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De-Stress from Deployment: Handling Stress after Deployment MAR 2013 De-stress from Deployment: Handling Stress after Deployment Facilitator’s Name: Leslie.

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Presentation on theme: "De-Stress from Deployment: Handling Stress after Deployment MAR 2013 De-stress from Deployment: Handling Stress after Deployment Facilitator’s Name: Leslie."— Presentation transcript:

1 De-Stress from Deployment: Handling Stress after Deployment MAR 2013 De-stress from Deployment: Handling Stress after Deployment Facilitator’s Name: Leslie Robinson Date:July,

2 De-Stress from Deployment: Handling Stress after Deployment MAR 2013

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5 Objectives Define stress and stressors. Identify stressors and recognize symptoms of stress. Discuss importance of utilizing stress management techniques. 5

6 De-Stress from Deployment: Handling Stress after Deployment MAR 2013 Stress is the psychological, physical, and emotional response we have when life challenges seem greater than our ability to handle them. Stress and Stressors Defined 6 Stressors are the real or perceived demands that disrupt our balance.

7 De-Stress from Deployment: Handling Stress after Deployment MAR 2013 The real or perceived demands that disrupt our balance. Stressors

8 De-Stress from Deployment: Handling Stress after Deployment MAR 2013 Real vs. Perceived Stressors Real changes occur in the body and mind due to real or perceived demands that disrupt our balance. Real“I can’t find my keys and I’m late” Imagined“My husband is 5 minutes late; what if he was in a bad car accident?” 8

9 De-Stress from Deployment: Handling Stress after Deployment MAR 2013 Real vs. Perceived Stressors Examples “My boss wants this report completed tomorrow. There is no way to do it.” “I don’t think my mother in law likes me.” “There is an official letter from the bank. What am I going to do? I must have overdrawn my checking account.” “I didn’t plan on the water heater breaking. How am I going to pay for it?” “The doctor hasn’t called. My test results must be negative.” 9

10 De-Stress from Deployment: Handling Stress after Deployment MAR 2013 Some stress is actually good for us. Too much stress is a different matter. 10

11 De-Stress from Deployment: Handling Stress after Deployment MAR The person believes the stressor is significant for his or her well being. AND 2. The person believes the stressor is bigger than his or her ability to deal with it. “Bad” Stress Conditions 11

12 De-Stress from Deployment: Handling Stress after Deployment MAR Exposure to stressors + Stressor is relevant to our well-being + Beliefs that stressors will harm and/or threaten us + Belief we cannot handle stressors + Last over time (chronic) = STRESS RESPONSE 12

13 De-Stress from Deployment: Handling Stress after Deployment MAR 2013

14 WHAT IS STRESS Mental, emotional or physical strain or tension. Our body’s signal that something is different, that disturbs the body’s normal state of functioning.

15 De-Stress from Deployment: Handling Stress after Deployment MAR 2013 STRESSORS Financial Issues Emotional Pain Relationship Issues Problems Sleeping Unmet Expectations Dealing with Change & Loss Communication Glitches Other People Self-Attack Employment Challenges Reintegration

16 De-Stress from Deployment: Handling Stress after Deployment MAR 2013 MORE STRESSORS Emotions log jammed Inner Conflicts Everything feeling like life or death Feeling responsible for everyone and everything Who am I now? / Identity Struggles

17 De-Stress from Deployment: Handling Stress after Deployment MAR

18 De-Stress from Deployment: Handling Stress after Deployment MAR 2013 Categories of Stress Symptoms Physical Psychological or emotional Behavioral Thought processing 18

19 De-Stress from Deployment: Handling Stress after Deployment MAR 2013 Physical Symptoms increased heart rate elevated blood pressure increased respiration muscle tension muscle spasms or tics stomach ache, headache, dizziness, eye strain problems concentrating digestive problems like nausea, constipation, or diarrhea insomnia or sleeping too much skin breakouts weight loss or gain cold sweats 19

20 De-Stress from Deployment: Handling Stress after Deployment MAR 2013 Psychological or Emotional Symptoms being tired mind wondering anger and irritability anxiety and worry impatience rushed speech confusion relationship problems memory loss feeling overwhelmed moodiness short temper and agitation feelings of burnout and depression feelings of isolation numbness and lack of interest in life guilt and shame or a sense of failure 20

