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Post Traumatic Growth PTG

What is Post-Traumatic Growth?

What is Post-Traumatic Growth?

I’ve recently done a PD with Dr Fiona Pienaar based on the work of Richard Tedeschi & Lawrence Calhoun (1995) and want to share some key insights and questions for you to reflect on.  Trauma includes (but is not limited to) our experience of the pandemic and natural disasters as well as relational trauma (such as abuse), discrimination and also life transition trauma (redundancy, divorce, bankruptcy etc); illness and of course grief and loss.


What is Post-Traumatic Growth?

Post Traumatic Growth (PTG) is about ‘Bouncing Forward, as opposed to bouncing back to who you were prior to a traumatic event.  People not only survive trauma but can be transformed by it, summarised beautifully in this phrase “I am more vulnerable than I thought but much stronger than I ever imagined”.

Broadly, here is the PTG Inventory which can assist to consider if growth has occurred as a result of adversity and to what extent:

  1. Appreciation of Life
  2. Relationships with others
  3. New Possibilities in life
  4. Personal strengths
  5. Spiritual/worldview change 

(this summarises the domains measured in the PTGI scaled questionnaire)


Trauma Questions

Here are some questions for you to consider about any trauma you have experienced in life (assuming you feel you have gone through a recovery process from trauma – trauma counselling prior to recovery is really important first):

  1. What have you noticed about yourself and how you have recovered after trauma?
  2. What are you proud of?
  3. What are your strengths?
  4. What are your strengths as a family and/or group of friends?
  5. What about your vulnerabilities – are you aware of them and can you share them?
  6. Who are you connected to?
  7. What relationships, work, and activities have you changed by choice or adaptation?
  8. How have your spiritual or worldview beliefs changed?


If you feel reflecting on these questions would be better served in therapy because you want to more fully delve and explore OR if these questions reveal that you may be still recovering, don’t hesitate to private message me or email at to arrange a session.

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