Connecting ASD Students to Career Options: 20 Tips You Don’t Want to Miss

Let’s start with a 4 question  self-questionnaire. You may  give it to a student or  your son/daughter . 

1. Do you know the career that is right for you?

___ Yes    ___Not Sure     ___No

2. Do you have a unique interest or ability, but don’t know the right course of study or career to pursue?

___ Yes    ___Not Sure     ___No

3. Can you name your personal preferences and emotional strengths?___ Yes    ___Not Sure     ___No

4. Do you have many strengths yet, have challenges such as, social anxiety?___ Yes    ___Not Sure     ___No

20 Career Tips Just for the Student and h/her advocate. I offer you these career tips to find career possibilities. No matter where you are in the process of seeking a career, try these tips to discover more about yourself and the career right for you.

1. Identify your hard skill strengths in cognitive interests. For example, you may enjoy watching a good debate, learn chunks of information quickly, or have an interest in reading and studying social issues, such as civil or gender rights. If any of these sound like you, discover how each of these can be applied to a career of interest. There are many outlets to pursue your strengths. Here is a video just for you.

2. Take note of your unique ways to self express. There are many ways to express your genius capacities. Some include music (singing, playing an instrument, writing music and lyrics), the arts (visual spatial talents to paint, sculpt, or in designing architecture). These strengths can lead to an idea for a business or self employment. Many people have extraordinary talents that fit into a careers and are highly valued in society. Doing what you love can still take work, yet, can be motivating, invigorating, and fun.

3. Personal Preference Strengths (PPS) are especially important to know, even if you have no idea of a career choice or if you already know a specific career interest. For example, you may have a preference to choose a setting that operates on a slower pace over a fast paced setting. PPS are enhancements that can positively support your motivation, participation, or performance in a career. Once understood how to apply your preferences, they offer you predictability and become the fabric of how you work, adapt, and become most effective. Your individual preferences can make all the significant difference to enjoying your job and maintaining a career. I call it ‘in the groove’. A person is most ‘in their groove’ or ‘in their own skin’ when understanding and using their personal preferences at their best. Being aware of your PPS is like having insight into knowing if the job atmosphere is right for you.

4. Your Emotional Strengths-

Emotions drive everything we do. Daniel Goleman claims our emotions are as important to managing a career as  cognitive skills. Having only hard skill ability will not guarantee your effectiveness in a career. It is important to know your best emotional strengths and how to use them to your benefit, such as, interviewing for a job, maintaining a career, or asking for a promotion.

Here are some emotional strengths that you may notice in yourself.  Emotional strengths are valuable to becoming a good employee.

5. Do you avoid letting other people’s opinions change yours? If you answered yes,  you are true to yourself and show a  sense of self-awareness? ___ Yes ___Unsure ___No

6. Do you usually manage  well when you are in a group working on a task or a project? ___ Yes ___Unsure ___No

If so, you have shown self-awareness.

7. Do you accept correction about how to do a task without reacting defensively? ___ Yes ___Unsure ___No  If you answered yes, you show self- regulation.

8. Have you assisted another person when they asked for help on a task? ___ Yes ___Unsure ___No   If you answered yes, you are showing to be trustworthy.

9. When faced with an important task, do you get started working on it? ___ Yes ___Unsure ___No   If you answered yes, you are taking initiative.

10. Do you admit to yourself or someone else when you have made mistakes on a task? ___ Yes ___Unsure ___No   If you answered yes, you are showing that you are conscientious and trustworthy.

11. Have you came to a class or a meeting prepared?

___ Yes ___Unsure ___No   If you answered yes, you are showing that you are motivated.

12. Have you contributed ideas or work tasks with others on a project? ___ Yes ___Unsure ___No   If you answered yes, you have participated well on a team.

13. Have you thanked someone for doing you a favor, such as a teacher or a boss? ___ Yes ___Unsure ___No   If you answered yes, you are self-aware about when to show gratitude.

14. Have you helped someone who was struggling and needed assistance? ___ Yes ___Unsure ___No   If you answered yes, you were showing  empathy for someone else.

15. Have you found deep meaning and purpose in taking part of  a group, such as, bringing awareness about the global environment, or helping your church feed hungry families?

___ Yes ___Unsure ___No

If you answered yes, you are showing the ability to take part with focused group awareness.

16. Have you shown the unique ability to convince someone to buy something or do something beneficial? If you answered yes, you have shown to have influence with others.

17. Have you  sensed the moods of other people through their body language or facial expressions? ___ Yes ___Unsure ___No                  If you answered yes, you have shown a deep social understanding in receptive communication and social awareness.

18. Are you a good listener to someone else you admire?

___ Yes ___Unsure ___No

If you answered yes, you have the ability to build a bond with others.

19. Have you participated with with others on a team or a project?

___ Yes ___Unsure ___No   If you answered yes, you were capable of cooperating and collaborating on a team.

20. Have you asked for help when you had a problem? ___ Yes ___Unsure ___No

If you answered yes, you have shown self-awareness.

Congratulate yourself if you discovered some ways you have self-awareness and social awareness.

Take the Strengths and Career Index   only $9.99.  Use code: Index65

Thank you for reading blog.

Dr. Jackie Marquette

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End Note:

I believe these tools have something unique to bring to the table for youth with ASD. This blog represents a strengths model to support personal preferences and emotional needs, known as SAFETY Works©.

In my research, I listened to the voices of hundreds individuals with autism and their advocate/parents about how they found meaning and how they wanted to live their lives. Over three decades of study and experience, I used the data to create these tools to help people facilitate getting the right job, pursue college, and/or to live interdependently. With personal experience, I have a an adult son with autism who has become an accomplished artist.  He taught me how to support his self-determination, self-advocacy and adaptation. We personally experienced many trials and errors with set backs and progress. My mission is to pass these tools to people with autism and their advocates to create and live their adult lives their own way.

Please offer your comments, because I want to hear them. I spend a lot of time writing. If you like my blog and think it can help other people, please share it.

Thank you for reading blog.