Best Job for ADHD

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    • #61876

      I am a teacher and I saw that it is recommended as a top job for people with ADHD. Anyone have any ideas or thoughts on what good careers are out there for people with ADHD? I feel like I get extremely bored, overwhelmed, and frustrated with some of the tasks involved with teaching. Some days I love it, but other days I cannot stop just browsing on my computer while the students work. Thank you!

    • #61883

      I can only speak from experience, and not everyone would see this as a career choice (although it definitely can be) but I really enjoyed being a retail manager. There was a routine that began and ended each day, and in between was all relatively fast-paced, react-in the-moment tasks which I was always good at. Delegating tasks to employees was helpful too.
      I suppose it would ideally be a busy store or it would probably be really boring.

      It had just enough structure to keep me on track but was varied enough to be interesting.. I’m sure you can find these same qualities in other professions too.

      Maybe start with what you like most about teaching- what engages you the most and start there.

      Good luck!🍀

    • #61897
      Penny Williams

      Here’s a list of jobs most suited for individuals with ADHD:

      8 Dream Jobs for the Easily Bored and Consistently Creative

      The key is to align your career with your interests and passions for the most success:

      How to Align Your Career with Your Passions

      ADDitude Community Moderator, Author & Mentor on Parenting ADHD, Mom to teen w/ ADHD, LDs, and autism

    • #62066

      I’m a teacher who has ADHD, and I’m just trying to figure out how you have the time to be bored. Extremely stressful and frustrating yes, but for me, teaching has NEVER been boring. Maybe it’s what you’re teaching? I teach special education, and every single one of my students has ADHD. If I were to take my eyes off of my students long enough to surf the internet, or even to check my cell phone, all heck would break loose. I can honestly say that every day I’ve taught has been challenging, and I’ve found ALL of my students to be interesting. If you really crave excitement, I can tell you that teaching special ed at an alternative high school is probably the wildest ride of all. I guess it just boils down to what rings your bell. One of the suggested careers for people with ADHD is culinary, which I didn’t like at all. You are hooked to a time clock, you work the major holidays, and you spend your day around dangerous equipment and noxious chemicals. I had to leave before I cut off more than just the tip of a finger. Whatever you decide to do, I wish you future success.

    • #62087

      It sounds like you need a more stimulating environment. What about teaching at the science Museum, environmental education center, or doing trainings for a corporation or workplace safety company? Or a different role in the school system, like as a resource person within your subject matter?

    • #62099

      For me, being a freelancer writer is perfect, as long as I have some choice in subjects and the assignments are short (which for me means I can focus for 45 minutes to 2 hours and be done).

      I was a high school English teacher for 14 years. Enjoyed the interaction with the kids. Left in 83 when I got hooked, lined, and sunk with personal computers, specifically over what I saw they could do to empower me and others. Within 2 years part of my income and within 3 years later all of my income came from freelance writing. Stuck with that thru the end of 2003.

      After a 12 year hiatus, decided to get back into freelance writing and now I have a full-time freelance gig (meaning there’s enough work for 12 hour days, 6 hours a week) and a quarter-time gig. I write for websites on mostly unrelated topics – automotive, especially motorcycles and trucks for a big name tech site, and wearable health technology for the other site.

      I do have some big projects in my writing, but I always break them down.

      I’ve worked it (my writing biz) so I have the freedom to explore and grab something that intrigues me on the internet (and I’m pretty easy that way) and if I can make it fit for either site for which I write then I get to go deep on the topic. Sometimes too deep. One editor told me, “we’re not testing for NASA, ease back a bit.”

      Anyway, that’s some of my experience with freelance writing and why it works for me with my flavor of ADHD.

      • #62127

        brucerbrown – I find your story inspiring. I taught ELA in a public high school for 13 years, until the changes in education management and administration drove me insane. I have been freelance writing for the last year, and find that I struggle with time management, and marketing (finding new clients.) The freelance choice is how I discovered and was diagnosed with ADHD. The structure of teaching had provided structure, while the demanding pace and ever-changing environment had kept the boredom and distraction at bay. I would be interested in hearing more from you on your transition if you are receptive to that.

        • This reply was modified 4 years, 4 months ago by TaraB.
    • #62148

      Hey Mathew,

      I’m always happy to talk about myself! I’ve been thinking about finally sitting down and at least outlining a book on all the stuff involved in starting and maintaining a successful freelance writing business. Not for an audience restricted to ADHDers, but anyone. I’ve actually given little talks on it (like in the 90s) and written some stuff. But that story keeps changing and progressing.

      I’m great at ideas… and sometimes outlines… actually apportioning and taking the time to write the chapters, well, that’s a struggle. Especially when I have an article deadline five days a week (my part-time gig) and assignments to last me easily thru next spring for the main site for which I write. They both pay, so that’s a big pull for me. It also serves as a wonderful reason why I can’t get other stuff done. 🙂

      My transition didn’t come fast and it didn’t come easily. I tried many other jobs, careers, professions, and businesses on my path to manageable continued success as a freelance writer. I’m sure you don’t want to know about didn’t work for me. However, my transition process has been and continues to be about self-discovery. About getting an idea or an opportunity and thinking, “Maybe?” and then throwing myself into it until either I fail or discover it’s not something I really want to do full-time. So I could go way off on that, but I don’t think that’s what you’re really asking.

