Working can prove to be a real challenge for those on the autism spectrum. Even those with milder, high functioning forms will experience at least some problems working or holding down a job. Many of the difficulties experienced by individuals with Asperger’s Syndrome are centered around the social aspects and interpretation of directions.
It is common for those with Asperger’s Syndrome or Autism Spectrum Disorder to prefer jobs that let them do work solo and limits the need to socialize with co-workers or customers. This is particularly so for those who have a lot of anxiety.
Every person is different, and those with Asperger’s or Autism Spectrum Disorder are no exception. What some may struggle with, others may not or may to a lesser degree. When seeking any job, the key is to look for careers and positions that are best suited to their unique talents and abilities.
If for example, someone with Asperger’s or Autism Spectrum Disorder feels a lot of anxiety when under pressure or interacting with customers, then a job as a waiter or waitress is probably a bad idea. This is likely why, a lot of people on the spectrum prefer technical jobs working with computers or related to one of their particular interests that allows them to work at their pace and within their comfort zone.
Some of the best technical jobs for those with Asperger’s include:
- website design
- graphic design
- 3D animation
- network administration
- video production
- data mining
- system design
- computer technician
These jobs all need a lot of dedication and technological knowledge, but are usually performed alone or in small groups, within controlled environments.
For those without a lot of computer skills, there are still a lot of options out there that can enable them work more comfortably. Some of those types of jobs include:
- building maintenance
- video game tester
- content writer
- interior decorator
- affiliate marketer
- business consultant
- real estate investor
- warehouse worker
- shelf stocking
- lawn care
- house cleaning
- assembly line
These jobs require little to no conversation with the people around them in order to prosper.
For those with a desire to express their creativity and have talents to share with the world, they may find the perfect job in one of these areas:
- music writing or playing an instrument
- wood carving
- acrylic or oil painting
These types of jobs allow for more creativity and expression than say a job working as a cashier where the person with Asperger’s may experience a lot of distress or discomfort trying to perform their job duties.
If those with Asperger’s or Autism Spectrum Disorder are given the chance to combine their hobbies and strong interests with a job, they will usually excel much farther in those jobs and it will seem less like work. It will reduce stress levels and work will be something they look forward and enjoy.
Many of those on the Autism Spectrum who have an official diagnosis are able to claim disability, but it wasn’t a fast or easy process. Even though it is a disability and it can be a real challenge to work, it is possible to survive in a job or even start your own business, it is just a matter of finding the right path suited to their interests and abilities.
Whether you’re someone with Asperger’s or Autism Spectrum Disorder, or you know someone who is, I hope this was helpful for you. Let me know in the comments.