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.
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