Honestly, although you put in an effort and escaped alcohol’s clutches, that doesn’t automatically mean you’re home free. Without denying that giving up alcohol will greatly improve your life, you will have to prepare yourself to face the upcoming challenges of your newfound sobriety.
One of the challenges that most of us recovering alcoholics will have to deal with at some point is going to the first job interview. Even though I feel excited about getting back in the workforce, I must confess I’m also pretty nervous about the situation. After all, a job interview is a stressful event that tests the strength of my sobriety and my arsenal of coping strategies.
Don’t Apply for a Job if You’re Not Ready
Although my wife never said anything to me, I felt pretty uncomfortable the first couple of months after I got home from the rehab center. While she was working from 9 to 5 and sometimes during the weekend, I wasn’t involved in any project with monetary compensation. I also felt pretty embarrassed about the whole thing, since I was aware that our financial situation wasn’t very solid either.
When I brought this issue up to my therapist, she told me that she can understand how I feel, but this is not a good time in my life to get a job. I pretty shocked and frankly, angry with her for giving me this piece of advice. Later on, I understood that my therapist was right: giving the numerous changes you undergo immediately after rehab, you don’t need additional stress on your plate as you settle in your sobriety.
I started accommodating to the idea that someone else – in this case my wife – will provide for me, so a year afterwards I ended up procrastinating rather than actively looking for a job. But I’ll tell you this story some other time.
If you’re thinking of looking for employment and job interviews in the first year of sobriety, I urge you not to listen to yourself. Not only will you expose yourself to stressful situations unnecessarily, but ending up with a job you’re not satisfied with or that is not fulfilling only paves the road to relapse.
Dealing With My First Job Interview
As I’m approaching my third year of sobriety, I believe I’m ready to put my coping strategies and sobriety to the test. The other day when I stumbled across a classified ad looking for a woodworker with minimal experience, I knew I was ready for real world challenges.
Although I was aware that finding employment in these harsh economic times is not going to be easy, I decided to give it a shot and apply. To my surprise, they called back a few days ago and scheduled an interview. While I am feeling excited about the opportunity to do something I enjoy, I am also pretty nervous about how things are going to play out.
To put my mind at ease – and from prevent it from running all sorts of worst-case scenarios in my head – I decided to start preparing minutely for the interview. While I realize I can’t anticipate all the questions they’re going to ask me, I’m currently preparing an answer for the most obvious one ‘Why did you leave your last job?’ After weighing the pros and cons, I’ve decided to be honest and admit my addiction if the topic comes out. What would you do?