21 De-Stress from Deployment: Handling Stress after Deployment MAR 2013 Behavioral Symptoms exaggerating normal behavior withdrawing working harder changes in diet blaming having fights pretending that nothing is wrong Restlessness or fidgeting angry outbursts crying risky or careless behaviors sharing fewer satisfactions with family and friends having other family members with stress problems having fewer stress-free conversations with family and friends being over-watchful or overly concerned about safety staring into space (the “thousand-yard stare”) 21

22 De-Stress from Deployment: Handling Stress after Deployment MAR 2013 Thought Processing Symptoms problems concentrating confusion having problems in making decisions or processing information memory loss having a hard time telling what is real re-experiencing events or flashbacks troubling memories or nightmares loss of trust hallucinations or delusions “This is horrible or unbearable.” “I’m not good enough.” “I’m going to go crazy.” 22

23 De-Stress from Deployment: Handling Stress after Deployment MAR 2013 Combat Stress Combat stress is…. The expected and predictable emotional, intellectual, physical, and/or behavioral reactions of Service Members who have been exposed to stressful events in war or military operations other than war. A few symptoms are… Problems concentrating Troubling memories or nightmares Agitation and intense anger or irritability Angry outbursts Risky or careless behaviors, such as increased smoking, drug or alcohol Problems sleeping Pounding heart and sweating; cold sweats 23

24 De-Stress from Deployment: Handling Stress after Deployment MAR 2013 Strategies to Reduce Stress… Recognize and manage what is within your control Make a list of the things that cause you stress and simply avoid them next time Tolerate and understand uncertainty Stop over scheduling or commitments Focus on the present, all else in an illusion Stop trying to be perfect Don’t get caught in the vicious circle of stress Stop constantly thinking about your problems Be optimistic and believe in yourself 24

25 De-Stress from Deployment: Handling Stress after Deployment MAR 2013 Stress Busting Strategies Journal about your stress and worry. Limit worry to a specific time of day. Postpone worry when you are busy. Tolerate and understand uncertainty. Focus on the present, all else is illusion. Do a physical activity. Talk to a friend. Slow down your breathing. Relax your body. 25

26 De-Stress from Deployment: Handling Stress after Deployment MAR 2013 The Path Starts Here How to Manage Your Stress … 26

27 De-Stress from Deployment: Handling Stress after Deployment MAR 2013 Cascade of Responses

28 De-Stress from Deployment: Handling Stress after Deployment MAR 2013 Stress Technique: Relaxation Breathing Feelings come and go like clouds in the windy sky. Conscious breathing is my anchor. Thich Nhat Hanh 28

29 De-Stress from Deployment: Handling Stress after Deployment MAR 2013 Relaxation Breathing Steps 1.Sit or lie down shoulders straight. 2.Relax the stomach. 3.Breathe in through the nose (See your stomach rise). 4.Breathe out through the nose (See your stomach fall). 5.Pause for a moment. 6.Continue 15 – 20 minutes. 29

30 De-Stress from Deployment: Handling Stress after Deployment MAR 2013 Relaxation Response Simplest technique to calm the body. 1.Choose a focus word, (e.g., “peace”, “relax”, “it’s OK”). 2. Sit quietly in a comfortable position. 3. Close your eyes. 4. Relax muscles. 5. Breathe slowly, naturally, and repeat focus word 6. Continue minutes. 30

31 De-Stress from Deployment: Handling Stress after Deployment MAR 2013

32 Learn to De-stress… 32 1.Find a strategy for managing stress that works for you. 2.Don’t let others stress you; reject stress generating thoughts. 3.Stop expecting so much of yourself. 4.Let “good enough” suffice. 5. Take it one day at a time.

33 De-Stress from Deployment: Handling Stress after Deployment MAR 2013 Review of Key Points 1.Stress is both real and subjective. 2.It has real impacts on bodily systems. 3.You can relax the body using a stress management technique like diaphragmatic breathing. 4.There are many free useful resources for stress management. 33 YRRP Website for Handouts: Address Your Stress

34 De-Stress from Deployment: Handling Stress after Deployment MAR

35 De-Stress from Deployment: Handling Stress after Deployment MAR 2013

36 De-stress from Deployment: Handling Stress after Deployment Facilitator’s Name: Leslie Robinson Date:July,


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