31 Low-Stress Jobs That Pay Over $70,000 A Year

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Have you ever thought about what your dream job would be?

When I think about what constitutes my dream job, there are a couple of important factors: Overall compensation, the ability for advancement, and personal satisfaction with the day-to-day duties.

That said, there are some things you can’t put a price on, like leaving work at work and having time to enjoy your life outside work.

You have to ask yourself: Do you live to work or work to live?

Job stress is an important consideration in choosing a career path.

Everyone has a boss. But no one wants to lose sleep thinking about the day-to-day grind or a tumultuous relationship with a boss. The average American puts in way more than 40 hours a week at their job. That’s no big deal if you love what you do and you’ve worked hard to get to that position, but even a dream job can slowly become a nightmare in the long-run – Especially if it stresses you out or takes away from time spent with family and friends.

Related: 12 Six-Figure Jobs That Will Be In High Demand Over The Next Decade

This is why it’s important to consider low-stress jobs that pay well. As such, the Bureau of Labor Statistics and Occupational Information Network (O*NET) collects data on stress tolerance for hundreds of occupations. Using a scale of zero to 100, O*NET then rates each job based on stress tolerance. The lower the rating means less stress in that particular occupation.

We’ve compiled a list of jobs that, according to the O*NET database, are relatively easy on the body and mind (according to those in that particular profession) and pay over $70K a year, on average.

Many of these low-stress jobs that pay well are in specialty professions. Higher education is almost always an important requirement for most low stress jobs that pay well. IE: Engineering, science, data collection and analysis, math, and certain medical professions, like dental hygienists and optometrists

Political Scientists

Stress tolerance rating:

61 / 100

Median annual salary:$60.27 hourly / $125,350 annual

Job description and tasks, according to O*Net

  • Disseminate research results through academic publications, written reports, or public presentations.
  • Teach political science.
  • Develop and test theories, using information from interviews, newspapers, periodicals, case law, historical papers, polls, or statistical sources.
  • Identify issues for research and analysis.
  • Interpret and analyze policies, public issues, legislation, or the operations of governments, businesses, and organizations.

 

Marine Engineers and Naval Architects

Stress tolerance rating:

71 / 100

Median annual salary:$45.89 hourly, $95,440 annual

Job description, according to O*Net

  • Design complete hull and superstructure according to specifications and test data, in conformity with standards of safety, efficiency, and economy.
  • Supervise other engineers and crew members and train them for routine and emergency duties.
  • Study design proposals and specifications to establish basic characteristics of craft, such as size, weight, speed, propulsion, displacement, and draft.
  • Perform monitoring activities to ensure that ships comply with international regulations and standards for life-saving equipment and pollution preventatives.
  • Oversee construction and testing of prototype in model basin and develop sectional and waterline curves of hull to establish center of gravity, ideal hull form, and buoyancy and stability data.

 

Art Directors

Stress tolerance rating:

69 / 100

Median annual salary:$46.77 hourly / $97,270 annual

Job description, according to O*Net

  • Formulate basic layout design or presentation approach and specify material details, such as style and size of type, photographs, graphics, animation, video, and sound.
  • Manage own accounts and projects, working within budget and scheduling requirements.
  • Confer with creative, art, copywriting, or production department heads to discuss client requirements and presentation concepts and to coordinate creative activities.
  • Present final layouts to clients for approval.
  • Review and approve art materials, copy materials, and proofs of printed copy developed by staff members.

 

Computer Hardware Engineers

Stress tolerance rating:

67 / 100

Median annual salary: $57.48 hourly / $119,560 annual

Job description and tasks, according to O*Net

  • Update knowledge and skills to keep up with rapid advancements in computer technology.
  • Build, test, and modify product prototypes, using working models or theoretical models constructed with computer simulation.
  • Write detailed functional specifications that document the hardware development process and support hardware introduction.
  • Specify power supply requirements and configuration, drawing on system performance expectations and design specifications.
  • Confer with engineering staff and consult specifications to evaluate interface between hardware and software and operational and performance requirements of overall system.

