TCK’s and Trauma focusing on the research of Dr. Lindsay Stone. Dr. Stone is a TCK/MK herself and her research focused on stories of TCK’s and identified specific trauma categories they often experience.
One thing the globally mobile lifestyle requires from us all is to adjust to change. In Third Culture Kids: Growing up among Worlds, David C. Pollock and Ruth Van Reken introduced the concept of ‘building a RAFT’ to help ease us and our children through moves to new cultures.
RAFT stands for:
- Think Destination
But RAFT is not only for moves across cultures. It is a change model for transitions of all kinds and can help us adjust in times of rapid change, ambiguity, even turmoil, such as what we are experiencing today.
(For full details on RAFT, please refer to Third Culture Kids, now in its third edition, by David C. Pollock, Ruth Van Reken, and Michael Pollock.)
(Third Culture Kids)
Families in Global Transition resources www.figt.org
Lauren Wells coaching, training & resources www.tcktraining.com
Interaction International resources https://interactionintl.org/resources/
TCK Connect groups https://interactionintl.org/programs/tck-connect/
Third Culture Kids
In this publication, the authors explore the experiences of those who have become known as third culture kids (TCKs) – children who grow up or spend a significant part of their childhood living abroad. The book is rich with real-life anecdotes and examines the nature of the TCK kid experience and its effects on maturing, developing a sense of identity, and adjusting to one’s passport country upon return. The authors give readers an understanding of the challenges and benefits of the TCK life and provide practical suggestions and advice on maximizing those benefits. (Amazon)
One way to process your own grief is through writing of a lament. Here is one way to engage in that process.
Writing your own lament
By James Covey (adapted from Healing Teen’s Wounds of Trauma)
One positive way to deal with the hard things that go on in our lives is to create a “lament.” A lament is a way of expressing our pain to God when we feel bad. It might be done in words, in music, in dance or any other form of creative expression.
A lament helps us expose all the stuff that we have tried to hide and share it with God. This is a good way to start telling your story and releasing painful memories. As it becomes more comfortable for you to share it privately with God, creating a lament can lead to sharing your story with another person when you are ready.
There are many examples of laments in the Bible. Trauma after trauma happened to the nation of Israel as a community (wars, captivity, displacement, famines) as well as to individuals (abuse, rape, abandonment, murder). Many of them found comfort in bringing their pain to God. They had an honest way of speaking to God where they poured out their complaints to him, sometimes even as they declared their trust in him. There are over 40 laments in the book of psalms (making it the most common type of psalm). Laments have the elements below in them but they must have a complaint to be a lament. It is helpful to also have a review of God’s faithfulness and a vow of trust in God.
Parts of a Lament
- Address to God.
- Review of God’s faithfulness in the past.
- Complaint. (must have this)
- Confession of sin / Claim of innocence.
- Request for help
- God’s response.
- Vow to praise / statement of trust in God.Examples Psalms 142, Habakkuk 3:17-18, Psalms 130, Psalms 13Here is Psalm 13 and the parts of a lament in it. This might help you in creating your own.1. How much longer will you forget me, Lord? Forever? How much longer will you hide yourself from me? 2. How long must I endure trouble? How long will sorrow fill my heart day and night? How long will my enemies triumph over me? 3. Look at me, O Lord my God, and answer me. Restore my strength; don’t let me die. 4. Don’t let my enemies say, “We have defeated him.” Don’t let them gloat over my downfall. 5. I rely on your constant love; I will be glad, because you will rescue me. 6. I will sing to you, O Lord, because you have been good to me.Vs 1-2 Address to God and Complaint Vs 3-4 Request
Vs 5a Statement of Trust
Vs 5b-6- Vow to Praise
Shop Talk with Brandi and James Episode number 6 (Subscribe on wherever you listen to podcasts)
followers of Christ to learn to listen to God in the context of contemplative, abiding prayer where God is enjoyed and desire for Him stirred. As I’ve learned and grown deeper in my own intimacy with the Trinity, a passion has developed to help others experience the joy of discerning God’s work and presence in their lives. Believing that God is always at work, I love the ministry of spiritual direction as a means to become aware of and responsive to Him. I desire to create a safe place for people to listen, explore, and respond to the Father.
Find out more about Dr. Ted Wueste at https://desertdirection.com/
Active Listening Skills
- S – S stands for sitting squarely. So you sit and face the person that you are talking to. We should sit attentively at an angle to the person, so that we can look at them directly and show that we are listening to them and paying attention to them.
