Have You Had A Career Involving Your Special Interest?

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Mountain Goat
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13 Oct 2019, 2:39 pm

Nearly all the jobs I have done have involved one of my special interests except one temporary summer job which by its nature, didn't last long.

What about you?



IsabellaLinton
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13 Oct 2019, 2:53 pm

Yes. I specialised in my special interest in Uni, and it led to a successful career until I imploded from burnout.

I never worked in any other field except for a couple of part-time, summer jobs.



IstominFan
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13 Oct 2019, 3:05 pm

No job has involved one particular special interest, but all of my jobs have involved my general interests of books and writing in some form or another.



Trogluddite
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13 Oct 2019, 3:07 pm

Only for a little while - I did a bit of computer programming in my last job. It didn't go very well, really; I was too used to having total control over my coding projects, and I found it very hard to do it as part of a team and with dead-lines etc. To be honest, it kind of killed it as a hobby for a while because it would remind me too much of the stress of work - I've got back into it now that it's just a hobby again, though.


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Mountain Goat
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13 Oct 2019, 3:42 pm

Trogluddite wrote:
Only for a little while - I did a bit of computer programming in my last job. It didn't go very well, really; I was too used to having total control over my coding projects, and I found it very hard to do it as part of a team and with dead-lines etc. To be honest, it kind of killed it as a hobby for a while because it would remind me too much of the stress of work - I've got back into it now that it's just a hobby again, though.


I reached a point where I found I could no longer take another job (Which I hope will change in the future) in one of my special interests (Bicycles) and it has really hit me in the ability to work on my own bikes. I promised a man and lady I know I would repair their bikes and it has been months as I was shutting down just looking at them! I will eventually do them. I am determined because I promised. Maybe if I do just a little bit now and then I can get them done so at least by next year they can ride them again.
It is aweful not being able to do the very things I used to do I could do... It is like my security has been pulled out from under me.



Trogluddite
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13 Oct 2019, 4:04 pm

Mountain Goat wrote:
It is aweful not being able to do the very things I used to do I could do... It is like my security has been pulled out from under me.

That's pretty much I how felt, too. My coding was always a really good hobby for escaping from stress at work before; so when I started working as a coder, I felt like I'd lost one of the best ways I had of coping with the stress.

It's often recommended that autistic people look to their special interests as "strengths" to help them find a job. I think it can be a good thing for some of us, but I'm not so sure that it's always the best advice - I think that "transferable skills" are more important than trying to match the exact same thing. Doing a hobby under the stress of working conditions felt very different to doing it as a self-motivated thing, especially working for a corporation rather than being self-employed. After my experience, I've decided that I'd prefer to keep my interests and working life apart if I can.


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dragonsanddemons
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13 Oct 2019, 4:12 pm

I'm jealous of those who have a special interest they can make a career out of. None of my interests have any practical uses.


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Mountain Goat
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13 Oct 2019, 4:18 pm

Trogluddite wrote:
Mountain Goat wrote:
It is aweful not being able to do the very things I used to do I could do... It is like my security has been pulled out from under me.

That's pretty much I how felt, too. My coding was always a really good hobby for escaping from stress at work before; so when I started working as a coder, I felt like I'd lost one of the best ways I had of coping with the stress.

It's often recommended that autistic people look to their special interests as "strengths" to help them find a job. I think it can be a good thing for some of us, but I'm not so sure that it's always the best advice - I think that "transferable skills" are more important than trying to match the exact same thing. Doing a hobby under the stress of working conditions felt very different to doing it as a self-motivated thing, especially working for a corporation rather than being self-employed. After my experience, I've decided that I'd prefer to keep my interests and working life apart if I can.


The issue is I found that I needed to work in jobs that somehow involved one of my special interests or I would have been too stressed. The one job I did which was not part of one of my special interests wasn't at all easy.



shortfatbalduglyman
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13 Oct 2019, 4:36 pm

No special interest

No career

No hobbies

No job

No job skills

So what, I have no job skills?