 

Orthodontists

Stress tolerance rating:

67 / 100

Median annual salary: $100.00+ hourly / $208,000+ annual

Job description and tasks, according to O*Net

  • Study diagnostic records, such as medical or dental histories, plaster models of the teeth, photos of a patient’s face and teeth, and X-rays, to develop patient treatment plans.
  • Adjust dental appliances to produce and maintain normal function.
  • Fit dental appliances in patients’ mouths to alter the position and relationship of teeth and jaws or to realign teeth.
  • Diagnose teeth and jaw or other dental-facial abnormalities.
  • Examine patients to assess abnormalities of jaw development, tooth position, and other dental-facial structures.

 

Petroleum Engineers

Stress tolerance rating:

68 / 100

Median annual salary: $66.02 hourly / $137,330 annual

Job description and tasks, according to O*Net

  • Specify and supervise well modification and stimulation programs to maximize oil and gas recovery.
  • Monitor production rates, and plan rework processes to improve production.
  • Maintain records of drilling and production operations.
  • Analyze data to recommend placement of wells and supplementary processes to enhance production.
  • Assist engineering and other personnel to solve operating problems.

 

Electrical Power-Line Installers and Repairers

Stress tolerance rating:

68 / 100

Median annual salary: $36.07 hourly / $75,030 annual

Job description and tasks, according to O*Net

  • Install or repair cables or wires used in electrical power or distribution systems. May erect poles and light or heavy duty transmission towers.
  • Adhere to safety practices and procedures, such as checking equipment regularly and erecting barriers around work areas.
  • Test conductors, according to electrical diagrams and specifications, to identify corresponding conductors and to prevent incorrect connections.
  • Open switches or attach grounding devices to remove electrical hazards from disturbed or fallen lines or to facilitate repairs.
  • Climb poles or use truck-mounted buckets to access equipment.
  • Drive vehicles equipped with tools and materials to job sites.

 

Mathematicians

Stress tolerance rating:

57 / 100

Median annual salary: $53.30 hourly / $110,860 annual

Job description and tasks, according to O*Net

  • Develop computational methods for solving problems that occur in areas of science and engineering or that come from applications in business or industry.
  • Apply mathematical theories and techniques to the solution of practical problems in business, engineering, the sciences, or other fields.
  • Develop mathematical or statistical models of phenomena to be used for analysis or for computational simulation.
  • Assemble sets of assumptions and explore the consequences of each set.
  • Maintain knowledge in the field by reading professional journals, talking with other mathematicians, and attending professional conferences.

 

Dental Hygienists

Stress tolerance rating:

71 / 100

Median annual salary:$37.06 hourly / $77,090 annual

Job description and tasks, according to O*Net

  • Clean calcareous deposits, accretions, and stains from teeth and beneath margins of gums, using dental instruments.
  • Record and review patient medical histories.
  • Examine gums, using probes, to locate periodontal recessed gums and signs of gum disease.
  • Feel and visually examine gums for sores and signs of disease.
  • Expose and develop x-ray film.

 

Online Merchants

Stress tolerance rating:

65 / 100

Median annual salary: $37.22 hourly / $77,420 annual

Job description and tasks, according to O*Net

  • Fill customer orders by packaging sold items and documentation for direct shipping or by transferring orders to manufacturers or third-party distributors.
  • Receive and process payments from customers, using electronic transaction services.
  • Create, manage, or automate orders or invoices, using order management or invoicing software.
  • Deliver e-mail confirmation of completed transactions and shipment.
  • Correspond with online customers via electronic mail, telephone, or other electronic messaging to address questions or complaints about products, policies, or shipping methods.

Food Scientists

Stress tolerance rating: 62 / 100

Median annual salary: $35.31 hourly / $73,450 annual

Job description and tasks, according to O*Net

  • Inspect food processing areas to ensure compliance with government regulations and standards for sanitation, safety, quality, and waste management.
  • Check raw ingredients for maturity or stability for processing, and finished products for safety, quality, and nutritional value.
  • Develop new or improved ways of preserving, processing, packaging, storing, and delivering foods, using knowledge of chemistry, microbiology, and other sciences.
  • Test new products for flavor, texture, color, nutritional content, and adherence to government and industry standards.
  • Stay up to date on new regulations and current events regarding food science by reviewing scientific literature.

