Tips to Stop Negative Thinking When We Are In Wrong Job or Career

Yesterday, I received an email from one of my clients who was clearly in crisis because he is in the wrong job. His ADD symptoms continue to spiral out of control and it is impacting not only his work, but those around him. He is at the beginning of his process and does not see the light at the end of the tunnel yet (but he will). See if this does not resonate with you:

  • You do not feel as if you "fit it" with your work environment
  • You make mistakes
  • You say the wrong things or you are at a loss for words when you need to speak up
  • You can feel the spiraling effect of those around you losing confidence in your abilities
  • You beat yourself up and "feel stupid" because you just can not seem to get it "right"
  • You think if you just work harder, everything will work out
  • You are able to process the information and connect to your job tasks quickly enough
  • You are working in a "cube" and miserable

It is interesting that basically all of these symptoms either go away or are decreed when we are in the right job or career for us.

But, if you are in the wrong job and you know in your gut that this is true, here are some tips to help you manage where you are today:

  1. Negativity CAN be managed. We all have negative thoughts because most of us were raised with them. For us Warrior Spirits (ADDers), it's only natural to go to the dark side because we think so fast and are literally bombarded with thousands of thoughts every minute.
  2. First notice when the a negative thought occurs. Try noticing for the next hour, or for the next few minutes if you get distracted easily.
  3. When a negative thought comes into your mind, just notice it and wish it well (I know this sounds a bit crazy, but it works).
  4. Then let it go.
  5. Say to yourself – "hmmm that's interesting" or "there goes another one."
  6. Now, you can DECIDE to focus on one thing that makes you feel good, like your supportive spouse, your child's smile, your friend who is always there to cheer you up, or for the ONE THING you actually enjoy about the work you are doing now, even if it is small, like answering emails or eating at a great restaurant near your place of work.
  7. If that does not work, intensify the thought until it is almost overwhelming and it will dissipate, then send it light and let it go.
  8. Now, think about one good thing about your JOB today – one thing that you like to do and do well. It does not mean you should stay at that job, just notice the parts of the job, no matter how small, that you actually make work, understand and derive even a small amount of joy or interest.
  9. For at least one hour during the day, focus on the positive aspects of your work or the work you are doing now. This is not always easy, so take three long breaths in and slowly breathe out and clear your mind.
  10. Here is the most important tip: STOP BEATING YOURSELF UP. It does not serve you in the workplace. These self-attacks only attract more of the same to you.
  11. Now recognize if there is a difference and express appreciation and gratitude for whatever you can about your work, no matter how small.

Remember, you are in the wrong job if all or most of the bullets at the beginning of this post are true for you. I used to think I was "stupid" because I could not seem to copy things correctly as a secretary. But the real truth is that I am brilliant at the work I do now, love it and see it as a gift every day.