Articles

Reevaluating Your Career during Addiction Treatment

Mar 20, 2021

Some of the biggest changes in your life from sobriety can happen at your workplace. Prioritizing your own health and well-being can lead to a change in how you see your current job and career. Now that you’re preparing for substance use treatment, reevaluating your profession and your work habits can help set you up for sustaining sobriety in the month and years to come. Today, we’ll talk about the connection between your professional life and your plans for a sober life.

Balancing demanding work and sobriety can be challenging to people in high-profile positions. Without strategies to maintain sober work habits, a relapse becomes more likely. For some professionals, treatment becomes a time to reevaluate their career choice if it’s interfering with their goals for sobriety. With help of addiction specialists, those in recovery can use strategies to manage stress and create incentives for themselves to make work a positive and rewarding experience.

Your Professional Life and Your Sober Life

These may seem like two different parts of your life, but they’re really two sides of the same coin. Your professional life feeds your sober life and vice versa. Figuring out how to integrate the two so they both run smoothly is important.

You may be familiar with the phrase “work-life balance.” It may conjure up images of struggling to split your energy equally to your career and your family. Let’s reboot that thinking. Instead, let’s look at how our sober goals can help our professional life and shape a professional life that supports our sober goals.

Should I switch careers now that I’m sober?

Evaluating a career at any time should give you an opportunity to measure how aligned it is with who you are and what you want. There are a lot of reasons to stay in a career that’s not been satisfying, especially if it contributed to your drinking. The thought of changing careers in the midst of recovery can create anxiety or fear related to having a drinking problem discovered by new colleagues.

Career changes during sobriety may get made if staying in a career truly leaves you feeling unfulfilled or threatens your ability to stay in recovery. For example, working in the medical profession with easy access to substances may make it more challenging for some people to stay in recovery. For some medical professionals, a brief hiatus during the early months of recovery may be preferable. A career in a profession where frequent drinking with clients is customary also poses a problem. It can put you in a position of risking relapse or constantly using strategies to avoid others who are drinking. Some may be deeply affected by these circumstances and others may not find it challenging. Whether to take a break or change careers is an entirely personal decision that no outside person can judge.

Making Work a Positive Experience during Treatment

With employment during treatment, think of managing your work as one of the important building blocks on the way to recovery. You may need to redesign your workspace and workflow to create positive experiences. It could come from exploring options to work at home, changing your start and end hours, or adding a visual reminder of sobriety goals to your desk.

A profession with demanding duties and long hours takes a toll on physical and emotional well-being. Rather than focusing on getting the work done, break up the day with physical activity and mental breaks. These can be motivating and encouraging moments that keep you going all day.

Tips for Practicing Sobriety at Work

Staying sober at work is about keeping your job and sustaining your recovery. But, sober work habits don’t mean just not drinking at work. It means making choices to protect your recovery at a place where stressful situations and difficult people may be a routine part of the day. These factors can threaten your sobriety if left unchecked.

Look for ways to practice making healthy choices when managing your response to the environment and your own feelings during your work time. How you handle the stress on the job can teach you a lot about how you’re handling your recovery efforts outside of work. Recognizing the signs that you’re feeling burned out at a job is also very important.

Another tip for how to stay sober during your career is setting small goals each day and finding ways to celebrate reaching each one. These little victories help you create momentum at work and in all areas of your sober life. Recognizing your accomplishments regularly can boost your self-esteem, too.

Headwaters Can Help

At Headwaters, we understand the unique demands of being a professional in a high-profile career while working on your recovery. We use a multidisciplinary approach to treat and support patients whose substance misuse and mental health may threaten their career. We emphasize the importance of connecting career choices with recovery goals. When patients see each aspect of their lives as connected, they become more capable of steering their career in a direction they want to go without sacrificing their health, well-being, and reputation.

HeadWaters at Origins is a well-known care provider offering a range of treatment programs targeting the recovery from substance use, mental health issues, and beyond. Our primary mission is to provide a clear path to a life of healing and restoration. We offer renowned clinical care for addiction and have the compassion and professional expertise to guide you toward lasting sobriety. For information on our programs, call us today: 844-439-2837.

You May Also Like…