 

Sustainability Specialists

Stress tolerance rating:

68 / 100

Median annual salary: $37.22 hourly / $77,420 annual

Job description and tasks, according to O*Net

  • Develop sustainability project goals, objectives, initiatives, or strategies in collaboration with other sustainability professionals.
  • Monitor or track sustainability indicators, such as energy usage, natural resource usage, waste generation, and recycling.
  • Assess or propose sustainability initiatives, considering factors such as cost effectiveness, technical feasibility, and acceptance.
  • Provide technical or administrative support for sustainability programs or issues.
  • Review and revise sustainability proposals or policies

 

Ship Engineerings

Stress tolerance rating:

68 / 100

Median annual salary: $36.53 hourly / $75,990 annual

Job description and tasks, according to O*Net

  • Start engines to propel ships, and regulate engines and power transmissions to control speeds of ships, according to directions from captains or bridge computers.
  • Maintain or repair engines, electric motors, pumps, winches, or other mechanical or electrical equipment, or assist other crew members with maintenance or repair duties.
  • Perform or participate in emergency drills, as required.
  • Monitor engine, machinery, or equipment indicators when vessels are underway, and report abnormalities to appropriate shipboard staff.
  • Maintain complete records of engineering department activities, including machine operations.

 

Technical writers

Stress tolerance rating:

69 / 100

Median annual salary: $35.89 hourly / $74,650 annual

Job description and tasks, according to O*Net

  • Organize material and complete writing assignment according to set standards regarding order, clarity, conciseness, style, and terminology.
  • Maintain records and files of work and revisions.
  • Edit, standardize, or make changes to material prepared by other writers or establishment personnel.
  • Select photographs, drawings, sketches, diagrams, and charts to illustrate material.
  • Interview production and engineering personnel and read journals and other material to become familiar with product technologies and production methods.

Microsystems Engineers

Stress tolerance rating: 69 / 100

Median annual salary: $49.70 hourly / $103,380 annual

Job description and tasks, according to O*Net

  • Create schematics and physical layouts of integrated microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) components or packaged assemblies consistent with process, functional, or package constraints.
  • Investigate characteristics such as cost, performance, or process capability of potential microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) device designs, using simulation or modeling software.
  • Create or maintain formal engineering documents, such as schematics, bills of materials, components or materials specifications, or packaging requirements.
  • Conduct analyses addressing issues such as failure, reliability, or yield improvement.
  • Plan or schedule engineering research or development projects involving microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) technology.

Robotics Engineers

Stress tolerance rating: 73 / 100

Median annual salary: $49.70 hourly / $103,380 annual

Job description and tasks, according to O*Net

  • Review or approve designs, calculations, or cost estimates.
  • Process or interpret signals or sensor data.
  • Debug robotics programs.
  • Build, configure, or test robots or robotic applications.
  • Create back-ups of robot programs or parameter.

Agricultural Engineers

Stress tolerance rating: 67 / 100

Median annual salary: $40.58 hourly / $84,410 annual

Job description and tasks, according to O*Net

  • Prepare reports, sketches, working drawings, specifications, proposals, and budgets for proposed sites or systems.
  • Discuss plans with clients, contractors, consultants, and other engineers so that they can be evaluated and necessary changes made.
  • Meet with clients, such as district or regional councils, farmers, and developers, to discuss their needs.
  • Provide advice on water quality and issues related to pollution management, river control, and ground and surface water resources.
  • Plan and direct construction of rural electric-power distribution systems, and irrigation, drainage, and flood control systems for soil and water conservation.

 

Financial Examiners

Stress tolerance rating:

67 / 100

Median annual salary: $39.15 hourly / $81,430 annual

Job description and tasks, according to O*Net

  • Direct and participate in formal and informal meetings with bank directors, trustees, senior management, counsels, outside accountants, and consultants to gather information and discuss findings.
  • Recommend actions to ensure compliance with laws and regulations, or to protect solvency of institutions.
  • Prepare reports, exhibits, and other supporting schedules that detail an institution’s safety and soundness, compliance with laws and regulations, and recommended solutions to questionable financial conditions.
  • Resolve problems concerning the overall financial integrity of banking institutions including loan investment portfolios, capital, earnings, and specific or large troubled accounts.
  • Investigate activities of institutions to enforce laws and regulations and to ensure legality of transactions and operations or financial solvency 

 

Mechatronics Engineers

Stress tolerance rating:

67 / 100

Median annual salary:$49.70 hourly / $103,380 annual

Job description and tasks, according to O*Net

  • Design engineering systems for the automation of industrial tasks.
  • Create mechanical design documents for parts, assemblies, or finished products.
  • Maintain technical project files.
  • Implement or test design solutions.
  • Create mechanical models and tolerance analyses to simulate mechatronic design concepts.

