counseling if you do happen to find your mental health is being impacted negatively.
Are These Roles Right for You?
It can be hard to know whether or not you are the right person for the job until you start working, as this is when you will start to see the reality of the career you have chosen and what those challenges are truly like. However, if you are someone who has in the past done well working under pressure and feel as though this is the kind of environment that you thrive in, perhaps one of these career paths could work well for you.
All careers can be tough in one way or another; pressures on the job are something that everyone will experience more than once in their lifetime. However, some careers are more challenging than others and they aren’t for everyone, but certain people can do extremely well in these roles and handle the pressure.