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Found 7 results

  1. I've been in a cycle of un/underemployment and depression for several years, exacerbated by a still not great economy, especially where I live. I worked hard to build a career I was proud of, but falling off that track has been disastrous. It's been horrible trying to get hired again and I've been stuck temping here and there or working on short term contacts. I had one job a few years go that looked like it was the road back, but I got laid off after a year due to budget cuts, and it began the cycle all over again. How have others who have been on career tracks managed to get back into the work you trained for and are good at after a long bout of depression? I've been turned down for plenty of jobs for being overqualified, so aiming lower doesn't work out for me. I find a lot of fulfillment in my work and find that I need something that is meaningful and relatively challenging. My career has been in nonprofits, so it's "giving back" kind of work and not about status or big paychecks (to put it mildly!). I've tried to stay active in the community as a volunteer to keep developing my contacts, but my ability to network and volunteer and, above all, apply for jobs, waxes and wanes with my moods. How do you deal with resume gaps too? I've sometimes been up front that I was dealing with health problems when I feel like it is worth mentioning because I've had so many years get eaten up by one hell of a detour.
  2. I am wondering what everyone does for a living, and in particular if anyone else feels they aren't a good fit for their job. I'm have been a legal secretary for 10 years, and office grunt work is pretty much the only thing I have done. I don't consider this a career. It's demeaning, doesn't use any of my real talents, and it brings me attention for all the wrong reasons. To say I don't fit in is an understatement. I haven't figured out what I really wanted to do (or I did and some health issue got in the way, i.e., nursing). I work with attorneys who treat me like I'm an idiot. My coworkers hate me. When I started this job 6 years ago, my moods were cycling out control and my relationship with my ex was going down the toilet. Low self-esteem made me quiet (some called me "stupid" because of it), but mostly people here like to pry into others' lives and I was not willing to take down my walls. I would say hello to people several times, only to have them ignore me. Now the general consensus is that I"m rude and a bitch, a snob, conceited, etc. If anything, I've mostly felt the opposite. People have made rude remarks to me, act strange around me, snub me... I get gossiped about constantly (one guy changed the words to a song to make it sound like he wished I was dead)I can't until I can go to graduate school so I can quit. The whispering has driven my paranoia to crazy levels. On top of that, I have executive functioning problems, such as poor working memory (tested in the 1st percentile...so it's very bad), poor attention span, etc. I'm overly sensitive to noise, as well. So sensitive, I need to put in earplugs do drown out everyday sounds. I have to take bathroom breaks just to calm myself down. Can anyone relate?
  3. Probably a stupid question. I've never had any direction career-wise. Other people look at their skills and interests to figure out what jobs/careers are right for them, but I've never been able to come up with a single idea. As far as I am concerned, I have no skills... And, strangely, I don't have any real interests. I have racked my brains for years but no job seems right for me at all. The only thing I know is mental illness.... I've had severe social phobia (possibly bordering on agoraphobia) for years, plus depression, generalized anxiety, and a little OCD. Actually I started out with Body Dysmorphic Disorder, which I'm fairly sure I still have. My self-esteem is non-existent; minus zero. I'm in a constant battle with myself. I know how all of it feels, because I've been there. So, I was wondering if maybe my career is staring me in the face? Maybe I should help other girls with poor body image and social anxiety? Could I even do that? I mean, I've got a hell of a long way to go. I'm in CBT, and I still struggle leaving my home. Could I ever be well enough to help others? I know there are lots of different ways someone can work in mental health, so I'm not sure what would be "right" for me, if anything. I live in the UK.
  4. I've been having major career-related anxiety lately. Basically, I feel like a loser because I'm too anxious to ever go into management. I have never been a leader, thanks to my anxiety. The thought of being in charge of other people fills me with such anxiety. I don't think I could ever handle it, and I'm not sure that I even would want to. But this makes me feel like my career growth will be extremely limited because I can't handle management. And, as a result, people in management positions have become a major anxiety/depression trigger for me. Whether it's a police captain on a TV show, or a news story about the new mayor of Boston, I feel like such a failure as a person because I know I could never have a leadership job with such responsibility. I wish I could handle it, and I wish that I had an interest in it, if for nothing else than the prestige and the higher pay. (I'm selfish.) But I know that if I ever tried, I would be a terrible manager and would probably fail spectacularly. Anyone else feel this way? Do you think one can still have a rewarding career and stay out of management? Am I a weak, failure of a person because I can't handle going that route?
