Post Traumatic Success Development (PTSD) is positive psychological change experienced as a result of trauma, adversity and other challenges in order to rise to a higher level of functioning.
Traditionally, a lot of attention has gone into diagnosis and recovery from the psychological damage associated with traumatic experiences. Therapies with a primary focus on past events are the norm and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder is increasingly seen as an almost inevitable consequence of experiencing trauma. However, trauma can be approached from a different angle. Several studies show that instead of focusing on what's "wrong" with a person and trying to fix that, the focus should be on what is "right" and building on those strengths. Traumatic experiences need not always be debilitating and people can and do progress to new stable patterns of healthy functioning and positive emotions with the help of appropriate future focused life changes.
Post Traumatic Success Development is not about returning to the same life as it was previously experienced before a period of trauma, but rather it's about undergoing significant life-changing shifts in thinking and relating to the world, that contribute to a personal process of meaningful change. It's about recognizing, accepting and building on strengths, resilience and growth that are often hidden inside trauma.
How do we do this? We see ourselves as who we want to be by focusing on what already works. Society often tells us that we are either Heroes or Broken. We may have done heroic things and we may have been broken but those things don't define us. Instead, we recognize that we are whole people with the ability to fully experience and enjoy life without looking through the windows of our past. We flinch forward, deliberately and with purpose, using our strengths, resilience and resulting growth to continue our mission of giving back to our brothers and sisters, community and society.