Finding Your Work-Life Balance

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Want to achieve work-life balance? See career options that could fit your lifestyle.

By Lisa Manterfield   

Is your career causing you chronic stress?

Consider exploring careers known for their flexibility.

According to a study conducted by the National Council for Family Relations, an organization focused on family research, flexible work hours can actually reduce stress and help employees strike a healthier balance between work and family life.

Sound like something you might be interested in? Check out these careers that could help you in your pursuit of work-life balance.

Do you want non-traditional hours?

While having evenings and weekends off could make it easier to spend your free time with family and friends, there can be perks to working non-traditional hours, too. Having time off while everyone else is at work means you could be free to run errands, schedule appointments, and enjoy your favorite activities without having to fight the crowds. Check out these career options known for non-traditional hours.

Chef

  • Work-Life Balance: In breakfast cafes, fine restaurants, and all-night diners, chefs can often find themselves working odd hours. But if this suits your lifestyle - and your love food - this might be a good option for you to explore.
  • Average Salary: Chefs have an average yearly salary of $44,780, according to the U.S. Department of Labor.*
  • Education Options: Culinary Arts Certificate/Diploma, Associate's in Culinary Arts

Find Culinary Arts Programs Near You

Medical Assistant

  • Work-Life Balance: Although many work a regular 40-hour week, according to the Department of Labor, the extended hours at physicians' offices, clinics, and hospitals could potentially create opportunities for part time, evening, or weekend hours.
  • Average Salary: Medical assistants have an average salary of $29,760, according to the U.S. Department of Labor.*
  • Education Options: Medical Assisting Certificate/Diploma, Associate's in Medical Assisting

Start Now - Find Medical Assisting Programs Near You

Do you want to work from home?

In 2008, Inc., a magazine for small business owners, reported that 82 percent of business managers expected the number of remote workers to increase over the following five years. Consider taking advantage of this potential trend by exploring the following opportunities.

Virtual Assistant

  • Work-Life Balance: According to the Department of Labor, virtual assistants are freelancers who often work at a home office. They use the Internet, e-mail, fax, and the phone to communicate with clients about administrative, creative, or technical support services.
  • Average Salary: According to the online careers database Simply Hired, the average annual salary for a virtual assistant is $45,000.*
  • Education Options: Office Administration Certificate/Diploma, Associate's in Office Administration

Find Administrative Programs

Computer Support Specialist

  • Work-Life Balance: According to the Department of Labor, a growing number of companies allow computer support specialists to work remotely, and often with flexible hours.
  • Average Salary: The average annual salary for computer support specialists is $47,360, according to the Department of Labor.*
  • Education Options: Bachelor's in Computer Science

Click Here to Find Computer Science Programs

Do you want seasonal and/or contract work?

If "seasonal work" conjures up images of camp leaders and department store Santas, you might be surprised by these careers that could offer flexible schedules year round. Keep reading to learn more...

Accountant

  • Work-Life Balance: According to Simply Hired, there is a growing trend in companies to hire contract accountants to help with additional workload at year-end or tax time, or for special projects, such as audits. Accountants might work long hours during these times, but they could also be able to pick contracts that suit their schedules.
  • Average Salary: According to the Department of Labor, the average annual salary for an accountant is $68,960.*
  • Education Options: Bachelor's in Accounting

Find Accounting Programs Now

Teacher

  • Work-Life Balance: One of the perks of teaching is the potential for long summer breaks. Even in districts with year-round school, teachers might work an eight-week schedule, followed by a one-week vacation and a five-week midwinter break.
  • Average Salary: Average salaries for teachers range from $51,550 for kindergarten teachers to $55,990 for secondary school teachers, according to the Department of Labor.*
  • Education Options: Bachelor's in Education

Click Here to Find Teaching Programs

*All salary information comes from the U.S. Department of Labor using May 2010 national estimates, unless otherwise noted.

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