Sometimes we work for pleasure. But, more often than not, people work for money.
Since working is an exchange of your time, energy, and talent it is best to find a job that you love and enjoy. However, many people are working in extremely tough and demanding job fields.
I found an old resource (1988) – The National Institute on Workers Compensation and the American Institute of Stress put together a list of “10 Tough Jobs”.
The results were published in Communication and Conflict Management in Churches and Christian Organizations.
10 Tough Jobs
Here’s the list of the toughest jobs:
- Inner-city high school teacher
- Police officer
- Air traffic controller
- Medical intern
- Stock broker
- Customer service/ complaint department worker
What Do You Think Are the Toughest Jobs?
Of the jobs listed above, here are my top three toughest jobs.
Inner-City High School Teacher
Couldn’t we just remove the ‘high’ and make it inner-city school teacher?
Honestly, I think teaching in general is a hard job. My wife did her Master’s Degree in Memphis, TN and many of her classmates were inner-city teachers.
She came home with some wild stories about teaching in the inner city. I’ve only spent a few days of my life in the inner-city projects. I’ve only worshipped a few times in the inner-city. However, I have a lot of close friends who do inner-city ministry and I know inner-city work is demanding.
I respect any person who commits themselves to any form of inner-city work. If you’re one of those folks, you have my deep appreciation and thankfulness.
On a somewhat unrelated note: I spent one day as a substitute teacher of a group of rambunctious kids in grade two. I wouldn’t suggest this as one of the 50 best part time jobs.
It wasn’t the worst day of my life, but it wasn’t too far off either.
Thus, I would add to the list, substitute teachers who work with young kids who have absolutely no idea what they are doing.
Interestingly, I enjoyed substituting for High School much more than elementary school.
Complaint Department Worker
Folks in North America have a very direct, and at times, confrontational style of dealing with conflict.
So, yes, I’d categorize this as one tough job. You certainly couldn’t expect anyone to sing your praises.
People who have a problem with a product can be vicious. I admire anyone who is willing to stand in the line of fire.
Often times when you have a problem with a product, (especially if you’ve had multiple conversations) it is hard to remember that there is a real person on the other end of the line.
Phone customer service people definitely get the least amount of self restraint from me. I don’t try and be mean, but for some reason getting upset at a person on the other end of a phone line is so much simpler than other forms of customer service.
Count me out.
There’s probably a few hundred thousand jobs I’d prefer over being a complaint department worker. As an alternative, I’d try and turn a hobby into a source of income.
Number three was a difficult choice. I didn’t know if it should be miner, medical intern, or police officer.
I finally settled on miner and here’s why. It seems like mines are typically located in some of the most desolate places on earth. While it is not always true, most of the miners I know actually travel to the mine for three weeks and back home for a few weeks. The idea of being away from your family for weeks at a time would make it one tough job.
In addition, mining is dangerous. Any time you risk your life for a job I’d put it on the tough list.
If you’re in a tough job field and want out, you could consider a home based business.
Which jobs from this list would you include in your top three? If you could add an extra job, what job would you add to the list?