      You asked specifically about marketing and time management. Of course, there are whole books on both subjects for everyone, not just ADHDers. Here are a couple things that work for me, everyone’s mileage may and likely will vary:

      Marketing. I have tried lots of stuff. I know marketing at best is a blend of purposeful activities done consistently. And while there are specific modes and techniques, I think what works best for people ends up being personal, because you’re really selling yourself, not your work. Like all person-to-person marketing and sales, there’s a connect-meet-know-like-trust cycle that underlies the process.

      First off, for me, reticence is a dirty word. My personal marketing philosophy or mantra is NBNBC – “No balls, no blue chips.” And it’s really about relationships. So if I know people who are or who know or might know people who can help, I ask.

      If there’s someone appropriate for me to meet I don’t know, I go after them. Frankly, that approach never worked for me with dating, but it has in business. So I’ll chase someone down on Facebook and/or LinkedIn and find out what I can about them. I’ll look for commonalities. And then I’ll write or call. If I can, I try to find what they need and then present myself as a solution. In an ideal world the activities required to be that solution will be things I like to do and am good at, or at least good enough for someone to pay me.

      My freelance writing has been almost exclusively short articles, first with magazines and now with websites. I’ve taken on other types of assignments like white papers or analysis or whatever, and I suck at them. My sweet spot is an article that’s 250 to 600 words long. I discovered that over time, it wasn’t like a choice.

      I am not and was not afraid of some honest self-deprecating humor. I remember telling editors, especially earlier in my career as a tech writer, “Look, I don’t know as much as these other people about computers and hardware and software, I don’t write as well as they do, and I’m not as smart. But I will work my ass off for you, I won’t miss deadlines, and I will communicate. If you need something written in an emergency for whatever reason, you get in touch with me and I can possibly do it, I’ll do it. I can be a fallback and a backup. And once I turn in a copy, if you don’t need my further involvement, you can do whatever you want with it. I don’t have ego about my writing. And I promise I will always cash your checks.”

      And sometimes when my workload was light, I’d go into an assigning editor’s office (this would be people I knew) and literally get on my knees. They would laugh, I would laugh, and I’d say, “I need work. I have capacity to fill. Can I help with anything?” And I got work.

      So that worked for me, Mathew, back in the day when the editors had offices in a central location. I lived three hours away but I’d drive into Manhattan for a lunch meeting to talk with an editor about work.

      It’s different now. An editor I worked for from March 2016 until last week just left the major site for which I write. We never met in person. After he realized I was reliable and he could trust me, he let me find my own assignments and turn them in directly to the copy edit queue. And I propose stories for other editors in various sections or subject matter teams. Remember all those jobs, businesses, etc. I tried in my self-discovery process? Well every one of them gave me experiences I find I use, so I can write about a wide range of topics. I also can talk somewhat knowledgeably about a wider range. And I often can BS about the rest. But I laugh as I’m doing it so they’ll know I’m making it up.

      That’s just some of the things I can think of about the marketing and continued selling of myself.

      Time management? Prior to my ADHD diagnosis, my greatest tool was adrenaline from fear of missing a deadline. If I missed deadlines one of my main value-adds to editors was gone. Since my diagnosis, last November, I don’t need adrenaline, at least not from fear. But it’s still a process because I’m still easily distracted and when I go sideways, I tend to go longer and deeper. Like now, I’m afraid, because I have to stop because I have four deadlines today and so far have met only one.

      Hope something, (anything?) above makes sense and might be useful.


      p.s. – I don’t know if it’s allowed to give out personal email addresses here, so I won’t. But I’m about as easy to find as anyone can be and you don’t need stolen data from Equifax. I suspect if you looked me up on Facebook or LinkedIn, should you have reason to, it should take much effort to find the real me. 🙂

    • #87418

      I am a Paramedic and i think its great for ADHD. I also think something similar such as being a police officer etc would be equally fine.

      The reason being a paramedic works so well for me is that I come to work, not having any idea what is going to happen. Nothing mundane or repetitive requires completion daily. When my pager goes off i respond to the page, I leave the branch and drive around town (sometimes with sirens which is super exhilarating). Each situation/job i attend is different which keeps me interested! I am with a patient for approx 30-60 mins and then i drop them off at hospital and can completely forget about it. This just works for my ADHD brain. I have also had to develop some tricks to slam the ADHD symptoms so i can be a good paramedic. For example, 1 pen is always required at every job as a paramedic. I carry 5 in various pockets. I also try (and sometimes (ok most of the time) fail) at keeping the same things in the same pockets daily so i never lose them. For those of you thinking its dangerous to be around patients and administering medications etc with ADHD, i would say Yes, it is. However checks and balances always ALWAYS occur. A medication is read aloud and checked by two 2 people 2 times, before given so there is absolutely rarely an error!

      I work in a rural location as well, which leaves plenty of time between jobs to do what ever it is i am interested in that day…. which usually changes daily. People i work with ask me what my flavour of the day is and it will be minimalism, or oprah winfrey or true crime… whatever and i will be focused like no other on that topic… until it changes! haha :/

      Other perks include being able to go to a coffee shop when not responding to a call

      ah i got a job bye!

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