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  • Sam DiFranco

<a>What are the best jobs for people with bipolar disorder?</a>

There is no one-size-fits-all job for anyone. This is also true for people with bipolar disorder.

Instead, people with the condition should look for work that suits them as an individual. Here are some things to consider when deciding what kind of job is right for you:

What’s the work environment like?

Will this job support your lifestyle and help you grow as an individual, or will it be too challenging in terms of stress and erratic hours?

For many people with bipolar disorder, a quiet and relaxed workspace can help them to maintain regular schedules which can improve overall functioning.

What’s the schedule like?

Part-time work with an adaptable schedule can be helpful for people with bipolar disorder. It can also be helpful to work during the day.

Overnight and night shifts, or jobs that require you to be on call at night, may not be a good idea because sleep is very important. Maintaining a normal sleep/wake pattern can be beneficial with bipolar disorder.

What will your co-workers be like?

Seek a job where your co-workers have values in line with your own, and who also embrace work-life balance, as this is important to your overall health and well-being.

Having supportive co-workers is also helpful for feeling understood and coping during stressful situations, so seek out those that will support you.

Is the job creative?

Many people with bipolar disorder do best when they have a job where they can be creative.  It can be helpful to find a job where you can be creative at work or a job that gives you enough free time for creative projects.

Once you’ve answered these questions, you should dig a bit deeper to try to better understand yourself so you find a job you’d enjoy.

Think about your:

  1. interests

  2. strengths and abilities

  3. skills

  4. personality traits

  5. values

  6. physical health

  7. limits, triggers, and barriers

Once you narrow down your job choices, do some more in-depth career research.

  1. working duties

  2. required skills

  3. required education or training

  4. required license or certificate

  5. usual work hours

  6. work conditions (physical demands, environment, and stress level)

  7. salary and benefits

  8. opportunities to advance

  9. employment outlook

If you can’t find a job that suits you, perhaps you may want to consider starting your own business. You can create your own job that allows for more creativity and flexibility than you may find if you work for someone else.

However, running your business has its own set of challenges. Depending on what you feel you need, you may prefer a regular structured schedule if you’re living with bipolar disorder.


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