Every stage of addiction recovery comes with new challenges. In the beginning, you had to face the fact that you had a problem with drugs or alcohol. Then, you had to find a treatment program and work through the steps. Now, you’ve reached a new challenge, and this one is cause for celebration. The need to find a job means that you are transitioning well to sober living, and you can find support for finding the perfect position to suit your skills and interests.
Is Long-Term Employment for Recovering Addicts Possible?
Low self-esteem is a common obstacle that you might encounter while looking for jobs in recovery. Before you went to treatment, you might have lost your job due to chronic lateness or being under the influence while working. Entering sober living gives you a new opportunity to demonstrate your ability to stay off of drugs. However, holding a job means that you will encounter unique stressors that could trigger cravings. Putting together a solid support system is critical for anyone exploring jobs for recovering addicts. You can enjoy long-term employment when you ensure that you can continue to attend meetings and sober social events during your time off.
How Do You Find Addiction Recovery Jobs?
There are several ways to approach your job search. In the past, you might have used networking to find out about new positions. You can still do this by reaching out to members of your sober living community. You might have recently made a new friend who knows about job opportunities with their current employer. Many sober living communities and recovery centers also have connections to companies nearby that are hiring. Combining these resources with online searches can help you find a position in a competitive job market.
What Are the Best Jobs for Recovering Addicts?
There is no single perfect job for a person in recovery. The right job for you depends upon your past work experiences, confidence in sobriety, and general interests. For example, you might have had to quit working in a specific field due to your addiction. This is common if you worked in an environment that gave you easy access to drugs or alcohol. In this case, the right job will provide a safer environment that makes it easier to stay sober. Many people even go on to become sober companions or counselors once they’ve completed addiction treatment.
Your time in treatment has also provided you with possible new skills that you can use to your advantage when searching for addiction recovery jobs. Your refined communication skills could make you the perfect person to take on a customer service role or serve tables in a restaurant. If you are unsure of what type of job would be the best fit, you can work with your counselor in sober living to explore potential careers.
What Challenges Could You Face When Seeking Jobs In Recovery?
As nice as it would be to gloss over the truth, it wouldn’t be fair to ignore the importance of honesty for your recovery. Unfortunately, there are still a few barriers to finding employment for recovering addicts. Planning for these obstacles helps you know how to handle them if and when they come up.
Most employers are willing to give a recovering addict a chance, but you could still face stigma about your past. You can reduce the chances of this happening by applying for jobs with employers known for promoting diversity and equality. You can also work with your sober mentor to develop responses to interview questions that fit how much you want to share about your struggles with addiction. You have a right to decide how much you wish to disclose about your past, and there are laws in place to protect you from employment discrimination.
You may also lack positive references, and many employers request both professional and personal ones that can vouch for your reputation. Being in sober living already gives you references that you might not have considered. If you’ve volunteered to help with events or meetings, some of the people you’ve worked with might be able to serve as a reference. Other volunteering projects can also help you to demonstrate your ability to meet the obligations of a job. Staying active in your sober living community allows you to develop positive relationships that foster new job opportunities.
Jobs in recovery are about so much more than just having an income. Working helps you build self-esteem, become more independent, and fill your time doing things beneficial for society. Many people need to stop working temporarily while they seek treatment. If you’ve had a lapse in employment, don’t worry. Leaning on the support of your sober living friends and mentors helps you find the perfect job to utilize your skills and continue working on your personal development.