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Navigating life after treatment is challenging for everyone. In treatment, you learned to prioritize your recovery and your health. Outside of treatment, you still have to keep both of these things at high priority, although now you have greater responsibility to gain financial and environmental stability on your own as well. 

Many people struggle to find and maintain employment after completing inpatient treatment programs. Life after treatment can bring about new triggers and challenges. Although it can be difficult, you must find a job as it is a huge step in the right direction to maintain your sobriety. Not only does it help financially, but it also offers a sense of purpose and meaning in your recovery journey. Before you look for employment, it is essential that you establish stability in your own recovery. Make sure to always put your recovery first!

Why Is It Challenging to Find Employment After Rehab?

Employment can be hard to come by with or without addiction playing a factor. Some people may lose their jobs because of addictive or destructive behaviors, or merely because they needed extended time off to go through rehab. This can make it more difficult to find a job moving forward. Unfortunately, there is still the stigma of addiction and substance use in our world. Because of this, some employers neglect to consider hiring people that have a past of using drugs or losing their jobs because of addiction. Many people that experience addiction and go through the treatment process are not properly equipped with the necessary tools and resources needed to secure a job. It is important that we continue to challenge these stigmas moving forward and offer suggestions of ways to help you find a lasting job after treatment. 

4 Tips To Help You Find Work After Treatment

#1. Be Flexible During Your Job Search

When you are in your initial stages of searching for employment, it is important that you keep your options open. Especially as the pandemic continues and society tries to find its new normal, there are an incredible number of job opportunities available. Be able to recognize the time you are willing to dedicate to a job, as there are both part-time and full-time job options available. A full-time job is a huge commitment and can inevitably contribute to stress, especially if you are just coming out of treatment. 

No matter the job you secure, you will want to prove yourself to your employer that you are able to handle the job and the responsibilities that come with it. It is important to recognize that if you struggle with your own self-esteem, trying to prove yourself to an employer can also be a trigger. If you know yourself to not do well under high stress, consider options with greater flexibility. 

#2. Take Advantage of Job Resources

Most rehab treatment programs can connect you with assistance programs to help you find employment during recovery. There are a variety of organizations that help people find employment specifically because they have a history of addiction. These programs do not discriminate and pride themselves on giving people second chances. They can be a very valuable resource to help you get back on your feet.

Many treatment centers will be able to connect you with skills training workshops and other educational sessions to help you grow your personal skills. Most importantly, you will want to have an updated resume when you start applying for jobs. In addition, to help from your treatment center or mental health professionals, there are endless online tools to help you locate a job as well. One concern about online searching is the validity of a source. When you interact with online job searches, make sure you seek secondary approval from a professional to make sure that you are not getting scammed. This is especially important when you apply for a job and send in any personal information. 

#3. Serving Others Serves Yourself

Volunteering and serving others can help bring your own life into perspective. As you are looking for a job, you can dedicate your time to improving your work and social skills by volunteering. Getting involved in service can bring about a sense of purpose while helping you grow your resume. Employers love to see and discuss volunteer and service work with potential employees because it emphasizes well-roundedness in a person. Sometimes volunteer commitments can evolve into a paid job as well.

#4. Grow Your Social Network

You have probably heard the phrase, “It’s not about what you know, but who you know.” Networking is key when it comes to securing employment. Take advantage of the relationships you build during treatment and after, especially in your support groups. Making these connections can increase your sense of social support and self-esteem while building reliable sources of reference when you apply for jobs. Sponsors, peers, and other recovery specialists may be able to supply you with job leads or possible positions that would be a good fit for you. Whether you are just leaving treatment or have been in recovery for some time, these resources can help to expand your network of contacts. 

Finding work after treatment is another challenging task in one’s recovery journey. New obstacles present themself for someone that has experienced a gap in work because of addiction treatment. It is essential to establish employment when you are ready as it helps you to maintain sobriety by contributing to a sense of purpose while relieving financial distress. Four tips to help you find and secure a job after treatment include being flexible in your search, taking advantage of job resources, volunteering, and growing your social network. West Coast Recovery Centers wants you to know that you are not alone. We offer a variety of holistic and traditional treatment therapy options to help individualize your recovery journey. When you are reaching the end of treatment, we can connect you with job resources and skills training to help you navigate employment responsibilities outside of rehab. For more information, give us a call at (760) 492- 6509

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