  5. so i just came down from a huge hypervenalating session.. and worried im gonna work myself up again. I think I need to give a quick background of my situation so this makes sense. I'm 29. i have an associate in graphic design. I have about a year left until i have a bachelors in graphic design. my mom has three degrees (occupational therapy, speech therapy and social work) and has been unemployeed for about 8 years and is dealing with issues of her own. ive lived with my mom and my grandparents my entire life. my grandpa is now 88, my grandma 85, my mom 59. we're all in metro detroit, michigan. i have a gappy employment history with nothing lasting over a year, if you don't count my internship that im at now (unpaid, it's a one person business (my boss)). Over the last few months, my anxiety has skyrocketed. I've started having almost daily anxiety attacks. The major thing that triggers me is dread of the future. I think if I write this down it'll help.. it usually does. So the big factors I panic about are: 1. that I've choosen the wrong career, especially for this economy, and that I won't be able to find a job or get hired as a graphic designer, and that I might not even be able to get hired at some minimum wage retail job. 2. that my mom won't be able to support herself, and that there is no way I would be able to support her. I know she does more, but it seems like all she does right now is sit in her room listening to music. At least she started seeing my med doc, and my doc said she can help my mom get on disability. I really hope she'll be able to pull herself out of what's happened, becuase it wasn't always like this. she had a stable job when I was a teenager. Stuff happened that screwed up her life in my mid 20's. 3. what my mom and I will do when my grandparents/her parents are no longer with us. I have laid out a plan, but I still panic. If anything else, both of us get full time minimum wage jobs, and she hopefully will have disability as well. we move to some place that's warm so there's no cold winter, and rent the cheapest 2 bedroom apartment we can find, where the area is semi-decent, and there's jobs. maybe somewhere in texas. So, those are basically the areas that I panic daily over. I think it helped that I wrote it down somewhere. I'd write it in my blog here, but I thought other people would relate to panic over a career in this crap ass economy. I also worry about how our state of living will be (or whatever it's called). I also get really depressed because I did really well in h/s and college, and my mom has three degrees and got like 4.0's all the way through.. and the thought that both of us will end up working at some minimum wage jobs is beyond depressing. I think back to something I said to myself at my first job as a library page when I was 16 ("well, this is just a JOB, not my CAREER") and I start crying because I think, I might just end up back in that very same kind of job again, 20 years later. I think I'm not looking at things logically when I get like this. I know my mom's situtation has affected me in a huge way. I also know the last time I tried finding any kind of job (cashier, etc) was around 2009-2010, which was the height of unemployment in Michigan. Now, the rate is slowly going back down (it's at 9% now I think, back in 09 it was at 14%, I think the highest it ever went was 15%.) My grandpa says its cause everyone's leaving Michigan (lol) but even if that is the case.. eh it leaves a bit more jobs open for the rest of us left here, right? I guess it just boils down to the fact that I'm freaking out that I won't be able to get hired and have a job that pays enough to live off of, and what to do if my mom is with me.
