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Ok, I want to go back to work but can't think of a SINGLE job I would be any use at.

(22 Posts)
FlightAttendant Tue 13-Oct-09 16:14:03

This is worrying me, because I've been thinking about going back for a while now and I'm really worried I'm going to go into completely the wrong job and have to start over.

Jobs in the past have all been low key, low skill stuff - shop work, library assistant, etc etc. I haven't got a degree and have never had a career as such, though I do have three a-levels and was quite clever at school.

Don't take this wrong, I would be delighted to muck out stables, flip burgers or anything else really but every time I come up with something, I just think 'No you would be shite at that'.

I guess I know myself better these days and my own limitations, to an extent - I have probably Aspergers, which makes me in simple terms quite anti social, very OCD about things and quite dim when it comes to workplace dynamics. I worked very hard when I did last work - to the point where I was racing around being the perfect employee (technically - not sure if I saw the whole picture) and was buzzing so much I didn't eat, lost 3 stone and was signed off for the next 5 years with anxiety/stress.

Of course that may not happen this time but I know I deal badly with having to be around other people, and get really upset when there are too many demands or stimuli at the same time - noise, public transport, restaurants - can't do those situations.

Has anyone got any ideas - or suggestions as to how I could find out what kind of job to go for? Am I overthinking it?

My sons are 6 and 2 so officially don't have to worry for another few years but I feel so useless and crappy without a job - and it is lonely. I thought about studying as well but not a clue what to study!

Thanks very much if you got this far.

FlightAttendant Tue 13-Oct-09 16:17:56

I meant to add, I thought about working for the council - planning or some kind of civil servant office thing, but am afraid I might be rubbish at that. The thing about office politics and being obsessive etc etc, I mean I could do filing quite well but i would always be thinking I was doing it right, when in fact it was wrong...if that makes sense? Bit like I do on here a lot smile

fruitspooksbatsintheeaves Tue 13-Oct-09 16:20:20

oh me too! I could have written that post. I am in the middle of a graphic design course and beginning to think I should have just gone and got a job as I am finding it really stressful. (I did the same course 20 years ago when I left school)
At the moment I am unreasonably jealous of everyone with any kind of job.
I have been a SAHM for 16 years and I'm afraid to say that after finding it SO hard to get back to work I will not be encouraging my dd's to be SAHM's

FlightAttendant Tue 13-Oct-09 16:26:35

Oh it is lovely thta you are studying though

I wish I knew what I wanted to do, my main thing is I just want to eb GOOD at it iyswim? Are you really good at graphic design? If so then keep at it - it is so hard to find something to be good at! smile

See I am envy of you and you are envy of people with jobs!

FlightAttendant Tue 13-Oct-09 16:30:15

The things I have ever been good at are:

singing (but you can't get a job doing that!)

whistling - ditto grin

spending money on things I don't, technically, need.

putting up fences - but I am a wuss and would have to stop after half a day and go home.

I don't want to work with children (don't like them!!)

not pretty enough to model (ha)

I could do proofreading or something, might die from boredom but at least I could stay at home and do it, and not have to see anybody...

fruitspooksbatsintheeaves Tue 13-Oct-09 16:33:14

thats the problem you see. I like Graphic Design but get very deflated when I think what I've done is good but then no-one else seems to like it, and I often don't see the appeal of modern stuff so maybe I'm not very good. sad

when I finish my course next year I shall be getting a job but it may have to be any job not necessarily a design one and then I will feel guilty at wasting time and money.

I am SO negative!!

I think you need to do something you enjoy to be good at it. Think of something you enjoy doing. Maybe you could do some distance learning while your DC's are still little.

FlightAttendant Tue 13-Oct-09 16:50:51

Oh Fruits I am sure you are good at it - you wouldn't have got the place on the course unless you showed an aptitude.

And if you enjoy it then that's the important thing - like you say.

I think I'll look at some courses. Whatever I end up doing it's going to have to fit in around the kids, because I haven't got a DH at the moment...that's something esle to consider! There aren';t that many jobs where you can just take a day off when one of them is ill, I expect.

snice Tue 13-Oct-09 16:53:02

Why don't you sign up as a mystery shopper/market researcher for some pocket money whilst you think about what you want to do in the long term? Can pick your own hours.

LaurieFairyCake Tue 13-Oct-09 16:55:25

do you like crafts? are you any good at that? Could you be any good at that? You could work on that from home and sell at craft fairs/ebay/etsy etc.

It sounds like you might be good at a job that had very clear expectations where you could work alone. <thinks>

FlightAttendant Tue 13-Oct-09 17:01:13

Hmm I am not sure what a researcher does tbh...how can I find out? If it involved shopping in actual shops it might be a no-no - I am only Ok online. I avoid supermarkets as they are full of (shhh) people. blush

Crafts - well yes, I am Ok at crafty things and used to do it a lot - but I would need something full time really in order to pay our rent and everything else - I can't see myself being prolific enough to make an actual living from etsy etc.

