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Pharmaceutical reps don't have it easy, as they usually spend their workday jumping over Olympic-size hurdles to get the job done. First challenge—trying to get in to see the doctor. Doctors are not known for having lots of free time, and rarely carve out time just to hear from pharma reps. A rep may wait around in a doctor's office for an hour before the doctor is "in" for the rep. And even then, the rep might have to make his pitch as doc rushes down a hallway to the next appointment, or in between bites as a doctor wolfs down a sandwich during a five-minute break. Other physicians may refuse to talk to reps at all, so you might not even know if you'll be allowed in the door on a particular day.

To make matters even more stressful, those five minutes are critical to your paycheck. Since a big chunk of a pharma rep's salary rides on getting drugs into consumer hands via a doctor or other health care pro, the success of that harried five-minute pitch is crucial.

Toss in plenty of traffic battles, long hours, the constant need to bone up on new products, and the competition trying to muscle in on your territory, and that's the recipe for a nice heaping plate of stress-a-roni.