Recovery from an addiction to drugs or alcohol is a lifelong battle, and managing ongoing sobriety is a difficult task. However, some may look to merge their recovery journey with a professional career. For many, the communities and relationships made along the way can be so profound that they feel compelled to give back for the opportunities given throughout their journey. In contrast, others may look to work while keeping their recovery in focus. Regardless of the reason, if one is in recovery themselves or not, seeking a career in the recovery community is a noble effort. There are numerous ways for your client to find a professional foothold as a member of the recovery community.
Knowing Your Options
There are various ways to bring a positive impact to the recovery community. While most may first envision therapists, counselors, and psychiatrists as the hallmark professional roles, there are many other opportunities and ways to make an impact. Serving as a sponsor, volunteer, attending group meetings, writing, and more can be good ways to pursue a career in the recovery community. Moreover, each role requires a different skillset based on an individual’s best fit.
The wide array of careers available ensures that individuals can play to their strengths in the recovery community and offer the kind of support necessary to create a profound, positive impact. While some may feel compelled to go back to school for a degree in the field, others may utilize their other skills to find a fruitful career in this space.
Balancing Your Recovery and Profession
While having suffered from addiction is not a prerequisite for an effective recovery professional, it can provide a unique perspective on approaching a professional career in the community. However, individuals navigating their sobriety while seeking employment in the space must first ensure their practices for sobriety are effectively developed. The stresses of sobriety are prevalent even well into one’s recovery, and there may be concerns regarding managing urges or relapse, especially when one is in a position to help others navigate sobriety.
Your client’s sobriety is critical, and taking time to practice new coping strategies, find independence, and establish a consistent, sober lifestyle, are all crucial while navigating what can be a very vulnerable space. Taking time as a sponsor or alumni in group meetings can provide perspective on what it means to be a figurehead in the addiction recovery community while challenging individual practices. Spending time as a peer in recovery, alumni, and a sponsor all scaffolds the necessary skills needed while giving each person time to determine if a career in the recovery community is right for them.
The Power of Volunteering
Volunteering can take many different forms, especially when engaging with the recovery community. Volunteering is a great way to get on the ground with those suffering from addiction and can acclimate an individual with the unique needs, goals, and atmosphere necessary for a healthy, effective recovery. While some dedicated recovery facilities may accept volunteers, looking to various soup kitchens or other opportunities can all introduce an individual to the space. This approach is necessary to create an informed, realistic image of the needs and challenges of those in recovery while establishing poignant connections to create a relevant social network. Likewise, this will also bolster your client’s resume, and those navigating recovery themselves can use their time volunteering both as a means to a professional goal as well as an ongoing, effective therapeutic outlet.
Going Back to School
Becoming a counselor, psychiatrist, or nurse takes time and schooling, especially when focused on the recovery community. While obtaining a degree or certificate in this field takes time, it is never too late to look to various programs to pursue this degree. The education therein is paramount for being effective as a professional in a recovery community. There is no age too old or young to begin pursuing a career as one of these dedicated professionals.
Opening a Sober Home
Sober homes play an important role in recovery. Opening a sober house can provide a space for those navigating their sobriety to continue practicing their recovery techniques while testing the waters outside the walls of a dedicated recovery facility. The kinds of licensing and permits required to open these homes will vary from state to state or even county to county, and they still need a significant amount of care and research to operate safely and effectively. Researching the best practices is essential when dedicating oneself to these sober homes.
Seeking a career opportunity in the recovery community is a noble effort, and there are many ways to bring your skills and passion to such an important space. Suppose you are looking to get engaged with the recovery community or balance your sobriety with your ongoing involvement in the larger recovery community. In that case, we at Pacific Sands Recovery Center can help. We are prepared to help you manage your sobriety while pursuing your professional goals of any kind, all while providing a safe, accepting, and supportive space to become more informed about the importance of a sober life ahead. Located in beautiful Santa Ana, California, our unique and personal approach to each individual allows us to personalize our time with you. For more information on how we can help you, or to speak to a caring, trained staff member about your unique situation, call us today at (714) 492-1119.