Today I speak with Peter O’Shea about what inspired him to leave a corporate career to work with young kids from socially disadvantaged backgrounds. Peter works on several programs. The Grapple Gang teaches jiu jitsu to kids in schools and the Gloves not Gunz initiative provides a sporting and community centre to help young people move away from possible antisocial and criminal activity. Lastly, Peter works on a program which takes yoga into the prison system. We spoke a lot about Peter using his lived experience of postttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) to connect with kids, as a form of early intervention and the positive impact this can have on their understanding of their own trauma and mental health. I also talked to Peter about his personal journey. We take a dive into what PTSD recovery can look like, what it feels like to be triggered and the need to be supported on the trauma journey. We looked at Peter’s coping strategies, including nature and music! Our two faves! Trigger warning: there is some discussion of suicidal ideation but no details are given.
The DSM-V describes posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) as characterized by exposure to a traumatic event and the subsequent development of symptoms that fall into four clusters (i.e., intrusions, avoidance, negative alterations in cognition and mood, and alterations in arousal and reactivity). You can see more about Pete’s Gloves not Gunz program here and the Grapple Gang UK program here.
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