Season 3 Episode 3: Navigating the Neutral Zone with Dr. Stephen Jones

Why do they call it the neutral zone?? it doesn’t feel neutral at all its just hard! Join Brandi and James as they talk to Dr. Stephen Jones about his research, books and personal experience with navigating transition. They cover the range of the transition experience and talk tools and practical steps for healthy transitions. Imagine if one can only function at 70-80% of your underlying capacity when living cross culturally what does accounting for that difference look like?

Stephen W. Jones is father of three and husband of one. He works to see transformation in the lives of individuals, communities, and the world. He yearns to see beauty rise out of pain, and believes that rooting lives in eschatological hope sets people free.

Jones teaches, trains, and studies at the intersection of intercultural relations, cross-cultural ministry, and political science. He is a Ph.D. Candidate in International Development at the University of Southern Mississippi and earned his M.A. in Intercultural Relations from the University of the Pacific, in conjunction with the Intercultural Communication Institute.

He was formerly Assistant Professor of International Studies at Crown College in Minnesota, where he oversaw the Center for Global Engagement and the International Relations (B.A.) and Intercultural Youth Development (B.S.) majors.

Podcasts by Stephen:

Books by Stephen:

Season 3 Episode 2: Women in Cross-Cultural Ministry with Amy Galloway

Join Brandi and James as they welcome Amy Galloway to talk about the roles of women in cross-cultural ministry. The topics range from how to create organizational change towards a minority (30% must be represented for change to happen) to the development traits women experience at different points in their journeys.

Amy Galloway has an undergraduate degree in International Studies and a masters in Communication, both from the University of Denver. She has spent the the last decade helping Novo walk through a cultural transition to increase gender diversity among their leaders. Now her primary focus is writing, leading retreats, and visioneering an activation/development branch from Malaga Spain with Amy contributions to the team includes through her communication gifting and heart for prayer. She coaches and trains in the discovery of calling and navigating major transitions in vocation, parenting, transitions, and women in leadership.

Amy writes a blog on life transitions called Beautiful Upheaval, where this reflection was originally posted.

Season 3 Episode 1: Conflict Resolution with Dr. Janeen Davis

Join Brandi and James as they interview Dr. Janeen Davis to figure out why we can’t all just get along! Janeen shares about her experience as a cross cultural worker and care provider and how she found the Peace Pursuit Quickstart Guide and shifted from being a conflict avoider to a peace pursuer.

Janeen Davis, PsyD, MFT, has served overseas in a large global ministry since 2007, where she led a Member  Care team in providing care and support for personnel throughout Asia whenever they experienced personal struggles, difficult team dynamics, and family needs.

In 2020, Covid forced her to evacuate her Asian home and transition back to the States, where she now  partners with Peace Pursuit International as a Master Practitioner and Trainer and serves as the Director of Counseling for a church in TN. She founded Purpose & Peace Solutions to be a center point for specialized  ministry services, through which she provides executive consulting, conference presentations, group trainings, creative development of media and marketing resources, and also offers virtual care for missionaries and Christ followers around the world. She can be reached at for member care, training and retreats, conflict resolution, ministry consultations and counseling.

Find out more about the Peace Pursuits Model.

It all begins with the Quickstart Guide and the question… Do you want to resolve a relational problem?

If so, you’ve come to the right place. People from many cultures and age groups have used our QUICK START GUIDE to help resolve their interpersonal conflicts.

Experience shows that if both parties in a conflict prayerfully, thoughtfully, and sincerely complete the QUICK START GUIDE, they will reach appropriate confession and forgiveness in the vast majority of situations.

Even if only one party completes the QUICK START GUIDE, the probability of reaching peace is greatly increased.

Remember: proceed prayerfully, thoughtfully, and sincerely.

