To ask what job you do if you have social anxiety?

(59 Posts)
hexagonal Mon 13-May-13 16:02:37

Also if you don't have a degree (dropped out because of the anxiety).

Everything I've done before involved working around people and I'm not sure if I can handle that anymore, I had a bit of a breakdown last year because of it.

I'd love to do something like proofreading but not sure about freelance work, also don't think I would get any since I don't have experience or a degree.

So, if you have social anxiety, or even if you just hate people, what do you do?

hexagonal Mon 13-May-13 16:58:19

anyone?

Dawndonna Mon 13-May-13 17:01:48

I have a friend who works in a primary school, helping kids with anxiety. She really enjoys it.

RainbowSpiral Mon 13-May-13 17:07:51

working with computers? Certainly a lot of the guys who do computing analysis stuff at work only deal with computers and people via email.

LimitedEditionLady Mon 13-May-13 17:09:37

Somewhere very calm and not claustaphobic.carer?would a job which focuses you on someone else help to keep you occupied?people have different sorts of anxiety and triggers.do you not like big groups of people?is it meeting lots of new people?build on it op

UptheChimney Mon 13-May-13 17:10:15

Get some sort of therapeutic remedy -- counselling, medication -- for the social anxirety. It's crippling your life and you haven't got the qualifications you could/should have. Try to do something about the anxiety, and then you'll have many more options for work.

LimitedEditionLady Mon 13-May-13 17:11:17

Can you be in a place near people if you work independently?do you need to have flexible hours or will fixed times relax you?

hexagonal Mon 13-May-13 17:12:39

Dawndonna, do you know what qualifications she has? I wouldn't mind doing something like that if it's one to one, I think I had something similar myself in primary school.

RainbowSpiral, that's something else I'd quite like to do but have nowhere near good enough computer skills.

hexagonal Mon 13-May-13 17:16:49

LimitedEditionLady, I've looked at vacancies for caring jobs, they all seem to need qualifications and a driving licence, neither of which I have.

UptheChimney I'm on medication, just switched to a new one because the old one wasn't working. My GP referred me for counselling over a year ago, still haven't heard anything back about that.

UptheChimney Mon 13-May-13 17:18:33

It really sounds as though you need to develop your skills. It's a pity you couldn't finish your degree. Did you have a disability plan when you did it? If your disability is diagnosed & acknowledged by your college or university, they can provide assistance with it, so you're on a more level-playing field with other students.

Dawndonna Mon 13-May-13 17:19:33

She actually has a degree in psychology, but she can't cope with using that, so she's doing the teaching assistant training through the school. I did just check with her on faceache, she started as a volunteer.

manicinsomniac Mon 13-May-13 17:26:15

something with animals or the environment?

how are you over the phone? - if you're ok then marketing, call centre type stuff?

HGV driver?!? (seriously, that sounds flippant but my uncle did this for a couple of years after a breakdown and said the long hours alone on the road were the best therapy in the world.)

raisah Mon 13-May-13 17:30:39

is the caring profession the right one for you if you suffer from social anxiety. maybe a job that involves setting up systems and processes such as an IT analyst would be more appropriate. As you know what your triggers are, try developing strategies to counteract them. Chase up your GP for the counselling /CBT as it will greatly improve your quality of life.

Can you do an open university degree thereby minimising the social interaction required.

hexagonal Mon 13-May-13 17:47:52

In the long term I'll definitely try to get some actual qualifications, but I really can't afford to do that right now. I also know it's better to actually deal with the social anxiety rather than try to work around it, but it's pretty severe and I've had it since I was really young, so that'll probably take a while as well.

I've been applying for loads of things like office assistant and data entryjobs, but not getting any replies. I'm still applying for things like shop assistant, because they're the only ones I have any hope of getting, and have had a few interviews but managed to screw those up as well somehow.

hexagonal Mon 13-May-13 18:01:11

UptheChimney I didn't have a diagnosis until after I dropped out

Dolallytats Mon 13-May-13 18:14:14

Hexagonal, if your GP is taking too long with the referral you could see if you have a branch of Mind near you. They offer counselling for a variety of issues. Also there are some anxiety charities that offer a sliding scale of fees, which means that paying for therapy may be an option (not that you said it wasn't, just that it can be very expensive).

