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Jobs For PTSD

Discussion in 'Employment & Education' started by Paloma, Jan 26, 2010.

  1. Paloma

    Paloma New Member

    I realize this could open the door on a lot of humour...which is fine! But I AM serious. I am thrashing around trying to figure out how to put my life back together in a way that doesn't continue the cycle of triggering. I know I have to work with my self but I also need to lower my day to day stress levels. A part of that is making a living.

    I was wondering if others had thoughts on jobs that were manageable for them long term. Thanks
    madmoo likes this.
  2. SunnyBrookFarm

    SunnyBrookFarm New Member

    I personally have not managed to find that balance. I honestly know that I need a lower stress job but am unable to take one at this time. Having said that, my daughter (also PTSD) recently changed jobs from an employer with alot of stress, responsiblity, and constantly changing shifts (including 3rd shift quite often) to a new job at a bakery with stable hours and far less stress. The improvement could be seen almost immediately.

    Good luck on your job search.
    madmoo likes this.
  3. Marlene

    Marlene VIP Member Premium Member

    Echoing Becky's post. Although my change of job was involuntary (I was laid off), the change in the level of stress, the way the people act and are treated and the overall atmosphere of the office are so much different and better than before that it's helped my symptoms quite a bit. I still have symptoms daily, but for the most part they're much better.

    Short of working from home, I don't think it's so much the job as the people and the environment.

    Lisa
    madmoo likes this.
  4. PerfectEmpire

    PerfectEmpire VIP Member

    I agree with Lisa: it's not so much the job as it is the people and the environment.

    Some possible guidelines:

    Environment
    -No thrashing, banging, or other forms of cacophony
    -No constant movement, bustling about, or chaos
    -Plenty of repetition and predictability - practically hypnotic and very calming
    -Lots of natural light
    -Plenty of exits, easily escapable, first floor a plus
    -Private, single-stall bathrooms that are well lit, lockable, and clean
    -Located in a safe area away from crime
    -Not too rural/isolated but not trapped in the middle of the city either
    -Choice between stairs and elevator if not on first floor
    -Well lit parking lot, close parking
    -Very little traffic and a short commute

    People/Culture
    -Task oriented job with flexible schedule (it's okay to be late or come and go as you please as long as the job gets done)
    -People who don't talk too loud
    -Relaxed dress code
    -People who are educated in counseling/communication
    -People who are mature and not dramatic
    -People who are emotionally healthy

    It's as if the perfect job is changing light bulbs in upscale counseling offices! It's task oriented, it doesn't matter what you wear, the other professionals are trained and mature, and there is no clocking in and out.

    So what jobs fit this list?
    greenleaf, Nighthawlk, Zef and 12 others like this.
  5. Paloma

    Paloma New Member

    These are a help...thanks.PE...I just gave notice at my mechanic job today and reading your lists I realize why. I would find myself physically dreading going in...though the boss was nice. But it was dark, fast, noisy, unpredicatable, chaotic...and I am not who I used to be to handle this. I am really trying to put a positive spin on it and not feel like a failure because I can no longer handle what I used to. But you guys are right...people, environment...and I will add pace. I will send a flyer to upscale counseling offices for handyperson gigs (LOL) :)
    Zef and madmoo like this.
  6. SunnyBrookFarm

    SunnyBrookFarm New Member

    Wow - Perfect Empire - that's a great list - and now I understand why I'm struggling so much at work. My work environment is exactly every item on your list (but with the wrong answer).

    I have NO flexible schedule - in at 8am sharp, work through lunch at my desk, stay late at least 2 nights a week (supposed to get off at 5pm) and even if you work late - you can't come in late the next morning.

    We have no natural lighting - all florescents and they drive me CRAZY.

    There is always drama here and gossiping - I stay away from it but because everyone talks so LOUDLY I still get distracted and don't like hearing it.

    There is always chaos and bustling around and rushing around and everything is always changing.

    Truly - I hope this list can help someone not fall into the trap I did.

    Thanks again.
    The Albatross likes this.
  7. Marlene

    Marlene VIP Member Premium Member

    OMG, this is the opposite of the last place I worked. It was all drama, gossiping, bitch-biting, and people just being a-holes because they knew the could get away with it.

    My first day at my current job I saw a sign in my boss's office that said 'Be nice or leave'. The environment make SUCH a difference to how we handle our daily symptoms.

