Taiwo spoke about interpersonal communication and conflicts that develop in the workplace, in families, in communities, etc. She said that conflict is "change wanting to happen". If you can get people to address questions like "What don't you like?" and "What would you suggest?", then you are your way to avoiding toxic communication. One of her activities was to have us stand in a square that describes how we communicate when there is conflict. The choices were....are we defensive, do we blame, do we stonewall or are we at the point of contempt? Taiwo suggested that if you or another person are "stonewalling" during a conflict, take a break and set a meeting to resume the conversation in the future. Perhaps mention that "I would like to review your point of view and think about this some more." That means you have been listening, even though you might not agree.
We thought some of her techniques would be useful as we try to teach missionaries how to communicate when they live with companions who are from another culture.
Taiwo received a gift. You notice that she is quite tall!
This sign was in the cafeteria of Ernst and Young, a worldwide accounting firm, where the speech was held.
We had some elders come to Accra to renew their non-citizen cards. The missionaries always enjoy seeing each other and sharing their experiences.
Elders Buchanan and Murige, Zone Leaders of the Tema Zone, met us at the MTC to pick up some bike helmets.
On one of our morning exercise routes, we met and talked with Francois Schmidt. He works at the Swiss Embassy which is only a short distance from our apartment. He invited us to participate in a 10 K Fun Run the Embassy was sponsoring. Nancy and Delynn Heid, (Mission President's wife), decided to sign up. Registration was free and there were snacks, a T shirt and cap. What a deal!! Running really is a challenge here because of the heat. But Nancy has been running 3-4 miles most mornings, so really 6.2 miles shouldn't be a problem, right?
Nancy and Delynn prior to the start.
Nancy, at the finish. If you enlarge the photo, you will be able to see the fatigue on her face. She drank about a gallon of water afterward, but she did well. It was a first for her.
Delynn and Nancy discussed the successful strategies they executed during the run. Actually, running in "real feel" heat of 108 degrees was totally exhausting!! And, the caps that were part of the race "attire" didn't help cool them. They felt great that they finished and they were not last. There were about 120 runners in the race.
On Sunday we attended church in Dodowa. President was making some minor adjustments in mission assignments and we were asked to transport some missionaries back to the mission home. The community is located at the outer edge of metro Accra. While waiting for the meetings to begin, Stan found this very large Mango tree heavily laden with fruit. Can you tell it is about 90 degrees with 90% humidity?.
Dodowa's building. The Church is growing nicely in this area. We really enjoyed meeting the members and worshiping with them.
The setting is so green and tropical.