In recovery, you are taught that your sobriety has to be a part of every aspect of your life. Without putting your recovery first, you can risk a relapse when you least expect it. As you start mentally going through all the different areas of your life, you begin to cringe when you think about sharing your addiction in the workplace. Why would you want to become so vulnerable to people who may not understand the whole story?
Well, the good news is that you do not have to share anything you are not ready to, especially concerning your personal life. As a person in recovery, you should never share something that might harm anyone, including yourself. There may be, however, some instances that you may need to crossover your recovery into the workplace.
You Are Ready
When you are open to telling others and feeling comfortable doing so, you should talk about it. Keep in mind, though, that time may not come. You have to feel out the situation and decide if that is something that needs to happen. There is no reason for you to jeopardize your position at work or give people ammunition to harm you. You should never lie, but you should never offer up information that could be detrimental to your professional standing, either.
You Could Help Someone Else
Addiction, as you know, happens to people all the time. You do not need to wear an imaginary cape to save everyone who is addicted to drugs and alcohol at the workplace. Still, you should never walk away from an opportunity to be of service to someone who needs help. Before you break your anonymity to someone you work with, you should make sure you are ready for what comes next. If you are considering sharing your addiction with a colleague, run the idea by your sponsor or someone you trust. They can help you see the truth in the situation before you blow your cover.
You Need to be Honest
If you feel like a liar and you are in a place where you know people can understand your past, by all means, share your story! Your ability to stay sober is a miracle, and many people love to hear about a person’s redemption. The thing you really need to contemplate is who your audience is. Being around your coworkers for eight hours a day can give you a good indication of their response. As you let others know what you have been through, you will be pleasantly surprised at how many others will admit to their struggles. Having recovery support in your workplace can be rewarding. It can make you feel relieved that you do not have to keep it a secret any longer.
Your Job Depends On It
Applying for a job usually entails a job application in either a written or verbal form. During this initial process, you may be asked some personal questions about mental health issues or legal issues. Answering questions honestly is the best way to handle them. You do not want to start a job on a lie. Lying to your employer means you will continuously be trying to cover your lie, with other lies, on top of more lies. You will not be comfortable in your job, and your performance may suffer. Plus, if they find out you lied to them when they asked for you honesty, you may get fired at a later date when they discover the truth. The rule of thumb is that you do not have to give more information than needed, but tell the truth, since your job could depend on it.
Your Recovery Depends On It
Once you start implementing honesty and integrity in your everyday life, you should carry that over to your job. Without taking your recovery into your job, the pressure may take a toll on you and lead to a relapse. By practicing the recovery principles in all your affairs, you will be a worker among workers. Even though you may not tell your coworkers that you are working a recovery program, they will see its effects. Your work ethic and professionalism will speak for themselves.
Consider each of these points carefully. There are good reasons to keep your recovery to yourself, but you may also need to disclose parts of your addiction. Base your reasoning on what is best for your overall sobriety. If honesty about your addiction threatens your livelihood, you should consider holding back that information. Your addiction does not have to define who you are in your profession unless you continue to drink and use. If you have worked hard to stay sober, you can rest assured that your recovery will determine the employee you are today.
If you, or someone you know, has a problem with drugs and alcohol, Valiant Living can give you the tools that you need for cessation of drugs and alcohol. Offering a full range of recovery and mental health services, Valiant Living offers “Expanded Recovery” to enrich our clients’ lives in mind, body, and spirit. With the power of recovery, clients are restored to full health and experience life-changing healing.
Call us today to get started: 303-536-5463