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Finding a Job in Recovery

Making a New Start

Rebuilding self-confidence is an essential part of addiction recovery. It’s natural to worry about being accepted by friends and family and being accepted by an employer. Eventually, you’ll need to clear that hurdle and find some means of generating income. That can be difficult for individuals who may have lost jobs because of their addiction and the negative behavior it produced.

It’s hard to re-establish your independence without a steady source of income. Bear in mind that getting a job can go a long way toward restoring your confidence and independence. If it helps, keep in mind that you don’t have to go out and secure a managerial position right off the bat. Sometimes, starting with small steps is the best approach.


Don’t forget the importance of reaching out to acquaintances, former coworkers, friends and family when you’re trying to find a job. It can be tough going for a while given your condition and the ongoing challenge of addiction recovery. Utilize any contact, any advantage you can as you work your way back into a day-to-day routine. Be prepared for some potentially difficult conversations along the way, as it may be necessary to convince some people you reach out to that you intend on making a new start and that you’re sorry for any transgressions you may have committed when you were using. Sometimes, people just need to know that you’re sincere before they’ll be willing to help.

Learning opportunity

Many treatment programs offer employment assistance and provide advice on how to go about looking for work. You can learn how to handle yourself in a difficult interview, address difficult questions about your past, and how to sell yourself based on experience and skills. Remember that first impressions are important, so be sure to dress appropriately and respond to questions patiently and honestly. Addressing your substance abuse problem and the fact that you’ve been in recovery can put you at a significant disadvantage, so you’ll need to decide whether to broach the subject based on how the interview is going and your instincts about how your interviewer might respond to such information.

The right job

Determining the right job as you emerge from recovery doesn’t have to be an exact science. Bear in mind that you may be better off taking a job you know is temporary, something that can help restore your confidence, help make ends meet and build a good work history. Don’t dismiss the gig economy, which offers many opportunities for people to find work they can do at home or work that they’re comfortable doing independently. If you love dogs and cats, consider starting a pet-sitting business. It’s a high-demand niche these days as more and more people choose to leave their pets in social surroundings during the week, especially with individuals who pet sit in the comfort and familiarity of a home environment.

If you’d rather go the e-commerce route, there are a great number of popular niche-based business ideas these days that have excellent long-term profitability potential. Start by digging deep on a single item to know the ins and outs of its potential (long-term) profitability before taking any steps. Take wireless earphones, for example. According to predictions listed here, wireless headphones not only currently own 31% of the wireless earphone market share, but the “retail market for the headphone industry is also expected to grow to $15.8 billion by 2025”. Who knew, right? This is why it’s best not to overlook any possibility, and to do extensive research on each product that makes it to your list of potentials.

Staying employed

Once you’ve found work, establishing a good work history means observing the basics, things like showing up for work on time, being cooperative and helpful and demonstrating enthusiasm for what you’re doing. If you’re reliable and helpful, an employer will entrust you with more responsibility and you’ll earn yourself an excellent business reference when further employment opportunities arise. Be mindful of your recovery – work can be stressful so it might be advisable to try and work a manageable number of hours in the beginning.

Explore your options and remember to take it slow and easy at first when finding employment after recovery. Be patient: finding a job can take some time but persistence usually pays off in the end. Your confidence will grow with each success.

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