Tracking Energy Levels
It can be a struggle to keep track of your energy levels in everyday life when you are part of a system. Especially people pleasing and avoiding members who manage daily routines are often highly unaware or dismissive of the current state of the body. Counterintuitively they are most ignorant when they are thriving because there is no pressure to be aware of the rest of the system (and they have enough energy to keep intrusions from other system members at bay).
Since I am the host of a relatively high functioning OSDD-System I know what I am talking about. For years on end I was kind of aware that I was an alter of a system while ignoring the fact at the same time. I avoided thinking about it too much besides times of crisis. My aphantasia (I am the only one in our system without a vivid imagination) made it exceptionally easy for me to overlook evidence of our dissociative disorder – I wouldn’t be affected by flashbacks of any sort and to this day I am not able to access our inner world. In therapy we developed a mode of inner communication by default. From that very day I am progressively able to communicate with the others by nodding and headshaking and other techniques we came up with. Our system consists of 16 members and everybody can cofront with me (to varying degrees) as our host. Full switches are relatively rare. Due to that we consider ourselves as OSDD while we express many features of major DID. We kind of diagnosed ourselves since we are a mental health professional and specialized in diagnosing and treating dissociative disorders. Our co-host and inner self helper deals with inside affairs and gained a stunning amount of insight in our system structure. Together we came up with a method to track energy levels in a parsimonious and easy way.
So what do you need?
contact with at least one alter who is able to access the system’s state (an inner self helper, a main protector, a gatekeeper) and willing to participate
some knowledge about spoon theory (will be described below)
agreement on where to place the information (a message board or display in the fronting room, a central spot in the inner landscape or an accessible outside-world spot like a notebook or a board)
So what is spoon theory?
Spoon theory was developed by a disability activist with chronic pain to vividly explain what it feels like to live daily life with chronic illness(es). The idea is that your energy level for the day will be limited as part of your condition and vary widely between different days due to somatic and psychological factors. You wake up with a certain amount of spoons (the amount of energy you have on that very day) and have to manage your daily choirs – which will all be energy-consuming to an extent. So certain activities will “cost” a specific number of spoons. The challenge is to make it through your day without using up all your spoons before bedtime. Later it was enhanced by mental health activists to include psychiatric conditions in fork theory. Since we see body and mind as intermingled we kept the spoon analogy for us. Do as you please.
So what to do?
Get in contact with the inner self helper (or alike) and introduce them to the theory. Then figure out how to measure your daily count of spoons. In our experience it will come quite naturally to alters already assigned with jobs like theirs. Decide in an inner meet up or with the main alters how to communicate the spoon-count of the day (like described above). You are done!
-The Adaption System