Careers Where Patience Really Is a Virtue


Have you always been praised for your patience? Then read on to find careers that could be the right fit for your personality.

By Kristen Henning

Patience is a virtue. We've all heard the cliché before.

But did you know that this can be especially true on the job?

Fact is there are quite a few careers out there where the cliché rings particularly true.

Check out our list of careers where patience can really pay off.

Career #1: Teacher

Educators of all grades usually create lesson plans, grade students' assignments, and communicate with parents about their child's progress, says the U.S. Department of Labor. But when it comes to student learning, patience is something every teacher needs.

How Patience Can Pay Off: "Most of what is worth learning is not learned instantaneously. Someone who is impatient with results will quickly become frustrated in the classroom," says Shatkin.

And the reason, he says, is that a teacher might have to wait weeks or months before a student starts demonstrating mastery of just one concept or skill. Not to mention having to deal with those whoopee cushions conveniently placed on your chair during lunch time.

Click to Find the Right Teaching Program Now.

Education Options: In general, all teachers need a bachelor's degree, according to the Department of Labor, although the concentration of the degree may vary depending on the level and subject of teaching. For example, if you want to teach elementary school, you may need a bachelor's degree specifically in elementary education, the Department says.

Career #2: Social Worker

Social workers typically find themselves helping clients adjust to changes and challenges in their lives, like crisis situations such as natural disasters and child abuse, according to the U.S. Department of Labor.

How Patience Can Pay Off: "Due to the very nature of the job, [social workers] must show a great amount of patience and care as many people are coming to see them at a very pivotal and low point in their lives," says Kristen Jacoway, owner at Career Design Coach and author of "I'm in a Job Search-Now What?"

Click to Find the Right Psychology Program Now.

Education Options: To pursue a career as a social worker, the most common requirement is a bachelor's degree in social work. Although, employers may also hire those with a bachelor's degree in related fields, such as psychology, according to the Department of Labor.

Career #3: Dental Assistant

As a dental assistant, your calm and collected self could help prepare patients for treatment, instruct patients in proper dental hygiene, and help patients with billing, according to the U.S. Department of Labor.

How Patience Can Pay Off: Your relaxed approach might be needed when it comes to patients who aren't fond of dental work.

"Dental assistants must possess patience in dealing with those who are fearful of the dentist," says Jacoway. They do this by "explaining in great detail what they are doing, and giving the patient time and space to process this information to let any dental work or procedure happen," she says.

Click to Find the Right Dental Assisting Program Now.

Education Options: Although educational requirements for dental assisting vary from state to state, according to the Department of Labor, some states require prospective dental assistants to have graduated from an accredited program.

Career #4: Pharmacy Technician

Pharmacy technicians are usually tasked with things like answering phone calls from customers and gathering customer information to fill a prescription, according to the U.S. Department of Labor.

How Patience Can Pay Off: Since pharmacy technicians are on the front line of staff dealing with the public, says Jacoway, a good deal of patience is especially needed when it comes to customer service.

"Additionally, [pharmacy technicians] are communicating with a variety of different personalities with the public, so a great deal of patience must be inherent to treat everyone with the same care and respect expected," she says.

Click to Find the Right Pharmacy Technician Program Now.

Education Options: Have the ability to keep cool when a customer gets on your last nerve? To pursue a career as a pharmacy technician, a high school diploma is typically required. Some states also require passing an exam or completing a postsecondary education program in pharmacy technology, according to the Department of Labor.

Career #5: Registered Nurse

Registered nurses may find themselves having to stay mild-tempered while doing things like setting up plans for patient care, helping perform diagnostic tests, and operating and monitoring medical equipment, according to the U.S Department of Labor.

How Patience Can Pay Off: It takes patience to work with patients. "As registered nurses provide and coordinate patient care to the public and work on interdisciplinary teams, patience is a must," says Jacoway. "People receiving care may possibly be facing a life-threatening diagnosis, a new disability, or a broken bone."

Click to Find the Right Nursing Program Now.

Education Options: If you want to apply your compassionate side to your career and prepare for a career as a registered nurse, you typically need an associate's degree in nursing or a diploma from an approved nursing program, according to the Department of Labor.

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