Wednesday, August 05, 2015

The Best Decompression Exercise

One of the best exercises we make teams work through when decompressing is the exercise to write down a 20 second, 2 minute and 20 minute response to the question, "How was your trip?" [The 20 minute response is just an outline.] People coming home get this question all the time - from friends, family, supporters, leaders. Unfortunately, most people that ask this question only have the attention span for the 20 second answer.

[Also, this was not my original idea. I stole it from a mentor that I had in college.]

Every once in a while, someone will listen for 2 minutes. And once in a blue moon, a leader, foundation, missions org or church missions committee will want to hear the 20 minute response. Walking teams through this exercise sets the expectation that most people only hear the 20 second response and that future missions leaders need to be able to articulate their experience clearly.

If you lead teams, this is highly recommended. If you are involved in missions mobilization, you probably meet with people when they come home. The best thing you can do is to let them talk. For 20, 40, 60, 90 minutes. If you help support student missions, try to pay attention for 2 minutes instead of 20 seconds.

Here's my 20 second answer:
We helped run a little gathering for some students in the city of Prague. Most of these students
are from families that have chosen to live cross culturally intentionally so it is a pretty unique community of kids that know and love each other. We got to do some pretty interesting things with regard to culture and serving in the city of Prague and it went super well. Will be fun to see what happens with this community of students in the future.


  1. Great post and suggestion on many fronts. I will keep this 20s/2m/20m exercise in mind.

  2. Thanks for reading Jorge!