    Lisa
  8. PerfectEmpire

    PerfectEmpire VIP Member

    Ha ha ha sounds like my kind of place! LOL
    madmoo likes this.
  9. anthony

    anthony MyPTSD Admin Staff Member Premium Member

    Train driver.... its one of those jobs were you work alone and don't have to engage traffic or people.
    Anna, Sammy and revelry like this.
  10. She Cat

    She Cat VIP Member

    One of the reasons I do housework for a living...I don't have to be around people... 90% of the time I am alone....
    Tabitha likes this.
  11. louisa

    louisa Well-Known Member

    I'm not working at the moment. I have a degree and a proffesional qualification but no longer have any interest in pursuing the same career. I keep thinking that If I'm ever well enough to return to work I want a job where there is no contact with human beings atall.

    I am very down. I cannot envision a future where I will work and live a normal life. I want to get better but instead I'm getting worse.

    Louisa
  12. Jimmy

    Jimmy Active Member Premium Member

    Well I don't know what is like in the countries where you live, but I went this morning the the RSPCA (Royal Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals) here, to volunteer.
    There were 24 new volunteers and I was the only male (felt a bit out numbered), but the positive thing is that everyone there are volunteers who want to be there and want to do good.
    There are no crowds, no traffic, and all the animals there are in need of love and affection. Some people go just to walk dogs which i suppose is good for exercise too.

    Yes, at times there are animals that come in with horrific injuries and neglect, but you get to choose where you work and don't have to see that side.
    I chose the animal ambulance.

    This is my first step since being discharged from the military after nearly 20 years of service. Which is all I know how to do.
    I just hope I like it when I go for my first day.

    Jimmy
  13. Paloma

    Paloma New Member

    Good place to do good...I agree. Unfortunately I have to get paid too. Now that is even more urgent as I just got a foreclosure notice...and I am in no better shape than I was before I got the notice. Sigh.
  14. Jagged Angel

    Jagged Angel Well-Known Member

    I work as a part-time academic at a rural university, and it is perfect. No loud noises, no sudden movements, large windows for natural sunlight, located in a quiet spot. The work is mostly routine, and when it isn't it's not a fuss because there are no massive surprises to deal with. And the best of all - so long as I get the work done, and I turn up to teach my classes on time, it doesn't matter if I turn up at 12pm. My classes have all been arranged to be in the afternoons.
    Sveta and Deaf Global Nomad like this.
  15. clare

    clare New Member

    I would love to work at an assisted living center or senior center. I worked at a rehab/shelter for years and I loved it, but the stress from working with ex cons, homeless, prostitutes, etc. sometimes outweighed the personal rewards.
  16. popeye

    popeye New Member

    I also am not working at the moment and I am currently looking into becoming a dog trainer. I have noticed that there are no service dog training companies in the state of Wisconsin at least none that I can find online. I would like to train PSD (psychiatric service dogs) but I would also train dogs for autism and hearing dogs possibly seeing eye dogs and things of that nature. I have noticed that dogs comfort me more than any pill or therapy I have received. I currently have absolutely no idea how to train a dog even though I have had many as pets. My dogs already came with the basics of house training and being able to sit on command. I got a dog from the animal shelter near my home and I am taking him to classes beginning on march 3rd. Hopefully I will be able to train him to become a service dog for me. He is highly intelligent and willing to learn but more or less the dog can only be as smart as the owner lol.

    I think a dog trainer at least for me would be a good thing because the way I plan on doing it would put me on a one on one with a dog for days on end. Less human contact and also a comfort in itself. I will let you know how far I get with this idea.
  17. QuietNow

    QuietNow New Member

    Mortician. At least one of my coworkers did it and she's blissfully happy. Doing makeup and hair for dead people is quiet and actually in a way rewarding because the family is grateful when their loved one looks young or peaceful again. At least that's what she says.

    There's a book called "The 4-Hour Work Week" which is entertaining and gets you thinking, but it isn't a guide for how to really chuck your job. It is deeply flawed. You would need to have the drive and energy to sell yourself and your business before you get to the reward of automating it so that you don't have to be in the mix for the business to make money. It has some interesting points, though.
  18. QuietNow

    QuietNow New Member

    Popeye,
    Pet house sitters are in high demand in our area. Pet sitting usually includes dog walking twice a day, feeding, play time, as well as plant watering and mail/newspaper pick-up. Sometimes turning lights on or off to make the house look occupied while folks are on vacation. This is ditto for cat sitting or exotic pet sitting if you are familiar.

    If you can give IV fluids or injections to ailing pets then you are gold to a family wanting a vacation. I didn't have a vacation for 2 years after my kitty was diagnosed with diabetes. I gave him injections of insulin twice a day on schedule for 7 1/2 years of his life. Finding a pet sitter who had been a vet tech was a god-send. Later, one of our cats needed IV fluids every three days.

