Top 50 Hardest Jobs In The World (2024)

Some people don’t like to do easy jobs because it does not allow them use their bodies and minds to full capacity. The hardest jobs in the world are those that exert pressure on the workers. Some of these jobs are literally a matter of life and death; which is why they cannot be taken for granted, even for a moment.

Lazy people often assume that their jobs are too difficult; people generally tend to favor inertia, and a state of relaxation.

If you think your job is hard, then you need to check out these tough jobs, reserved for tough people.

Top 50 Hardest Jobs In The World

1. Mining

Mining is one of the hardest jobs in the world; it involves going down into the bowels of the earth sometimes to levels so deep that there is no oxygen to breathe. One then uses specialist equipment to dig into hard rocks to find things like coal, iron ore, gold, diamonds, and so on.

Imagine what that does to the body and to the mind. Swinging a pickaxe down in a pit with nothing but the sound of your own digging for company.

Sometimes, accidents can happen such as a section of a mine caving in, or an explosion which can occur when there are combustible gases trapped in a mine. Flooding can also happen, and so on.

2. Special Forces

The army is a hard institution; it needs to groom hard men because that’s what it takes to defend the country. However, the Special Forces are the hardest of the hard men; super soldiers who are trained for when the fight is hardest, and uncommon bravery is needed to overcome the odds.

Getting recruited into this elite fighting squad is no easy feat; it takes a show of the strength and mental fortitude which distinguishes candidates apart from regular soldiers. Sometimes they have to run great distances, sometimes they have to endure freezing cold.

Special Forces live very hard lives; combat situations can arise anywhere in the world, and can result in loss of lives; not only from enemy bullets, but also from the rough elements of the weather, or the terrain they are fighting in.

3. Professional Athletes

Professional Athletes usually retire at the age of 30. This is because they have one of the hardest jobs in the world; so physically challenging that their bodies simply cannot take it anymore, and so they have to step aside.

They must maintain optimum fitness levels; which means they must train daily. This means, running, jumping, push-ups, and skipping. Depending on the particular sports they are engaged in, the real test of their mettle may come in the ring or on the field.

Some sports like boxing and American Football come with a lot of pain. They may need to exchange blows with opponents, and even when pain is not the core objective of the sport, some sports are still contact sports, and so physical pain and injury are inevitable.

This is not something that everyone can engage in; professional athletics is a terrible business, even though quite profitable.

4. Surgeons

Surgeons have some of the most difficult jobs in the world; one wrong move can lead to a loss of life. Even good moves are not immune to causing death; and one can only imagine the mental and emotional issues that may arise with this kind of work.

Aside from the mental challenges associated with this work, Surgery is also very physically challenging. This is because the skill is quite a scarce one; and so there is a lot of demand for their work.

This means that they often have to spend long hours attending to patients, and sometimes there are several emergency cases lined up on the same day. Surgeons sometimes work for several days without breaks, and they may need to travel to attend to serious cases far from their residencies.

5. Nurses

Nurses deserve all the respect and support they can get; they work just as hard as surgeons but for less pay. The job is physically challenging; they have to run to save lives. Ambulances may carry accident victims, some of whom have lost so much blood, and must be rushed to the emergency rooms.

Nurses must frantically move about; trying to save the lives of their patients, and aside from those who attend to static/ emergency cases, they also play important roles in the recovery process.

Nurses stand on their feet for long hours attending to baby deliveries, emergencies, recovering patients and so on. Perhaps where they deserve the most praise is during epidemics or pandemics when they work for weeks, sleeping on the floor, and risking their own lives for the greater good. Nurses are some of the most important members of society; without them the healthcare system of any country would collapse within moments.

6. Fire Fighters

Fire Fighters are necessary to the well-being of the society. The work they do is not about money; it is about a passion to serve and to protect the people and their properties. Fire Fighting is grueling work; they have to run around a lot; climb, and lift heavy loads.

The bottom-line is that fire fighters have to fight fires; they have to hurry to the scene whenever there is a fire. When other people are running away from the fires they are running into the buildings.

This means the threat of physical harm; fire fighters sometimes suffer serious burns, and they also suffer serious injuries. Fire fighters also suffer loss of lives; sometimes while trying to rescue people from fires, they sometimes get caught in the infernos, or crushed by falling objects, or fall with structures that collapse.

