Some people thrive on the feeling they get from being under pressure or in the midst of dangerous situations. These people are sometimes considered adrenaline addicts who enjoy the rush and continue to seek thrills.
While there may be some truth to this, psychologists say it’s a personality trait determined partially by genetics. If you are one of these people who crave intense situations, you’ll probably be most fulfilled (and have lots of chances to help people) in a career like one of the five listed here.
Emergency room nurse
As an ER nurse, you see patients in various states of distress on a daily basis. People’s lives will be in your hands and the hands of the physicians treating them. This can be an extremely stressful and an immensely rewarding career at the same time.
Of course, to be immersed in the most action, you’ll probably need to work in a large city hospital, where more patients are rushed in each day. The average salary for nurses is around $70,000 a year. But professionals with specialized nursing skills, such as those who work in emergency rooms, typically make much more. The job outlook is also outstanding for anyone in the medical field.
Small-town police officers may not face more than a couple of dangerous situations per year in most cases. But if you want to go where the action is, you can apply for a job in a large metro area, such as New York City or Chicago.
Police work can be demanding, stressful, and very dangerous at times. But the pace keeps you on your toes. The average salary for officers and detectives is a little over $60,000 a year. Of course, this salary can grow much higher in large cities and further up the chain of command.
Hazardous material removal workers
These professionals generally work for waste treatment plants or construction companies, or they are self-employed. The job requires locating and removing hazardous materials, such as asbestos, lead, or toxic waste. It’s a dangerous career with a lot of responsibility.
However, people who do it for a living are well-informed of the precautions they need to take to avoid disaster. This job requires special training, and the average salary is around $40,000 a year.
Being a lawyer might not sound like an action-packed job. But if you specialize, you may get a front row seat to some pretty extreme events. For example, as a car accident attorney in Topton, PA, you might get called to the scenes of automobile wrecks by potential clients. You’ll be right in the middle of all the action throughout the whole process.
To become a licensed attorney, you must attend law school and get your JD (Juris Doctor). After that, the typical course is to complete a clerkship to gain experience. Lawyers’ salaries are virtually unlimited — especially if they work for themselves — but the average salary is well over $100,000 a year.
911 dispatchers are usually the first to know about accidents or crimes. These professionals answer 911 calls and dispatch the appropriate public service personnel (police, fire, or ambulance) to handle the situations. Because you’re dealing with so many different departments with this job, it is often very fast-paced.
Dispatchers work varied shifts since their communication centers are open 24 hours a day. This usually means that rookies will end up with a lot of weekend, night, and holiday shifts. But the job doesn’t require an education beyond a high school diploma and on-the-job training, and the average salary is around $40,000 a year.