Plenty of lil dipshits also have no job skills

They call themselves :evil: licensed clinical social worker :twisted:



domineekee
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13 Oct 2019, 5:52 pm

I got into making Techno in 1992, with a friend. We got our first record deal in 1996. We released about 10 singles, did a few remixes, had a few tracks on compilation albums, and released 2 CD albums.
We gigged in London twice, then went on tour around Europe, playing 17 gigs. While on tour, I met someone and ended up moving to Switzerland 6 months later, where we got married :heart:
My friend didn't want to work over the Internet so we disbanded. I carried on working as a DJ for a while, released one more tune and called it a day in 2001.



domineekee
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13 Oct 2019, 6:03 pm

^ whereupon I packed about 1000 meltdowns into a two year period, (no exaggeration) had a psychotic episode and got sectioned, then divorced.



wbport
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13 Oct 2019, 8:43 pm

I had wanted to be a programmer ever since I read a phamplet "Yes, No, One, Zero" while in elementary school and that was about my entire career. For years I was a contract musician when various churches needed an orchestra for Christmas, Easter, or presenting a major choral work--I had taken piano lessons for over a year around the 4th grade and violin in the 6th. A few years ago I taught chess at a summer camp, a hobby since around the 5th grade.



Borromeo
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13 Oct 2019, 9:52 pm

I'm a novelist (in process of trying to get my first, [Ilnconveniences,[/I] published, and currently typing The Harrowing of Helspeth.)

Sometimes I write with dip pens, or fountain pens, but mostly I use a typewriter. While I am working I like to keep the phonograph going and listen to some good music. Lately I have been on a major classical kick and playing Beethoven's Emperor Concerto, his 6th Symphony, and Chopin's Piano Concerto No. 1 on a windup Columbia "Grafonola" from the early thirties or late twenties. It sounds kind of like a really good radio instead of an old phonograph. All the writing is done under the 40-watt Edison lightbulb of my 1935 Eagle desk lamp.

My daily driver typewriter is a big sit-up-and-beg Remington, the "Paragon 12" model of 1927. But after lnconveniences it broke down due to dirt in the movement and a worn-out ribbon so I am not using it at the moment. Instead I am writing on a Corona 3 Folding Typewriter from 1922. It's very small and shaky and cigar-boxy but somehow it runs 97 years after manufacture.

Also, my desk has vintage books on it and a tombstone radio from 1938.

So I get to use all my special interests in one spot! Also, I need a real job.


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Fireblossom
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14 Oct 2019, 3:35 am

A career? Forget it, I've never even had a short term contract with a job that would have anything to do with any of my special interests. I do however have interest in mythical creatures and fantasy plus I write fiction, so I'm in the progress of hopefully making that a side job by becoming a novelist. I find it extremely unlikely, though not perfectly impossible, that I could one day make a living just out of that, but even having it as a side job would be somewhat satisfying and help me deal with my current boring job (or any other boring job I might end up with.)



Borromeo
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14 Oct 2019, 6:30 am

Fireblossom wrote:
A career? Forget it, I've never even had a short term contract with a job that would have anything to do with any of my special interests. I do however have interest in mythical creatures and fantasy plus I write fiction, so I'm in the progress of hopefully making that a side job by becoming a novelist. I find it extremely unlikely, though not perfectly impossible, that I could one day make a living just out of that, but even having it as a side job would be somewhat satisfying and help me deal with my current boring job (or any other boring job I might end up with.)


Give it a shot! You have a boring job. It's money & you can do good work, I hope--so keep it and moonlight as a fantasy novelist. Bonus awesomeness if you're also adding characters into your books who have terrible occupations but are secretly into something amazing. Runes? Slaying dragons--or taming dragons and riding forth to fight the greatest evils that ever threatened the world??

You can only do what you try. :)


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aquafelix
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14 Oct 2019, 6:51 am

dragonsanddemons wrote:
I'm jealous of those who have a special interest they can make a career out of. None of my interests have any practical uses.

Even a special interest with some practical use can be problematic. I’ve had more than one special interest over the years. I developed a special interests in psychology in my teens and eventually after a lot of detours did become a psychologist. I found the work fascinating, but, working as an aspie therapist was exhausting with all the social contact and demands on my executive functioning. I ended up burning out and then was admitted to a psychiatric hospital for a month (the same place I had worked a few years earlier, ironic yes). I’ve not been the same since. I still love psychology, but my career as a full-time therapist is over. The strain broke me and now I can't manage a full day without coming home with a splitting headache, shut down and non-verbal for the rest of the day.