Friday, October 28, 2011

Disequilibrium- A curable disease caused by change. And what to do when you think you might be in it!

 I recently, (OK, less than a week ago) resigned my position at a local church, so I'm brushing up on my strategies for coping with life change. The following was the most useful information I learned while training to be a Teacher Mentor for NC Public Schools...credits go to Dr. Sprinthall.  

Disequalibrium -  
Description-a feeling of being overwhelmed by job and personal life, usually characterized by reduced job performance related to a reduction in accuracy and efficiency, that strikes in times of change. Disequilibrium is a natural product of change, but prolonged disequilibrium can threaten job security, health, and personal relationships, if not recognized and treated. 

Disequilibrium strikes in times of change-
·               New job or change of job description
·               New baby
·               Death of a loved one
·               When learning a new job skill or taking on a new task
·               When starting a large project at work, home, or as a volunteer
·               When there is a change in your daily routine; (soccer season or changing to Daylight Savings Time)
·               Divorce, separation, or any major change for family member

What are the symptoms?  How do I know I got it?
·               Suddenly and uncharacteristically forget routine chores,(i.e., forgetting to pick up the kids from school, missing appointments)
·               Become accident prone
·               Cry easily and/or are irritable. You snap at others over little things
·               Feel exhausted and tired all day long and have trouble falling asleep at night
·               Oversleep, uncharacteristically late
·                Lose and misplace things like your keys, wallet, important documents
·               Unable to recall simple or basic learned information.
·               Exhibiting a majority of the above behaviors during a period of change and feeling overwhelmed by life.

How do you treat Disequilibrium?
·               Eat a balanced diet.  Skipping meals is forbidden.
·               Get to bed at a reasonable hour and make sure you get your normal 7-9 hrs. of sleep
·               Exercise.  Even though time is at a premium, don’t cut back on your fitness regime.  If you don’t exercise regularly, start now!
·               Cut back on the junk food and caffeine. 
·               Block out time for a leisure activity you enjoy.
·               Treat yourself! A movie with friends, a long hot bath, or read that novel you bought last year.
·               Cut out all “social obligations” that drain you instead of rejuvenate you until you are out of disequilibrium.
·               Make lists. Plan your day out on paper if you have to, but make a list and stick to it.
·               Give yourself a break!  Realize and admit you are only human and do not have superpowers. We all make mistakes.  Simply correct your errors and move forward.
·               Pray for focus, patience, and guidance in the face of change. See ISAIAH 41:13
If symptoms persist, seek counseling- Stephen’s Ministry, clergy, or Medical Professional 

Go Ahead - Google it!