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Careers for Socially Awkward People

Careers in mathematics, social sciences, communications, healthcare, maintenance, law and life sciences may appeal to socially awkward people because they do not require a lot of social interaction or offer opportunities for controlled interaction.

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Career Options for Socially Awkward People

Some careers require people to be capable of socializing effectively with others regularly. People who are socially awkward may find long periods of socialization may be intimidating or they may unintentionally cause others to feel uncomfortable because of their poor social skills. Socially awkward people may want to focus on career options that do not require constant socialization as part of their duties or offer opportunities for talking to others with a clear focus, which may help them be more comfortable when communicating with people.

Job Title Median Salary (2016)* Job Outlook (2014-2024)*
Historians $55,110 2%
Janitors and Building Cleaners $24,190 6%
Mathematicians $105,810 21%
Paralegals and Legal Assistants $49,500 8%
Medical and Clinical Laboratory Technologists and Technicians $50,930 16%
Technical Writers $69,850 10%
Microbiologists $66,850 4%

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

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Career Information for Socially Awkward People

Historians

Historians typically need to have a master's degree in history, but a doctoral degree may be necessary for advancement. Their professional focus involves researching historical events and studying historical materials. Although some positions may involve educating people about a historic event, it's possible for individuals who are not comfortable with a lot of socialization to pursue work opportunities that focus almost exclusively on research. For example, historians who work for the government may study the history of a particular political position or issue and then prepare a written assessment of that topic.

Janitors and Building Cleaners

Janitors and building cleaners are responsible for building hygiene. Tasks they perform include things like wiping down surfaces, mopping floors and ensuring that the environment is sanitary. It can be possible to find work in this field that involves working alone most or all of the time so janitors and building cleaners may rarely interact with the people who work in the offices they clean. On-the-job training is required for janitors and building cleaners and certification is optional, but may increase job prospects.

Mathematicians

A master's degree in mathematics is required for most career opportunities for mathematicians. Their work involves researching mathematical theories and they use the data from their research to do things like determine how effective a new medication is. They may spend long periods of time working on calculations or studying ways to apply math theories. Since they may spend a lot of time working on independent research, individuals who want to pursue a profession that doesn't involve a lot of social interaction may be interested in becoming a mathematician.

Paralegals and Legal Assistants

The most common way to prepare for a career as a paralegal or legal assistant is to earn an associate's degree in this field. Paralegals and legal assistants work with lawyers and help prepare materials for clients or for court. Tasks they perform can include organizing documents for court, filing paperwork and producing written reports. Their work may also involve talking to clients and others related to a case they're working on, so this job may still be a good option for people who are socially awkward because it can provide them with opportunities for interaction that have a clear purpose and may help them improve their social skills as a result.

Medical and Clinical Laboratory Technologists and Technicians

Medical and clinical laboratory technologists and technicians may spend much of their time wearing masks and other protective gear, so communication may be restricted, which makes this an ideal profession for those who do not want to interact socially during their work day. Their work involves collecting and assessing samples of things such as blood and the test results can be used to help diagnose patients, although they may also perform other types of duties and research. Technologists are required to have a bachelor's degree, while technicians can pursue their career after earning a certificate or associate's degree.

Technical Writers

Technical writers are communication professionals who use the written word and images to present technical information. They write things like instruction manuals and their work may involve breaking down the process of assembling a product or using a specific piece of equipment so that people can follow the directions. Technical writers need to have a bachelor's degree, and those that focus on working with medical or scientific equipment may need training or experience in those fields. Many technical writers are self-employed, and while they're writing and assembling material they may spend a considerable amount of their time working independently, so this career is an option for those who aren't comfortable with a lot of socialization.

Microbiologists

Microbiologists spend a lot of time working in laboratories, where they perform scientific tests on microorganisms. When they aren't in a laboratory they may be in an office writing a report on their research findings. Since they spend most of their time conducting tests and analyzing the results and work in a closed environment with a consistent team they do not have a profession that requires a lot of social interaction, so this profession may appeal to those who are socially awkward. It's possible to start out in this field with a bachelor's degree, although those interested in independent research need a doctoral degree in microbiology.

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