to be honest i think that laptop may have problems, besides that though you really don't want to be playing around with a laptop that is system critical to your work, if i were you i'd stick to using windows at the moment for your work and i'd also buy a 2nd backup laptop (either new, second hand or refurbished) and use that to experiment with linux on plus if your machine does have problems like i said you have a backup ready to go so you can still do your work.
ubuntu is not usually as unstable as it seems to be on your machine and why i think it's a problem with your laptop.
a couple of distro's i'd try in your shoes if you don't like ubuntu.
mint :- https://www.linuxmint.com/
opensuse :- https://www.opensuse.org/(i use tumbleweed but i'd suggest using leap for most people.)
Edited by terry1966, 14 June 2016 - 06:04 PM.