 

Astronomers

Stress tolerance rating:

71 / 100

Median annual salary: $57.56 hourly / $119,730 annual

Job description and tasks, according to O*Net

  • Mentor graduate students and junior colleagues.
  • Present research findings at scientific conferences and in papers written for scientific journals.
  • Collaborate with other astronomers to carry out research projects.
  • Analyze research data to determine its significance, using computers.
  • Study celestial phenomena, using a variety of ground-based and space-borne telescopes and scientific instruments.

 

Geoscientists (Except Hydrologists and Geographers)

Stress tolerance rating:

68 / 100

Median annual salary:$44.99 hourly / $93,580 annual

Job description and tasks, according to O*Net

  • Plan or conduct geological, geochemical, or geophysical field studies or surveys, sample collection, or drilling and testing programs used to collect data for research or application.
  • Analyze and interpret geological data, using computer software.
  • Investigate the composition, structure, or history of the Earth’s crust through the collection, examination, measurement, or classification of soils, minerals, rocks, or fossil remains.
  • Analyze and interpret geological, geochemical, or geophysical information from sources, such as survey data, well logs, bore holes, or aerial photos.
  • Identify risks for natural disasters, such as mudslides, earthquakes, or volcanic eruptions.

 

Optometrists

Stress tolerance rating:

70 / 100

Median annual salary: $56.76 hourly / $118,050 annual

Job description and tasks, according to O*Net

  • Examine eyes, using observation, instruments, and pharmaceutical agents, to determine visual acuity and perception, focus, and coordination and to diagnose diseases and other abnormalities, such as glaucoma or color blindness.
  • Prescribe, supply, fit and adjust eyeglasses, contact lenses, and other vision aids.
  • Analyze test results and develop a treatment plan.
  • Prescribe medications to treat eye diseases if state laws permit.
  • Remove foreign bodies from the eye.

 

Civil Engineers

Stress tolerance rating:

71 / 100

Median annual salary: $42.58 hourly / $88,570 annual

Job description and tasks, according to O*Net

  • Inspect project sites to monitor progress and ensure conformance to design specifications and safety or sanitation standards.
  • Compute load and grade requirements, water flow rates, or material stress factors to determine design specifications.
  • Provide technical advice to industrial or managerial personnel regarding design, construction, program modifications, or structural repairs.
  • Test soils or materials to determine the adequacy and strength of foundations, concrete, asphalt, or steel.
  • Manage and direct the construction, operations, or maintenance activities at project site.

 

Biostatisticians

Stress tolerance rating:

67 / 100

Median annual salary: $44.36 hourly / $92,270 annual

Job description and tasks, according to O*Net

  • Draw conclusions or make predictions, based on data summaries or statistical analyses.
  • Design research studies in collaboration with physicians, life scientists, or other professionals.
  • Analyze clinical or survey data, using statistical approaches such as longitudinal analysis, mixed-effect modeling, logistic regression analyses, and model-building techniques.
  • Provide biostatistical consultation to clients or colleagues.
  • Write research proposals or grant applications for submission to external bodies.

 

Climate Change Policy Analysts

Stress tolerance rating:

70 / 100

Median annual salary:$35.21 hourly / $73,230 annual

Job description and tasks, according to O*Net

  • Provide analytical support for policy briefs related to renewable energy, energy efficiency, or climate change.
  • Analyze and distill climate-related research findings to inform legislators, regulatory agencies, or other stakeholders.
  • Prepare study reports, memoranda, briefs, testimonies, or other written materials to inform government or environmental groups on environmental issues, such as climate change.
  • Make legislative recommendations related to climate change or environmental management, based on climate change policies, principles, programs, practices, and processes.
  • Promote initiatives to mitigate climate change with government or environmental groups.