    So, while dog training is an excellent goal, look into offering a pet sitting business too. The best thing about it is that the people are AWAY while you're doing it. They typically also like you bonded or recommended.

    Oh, and some services offer "while you're at work" services for dogs like extra walking or people visits for puppies or older dogs that can't stand the strain of owners being away for 10 hours at a time.
  19. QuietNow

    QuietNow New Member

    (Obviously I've been thinking about this topic for a while)

    Virtual assistant. If you know how to use office applications, can answer phones reliably during work hours, can arrange for travel/conferences, etc, then this could be a job for you. You don't have to be in the same state.

    Another option is Personal Assistant. That's someone who does errands and odd-jobs for people who are two busy with work. Think out-of-the-box and you could add things like 'argue your water bill when you're incorrectly billed.'

    Artist is another category, but that is a rather mercuric field. Remember, an 'artistic' income actually means 'unreliable.'

    (I'll add that a lot of very small businesses just getting started may desire a Virtual Assistant to answer the phone, forward mail, etc, but don't look into it because of the fear of the cost. While you want to get paid, offering something that allowed the new entrepreneur a way to start the business but not get buried with costs for a full-time employee would get you into a lot of business. I've been musing about this myself and have thought that offering a cost-structure on a per-call basis based on what I thought might be the call volume, billing only for specific hours worked on jobs for specific customers, etc, and advertising that fee structure might be a way to break into the business with some business.)
    madmoo and Cheshire like this.
  20. TLight

    TLight VIP Member

    Ditto; Environmental consultant. I write a lot of scientific papers and permit applications. 90% of the time I don't have to interact with anyone and I'm at home. Works perfect.

    For years I suffered, never knowing it was because I was being triggered. I finally went completely psychotic with the stress and ruined my health..............not worth it.

    I know what I can and can't do now. Empire's list is right on the money...........

    Can't find the job......pursue disability. A hard road but needed for me for a long while.
  21. FightingLily

    FightingLily New Member

    Painting walls does this for me.
    just thought I'd share ;)
    Sveta and madmoo like this.
  22. TLight

    TLight VIP Member

    I just have to update my job thing. Had to leave environmental consulting, too stressful and triggered by developers. Now I'm sort of lost. I want to find something that has nothing to do with people. I'm just triggered way to much by so many things.............I'm afraid I'll break again.
  23. Philippa

    Philippa VIP Member

    I know this thread is pretty dead, but I thought I would throw in that I had the hardest trouble finding work...fo ryears, I was unemployed and felt like crap, though I realise there was no way anyone would have hired me in the state I was in. I couldn't smile, and waitressing was my main qualification.

    After about 5 years I managed to meet a woman who was also recovering from PTSD and sexual abuse/assualts, who kindly handed over her job working in admin in a Lab at an STD clinic, over to me...which is where I am now, and apart from the rank smell of the place...which I am looking to get away from as soon as I can...the job is only 2.5 days a week...which means I have LOADS of free time to paint. I make the same wage as what a 5 day a week 9-5 er would make, so I can support myself and basically have been able to get my life back on track and have a pretty relaxed lifestyle now, though I have no kids or husband at 36.

    I'm fairly introverted by nature, so for me, any job that means I don't have to have any contact with people is just fine with me...and I've managed to land boring jobs that require no stress or thinking whatsoever, so I consider them to be jobs where I can heal. I even have an online journal at work, for when I get anxiety or emotions come up and I don't want to supress them, as you have to in the work place, for some stupid reason.

    It's definately not a stimulating job, but I think, in terms of healing, it's just what I needed...and even though I'm no longer friends with the woman who gave me the job, I'm forever in her gratitude for giving it to me, because I was seriously giving up on the whole thing. I thought I'd be some social security case who couldn't work because her brain had died from not using it for so long...but I've managed to turn the whole situation around, and I'm back on track. Have my own money to do with what I want, can pay for a good art therapist, and support myself again. I've come such a long way, and I need to acknowledge that now.
    Petros, Maze, Andre and 1 other person like this.
  24. Meli

    Meli New Member

    I'm thinking library or some sort of archiving duties (government, museum, laboratory, etc.)
    madmoo likes this.
  25. Babablacksheep

    Babablacksheep New Member

    PerfectEmpire, thank you for posting this. This helps me see a little bit more clearly why some of my past jobs works and why some didn't work.
    madmoo and The Albatross like this.

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