Third Culture Kids

The DBCs of Making A Global Impact In Today's World by Tayo Rockson

“Traveling the world is one of the greatest things you can ever do for yourself. It will shatter all illusions, stereotypes, and notions you have of the world and the people in it. You will unlearn, learn, and relearn things you will never discover through a book, a classroom, or a degree. It will humble you, shake you, wake you up. It will seep into your pores and find its way to your heart, and it will find it fast. The veil over your vision will come off and you will experience things that fringe over magic. And you will never ever be the same again in the best way possible. So do yourself a favor, and just buy that d**n plane ticket.” ~ Satori

By the age of 17, I had lived in five different countries and four different continents. Several words even though they sound the same mean two different things and invoke two different emotions. You know them?

Chips...

Football...

My point is I’m a minority everywhere I go even in my passport country but when faced with the option of celebrating my difference or conforming to what was considered the norm, I chose to celebrate my difference and I haven't looked back since.

You see growing up everywhere the way I did, I initially had an identity crisis. You know. Who am I?

Why am I not like them?

Why is my accent different?

But I came to realize that there is true beauty in our world. I also came to realize that even though the world is full of differences, many of us use these differences to drive people apart. With this realization, all of a sudden I had a sense of purpose. I saw my identity crisis as a gift. I saw my difference as an opportunity to show the world that there is beauty in having the mindset of a nomad. Not only in the way it opens our minds but also in the perspectives it gives us.

Many of today’s world’s problems today are caused because of people’s unwillingness to accept change whether it’s race, religion or ethnic background. Why can’t we use OUR DIFFERENCES to make a DIFFERENCE."

I believe there are 3 ways we can do this. It’s what I like to call the DBC. Read more here.

Become an Effective Cross-Cultural Communicator & Connector

How To Use Your Difference Make A Difference As Someone In Global Transition

Last weekend I was in DC for the annual FIGT conference and it was such a beautiful experience because I got to meet people that I had been interviewing, talking to and collaborating with for the past year and it was such a thrill. When someone asked me what the experience was like, you know speaking at my first conference about something I am so passionate about. I told her that it was such a rush. I went from being nervous pacing around the venue prior to the speech to feeling and amazing surge of energy right before the speech to relief that I had jus delivered the speech without mistakes to being humbled by people clapping at something I had just said for six minutes and thirty seconds. I've never quite felt anything like it but I honestly feel like this type of conversation is more of what we need to have in today's society. 

We need to learn how to celebrate and embrace our differences.

Defeating the "supposed to" syndrome

Breaking down the "Berlin Walls" that exist today and

Connecting in a digital age.

DBC. Here's the speech.

Become an Effective Cross-Cultural Communicator & Connector

How Nelson Mandela Taught Me To Use My Difference To Make A Difference As A Third Culture Kid

Society needs to do better and it starts with us. We can't afford to think our differences are a negative thing. No we must embrace them! I started www.uydmag.com and the "As Told By Nomads" podcast for this very reason. I wanted to create platforms that showed us what it was like to live in different cultures while promoting the idea of thinking outside the box. I believe that in order to develop the next set of global leaders, these are two concepts that need to be embraced. Diversity and multiculturalism is the new normal so it's time we stop denying it. Let's do better. Let's use our differences to make a difference. Hear more of my thoughts here or watch below. 

Become an Effective Cross-Cultural Communicator & Connector

Episode 12 with Brittani Sonnenberg: Home Leave

Image by Alex Trebus

Image by Alex Trebus

Brittani Sonnenberg is the author of the novel Home Leave, published by Grand Central in the US, Arche Verlag in Germany, and AST in Russia. Sonnenberg has an MFA from the University of Michigan and lives in Berlin, where she is a frequent contributor to Berlin Stories on NPR. She is currently a visiting lecturer at the MFA program of the University of Hong Kong. Her award-winning fiction has been widely published in magazines such as Ploughshares, anthologized in the O’Henry Short Story Prize Series, and received distinguished story recognition by Best American Short Stories. Her non-fiction has been published by Time Magazine, the Associated Press, NPR, Minneapolis Star Tribune, and elsewhere. She studied English literature with a citation in Mandarin Chinese at Harvard University. She was a European Journalism Fellow at Berlin’s Freie Universität from 2009-2010 and served as the editor of the American Academy’s Berlin Journal from 2011-2013. 

Check out the episode here or click play below.

Become an Effective Cross-Cultural Communicator & Connector