Founder - of Active Adaptation counselling in 1998
"A highly intuitive and naturally approachable counsellor,
able to bring clarity, effective coping strategies and objective solutions
to difficult and emotionally charged situations.
Experienced in crisis management
and adept in redirecting negative behaviour and situations.
A keen sense of the essential .
Skilled in adult, adolescent and child education,
having also researched and developed cross-cultural training programs
for all ages.
Well integrated in France, with a fine-tuned comprehension and enthusiastic
appreciation of cultural differences, commonalities and strengths."
Trudi Penkler is bilingual French/ English (English being her mother tongue)
and can communicate passably in German.
She holds a B.Sc. (Bachelor of Science) degree in Psychology
and a Higher Education Diploma in Psychological Guidance and Counselling (University of South Africa )
and was responsible for adolescent counselling while teaching in South Africa.
She has lived through the experience of an International transfer herself,
having relocated with young children to Grenoble, to accompany her husband, in 1986.
Living in Grenoble by choice now, her experience here has led to a familiarity with the town and its environs:
in particular medicine as it is practiced in France; the educational system including "international education";
international business and research groups here; social, cultural and sporting activities offered,
all against the background of the natural splendour of the region.
Trudi is highly aware and particularly sensitive to the situation of families who find themselves moving
across countries, continents, languages and cultures for professional reasons.
It was a natural development for her to put her qualifications and experience to use in the area of
cross-cultural counselling, coaching and facilitating.
'Active Adaptation Counselling" was founded in 1998 and since then,
Trudi has worked with a number of International companies and organizations,
while continuing to provide personal and psychological counselling in English.
During the last five years she has also been researching cross-cultural training methodologies,
and developing her own training and awareness programmes.
Counselling Approach/ Methodology
Working with clients who find themselves having to function effectively in
a `foreign' environment, has led me to favour a directive or instigative approach, rather than the more passive `client-centered' alternatives.
When our cultural reference systems that we have always depended on, without even being aware of it, have been disturbed, increased anxiety and learned helplessness can make it even more difficult to adapt to new circumstances. Previously unknown psychological and emotional difficulties may arise and existent difficulties may be exacerbated. There seems to be a greater need for being actively `steered in the right direction', at least initially, and to be guided out of the spiral of negativity that can become a maladaptive coping mechanism.
Rational-emotive, directive therapy is always implemented with the utmost respect for each individual's needs, potentials and limitations.
Working through actual life-experience examples as well as hypothetical situations , and sometimes identifying key or trigger events at the source of present behaviour, maximum client participation is encouraged .
Positive models are set up which can then be worked towards and reinforced.
Methods are based on the concept that we do have the necessary resources within us to be able to deal with change.
Flexibility and adaptability are drawn on so that a form of control and predictability can begin to be established and a new set of “habits” can be constructed, allowing the environment in which the person now has to function, to be perceived as more familiar and less threatening.
From this rebuilt `foundation', it becomes easier to establish more effective coping strategies in the face of encountered difficulties.
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