Nice idea though...maybe I could do something creative for an employer.

snice Tue 13-Oct-09 17:06:32

OK so prob no to mystery shopping then.

Would you go back to library work?

Could you go to college part time to do some sort of IT/word processing NVQ and then look for admin type jobs where you are 'behind the scenes' and don;t have to deal with the public. If you are good with figures maybe book-keeping?

FlightAttendant Tue 13-Oct-09 17:20:42

Snice, thankyou - that sounds like a very good place to start. I am already pretty fast at typing - well I don't do it properly but can do it quickly. I know my way around a computer, in some ways.

I think admin is the way to go smile

I like the idea of farm work actually too, but not sure how you get into that. i have never ridden a horse but I do have a barbour jacket grin

purpleduck Tue 13-Oct-09 17:21:53

OK.....
First, get a journal - and in the journal don't limit yourself. Don't say " I would like to do....but I would be crap". This is just for you to see, so don't limit yourself too much.
Next list the things you LIKE to do. Doesn't matter if they are "jobs", or careers - just things that make you happy. You may notice a theme - like you may notice that all the things you like to do involve problem solving.

What are the last 5 things that you have done that made you feel good? Why did it make you feel good? ie was it completing something, or making someone feel good, or was it creative?

What are your strengths? Remember - no-one will see this, so be honest and kind to yourself.

What DON'T you like to do?

What parts did you like about other jobs? Ie was it responsibility, or just being able to put your head down and get to work?

Are you willing to retrain, or go back to school?

You can look at the jobs4u website - at first don't look at it as a mission to find a career, but just notice the kinds of things you are drawn to.

What was the last career/job that you heard about that sounded interesting?

Note all these down in the journal - don't stress over having to make a decision. In fact, tell yourself you won't try to make a decision - now you will just look at things, write down your findings - maybe do a bit of navel gazing, and then see if a picture emerges.

I think the trick is to "research" yourself, THEN look at jobs to try and see what the best fit for you would be.



Good Luck!

FlightAttendant Tue 13-Oct-09 17:26:07

Ooh Purpleduck that is brilliant.

I will try what you have suggested and see what transpires.

I am in a bit of a chaotic phase atm with kids and pets and sorting out the garden, everything is mixed up and I feel quite stressed - like any job would be too much. But I know once I actually am doing something it will seem less frightening.

<wonders how any single parent copes with work and a child/house to run>

kcartyparty Wed 14-Oct-09 00:33:46

Hi... Sounds like your suffering from mummyitis! You have become so used to being mum it is hard to believe you are any good at doing anything else.

But your not just mum. You still have a name, and you should be proud of who you are.

You need to start believing in yourself. There is a job for you out their. But right now you have the most important job in the world... Raising your children! Enjoy it while it lasts. They will soon be in their teens

Speckledeggy Wed 14-Oct-09 00:49:18

How about working with animals? I should imagine a veterinary nurse would be fairly calm and not loads and loads of people.

Also, what about dental hygienist? Not the most glamorous of jobs but your victim won't be able to say much while you are digging around in their mouth.

I work in an office so I know what you mean about the people thing. Wondering if I've got Aspergers now...

purpleduck Wed 14-Oct-09 16:11:28

Flightattendant
I know what you mean about feeling that any job would be scary. I only recently went back to work (3 guesses for what I now do as a job ), and I also felt that way. Once you get into something (and I'm sure it will be scary at first) then you will be fine.



BTW, you can also go to your local college and get free careers advice

FlightAttendant Wed 14-Oct-09 19:02:45

Thanks everyone. I will get there in the end.

Purpleduck, I am guessing that you are a Purple Duck now grin

Either that or a careers adviser!!

mellifluouscauliflower Wed 14-Oct-09 19:20:21

A good career for someone who is slightly OCD and happier working alone is software tester / QA analyst. Actually you get extra points for being OCD as a tester and it doesn't tend to be very political. Often you can do it from home too which might suit you.

mellifluouscauliflower Wed 14-Oct-09 19:23:12

Thinking about it, if you've done library work, you could find a way in by applying for jobs testing library systems. IT qualification would also help

FlightAttendant Wed 14-Oct-09 19:52:02

That sounds very interesting. I am very thorough, well I used to be, now I get jumped on by the children and it kind of isn't as easy smile

but once they are both at school it would be Ok.

Thanks for the idea.

Speckledeggy Thu 15-Oct-09 00:58:34

Just had another thought, what about becoming a developer? If you don't know what that is, they write the code behind web pages so that whole thing works (a website designer makes the thing look pretty at the front end).

I know a couple of people who have dyslexia who are super brilliant developers. People without the greatest social skills also seem to thrive in that area and you normally get allocated a project and then get on with it without a million and one interruptions. It's also fairly decent money.

Another good one would be an artworker in a design studio or printing company. They don't have to talk a lot either!

Only downside of doing both jobs is staring at a screen all day but that seems to encompass most jobs nowadays!

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