Returning to the Workplace
When deciding to enter the workforce or advancing your career there are many obstacles one must work through. For an ABI survivor wanting to return to the workforce these challenges can be that much more difficult to overcome. Becoming a productive member of society once again comes with pressures and barriers that can be overwhelming and frustrating at times.
A recent article published by the Brain Injury Society of Toronto (BIST), "Returning to Work After A Brain Injury" discussed the process of returning to work for an ABI Survivor. The article is helpful in that they note that while the process to return to work may be a daunting one, it is certainly possible for some ABI survivors to be able return to successfully return to some form of employment. Returning to work can be a positive step and may even lead to new and exciting career paths!
The first question that BIST asks is, "How do I know if I should return to work?" According to this article, this question is essential to consider and it largely depends on each person's own self-motivation,
"Most people who feel they are capable of returning to work and are motivated will be able to in some capacity. That's right, you are the person who will best determine if you can return to work!"
BIST suggests that this does not mean the transition will be a simple one. You may need to consider an alternate mode of work or a different industry, depending on the severity of your injury. Furthermore it is something that needs to be discussed with others, the article explains,
"Besides evaluating your own desire, it is important for you to talk with different people in your life about returning to work. Talk to your family, treatment professionals, friends. These people will be able to give you feedback about how they see your readiness to work again. They live with you, rehabilitate you, and assess your medical condition. Ask for their honest feedback. Not only will they tell you if they think you are ready, they can provide you with specific feedback on challenges they think you will face upon your return."
Some further steps to take when considering your transition back into the work place are:
- Preparing a list of your abilities and restrictions
- Talking to your employer & those you work with
- Consider working on a gradual basis
- Have a plan for any difficulties you come across
For further information, please visit BIST's website for detailed descriptions and details regarding how and who to talk to about getting back into the workforce.
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