5 reasons working could change your life if you're living with a disability

From earning your own money to meeting new people and making a difference in your community – working could change your life for the better.

If you’re living with an injury, illness or disability, you may have faced barriers when looking for work. Employers may have overlooked your skills and abilities or not given you a chance to prove yourself.

At APM we believe there’s work out there for you where your skills and talents can shine. We’ve seen first hand how working can have life changing benefits in someone’s life – and we’d love to help you experience those benefits too.

Here are 5 benefits of having a job for people with an injury, illness or disability.

1. Financial benefits

Working allows you to earn money for yourself. This can give you more financial freedom and independence and allow you to look after yourself better.

On top of paying for things you need right now, earning money allows you to save up for things in the future. You can work towards long term goals like improving your housing, buying a car or going on a holiday.

Some people want to earn money so they can help their family out or give their children more opportunities. Being able to support the people you love can be very meaningful.

When you earn your own money you can choose how you want to spend it. This can help you feel like you have more control in your life and more freedom to do the things you want to.

For Maddy, one of the best things about having a job is the sense of independence it gives her. She said: “A job to me is that I know that I can stand on my own two feet eventually.”

Watch Maddy’s story:

Read a full transcript of this video.

2. Social connections

Working gives you the opportunity to meet new people and make connections in your community.

Connecting with others in a meaningful way is an important part of mental wellbeing. Social connection is linked with lower rates of anxiety and depression. It can also boost your self esteem and help you become better at communicating.

Many workplaces have a diverse range of employees and customers. This means you can meet people from different walks of life and learn about other people’s experiences. Diversity in the workplace can help you grow important skills like empathy and creative thinking.

Working in a team means you can also share your unique perspective and experience with others. You might be able to help solve problems, improve team morale or help make the workplace more inclusive.

Using your unique skills and experience to benefit your team can boost your self esteem and confidence.

For Pat, meeting new people is one of the best parts of having a job. He said: “I look forward to going to work and just meeting different people.”

Watch Pat’s story:

Read a full transcript of this video.

3. New skills

Having a job is one of the best ways to gain new skills and knowledge. Whether you’ve never been employed before or have lots of work experience under your belt, there are always new things to learn.

Learning new things at work is a great way to keep your brain engaged. It can be very satisfying when you get good at a skill or work out how to solve a problem on the job.

Working and learning new skills gives you the opportunity to grow and work towards your long term goals. For example, learning new skills might help you get a raise or become qualified for a different job that you want.

For Ashley, having a job at Crown Perth gave her the motivation and confidence to work towards her goals. She said: “I’m working my way up and looking into different areas and sections of the hotel and resort.”

Watch Ashley’s story:

Read a full transcript of this video.

4. Sense of purpose

Working can provide structure and stability in your life. Instead of waking up and wondering what to do with your day, a job gives you a sense of purpose.

When you work, you contribute to something bigger than yourself. This can help you feel like your life is having an impact on others in your community.

Having something to do everyday can give you direction and help you set goals for your future. It can also help protect your mental well being.

For Caley, having a job gives him a reason to get up everyday. He said: “It allows me to give back to the community and put a little sunshine on their faces.”

Watch Caley’s story:

Read a full transcript of this video.

5. New outlook on life

Having a job can help you feel more positive about life and more confident in yourself. It can empower you to plan for your future and work towards your goals.

People find work meaningful for different reasons. For some people, working gives them an opportunity to help others or make a positive difference in the world. For others, working lets them earn money or support their family.

You may find that work gives you a feeling of accomplishment or allows you to work towards your goals. You might enjoy the opportunities it gives you to meet others and learn new skills.

Dan worked with APM to find a job, and said that it changed his life for the better. He goes home after each work day feeling proud and happy.

Watch Dan’s story:

Read a full transcript of this video.

Ready to get to work?

If you’re ready to experience the life changing benefits of work but need a little help getting there, APM is here for you.

We help people living with an injury, illness or disability find work and access support to succeed in their job.

To get started, call us on 1800 276 726 or register online.

One of our friendly employment consultants will get in touch with you to set up a meeting. In the meeting, we’ll chat with you about your employment goals and any barriers you’re facing looking for work.

We understand everyone has different needs and goals when it comes to work. Our support services are tailored to you as an individual.

Whether you’re looking for a job or need help to stay in your current role, we’re ready to help you experience all the benefits that work offers.