If you are anywhere near East London, there is an organisation called Anxiety Care that offer this as well as some group therapies (I know you have social anxiety, but this might be an option at some point).

I also dropped out of university after starting to get panic attacks and it is something I really regret. I was half way through and can't help thinking that I should be a teacher by now instead of barely being able to walk to the end of my road.

Is there any way you could continue your degree with the Open University. As far as I am aware you can transfer the credits you have already got.

Good luck.

MiaowTheCat Mon 13-May-13 18:20:40

I worked in education - daft as it sounds I found that working with kids, plus the "Miss" thing really helped - I could mentally put my "Miss suit" on when I got to work on a morning and deal with stuff that would have reduced me to a nervous wreck in normal social occasions (although there aren't many normal social occasions where you have to have conversations about seeing who can piddle the highest up the wall in the boys' toilets... or I'm moving in the wrong circles)

kerstina Mon 13-May-13 18:40:08

How about a self employed artist, crafts person,gardener? I have suffered with this to some degree throughout my life but agree that working with children is brilliant as they take you out of yourself so you are not so focussed on your anxiety. As long as your co workers are nice.

ControlGeek Mon 13-May-13 18:48:19

I work in third line tech support. The calls come through to me via our online call logging software (so effectively by email) and I investigate then get back to the user by email. I have a degree, but not in the field I'm working in. I got into this from the ground up, so to speak.

Doodledumdums Mon 13-May-13 18:56:14

Hi Hexagonal. I have generalised/social anxiety, and although I am currently on mat leave, I work in publishing. I work in production, so my job doesn't aggravate my anxiety on the whole, as I don't deal with the public or with authors etc. Although there are times when I find it really stressful and tough.

I used to work with animals, and I loved it. I found them to be theraputic and all of the things which worried me before really seemed to go away. I wish I had never given that job up, but I got complacent as my anxiety got a lot better, so I thought I was ready for a more stressful job. In hindsight, I should have stuck with it!

Would animals be an option for you? I do have a degree, but it wasn't required for that particular job, so I think there are opportunities which don't require extra qualifications.

hexagonal Mon 13-May-13 19:00:29

I'd love to work with animals, especially since I'm not allowed pets in my flat, I never see those kinds of jobs advertised though. I did look into volunteering with animals a while ago but there aren't any places near me and it would get expensive to travel.

hexagonal Mon 13-May-13 19:11:29

ControlGeek that sounds perfect. Can I ask how you got into doing that?

SoftKittyWarmKitty Mon 13-May-13 19:12:50

OP, I'm having CBT at the moment and one of the reasons is social anxiety. It's really making a difference, although I'm nowhere near as badly affected by it as you. Definitely give the docs a call to chase up where you are on the list and when you're likely to get to the top. I was on the waiting list for 15 months but it was worth the wait.

I work in marketing at the moment but looking into becoming self employed. I second the person that suggested the OU - they have a lot of payment plans and fee reductions depending on your income.

Good luck!

Doodledumdums Mon 13-May-13 19:25:55

I think that animal jobs are ones that you have to seek out to be honest. I did some unpaid work experience in a veterinary hospital, with a view to potentially training as a veterinary nurse, and they offered me a paid job as a nursing assistant- so I was really lucky to be honest. Might be worth seeing if you can get a couple of weeks unpaid somewhere, as it might be a foot in the door?

I also had CBT and I can't recommend it enough, CBT is the only reason that I was able to finish my degree and actually get out of the house.

Mumsyblouse Mon 13-May-13 19:30:07

Can I just say that universities are now very supportive of both mature students and students with any type of difficulties/disabilities, temporary or otherwise, and I have several students with anxiety disorders. They are assessed by the student department that is set up to make things more accessible, and can have individual learning plans to help make things a fair playing field- so a student with anxiety disorder might have a plan where they attend lectures but don't speak in groups (if that is their anxiety). keep in touch with their personal tutor if it is getting worse as well as get counselling and mental health support (CBT, mindfulness, crisis management) from that team. In short, you would get a lot of support if you went back to do your degree.

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