Visit the Pursuit‘s website to find out more

Season 2 Episode 9: Care During Covid; What We Learned From The Pandemic

Join Brandi and James as they discuss James’ recent research and presentation on what the global staff care and counseling community have learned from the pandemic about caring staff. Not all of the changes that have impacted our cross cultural workers have been negative and many we need to keep doing. In many ways our cross cultural workers have benefited most in some of the ways the world has responded to the mental health impacts of the pandemic. It is key for those in care positions for remote staff to capitalize on those opportunities.

4 Lessons from the Pandemic

  • Lesson 1: Virtual Engagement
  • Lesson 2: Working Remotely
  • Lesson 3: Mental Health Impacts
  • Lesson 4: Collaboration  

Click Here to View James’ Presentation

Thanks to Alex_MakeMusic from Pixabay and Dee-Yank-Kee for the free Christmas music in the podcast!

Season 2 Episode 8: Trauma with Dr. Phil Monroe

Join Brandi and James as they interview Dr. Phil Monroe with Langberg, Monroe and Associates about trauma. Dr. Philip Monroe leads Langberg, Monroe & Associates and is a psychologist with three decades of clinical experience. His personal, professional, and spiritual musings may be found at

Trauma is a wound of the heart that affects every part of our being; our bodies, minds and hearts. It takes a long time to heal. Trauma is not an event so much as it is an experience. Trauma is the experience people have when they are overwhelmed and cannot cope. The effect someone has from that experience best defines long term trauma.”

“When we talk about trauma we are talking about an ongoing, long lasting effect. It may be soon after an event or experience or it maybe a years and decades later that it starts to show up.


Dr. Diane Langberg

  • Diane Langberg’s Youtube Channel
  • Suffering and the Heart of God (Book)
  • In our Lives First (Devotional)

Jenena Fisher

Trauma Healing Institute

Season 2 Episode 7: Navigating the Risk in Returning with Anna Hampton

Join Brandi and James as they interview Anna Hampton, Author of Facing Danger, to talk about navigating theology of risk and the risk of returning to locations after a crisis. In the Fall of 2022 we are still navigating challenges of Russia’s war against Ukraine and other evacuations from around the globe. We strongly encourage your organization to attend their Risk Assessment and Management Training. We are excited to announce her Fear and Courage Webinar on November 16th. Sign up by emailing her at

Anna Hampton,

Anna grew up as a farm girl in the Midwest and felt called to work overseas as a young teen. By her mid-twenties, she was in full-time work leading teenagers all over the world. In 1996, she began a long-distance courtship with Neal across three continents, and after marrying in 1999, sthey began raising their family in Afghanistan. She and her husband serve with Barnabas International in pastoral care and risk consulting. They have three adult children and one daughter-in-law. 

Anna shares God’s Word interwoven with personal experiences from living and working for a decade in war-torn Afghanistan and from over twenty-seven years of ministry experiences traveling in almost seventy countries. She writes with a realism and depth from her own trials of facing overwhelming obstacles with faith and joy while also living in extremist environments for almost two decades while raising three young children. She is the author of Facing Danger: A Guide Through Risk, Facing Fear: The Journey to Mature Courage in Risk and Persecution (est 2023), and contributed to the Risk Assessment and Management (RAM) Training that Neal wrote based on her book. 

Anna holds a Master’s in Educational Leadership from Bethel University and a Doctor of Religious Studies from Trinity Theological Seminary. She is a Bible teacher and conference speaker at international women’s events in Central Asia, the Middle East, and in the US. She writes at and at Behind the Veil: A Public Journal of a Hidden Life. (


Purchase her first book Facing Danger: A Guide Through Risk. Her new book Facing Fear: The Journey to Mature Courage in Risk and Persecution Hopefully will be available late Spring 2023 or Summer 2023.

Personal Blog


The Cry of the Soul: How Our Emotions Reveal Our Deepest Questions About God by Dan Allender and Temper Longman III

Thinking, Fast and Slow is a 2011 by psychologist Daniel Kahneman.

