"Small steps, big changes" written on a chalkboard

We have all heard of PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder); less is written about PTG: Post Traumatic Growth. PTG is the positive psychological transformation than can occur after a traumatic event in our life and it’s nice to know it’s an option, indeed they can go hand in hand: “63.2% of trauma-exposed veterans and 86.4% of veterans who screened positive for PTSD endorsed moderate-or-greater PTG.” https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s11126-023-10061-8

The amount of Post Traumatic Growth is linked to “openness, agreeableness, altruistic behaviors, extraversion, conscientiousness, sense of coherence (SOC), sense of purpose, hopefulness” (Wiki). In other words, it pays to be an optimist and the learnable skill set of having your act together pre-trauma will serve you well post trauma. It also helps to have a strong support network i.e. lots of good friends you spend time with… in many ways, you are the sum total of the people you spend the most time with.

I have always endorsed ‘change/grow steadily/gradually before life comes along and forces an abrupt and much more painful change.’ I think of it as akin to Earth’s tectonic plates: if they can gradually adjust to each other, life is good! If not, disaster and earthquake! I urge you to regularly, faithfully, unswervingly pursue your personal growth path to have a well rigged ship for when the storms of life come. I also assure you that there is always a morning after, a new dawn and a new day with many opportunities for new decisions and a new you.

Closing Quotes:

“Hold yourself back or heal yourself back together. You decide.” – Brittany Burgunder

“Trauma creates change you don’t choose. Healing is about creating change you do choose.” – Michelle Rosenthal

“Being traumatized means continuing to organize your life as if the trauma were still going on—unchanged and immutable—as every new encounter or event is contaminated by the past.” – Bessel van der Kolk

“Trauma often shatters belief systems and robs people of their sense of meaning. In so doing, it forces people to put the pieces back together; rebuilding beautifully those parts of their lives and life stories that they could never have torn down voluntarily.” – Jonathan Haidt, The Happiness Hypothesis 

As always, I share what I most want and need to learn. – Nathan S. Collier