Resiliency

 

What is resiliency?
 
It’s the mental, physical, emotional, and behavioral ability to overcome challenges of all kinds (trauma, tragedy, personal crises) and bounce back stronger, wiser, and more personally powerful. By doing so we learn to cope with adversity, adapt to change, recover, and grow. It is the ability to once again pick ourselves up after a trauma or painful experience.
 
Resilience is most commonly understood as a process, and not a trait of an individual. The idea of Resiliency Training is to improve performance in combat and reduce problems like depression, post-combat stress disorder and suicide. The approach is based on positive psychology and aims to give soldiers tools to diffuse negative assumptions and emphasize resilience.
 

Why is resiliency Important?

 
When we are in a weakened position where we feel as if things are going from bad to worse, it can be very difficult to find our balance, recover and regain stability. Our levels of resiliency change and develop throughout our life, and at points we will find that we do not cope as well as others, as well as surprising ourselves when we manage a difficult situation.
 
Resilience is important because it enables us to develop mechanisms for protection against experiences which could be overwhelming, it helps us to maintain balance in our lives during difficult or stressful periods of time, and it can protect us from our negative thoughts and thinking patterns taking over.
 
 

Resiliency Resources:

 
U.S. Army Ready and Resilient: http://readyandresilient.army.mil/
 
National Institute of Mental Health: http://www.nimh.nih.gov/index.shtml
 
www.realwarriors.net/ The Outreach Center can be reached toll-free at 866-966-1020 or via e-mail at resources@dcoeoutreach.org.
 
The ARNG Leader’s Guide to Soldier Resilience: a guide for Soldier Resiliency training, found on the G1 SharePoint.
 

 

Suicide Prevention

 
Suicide is a public health problem that causes immeasurable pain, suffering, and loss to individuals, families, and communities nationwide. Many people may be surprised to learn that suicide is in the top 10 causes of death in the Unites States as of 2018. These deaths are only the tip of the iceberg. For every person who dies by suicide, about 25 others attempt to take their life, and even more have suicidal thoughts. Every suicide attempt or death affects countless other individuals. Family members, friends, coworkers, service members, and others in the community all suffer long-lasting consequences of suicidal behavior.
 
Army strategy for suicide prevention.
·         Prevention: Individuals in this area are perceived as unaffected by stressors and demonstrate no indicators of increased risk. The Army’s objective is to provide training and support to keep all members of the Army family in this phase as much as possible.
 
·         Intervention: Individuals in this phase have signaled threat they are at increased risk and require institutional intervention. The duration of this phase is dependent on the individual’s response to intervention.
 
·         Postvention: The post-event stage coincides with the outcome of probable high risk behavior requiring institutional intervention. Individuals in this phase have attempted suicide or are the survivors – spouses, children, parents, significant others – of the individual who died by suicide. In this phase we seek to return the event to intervention then prevention and assist family members and others associated with the attempted or suicidal death.
 

Suicidal Alerts in Thinking

·         Sad or depressed

·         Trouble sleeping/ eating

·         Loss of interest/withdraw

·         Anxious/agitated

·         Frequent dramatic mood changes

·         Excessive guilt/shame

·         Feeling no purpose, feeling trapped

·         Desperation

·         Changes from feeling hopeless to acting perfectly fine

 

Suicidal Alerts in Actions

·         Poor performance

·         Risky activities

·         Violent behavior

·         Giving away possessions

·         Putting affairs in order

·         Seeking access to lethal means

 

 

 

 

 

How to Help a Suicidal Person Always take suicidal comments very seriously. When a person says that he or she is thinking about suicide, you must always take the comments seriously. Assuming that the person is only seeking attention is a very serious, and potentially disastrous error. Stay present with the person until a warm hand off to a professional can take place.

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·       Follow the information that is on the home page of Suicide.org. Always remember that you need to call 911 or your local emergency number immediately for anyone who is a clear and present danger for suicide. Do not hesitate.

 

·       Try not to act shocked. The person is already highly distressed, and if you are shocked by what is said, the person will become more distressed. Stay calm, and talk with him or her in a matter-of-fact manner, but get help immediately.

 
· Call 911, 1-800-SUICIDE, or 1-800-273-TALK. This point cannot be overemphasized; a person who is suicidal needs immediate professional help.
 
· Do not handle the situation by yourself. Do not allow untrained individuals to act as the only counselors to the individual. Stay with the person, keep them safe for now, but call in behavioral health help as soon as possible.
 

Suicide Prevention Resources

 

Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255) or http://www.suicidepreventionlifeline.org/
 
Suicide Prevention videos: “Shoulder to Shoulder” http://www.armyg1.army.mil/hr/suicide/defau.asp
 

Comprehensive Soldier Fitness

 
The goal of Comprehensive Soldier Fitness is to increase resilience and enhance performance and Soldier readiness by developing the five dimensions of strength
 
Build confidence to lead, courage to stand up for one's beliefs and compassion to help others. Comprehensive Soldier Fitness is about maximizing one's potential.
 
The focus of the program is identification of the 5 dimensions and strengthening a Soldier's general resilience by working on the specific dimensions. The dimensions are:
 
1.    Physical - Performing and excelling in physical activities that require aerobic fitness, endurance, strength, healthy body composition and flexibility derived through exercise, nutrition and training.
2.    Emotional - Approaching life's challenges in a positive, optimistic way by demonstrating self-control, stamina and good character with your choices and actions.
3.    Social - Developing and maintaining trusted, valued relationships and friendships that are personally fulfilling and foster good communication including a comfortable exchange of ideas, views, and experiences.
4.    Family - Being part of a family unit that is safe, supportive and loving, and provides the resources needed for all members to live in a healthy and secure environment.
5.    Spiritual - Strengthening a set of beliefs, principles or values that sustain a person beyond family, institutional, and societal sources of strength.