Coconut Generation

The Next Generation of Asian Indians

Third Culture Kids February 5, 2009

Filed under: Youth — Sam George @ 12:04 am

In the coconut generation book, I had dealt with this phenomena called TCK. Generally it was being used for Western missionary kids growing up in overseas mission fields. More recenlty the term  is being used for children of migrant workers in a globalized world. But it brings out tension of living between two cultures.

Recently I came across a study by professor of psychology Richard Nesbitt that brought out difference between Eastern and Western worldviews. He showed a group of Americans and Asians individual pictures of a chicken, a cow, and hay. When they were asked which of the pictures go together, Americans typically picked the two animals. Asians typically picked the cow and the hay, since cows eat hay.

Americans tend to see categories, whereas Asians are more likely to see relationships. That’s why doing business in Asia is about more than signing a contract; it’s about relationships of trust. Often the Western world focuses on privacy and individual rights, whereas the Asian world focuses more on collective harmony, collective society.

People in [individualistic] societies tend to overvalue their own skills and overestimate their own importance to any group effort. People in collective societies tend to value harmony and duty. They tend to underestimate their own skills and are more self-effacing when describing their contributions to group efforts.”

When two worlds converge, it is devastating as well very exciting. Not many can identify with their struggles, yet they develop unique leadership traits for the new world. President Obama  is a recent example of blending of cultures and leadership of third culture kids. Governer of Lousiana Bobby Jindal is another example from the Indian American community.

More on it later. Welcome to the world of Coconuts!!!


TV & Depression among youth February 4, 2009

Filed under: Youth — Sam George @ 5:09 pm

Family advocates and scientists have long debated puzzled over whether video gaming, watching TV, and Web surfing are healthy or harmful. Here is another recent research finding. Read the report in US News.

All parents and youth workers are aware of the increasing consumption of television, music and web activity among young people. This research also confirms prevalence of depression and addictive behaviors as a result of media intake. They warn adult care givers to wise to take a look at how their children use media, not just how much.

There’s good evidence that kids get fatter as they watch more TV and that lots of gaming can increase a teen’s aggression and anxiety. But it’s been harder to tell if watching TV and gaming play a role in depression, which usually first surfaces in adolescence or young adulthood and is the leading cause of disability worldwide. The evidence already out there suggests that people who watch lots of TV tend to be more depressed, but that could just be because unhappy people like to watch TV.

The reason behind depression risk with TV dosage is that it keeps kids away from activities known to reduce the risk of depression, such as time with friends and family, sports, and exercise. Kids do not need entertainment and kept busy, but they need adult relationships. Loneliness as they get isolated from others and not acquiring relational skills is bound doom young people in their development. Research also has linked increased screen time to obesity—but parents can work to keep their own kids from getting too fat. Get rid of the TV in the bedroom, for one thing. Kids with TVs in the bedroom gain more weight than kids who watch with the family.

Media is not all bad and we should not throwing television out of the windows. There is lots of good information and early schools are also using many of online resources in education. Adult caregivers should watch for signs that tv, web or video gaming is becoming an unhealthy addiction.

The solution to this complex problem of balancing between whether to allow or not and how much is healthy greatly depends on several other factors. The world of nutrition provides us wisdom – use in moderation.


Back again …

Filed under: Youth — Sam George @ 4:47 pm

I have been away from blogging for a while. Sorry for not making any entries, if you came looking for new stuff on the coconut blog.

I was generally busy with other things … mostly taking time to be with family. Took time most of holiday and new year season to be home and with wife and kids. Sometimes you have to go offline to nurture life and relationships. Real world relationships takes different skills than virtual world. Also got to write my next book…. more about it later.

Keep coming back to read my thots on youth, family, culture, leadership and God.

Have a blessed year!!!!