Yesterday we explored what it means to be intentional with our change, or more so, with our transitions, and some of the benefits being intentional has to offer. Today we’re going to look at a specific example that demonstrates the dramatic effect a seemingly simple change can have on our otherwise orderly lives.
Deric's big change.
Meet Deric, a professional who is in his second year of a Master’s program. Proud of his reputation as a high achiever, the choice to work full-time while completing his Master’s was an easy one.
Deric recently learned of a health issue that required he make a dramatic change in his health regimen, which currently consisted of walking up and down the stairs in his office, eating mainly fast food and snacks at the office, and generally a meat and potatoes menu at home.
On the surface, Deric took the news that he would need to begin carefully planning his menu and incorporate an exercise regimen into his life with resolve. Diet manual in hand, he purchased the foods specified by his physician, and joined a fitness club.
Here's to your health?
After the first week, however, Deric was overwhelmed. Where he typically grabbed a bowl of cereal for breakfast, picked up his lunch from a nearby fast-food restaurant, and threw together a quick dinner at home, he now had to plan, shop for and prepare all of his meals.
The menus looked easy enough from Deric's initial review of the menus, but when he started trying to cook to them, he found the preparation took a lot longer than he had anticipated, and many of the ingredients were new to him, requiring a learning curve in preparing as well as enjoying the meals.
The extra planning, preparation and eating time cut into Deric’s time for school work and the extra work he usually brought home from the office, resulting in his having to stay up later than usual most nights. He had originally planned to go to the gym in the mornings, but because of his restrictive diet, Deric’s energy level crashed and he had a hard time getting to work on time, not to mention waking up early enough to make and eat breakfast, and work-out.
Cut and run.
By the third week, Deric had completely given up on the diet in favor of his ‘old’ life. As a result, Deric’s health issues persisted, and his self-esteem took a hit, as he believed that giving up was the equivalent to being a failure.
On the surface, Deric thought that incorporating a new diet and exercise regimen into his otherwise fairly structured life would be a breeze, yet it was anything but. The demands of his daily life, as well as unexpected consequences from his lifestyle change took a toll in ways Deric hadn’t anticipated.
Deric’s situation is but one example of how change can interfere with our daily life. Stay tuned tomorrow where we’ll look at another example, this time of how daily life can interfere with our transition to change. Later this week we’ll dig into the nitty gritty of what happened, why, and how to avoid these issues in our own change situations.
About the Author
Megan Rounds, Ed.D. is owner and principle perculator of perculcha, llc.
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