Going Back to Work After Completing Treatment

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Mountainside is a living storybook. With each turn of the page, you meet people with amazing stories about how they overcame their biggest challenge – addiction. However, people in recovery face their own set of challenges when adapting to normal life: searching for a job while trying to balance family and sobriety is one of them.

If you are starting your recovery journey, your number one goal becomes learning how to embrace a sober lifestyle and building a new and healthy life. One of the ways you can gain a sense of confidence and self-esteem in your sobriety is through finding and maintaining employment. While being able to find and maintain meaningful employment does wonders for your wallet as well as your sense of independence and self-sufficiency, finding employment can be a frustrating process.

For many, finding the “right” job is a challenging process, especially if re-entering your profession before treatment is not be an option. But finding a simple and basic job is a great way to get back in the workforce. You may want to consider finding employment in areas you wouldn’t have considered in the past. This will help you learn the important lessons of humility and responsibility, while putting into practice the living and coping skills you learned during treatment.

A close friend of mine started out with a part-time hostess position at a popular family restaurant. She went home at the end of her shift and didn’t take her job home with her. It allowed her the freedom to earn a paycheck while giving her enough free time to implement her recovery program. While employed, she established a good working relationship with management and the owners, proving to them that she was a professional and reliable team player with integrity. She rapidly moved up in the ranks, and within 10 months, she moved into a management position with a salary, vacation time, and medical benefits. From that point on, everything just fell into place for her. She moved out of sober living, found an apartment of her own to rent, and bought a new car — all within one year. From there, she positioned herself to move into her dream job through a temp agency and is now a full-time employee working for a drug treatment facility.

The main thing to remember is these types of jobs aren’t meant to be permanent careers. They are meant to help you become responsible, financially independent, and help you reacclimate to a normal daily routine. The first step isn’t the last step. Each step will bring us closer to realizing our deepest dreams and desires. They are stepping stones.
Below is a list of tips and resources that may help you get started. Be sure to start networking with your new circle. Each of these relationships will allow you to get to the next step.

Below is a list of tips and resources that may help you get started. Be sure to start networking with your new circle. Each of these relationships will allow you to get to the next step.

**The Department of Labor’s One Stop Career Center –** The Department of Labor urges those in recovery and looking for work to get into contact with their nationwide network of career centers by visiting their service locator.
America in Recovery – This is a non-profit organization that will link employers looking for labor and willing to hire those in recovery with appropriate job seekers in their area. This is a free service for both employers and job seekers.

**Sign Up with a Temp Agency –** Register with your local temp agency and be ready to try just about anything they can throw at you – after all, any kind of work will get you out of the house and earning. Any recent positive work experience can be invaluable in rounding out some of the gaps on a resume.

**Volunteer –** If paid work eludes you, spend at least some of your time volunteering. Try to find volunteer work that you are passionate about doing and which provides job skills and experience that will look great on a resume.

**Go Back to School –** If you aren’t qualified for the job you want, then get qualified by upgrading your education or training. If dollars are tight, look for job training programs offered at your local employment center.

**Consider Internship Programs –** Know where you’d like to work or what you’d like to do? Then contact them and ask if they accept interns.

**Sign Up to Become an Apprentice –** The Department of Labor runs an apprentice program that matches people looking to train for a trade with over 25,000 employers ready to offer training and labor to those willing to apprentice. Currently, more than a quarter of a million Americans are apprenticing for trades such as becoming a chef, pipefitter, dental assistant, electrician, carpenter, child development specialist, construction craftsman, and many others. People in apprentice programs earn a wage while training.

Remember, you had to scale mountains and swim oceans to reclaim the best pieces of yourself in recovery. Minimum years of experience? Technical skills? Please! You know you’re limitless, and there’s nothing you can’t overcome.

If you or a loved one is struggling with addiction, Mountainside can help.
Click here or call (888) 833-4676 to speak with one of our addiction treatment experts.