You’ve gone through an addiction recovery program. You detoxed, learned about drugs and alcohol, met with groups, and gained skills to fight cravings and handle stress. But now you’re going home, back to your house, friends, family and routine. And you’re going back to work. What in the world are you going to do?
Navigating a return to the workplace after going through an addiction treatment center can be overwhelming. There may be a million questions floating through your head: should I tell people where I was? Should I keep it secret? What will people think of me?
Often the first challenge to returning to work is deciding how to handle questions about your absence. While some people who ask these questions will be sincere, others will probably just want to hear the gossip. Remember that you are entitled to your privacy, and you can disclose as many or as few details as you wish. Try not to worry too much about what other people say or think about you; you can’t control their actions, and it’s best to focus on yourself and your own recovery during this time.
Another workplace challenge is the sudden increase in stress. After being gone for a month or several months at drug rehab, it’s likely you’ll have a lot of work on your plate. You’re going back into a stressful environment, and you’re more vulnerable to stressors. During early recovery, take time to relax and de-stress as much as possible; find healthy outlets and strategies for coping with stress, and attend regular meetings and support groups in order to prevent relapse. You may even want to talk to your boss about reducing your workload for a bit to help you transition back into the workplace.
As you adjust to the routine of work, you may be uncomfortably aware that some things have changed. Where before you might have looked forward to work parties, business trips, and happy hour, those activities have transformed into minefields that threaten your sobriety. Take steps to avoid relapse, whether that means asking for soda or water at a bar or steering clear of the scene entirely.
Despite these challenges, work can be a great asset to your sobriety. Having a stable, structured routine is important with early recovery. Having to show up and do the work every day will help you keep on track with your sobriety, and holding down a job can boost your self-esteem. Generating an income can also keep you motivated and accountable, and help you integrate back into society as a whole.
If you or someone you love is addicted to alcohol or drugs, please contact our empathetic representatives today. We’re ready and waiting to speak with you about our luxury drug rehab program, where you’ll go through detox, gain practical skills, and learn how to live a life of sobriety. We will walk with you and support you in your recovery, and give you the tools you need to reclaim a successful, fulfilled life.