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Work for a smaller company
If you're unwilling to leave the field of IT entirely, you could step down from that FTSE 100 position and join a much smaller company.
Having a smaller network to deal with, far fewer computers, and users who don't have that same attitude towards you will remove the weight of the world from your shoulders.
You could even step into the voluntary sector and really feel wanted and valued. Although not-for-profit organisations have their own set of headaches, they aren't nearly as intense as those you experience in the upper echelons of capitalism.
Architecture is another career that would require more education. But you like numbers. You like the order and design of the world around you. And you could learn CAD more quickly than you learned subnetting.
Architecture is one of those fields where the sky could literally be the limit. You could spend some time in the great outdoors. You would be using the numbers you love so dearly, you would have a modicum of control over your own fate — perhaps being self-employed — and you wouldn't have to deal with downed networks, failover, end users and lazy programmers.
Photo credit: C O D Library/Flickr
You've spent years dealing with bugs and software in general, but perhaps not as a programmer. So why not join the developer ranks and start coding yourself? Most of the programmers I know are good, although quirky, people. Of course some of them live solitary lives and work long hours, but they are dedicated to what they do.
The biggest difference between programmers and other roles such as admins or consultants is that programmers' stress is specific in nature and tends to involve only one or two major problems — for example, code that won't compile or features that need to be added.
I'm not arguing that programming is easier or less stressful, but you won't have to deal with the avalanche of problems coming from nearly every corner of every building you walk into.
Photo credit: Lower Columbia College/Flickr