7. Mercenaries

Mercenaries are a fact of life that nobody wants to admit; that every country has them or uses them. That is because mercenaries are considered dirty; they do the dirty work which nobody wants to see.

Mercenaries are soldiers who do not fight for a flag, but for money. They are professional soldiers; they are mostly chosen from armies; they have combat experience, but have left the service of their countries armies in favor of private work.

Mercenaries are used to fight battles when the regular army are otherwise engaged, or when political considerations make it impossible to send in the regular army.

Mercenaries have a very hard and dangerous job; they have to exchange bullets with enemies on the battlefield; and just as the enemies die so do they die as well.  Mercenaries who happen to get captured have no hope that the government will sue for their release; they can suffer beatings and other forms of punishment in captivity.

8. Loggers

Loggers are some of the hardest men you can find; their jobs involve going into the deep dark forests; marking good trees, and cutting them down. That alone is an already daunting task; they may need to climb steep hills, descend steep valleys and sometimes spend days and nights in the woods.

Then there is the business of cutting down the trees; it is also a tough job that requires the use of heavy machines. These machines need strong men to operate them; they vibrate hard, and are also hazardous because they contain sharp, moving parts.

Using these machines can sometimes result in injuries, and even loss of lives. Loggers receive training so that they can successfully and safely cut down trees. After cutting the trees they also have to safely transport them to other locations; all at considerable risk.

9. E-Waste Recycler

Waste Recycling is a necessary thing; without it the whole world would soon be engulfed with trash. E waste recyclers work at the plants where electronic waste are sorted and recycled. This usually means delicately removing the components of discarded electronic equipment, piece by piece.

This is very painstaking work; the components are usually very small. Then the recycler has to sort them component by component into designated areas.

This is slow and thankless work; but it helps boost the tech industry because due to the work of E-waste Recyclers, more tech gadgets can be made, and more people can enjoy the use of technology. This makes their long working hours worth it.

10. Wildlife Photographers

Wildlife Photography is usually a thing of passion; people who engage in this work do it because they love it. They love nature, and they love getting good pictures and videos.

Wildlife Photographers spend days, weeks and months in the woods looking for particular animals to film; and sometimes their efforts may go in vain because they may not spot the animals at all, or because the animals may not be doing what they need to be doing at the time.

Wildlife Photographers often have to endure terrible heat or cold to do the work they do; they have to spend a lot of time in the forests, mountains, and deserts.

The following is a more extensive list of the 50 most dangerous jobs in the world.

Rank Job Pay (Annually)
1 Mining $60,000
2 Special Forces $100,000
3 Professional Athletes $1,000,000
4 Surgeons $400,000
5 Nurses $40,000
6 Fire Fighters $100,000
7 Mercenaries $300,000
8 Loggers $50,000
9 E-Waste Recycler $40,000
10 Wildlife Photographers $150,000
11 Pilots $202,180
12 Air Traffic Controller $129,750
13 Astronauts $100,000
14 Scientists $95,310
15 Healthcare Workers $91,100
16 Farmer $73,060
17 Stunt Person $71,870
18 Police Officer $66,020
19 Combat Engineer $65,160
20 Military Personnel $65,160
21 Water Transportation Worker $62,760
22 Cell Tower Climber $62,570
23 Forensic Science Technician $61,930
24 Explosive Ordnance Disposal $61,560
25 Teachers $61,030
26 Morticians $58,900
27 Iron and steel worker $57,160
28 Hard child social worker $56,680
29 Difficult Diamond Drilling $53,600
30 Oil Rig Workers $52,100
31 Firefighters $50,700
32 Chefs and Cooks $50,160
33 Public Safety Telecommunicator $49,370
34 Search and Rescue Workers $48,740
35 Truck Drivers $48,310
36 Carpenter $48,260
37 Brick mason $48,040
38 Prison Warden $47,920
39 Roofers $47,110
40 Metal Crafter $46,640
41 Scaffold workers $46,350
42 Mountain Guide $37,790
43 Crab Fishing $34,730
44 Ambulance Driver $33,570
45 Bodyguard $31,470
46 Sanitation Worker $30,320
47 Paramedics $40,000
48 Financial Analysts $150,000
49 News Correspondent $40,000
50 Personal Trainer $50,000



The hardest jobs in the world are sometimes a matter of life and death; either the life of the worker, or the life of the person he is working on. These hard jobs require skills, concentration, and a great deal of mental and emotional forbearance, not to mention the physical strength.

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