Addiction recovery takes a lot of hard work and dedication, and one of the hardest aspects of recovery life can be getting back into the swing of things when it comes to daily living. After having spent months in treatment at Avalon Malibu, it’s time to get re-acquainted with life at home – to find and maintain employment, to support your family in ways that perhaps you haven’t been able to in awhile, and to begin working harder towards your lifelong goals. There is a lot of hesitancy for those in recovery when it comes to finding employment, however, and it’s warranted because there tends to be some stigma for those in recovery finding work.
Previous studies have found that national costs exceed $400 billion annually on lost productivity, absenteeism, disability and worker’s compensation related to addiction, and for many employers, these issues are very worrisome when they go to consider hiring someone who says they’re in recovery. Ultimately, their worst fear is that they’ll face the same issues with you – of course, you may know well in your heart that you’re going to reach your recovery goals, but sometimes it can be hard to reassure an employer who is already skeptical. Getting a job may take some sincere effort and finding the right opportunity may take some time, just as for anyone, but despite the stigma, the good news is that employers are starting to change their perspective on helping those in addiction recovery to find work because of the many people who are honestly making an effort in their lives.
Stories on the news have highlighted a man who’d not only struggled with addiction but who also had a misdemeanor on his record – and despite the pushback from positions who saw red flags, he finally found a company who considered themselves “recovery friendly”. News sources state that more and more workplaces are starting to overlook employment gaps and minor drug-related police concerns as long as the person they’re working with is open and honest – and ultimately, the goal behind this is to reduce stigma for those in recovery in the workplace. Overall, companies who are “recovery friendly” tend to treat addiction recovery as a medical issue – and with this comes a greater sense of collaboration between the employer and employee to work together on healing.
With more companies starting to embrace the histories of those in recovery, it opens up chances to get back into employment while also having the support of those in the workplace.
For those who need or would like to show potential employers what they’re capable of, volunteering could provide an excellent opportunity to gain new skills, network, and even discover one’s true passions. For many people in addiction recovery, volunteering is a great starting place – and they can even begin while they’re in treatment so that they can find some added structure to their days.
Not only can you benefit from adding some work experience to your resume through volunteering, previous studies have shown that you can acquire many other benefits, such as:
- Building a stronger support system by meeting other people
- Learning new skills and strengthening current ones
- Getting a letter of recommendation for your desired job in the future
- Finding a greater sense of purpose and fulfillment in daily life
- Feeling great after helping others
- Reducing anxiety and depression
- And so much more
Once it’s time to start applying for positions and completing interviews, there are steps you can take to increase your chances of success, such as dressing nicely, arriving to the interview early, and preparing yourself for questions you can expect in the interview. For those with certain conditions, be sure to know your legal rights just in case– there are several Federal Civil Rights Laws that you’re protected under, such as:
- Americans with Disabilities Act
- Rehabilitation Act
- Fair Housing Act
- Workforce Investment Act
As you get to know another employer, be sure to remain open and honest with them. Don’t try to say something that doesn’t accurately apply to you, because you could tarnish the trust in the employee-employer relationship if they find out that you’ve lied. All in all, remain positive and continue trying – the right opportunity will arrive to you when you’re ready.
Avalon Malibu is a world-renowned, California state-licensed mental health and substance abuse recovery center. If you are ready to seek treatment to develop the tools you need to overcome life’s obstacles and be on the road towards happiness, health, and well-being, call us today at 844-857-5992 for a consultation. It’s never too late, and there are people here ready to help you – it’s never too late to begin taking steps towards a happier, healthier life.