Season 2 Episode 6: Transition Coaching with Tim Austin

Shop Talk with Brandi and James

Join Brandi and James as they interview Tim Austin to talk about the challenges of transition and ways coaching can help. Tim shares from his experiences and training as a life coach both concepts and practical ways for people to create space and creativity amidst major transitions. Click Here to view the transition curve Tim talks about (curtesy of

Tim Austin

Tim Austin is a Life and Leadership coach. Following 20 years of living and serving cross-culturally, Tim founded Encompass Life Coaching. He views himself primarily as a guide for leaders in the marketplace and ministry navigating challenging transitions.  He and his wife Eve served in Tajikistan and Turkey before returning stateside in 2016.  A non-negotiable on his work calendar are his one on one coaching clients.

While doing life overseas has been filled with adventure and opportunity, Tim would still say his greatest joy is being married to Eve for 30 years and raising their three kids together. To relax and unwind, Tim enjoys hikes and exploring all the ethnic food and coffee options from their new base in the Boise area.

Tim hosts a podcast and blog at

Connect with Tim Here:

find him on Instagram @encompass_life_coaching

Season 2 Episode 5: Spiritual Direction with Roslyn Manson

Join Brandi and James as they meet with Roslyn Manson to discuss what is spiritual direction and how it might be helpful for cross cultural workers. She shares some resources to find out more about Spiritual Direction and why you might want to meet with one. Enjoy!

Roslyn Manson graduated as a spiritual director in 2017, having completed an accredited 3-year formation program. In 2018 she graduated with a Master of Spirituality from the University of Divinity. She is currently based in Melbourne with SIL Australia, where Roslyn’s role is focussed on spiritual formation.

Season 2 Episode 4: Leadership Coaching with Keith Webb

Listen to the latest episode of Shop Talk: with Brandi and James as they interview Keith Webb to talk about Coaching and why coaching skills are an essential for good leadership.

Keith Webb is a coach, trainer and author. He advocates for a different kind of leadership, one that works on-the-go with people everywhere. He lived 20 years in Asia and interacted with leaders from many different cultures. These experiences led him to question conventional leadership practices. Now He writes, speaks, and consults on topics related to leadership. Visit his personal website and blog at for resources, articles and links to his trainings being offered around the world. Don’t forget to buy his book “The Coach Model” available in print or ebook.

Season 2 Episode 3 “The Couch” with Paula Wong

Join Shop Talk with Brandi and James as they talk with Paula Wong about her work with cross cultural workers. Dr. Wong was trained in Australia and now lives in Switzerland where she covers a broad range of issues in her Counseling Practice primarily with cross cultural workers. Through her work Paula holds an unshakable hope for healing both individuals and relationships. Part of her training includes a psychoanalysis approach and sometimes she says, people need to just get on the couch!

Season 2 Episode 2: Merry Cross Cultural Christmas

Join Shop Talk with Brandi and James as they interview friends from around the world gaining insights at ways to celebrate Christmas cross culturally. Special thanks to guests Mary Lou Smyth, Christopher Arnold, Tim Robinson and Randi Israel!

Thanks to Alex_MakeMusic from Pixabay for the free Christmas music in the podcast!

Depression Part 2 (Episode 13)

Shop Talk with Brandi and James

In this episode Brandi and James get a little deeper into what to do about depression. One of the big keys is growing in self awareness so you know when you need help and how to get it. It is easy to ask someone to help you move because it is obviously a two person job. Dealing with the mental, emotional, physical and spiritual challenges of depression are no different.

