"These severely traumatized patients, people who have been through living nightmares, people who might blamelessly choose death, often emerge from successful treatment by constructing lives for themselves that are freer than most ordinary lives from what Sigmund Freud, a century ago, labeled as “everyday misery.” They become true keepers of the faith and are the most passionately alive people I know.”
Rich Tedeschi and Lawrence Calhoun coined the term in 1995, when they noticed that some people did not recover from their traumatic experiences in a typically resilient fashion. Rather than return to their set point, everything about them radically changed: their worldviews, their goals in life, their friendships.
"It's not just bouncing back," Tedeschi explains. "Most people talk about that as resilience. We distinguish from resilience because this is transformative. "
"The one thing that overwhelmingly predicts it is the extent to which you say, "My core beliefs were shaken,'" Calhoun adds.
What kind of core beliefs? "The degree to which the world is just," Tedeschi says, "or that people are benevolent or that the future is something that you can control. Beliefs about, basically, how life works.”