Are You In the Wrong Job?

Guidelines to help you find the right career fit.

If you enjoy the work you're doing now, but are having trouble with your work environment or your co-workers, consider looking around in your current field for a company more accepting of your workplace needs. Basically, you're looking for a company that is flexible and open to dialogue, where you'll have some freedom to arrange your environment, schedule, and work habits.

If you're struggling with your work because it simply doesn't interest you, or your job is too stressful, it may be time to think about switching fields.

Everyone's ideal job is different, of course. But the following guidelines can help you in your search for the perfect fit:

  • Inventory your strengths and weaknesses. Think back on all the jobs you've had. List the aspects of each job that you excelled at, as well as the areas in which you didn't do well. "The key is to be realistic," says Nadeau. "Some people are so determined to master their difficulties that they stick with a job they're poorly suited for. Your efforts will be better spent if you choose a job that uses your strengths."
  • Analyze your likes and dislikes. "I have my clients write down everything they've liked about the different jobs they've held, and everything they've hated about them," says Kerch McConlogue. "Do you like standing on your feet? Dealing with the public? Working alone?" By identifying which aspects of work bore you, and which parts fascinate you, you can make a blueprint for your ideal job.
  • If you tend to be hyperactive, look for work that involves physical activity - a sales or service job that keeps you out and about, for instance, or an outdoor occupation, like landscaping or construction.
  • If you opt for self-employment or to work with a small company, make sure your team includes at least one detail-oriented person. "People with ADD have to be careful not to collect each other," says Novotni. "It's great to work with a lot of creative individuals, but you need at least one person in the group who is willing to sit down and plow through the paperwork and other boring stuff."

TAGS: Focus at Work, ADHD Career Paths

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