If you’ve graduated from an intensive inpatient addiction recovery program, going back to work is likely one of the biggest milestones to celebrate in your hard-earned life of sobriety. It marks a new beginning and a fresh start – one where you’re able to reassert your independence, get back into a steady routine and pursue your professional goals.
While it is an exciting time in your life, it’s important to prep yourself for the transition to avoid relapse. By learning how to manage work-related stress and find the right work-life balance, you can protect your sobriety and likely enjoy greater job satisfaction.
If you’re about the embark on the next chapter in your career, talk to your addiction recovery team to develop a comprehensive plan for managing stress – to avoid turning to drugs and alcohol as a crutch.
Here are three tips that can help you stay sober and avoid burnout.
(1) Stick to a schedule. It was easier for prior generations to separate their personal and professional lives. But, with the advent of email and the ability to remotely access corporate networks and applications, it’s all too easy to blur the lines. That’s why it’s a good idea to create a personal timeline for checking work email while you’re at home. That way, you can focus your attention on the task at hand without feeling distracted.
(2) Fill your schedule with stress-relieving activities. Instead of waiting until you’re overloaded with projects, be proactive and sign-up for stress management activities like yoga. Don’t wait until you feel overwhelmed and tempted to fall back on destructive behaviors. Take the initiative and work stress-relief into your daily routine.
(3) Schedule “fun”. So, you likely click “Accept” to carve out time on your schedule for work meetings. But, why not do the same for social activities too? If you live and breathe by a digital calendar, be sure to block off time for yourself too. Lunches with friends and evening spinning classes at the gym should get the same priority.