  6. So... I have about half a year left before I complete my Bachelor's degree in Graphic Design from a local University. I have an Associate's in Graphic Design, but it didn't do much in the way of finding jobs, since I got it just as the economy was tanking. Anyway, my mom has serious issues that I've touched on before. Basally, she has 3 degrees: in Speech Pathology, Occupational Therapy, and Social work. Yet, she has been unemployed for almost eight years. She is going through serious issues, and has been for years, and I know my situation is different from hers, but when my emotional side takes over, logic gets shoved into the background and ignored. Anyway, I have a huge issue with panic attacks over whether or not i'm going into a major that will be able to support me. I seriously have attacks over worrying that I'll end up homeless sometimes. I worry that I'll finish, and no one will hire me, even for crap entry jobs, and that I'll end up having to work minimum wage, with hardly enough money to just scrape by. I worry I'll have to give up my meds, my insurance, basically everything just to have food on the table (and at times I worry I won't be able to afford that after rent and I'll pretty much just starve.. it happened to someone i know). I have visions of living in a total run down tiny apartment, in an area with rampant crime, and worrying every day about being rapped/murdered/mugged and shot. Or, that I'll end up homeless and end up living in the sewers or under a bridge. I periodically check on craigs list and indeed, and there are graphic design jobs that pop up. Some are beyond what I can offer (some even seem to want the entire damn world), but some make me think I could handle them. But then I freak out thinking how I'm competing against like 300 other people for one position, and how most of those have experience under their belts.. and I just panic some more. (And I seriously home that 300 people completing for ONE graphic design low pay job is exaggerated). The fact of it is.. my mom's been unemployed for almost 8 years. She has severe issues.. but now I'm worried about her on TOP of my own shit, and it just drives me to a breaking point. Just recently I started worrying that she won't have any retirement (hell, i might not at her age either.) She's going on 60.. and i worry that if she doesn't get a job soon, she'll have NOTHING when she ends up having to retire at 80 or so. And I have NO CLUE how I'd support her.. ON TOP of my own self, if I'm making minimum wage. It just sends me into a panic attack. I know my mom is influencing how I see my own future. And I try not to let that get to me. All I want is a career where I can make enough to live ok. Decent. 30K would be wonderful. 20K would be hard, but doable. 25K would be good. I just worry worry worry that I won't be able to get a career in graphic design, and have to fall back on minimum wage jobs, and not be able to support myself. With minimum wage in Michigan, you make like 7:40 an hour. Per month after taxes that comes to $924 a month. Is that feasible? To live off of... without starvation? I guess I just panic over this. All the time. ALL THE FU*CKING TIME.
  7. Hi everyone, Just found this board tonight and I like a little snark in my mental health support so I thought I'd join. Instead of the standard noob post I thought I'd pose a topic. I'm in a highly chaotic industry. It's fast-paced, sort of technical, creative on command, and in most cases requires you to consistently maintain the constantly re-prioritized workload of 3-4 normal people. I am a rapid cycling, mixed state bipolar with ADD and anxiety. So basically unless I'm in a major depression I'm like a pig in shit in this type of work. I thrive on the chaos. For most of my life I've been considered very "highly functioning" for whatever that's worth. At my peak I am a force of nature, especially while in a nice level of mania (the part before I decide people are plotting against me.) But as we all know, the fun part never lasts. In about 2004 I spun out after a long period of mania (before I started the whole rapid cycle thing) that became combative, disruptive and paranoid. I had not been fully diagnosed with bipolar yet (although I was suspicious), so I just assumed that those who had been out to get me....well....got me. I had a good reputation in the industry at the time and didn't have too much trouble finding a new job. However by that time I was both in a depression and quite traumatized at the feedback I had gotten in the "HR huddle session" (aka you're fired speech) about my combative behavior so I over corrected. I was meek, conflict averse, and would burst into tears at the absolute worst moments. Needless to say that lasted less than a year. I wouldn't call it an outright firing so much as getting paid to decide to quit. I took that severance money and took 2 months off (smart move) for sort of a self funded disability. I went on a pill cocktail scavenger hunt and eventually landed on Lamictal (350), Abilify (10) and Effexor (100 something) and a Xanax topper. Since then a couple of drs have been a bit confused by that cocktail but it at least seemed to calm me down. (wayyyyy down if you know what I mean) Cut to current day, I have enjoyed a long bit of stability (until recently) except for lots of weight gain and and a slow "underwater" feeling but maybe as close as I feel like I can get to being normal-ish. I'm back to a good job now,performing adequately, but the point of the story is (and there's a lot of blanks I will fill in later) When I'm medicated to what people feel is a proper dose, I feel like I suck at my job. I get so much less done, it's less innovative, and I'm much less charismatic about selling my ideas. I'm also very hard on myself. I don't know what else I would possibly do for a living at this point. Right now I'm only just starting on 1000 of Depakote (and 2 mg xanax for sleep) - started a week ago after a misguided (but awesome) vacation from my drugs. Reading all about the weight gain (i need that like a hole in the head) but we are here to talk about work). Has anyone ever changed careers as a result of their "new" personality? Not making any rash moves b/c I know it takes a while to master a new cocktail, but I thought it was an interesting (if overly long) question to ask.
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