Types of Therapy

Some types of therapy that were mentioned in this episode are:

  • CBT (Cognitive Behavior Therapy)  is a form of psychological treatment that has been demonstrated to be effective for a range of problems including depression, anxiety disorders, alcohol and drug use problems, marital problems, eating disorders, and severe mental illness. Numerous research studies suggest that CBT leads to significant improvement in functioning and quality of life. In many studies, CBT has been demonstrated to be as effective as, or more effective than, other forms of psychological therapy or psychiatric medications.
  • DBT (Dialectical Behavior Therapy) is a type of Cognitive Behavior Therapy. Its main goals are to teach people how to live in the moment, develop healthy ways to cope with stress, regulate their emotions, and improve their relationships with others
  • EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization Reprocessing) is a psychotherapy treatment that was originally designed to alleviate the distress associated with traumatic memories (Shapiro, 1989a, 1989b). Shapiro’s (2001) Adaptive Information Processing model posits that EMDR therapy facilitates the accessing and processing of traumatic memories and other adverse life experience to bring these to an adaptive resolution. After successful treatment with EMDR therapy, affective distress is relieved, negative beliefs are reformulated, and physiological arousal is reduced.

Emotion Wheel

One of the main topics was the need to grow in self awareness especially as it relates to your own emotions. This Colorful emotion wheel could be helpful for that

Resilience with Geoff Whiteman, LMF (Shop Talk Episode 12)

Join Brandi and James as they interview Geoff Whiteman, LMF discussing his research on resiliency and cross cultural workers. His study was completed by 892 workers representing 41 nationalities and serving in 148 countries. He will be speaking a Missio Nexus in September on what the data said about organizations and resilience.

Visit his website at to find out more and sign up for his newsletter.

Grab your copy of the UNIVERSAL HUMAN NEEDS WHEEL and other go-to interventions Geoff uses to help promote resilient growth among global workers at:

Resource Recommendations:

Depression – Part 1

Depression and Cross Cultural Workers

Notes from the episode

If the number of people depressed globally every year represented a country’s population, it would be one of the biggest countries in the world ( Globally, more than 264 million people of all ages suffer from depression annually (WHO).) In this first episode James and Brandi discuss what depression is and how and why it might be more prevalent amongst cross cultural workers.

I had a black dog, his name was depression (

World Health Organization (WHO) At its worst, depression can be a frightening, debilitating condition. Millions of people around the world live with depression. Many of these individuals and their families are afraid to talk about their struggles, and don’t know where to turn for help. However, depression is largely preventable and treatable. Recognizing depression and seeking help is the first and most critical towards recovery. In collaboration with WHO to mark World Mental Health Day, writer and illustrator Matthew Johnstone tells the story of overcoming the “black dog of depression”. More information on the book can be found here: For more information on mental health, please visit:… Disclaimer: This video may contain links and references to third party-websites. WHO is not responsible for, and does not endorse or promote, the content of any of these websites and the use thereof.

A Christian perspective of Depression (

Episode 9: TCK part 2

Shop Talk with Brandi and James, join us for Third Culture Kids Part 2 with special Guest Dr. Joel Cagwin

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: 

  1. Reconciliation
  2. Affirmation
  3. Farewells
  4. 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.)

TCK – Part 1

(Third Culture Kids)

Families in Global Transition resources

Lauren Wells coaching, training & resources

Interaction International resources

TCK Connect groups

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)

Feelings Wheel

Grief (Part 2) – Dr. Ted Wueste

Shop Talk with Brandi and James Episode 7. Listen in to part 2 of an interview with Spiritual Director Dr. Ted Wueste

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

Grief (Part 1) – Dr. Ted Wueste

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


Join Brandi and James as they discuss how to listen well.
It’s not about the nail (or is it???)

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.

New Years Resolutions or how to make CHANGE that lasts

Shop Talk with Brandi and James Episode 4

Join Brandi and James as they discuss how to make resolutions stick and the science behind making change.

Subscribe to “Shop Talk” a podcast with Brandi and James. Available on Apple Podcast and Android and GooglePlay

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.


Enneagram: Interview with Jenni Swink

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.

Subscribe to “Shop Talk” a podcast with Brandi and James. Available on Apple Podcast and Android and GooglePlay

Recommended Resources

The best place to get started would be 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