 

Nanosystems Engineers

Stress tolerance rating:

67 / 100

Median annual salary:$49.70 hourly / $103,380 annual

Job description and tasks, according to O*Net

  • Write proposals to secure external funding or to partner with other companies.
  • Synthesize, process, or characterize nanomaterials, using advanced tools or techniques.
  • Supervise technologists or technicians engaged in nanotechnology research or production.
  • Prepare reports, deliver presentations, or participate in program review activities to communicate engineering results or recommendations.
  • Provide scientific or technical guidance or expertise to scientists, engineers, technologists, technicians, or others, using knowledge of chemical, analytical, or biological processes as applied to micro and nanoscale systems.

 

Document Management Specialists

Stress tolerance rating:

65 / 100

Median annual salary: $44.65 hourly / $92,870 annual

Job description and tasks, according to O*Net

  • Conduct needs assessments to identify document management requirements of departments or end users.
  • Consult with end users regarding problems in accessing electronic content.
  • Monitor regulatory activity to maintain compliance with records and document management laws.
  • Assist in determining document management policies to facilitate efficient, legal, and secure access to electronic content.
  • Implement electronic document processing, retrieval, and distribution systems in collaboration with other information technology specialists.

 

Physics Teachers, Postsecondary

Stress tolerance rating: 71 / 100

Median annual salary: $90,400

Job description and tasks, according to O*Net

  • Teach courses pertaining to the laws of matter and energy. Includes both teachers primarily engaged in teaching and those who do a combination of teaching and research.
  • Evaluate and grade students’ class work, laboratory work, assignments, and papers.
  • Prepare course materials, such as syllabi, homework assignments, and handouts.
  • Compile, administer, and grade examinations, or assign this work to others.
  • Prepare and deliver lectures to undergraduate or graduate students on topics such as quantum mechanics, particle physics, and optics.
  • Maintain regularly scheduled office hours to advise and assist students.

 

Environmental Engineers

Stress tolerance rating:

71 / 100

Median annual salary:$44.29 hourly / $92,120 annual

Job description and tasks, according to O*Net

  • Provide technical support for environmental remediation or litigation projects, including remediation system design or determination of regulatory applicability.
  • Collaborate with environmental scientists, planners, hazardous waste technicians, engineers, experts in law or business, or other specialists to address environmental problems.
  • Assess the existing or potential environmental impact of land use projects on air, water, or land.
  • Advise corporations or government agencies of procedures to follow in cleaning up contaminated sites to protect people and the environment.
  • Inspect industrial or municipal facilities or programs to evaluate operational effectiveness or ensure compliance with environmental regulations.

 

Acupuncturists

Stress tolerance rating:

66 / 100

Median annual salary:$39.63 hourly / $82,420 annual

Job description and tasks, according to O*Net

  • Diagnose, treat, and prevent disorders by stimulating specific acupuncture points within the body using acupuncture needles. May also use cups, nutritional supplements, therapeutic massage, acupressure, and other alternative health therapies.
  • Develop individual treatment plans and strategies.
  • Adhere to local, state, and federal laws, regulations, and statutes.
  • Insert needles to provide acupuncture treatment.
  • Identify correct anatomical and proportional point locations based on patients’ anatomy and positions, contraindications, and precautions related to treatments, such as intradermal needles, moxibustion, electricity, guasha, or bleeding.
  • Collect medical histories and general health and lifestyle information from patients.

 

Mathematical Science Teachers, Postsecondary

Stress tolerance rating:

66 / 100

Median annual salary: $73,650 annual

Job description and tasks, according to O*Net

  • Teach courses in philosophy, religion, and theology. Includes both teachers primarily engaged in teaching and those who do a combination of teaching and research.
  • Compile, administer, and grade examinations, or assign this work to others.
  • Evaluate and grade students’ class work, assignments, and papers.
  • Prepare and deliver lectures to undergraduate or graduate students on topics such as linear algebra, differential equations, and discrete mathematics.
  • Maintain student attendance records, grades, and other required records.
  • Prepare course materials, such as syllabi, homework assignments, and handouts.

 

Author
B. Carlisle

Contributing editor at Wealth Gang. An entrepreneur at heart, he's passionate about meaningful ways to leverage technology and social media for business opportunities and side hustles.