Change and early recovery go hand in hand. It’s natural to reevaluate your life, circle of influence, and habits as you pursue a healthier lifestyle. Changing your career in recovery is another genuine desire.
You may be looking for a new focus or a new purpose. You may wish to leave co-workers or managers behind. You may want to relocate to a new part of your hometown or work at something more fulfilling with your time. While a standard part of early recovery, it can be tricky to navigate a career change at this time without proper education and support.
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Changing Careers Early in Recovery: Is It a Good Idea?
Congratulations! You’re pursuing sober living and have renewed excitement and drive to change other facets of your life. You’re eager for everything to be new and fresh. You’re actively looking for ways to improve and enhance your life now that your mind and body are healthier.
This experience is almost another form of “high” or euphoria. It helps you stay motivated and focused but can also be accompanied by tricky overconfidence that could lead to rash decisions.
Everyone’s experience with their newly minted sober living will be unique to their circumstances. Changing your career in recovery is a good idea under the right circumstances, but it could damage your recovery in others. Let’s consider a few considerations to help you make the best choice.
Changing Your Career in Recovery: How to Do It Right
There are several reasons to leave a career during early recovery, but it can quickly go wrong. Before making any decisions, review these points.
Don’t Make Any Rash Decisions
While it may be tempting to simply quit and wash your hands of everything that was part of your “old” life, it’s important not to make rash decisions. If your substance or alcohol use interfered with your job, there might be some professional consequences you still have to work through or make amends for, which takes time.
Take your time to evaluate your job and your career path objectively. Reflect on what a significant change will mean regarding finances, logistics, transportation, family life, and sobriety.
If Your Work Environment Challenges Your Recovery, Stay Connected with Your Support Network
As you build a new life for yourself during early recovery, you create new habits and behavior patterns. It’s vital to continue putting your best foot forward at work rather than simply throwing in the towel. However, it can be a dangerous game when in a toxic environment or surrounded by peers who do not influence your recovery.
Suppose you can’t make an immediate change or try to fulfill your work obligations. In that case, it’s crucial at the stage of your recovery to stay in regular communication with your support network. Constantly remind yourself of your why, the coping skills you’ve learned, and your life’s path.
Take breaks or walk away as needed. If possible, inform your superiors of your new journey and what they can expect from you. If you’ve tried these tactics and you’re finding it increasingly difficult to continue your sobriety in this environment, it may be time to make a career change.
Pursue Stability Over Change
During the phase of early recovery, there’s so much in your life that is already new: your outlook, your trajectory, your mindset, and even your abilities. There is value in maintaining the stable forces in your life that are healthy and do not upset cornerstones of your daily routine unnecessarily. In the future, as you develop more personal autonomy, it may be a better time to make a career change.
Additional Tips for Changing Your Career in Recovery
Create A Solid Plan
If you were to leave your current career path, what’s next? Do you have something else lined up? Will they require background or reference checks that may present hiring challenges due to your past? Will it be an increase in pay or a drop in income? You must have answers to these questions before making any career-related decisions. Create a solid plan to ensure you can land on your feet.
Continue Building Career-Related Skills
If your current situation is stable enough to sustain your recovery, use this period to continue developing career-related skills and position yourself as a desirable recruit for new employers. Whether that means going back to school, pursuing certifications, or attending training seminars, begin developing the skills you need for the future career you want.
Get Counsel and Support When Considering Changing Your Career in Recovery
The compassionate and experienced team at Desert Cove Recovery is equipped to help you navigate sober living and early recovery without losing your sense of purpose or direction. Call today to learn more about how we can help.