21 May 2008

Stages of Adjustment...

I was reading some articles on line and found this chart of stages of cultural adjustment...

MAJOR STAGES OF CULTURAL ADJUSTMENT
Stage 1. Everything is wonderful.
Stage 2. Everything is terrible.
Stage 3. Some things are wonderful, some things are not, but that's the way the world is.
Stage 4. I am now accepted as an insider in this culture, and I feel good about that.
Stage 5. I have left my first culture and totally accepted the new, and I do not intend to turn back.

If I had a free afternoon I bet I could read back through the blog and put dates on the stages...

Any guess where I am now... or where I stayed the longest...?

I had a few good laughs... with me, myself, and I... as I was thinking about this...

3 comments:

Lena said...

I think everyones worried they will guess wrong BUT it I had to take a stab at it I would say you are at stage 5. I do think however that since you have been away for awhile you might drop down a few levels...maybe to the 3??? Thats just my guess...let me know if Im right =)

Jonathan said...

Jeff - I am a missionary as well (in year 3). I was turned on to your blog by a mutual friend. Question: do you think the last stage is ever really possible? I know missionarys who have been on the field for over 20 years and they thought they had reached level 5 only to realize that it did not really exist and if it did, they did not want to be there....they voluntarily "rebounded" back to what you describe as step 3 which enabled them to effectivly balance between the good, bad, and ugly of both their native and missionary culture. Any thoughts??? - jon

Jeff said...

Thanks to all for playing... I think we have recently entered stage 3... stage 2 was just too fun to blog about...

Is stage 5 attainable? ... I hope so... but I don't think it involves turning your back on your native culture... maybe just being able to transcend culture and genuinely care for and communicate with people in any culture or country...