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Once you’ve experienced sobriety for the amount of time that’s right for you, you’ll start thinking about returning to regular life, including a return to work. The thought of taking this significant step can bring up many questions and emotions that can be difficult to navigate. This guide will help make your return to work a positive one.

Start Slowly

There’s no hard and fast rule about how much work you should take on following drug and alcohol rehab. If possible, ease yourself back into work by starting on a part-time basis. If you’re not yet ready to re-enter the working world but want to prepare yourself, volunteering can be a great way to help you do this as you give back to your community by helping others.


Don’t Let Others Affect Your Determination

One of the biggest fears those in recovery have about returning to work is what their coworkers will think of them. The fact is that your time in substance abuse treatment centers is your business. You are not required to share the details with any coworker if you don’t want to or aren’t ready to. This decision is yours to make.

Regardless of whether you share information or what others may say, you always have to come first. Remember your recovery goal and the strength it took to get you to where you are now. Draw on the support of your loved ones and maintain your determination as you move through this new stage of your life.

Be Prepared for Possible Agreements

In some cases, an employer may ask you to agree to the terms of a written agreement as a condition of returning to work. This agreement may include terms such as monitoring and random drug testing, as well as the consequences for not meeting those terms. Be prepared to receive such a document and be sure to keep the lines of communication open with your employer so they can help you when you need it.

Maintain a Work-Life Balance

Work can sometimes become addictive among those in recovery, and it’s important that you watch for this cross-addiction. Work should never become an excuse for missing group meetings, enjoying time with family, or participating in healthy activities that you enjoy. Now that you’re in recovery, it’s easy to feel like you have to make up for lost time at work by working more. However, this will only result in burnout.

Instead, aim to be more efficient at your job. Set daily goals that you know you can achieve and leave your work at work. When you get home, focus on taking care of you. Even the smallest things like eating a healthy meal, exercising, and getting enough sleep can make a big difference to your next working day.

BriteLife Recovery is dedicated to supporting your sobriety. Our aftercare plans include individual therapy, social events, case management, and more to help improve your quality of life and long-term sobriety. Call us today for more information.

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