Spring 2015

Creating a Promising Future for the Individuals and Families We Serve.

By Lisa Ferritti, LMSW
Horizons Therapist

Change is inevitable.  Floppy drives become flash drives as technology moves nearly at the speed of sound. Children graduate from college and launch careers.  Marriages, births, divorces, and deaths happen. Jobs change. Elections alter our collective leadership. Sometimes we may identify the need to make a personal change: to eat healthier, to quit smoking, to exercise more or less, to work or study more or less, to spend less and to save more money.  At its most basic level, all change - regardless of whether at the individual or family level, at work, at school, or in one's community - has three components:  moving from a current state of how things are, through a transition, to a future state of how things will hopefully be. Change can be internally or externally motivated, major or minor, wanted or unwanted. Change can trigger a range of experiences, and many people experience at least some ambivalence about changing. We both want to change and we don't want to change, sometimes simultaneously (Miller and Rollnick, 2013). We might waver between reluctance, willingness, commitment, or resistance to change, and experience a range of emotions including anxiety, excitement, stress, joy, or sadness.

So how do we adapt effectively? There is no magic formula that results in change being viewed as positive or beneficial versus change being viewed as negative or detrimental, as individual responses to change vary. There are some universal factors, however, that promote healthy adaptation to change. A good place to start is to expect mixed emotions and to expect some resistance, as all change, no matter how small, brings with it a degree of uncertainty. It can be helpful to examine your expectations of change by asking yourself questions such as, "Is my expectation reasonable? If I asked 100 people about this, what would they say? Will this matter five years from now?"  Check your energy levels, as adapting to change requires mental energy to figure out how to respond, emotional energy to manage those mixed feelings, and physical energy in possible new behaviors.  Managing stress during times of change can be enormously helpful, and making time to relax, to have fun, and to engage in activities that bring joy and renewal can make change seem less daunting.


Finally, recognize when the demands of change exceed your capacity, resources, or energy levels. Check in with a trusted friend or advisor, or seek the counsel of a trained mental health professional. Your Horizons EAP is here to help! 


Drucker, P. (1973).  Management:  Tasks, responsibilities, practices.  New York, NY:  HarperCollins.


Miller,  W.R. & Rollnick, S. (2013).  Motivational interviewing:  Helping people change (3rd ed).  New York, NY:  The Guilford Press    

Featured Therapist
Tim Griem, LMHC

Tim Griem, LISW, a Licensed Independent Social Worker, works with children, adolescents, adults and couples. Tim has training in the Solution-Focused Approach, Grief Therapy, Narrative Therapy, Motivational Interviewing, Mindfulness and Strategic/Paradoxical Approaches. According to Tim, "I help the person understand how the problems arose and continue to impact their life. Therapy helps them gain some perspectives on the situation and how they might overcome the problem."
Your EAP
Horizons is pleased to be your company's Employee Assistance Provider. This program is available to you at no cost and provides effective problem resolution resulting in decreased distress and increased function for employees. In addition, it helps enhance productivity while decreasing benefit costs for employers and employees alike. If you'd like to access services, please call 
Horizons (319) 398-3943 or email Jennifer Lee.
To expedite service, please identify your workplace. 
Your Newsletter
As your EAP Provider, it is our mission to provide you with valuable and helpful information. We offer this newsletter to you as a feature of our service, with a goal of covering relevant topics and guiding support.

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Did You Know?

1 in 5 American adults will have a diagnosable mental health condition in any given year.(1)

1 Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, Center for Behavioral Health Statistics and Quality. (September 2014). The NSDUH Report: Substance Use and Mental Health Estimates from the 2013 National Survey on Drug Use and Health: Overview of Findings. Rockville, MD.

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