- O – O stands for having an open posture. Do not cross your arms as this can make us appear anxious or defensive.
- L – Lean forwards to show we are interested in what the person is talking about. It also means that the person can lower their voice if they wish to, if they are talking about personal issues, for example.
- E – E stands for eye contact. Maintaining eye contact again shows that we are interested and listening to what the person has to say. It doesn’t mean stare at the person as this can make them feel uncomfortable, but maintain good, positive eye contact.
- R – R stands for relaxed body language. This shows the person that you are not in a rush to get away, but are letting them talk at their own pace.
Join Brandi and James as they discuss how to make resolutions stick and the science behind making change.
To make sure your goals are clear and reachable, each one should be:
- Specific (simple, sensible, significant).
- Measurable (meaningful, motivating).
- Achievable (agreed, attainable).
- Relevant (reasonable, realistic and resourced, results-based).
- Time bound (time-based, time limited, time/cost limited, timely, time-sensitive).
Professor Rubin also notes that the definition of the SMART acronym may need updating to reflect the importance of efficacy and feedback. However, some authors have expanded it to include extra focus areas; SMARTER, for example, includes Evaluated and Reviewed.
Join Brandi and James with expert Jenni Swink as they look at the basics of what the Enneagram is how it can be used for cross cultural workers.
The best place to get started would be https://www.enneagraminstitute.com. Check out their free test and began to explore your own Enneagram.
The Enneagram’s structure may look complicated, although it is actually simple. It will help you understand the Enneagram if you sketch it yourself.
Draw a circle and mark nine equidistant points on its circumference. Designate each point by a number from one to nine, with nine at the top, for symmetry and by convention. Each point represents one of the nine basic personality types.
The nine points on the circumference are also connected with each other by the inner lines of the Enneagram. Note that points Three, Six, and Nine form an equilateral triangle. The remaining six points are connected in the following order: One connects with Four, Four with Two, Two with Eight, Eight with Five, Five with Seven, and Seven with One. These six points form an irregular hexagram. The meaning of these inner lines will be discussed shortly.
The Sacred Enneagram: Finding Your Unique Path to Spiritual Growth by Christopher L. Heuertz
The Road Back to You by Ian Morgan Cron and Suzanne Stabile
The Wisdom of the Enneagram by Don Richard Riso
What is Burnout?
“an extended period of time where someone experiences exhaustion and a lack of interest in things, resulting in a decline in their job performance.” “In those situations, the demands being placed on you exceed the resources you have available to deal with the stressors.”- David Ballard.
Certain amounts of stress can be positive resulting in peak performance. However, eventually more stress does not result in more productivity. There is a point where excess stress results in a decrease in productive resulting in fatigue, discouragement and Burnout.
Symptoms of Burnout
- Withdrawing from others
- Cynicism about self, others, work
- Lowered frustration tolerance
- Interpersonal Problems
- difficulty concentrating
- forgetfulness (long term and short term memories)
- Health; blood pressure, tight muscles,
- Exhaustion, Loss of energy
- Getting sick more often and easier
- Withdrawing from responsibilities
- Lack of Motivation
- Feeling of failure vocationally
- Reduced sense of satisfaction or reward for hard work
- Sense of helplessness
- Belief you are no longer effective
- Generally Decreased Satisfaction
- Falling behind with an inability to catch back up, resulting in being more behind
- Sense of Shame (feeling of failure)
- Feeling helpless, trapped and defeated
What to do
- Recognize – Watch for the warning signs of burnout
- Reverse – Undo the damage by seeking support and managing stress
- Resilience – Build your resilience to stress by taking care of your physical and emotional health
Some Things to help reverse symptoms of burnout. If you can’t imagine having the energy to do any of these things seek help from a counselor, coach or friend.
- Take rest/relaxation seriously- do the things that rest our body, mind or soul
- Margin/Boundaries – say no to things. The challenge with this is sometimes saying ‘no’ results in feelings of shame “I’m not good enough”. Don’t buy in, burnout happens from overextending one’s abilities
- Cultivate a rich non work life – church, friends, family, community
- Sleep– good, restful sleep. It might even be helpful to monitor your sleep for a week and see how many hours of quality sleep you are getting.
- Organization – it may be worth not doing other things in order to plan out a day, week or month in a way that seems more sustainable
- Physical health; eating right, sleeping enough and well, getting exercise
- Social Awareness – Know when its you, and when its them
- Find new friends.– Perhaps your networks is small, unavailable or negative