The best work-life balance jobs may seem difficult or even impossible to come by in an age where workaholism is rewarded in almost every industry.
CEOs who spend every waking hour at the office are praised in the media while their home lives fall apart.
Cubicle-dwelling middle-management work 50- or 60-hour weeks in hopes they’ll one day get a promotion (where—newsflash—they’ll work 70- or 80-hour weeks).
We’ve never worked harder in the history of humanity. And our work-life balance has also never been so out-of-balance.
It was Hillary Clinton who has been credited with these wise words:
“Don’t confuse having a career with having a life.”
If you, like many people around the world, are tired of giving way more of your life to your work than you want, maybe it’s time for you to start focusing on work-life balance.
That begins by searching for a new career focused on the best work-life balance jobs.
A note about this list of best work-life balance jobs
One quick Google search will show you that most of the articles showcasing the best work-life balance jobs in 2020 are pretty much the same.
They focus almost entirely on day jobs—meaning, a job working for someone else.
What I have found, however, is that people with the best work-life balance jobs often work for themselves.
Self-employment or entrepreneurship can be a difficult road and isn’t for everyone. If you think you may want to try it, I’d recommend freelancing or starting a business as a side job first. If things go well and you enjoy it, then consider taking it full-time.
Without further ado, here’s our list of best work-life balance jobs:
Freelancing can be one of the best work-life balance jobs in the world for a number of reasons.
For starters, a freelancer gets to decide with which clients they work and how many hours a week they work.
Of course, there are downsides to freelancing too. Running your own business isn’t exactly easy and the pressure of the feast or famine cycle can really weigh on you.
If you think freelancing may be a nice way for you to find more balance between work and life, try signing up for a few freelance job boards and taking on a few small jobs to see if it could be a fit for you.
Before taking the leap into freelancing full-time, you may want to consider trying it out on the side of your day job to make sure it’s something you enjoy and understand.
One great thing about freelancing is (unlike some careers on this list of best work-life balance jobs) you can begin freelancing in just about any industry.
2. Mobile Developer
If you’re even mildly interested in coding and computers, becoming a mobile developer could be one of the best work-life balance jobs to explore.
A mobile developer essentially plans and writes the code that makes mobile applications and websites run properly. And working in software can offer a great balance between work and life.
Depending on which company you work for, you may even be able to work from home a few days each week (or 100% remotely), cranking out your code and spending your extra saved commute time doing something you enjoy more.
In 2017, CNN projected growth of nearly 20% in this field over the next 10 years. Going after a high-demand job like this one means many employers are willing to offer great work-life balance benefits.
3. Tour Guide
If you’re less of a techy person and enjoy getting outside, your idea of the best work-life balance jobs may be different than someone who liked my previous suggestion.
If you’re a people person and like a fun adventure, becoming a tour guide may be just what the doctor ordered to balance your work and life.
You can do anything from signing up with a travel or touring company and offering tours around the world to creating your own AirBnB experience where you can show of your local city while working for yourself.
And because people who hire tour guides (and maybe even tip tour guides) are on vacation, they tend to be spending more liberally—which means being a tour guide can be a pretty lucrative career choice, while still maintaining a work-life balance.
4. UX or UI Designer
If you have a good eye for design and you enjoy the psychology of how people use the Internet and their various devices, becoming a UX or UI designer may be a wonderful fit for you.
There are plenty of technology companies all around the world that would let you work remotely or in their hi-tech offices—many of which offer a solid work-life balance.
Alternatively, if you’re more entrepreneurially inclined, could start your own design business and find UX or UI design clients to fuel your business instead.
5. Writer (various options)
If you enjoy sitting at a computer and using words to communicate important ideas, then a career in writing may be a good option for you.
Writing can be one of the best work-life balance jobs because, often, you’re measured less by the number of hours you work and more by the number of projects (articles, papers, scripts, etc) you deliver.
There are endless possibilities in the field of writing. You could be a blogger — writing articles for websites all over the Internet.
You could write marketing copy — these writers are called copywriters — that help companies bring in new business. There’s good money to be had in this particular niche.
You could go a more traditional route and publish books or write for a magazine or (do these exist anymore?) a newspaper.
There are even writers who write on behalf of other people — sometimes famous people, which is pretty cool. These are called ghostwriting jobs.
If you are willing to be flexible, you can explore any number of writing jobs that provide great work-life balance. Some people prefer to write for one company or publication, while others prefer to be a freelance writer — commissioned to write for a wide variety of publications.
To test the waters in freelance writing before quitting your day job, try picking out a few freelance writing jobs for beginners and seeing if you enjoy the work.
6. Hiring Recruiter
If you’re naturally an extrovert and thrive when you’re around other people, working in recruiting could be one of the best work-life balance jobs for you.
What does a recruiter do? They help companies hire the right people for the right jobs at the right time.
On a daily basis, you’ll find yourself on the phone, over Zoom, or in-person chatting with someone new. From there, you’ll make hiring recommendations to your superiors (or clients if you choose to try the freelance route).
Hiring recruiters may seem low on the totem pole, but they can also play a majorly important role in the health and success of a company. After all, companies are run by people. Getting the best ones in the building often makes all the difference.
7. Graphic Designer
Finally, on our list of best work-life balance jobs is a graphic designer.
As graphic design tools get more and more accessible, lots of creative people are turning to graphic design as a positive career choice.
Just like writing, there’s a wide variety of graphic design jobs you can explore.
For starters, you could work for an agency on a creative team, working under an inspired creative director.
You could work in a corporate setting on the creative team or as the singular designer of another team, not related to graphic design.
Of course you can always explore becoming a freelance graphic designer, finding your own graphic design clients, and growing your own small design business.
Not only are there various opportunities, there are also lots of different design emphases you can explore.
Some graphic designers only design for print material—magazines, books, brochures, etc.
Other graphic designers focus on things like product design (boxes, cartons, containers, etc) while others still focus on larger-than-life experiential graphic design (like the large signs you see in retail stores).
Needless to say, graphic design can be one of the best work-life balance jobs in the world because you have a load of fun while you’re at work and rarely is there a “graphic design emergency” in the middle of the night.
That’s our list of the 7 best work-life balance jobs around
Well, there you have it. That’s our list of the best jobs for a balanced career and life.
Remember, your work is not your life. Your life is your life. I truly believe that and I try my hardest to live by that mantra.
Yes, there will be times when life takes over. Or there will be times when work is more demanding.
But all-in-all if you can explore the best work-life balance jobs available and choose wisely, you can live a well-balanced life and be extremely happy.
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