The Best Careers If You Want to Work Outdoors

While the modern human often works indoors, behind a counter or desk, that wasn’t always the case. Aeons ago, human ancestors gathered, hunted, and were in constant states of movement. Today, sitting down inside may be a requirement for our jobs, but that doesn’t necessarily make us healthy or happy. In fact, research shows that sedentary jobs can lead to cancer and heart disease as well as frequently exposing us to bacteria and germs in an enclosed environment.

If you’re tired of the office gig, it might be time to think about switching to a career outdoors. Working outside provides a multitude of benefits for people, including better moods and attitudes, healthier mental and physical well-being, and a happier outlook on your career.

What are the benefits of working outdoors?

Working outdoors presents many positives for an individual’s mind, body, and sense of professional purpose. Some of these benefits include:

  • Lowered stress levels
  • Increased happiness
  • Improved health and wellness
  • Positive moods
  • Relaxation
  • Lowered blood pressure
  • Memory improvement
  • Increased energy levels
  • Better concentration and focus
  • Increased calories burned
  • Fewer sick days

Aside from these gains, people who work outside get 46 more minutes of sleep per night and may have their mortality risk lowered by 12 per cent. Additionally, cognitive function improves and employees tend to feel better about their professional contributions. An outdoor career can provide the change you are looking for if you need to get outside.

Do I need to live in a regional area?

Depending on the type of industry, some outdoor careers may require an applicant to live in a regional area. The regional areas are responsible for one-third of Australia’s economy and include many positions in agribusiness, tourism, and other creative outdoor fields.

To allow rural and regional areas to compete with larger cities and municipalities, some job openings are designated exclusively for residents of specific regions. Read the fine print of any position before you apply to make sure you are residentially qualified for it.

The best career pathways to start your outdoors career

If you want to leave the four walls of your office for the great outdoors, there are many careers to choose from. Here are some of the best fields to consider for outside work:


It’s hard to top the agriculture industry when it comes to outdoor careers. While there are many subfields of this industry, two areas that provide outdoor work and job security include landscaping and horticulture.

Landscaping concerns the care of outdoor green spaces, including lawns, trees, irrigation systems, golf courses and resorts, and public gardens. This field is ideal for individuals who have a passion for the environment and want to make a difference in their community.

Horticulture careers focus on the planting, care, art, technology, business, and science of plants and flowers. There are hundreds of directions to take in this field; some of the most popular jobs are as an arborist, botanist, farmer, educator, groundskeeper, forester, gardener, plant technician, and greenhouse owner, amongst others. With a career in horticulture, you can spend your days working in the fresh air while cultivating the beauty of the natural world around you.

Animal Husbandry and Services

Do you enjoy animals and work well with them? If so, you can combine an outdoor career with your love of animals to land a job in areas of animal husbandry and care services. For example, if you live in a metro area, you can still work outside with animals in zoos. While zoo keeping positions are competitive, this field allows you to work with a fascinating variety of animals from all over the world. Care, management, training, and feeding of animals in a zoological society makes for an exciting job with new challenges daily.

While many veterinary technicians work inside indoor clinics, some animal care careers happen outside. Equine trainers, riders, stablehands, groomers, and medical personnel are some of the many fields in professional equine horse care. If you enjoy working with horses and spending your days outside, an equine profession may be a good fit.

Fitness Services

Fitness classes and personal training have moved beyond an enclosed, airless gym and exercise facility. Now, outdoor bootcamp classes, strength training, and personal training are trendy. If you enjoy working with people and motivating them to achieve their goals, and you want to avoid working in an office setting, offer fitness services outside.

Make a difference in the health and happiness of your clients while being on the move. Whether working in a local garden park or in your backyard, you can enjoy an active career outdoors while helping other people increase their strength and confidence.

Creative Arts

Can creative types also find work in the great outdoors? There are many outdoor jobs for people with artistic and creative skills. If you enjoy photography, you can make a living outdoors taking pictures for weddings, family parties, business shoots, magazines, newspapers, and blogs. Other fields include outdoor architecture design and outdoor art gallery docent.

Breathe in the fresh air and enjoy the benefits of working outside

Ditch the office life and improve your physical and mental well-being by switching to an outdoors career. ICI offers a wide range of courses to help you gain the knowledge and skills you need to have a successful career outside. Download the brochures on ICI’s career courses and explore your outdoors opportunities today.

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Gladys Mae


Gladys Mae serves as the General Manager and Head of Student Services at the International Career Institute. Gladys holds a degree in Mass Communication - Broadcast Media from the University of San Jose-Recoletos. She joined ICI in 2010 and has over the past 12 years been instrumental in providing leadership and guidance to staff and students alike. Prior to joining ICI Gladys led a multifaceted career with key roles in the banking and business process outsourcing industries.