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Turn stress into strength this holiday season

ROBINS AIR FORCE BASE, Ga. (AFNS) -- The holiday season presents opportunities to engage in multiple forms of resiliency.

Engaging in close relationships, practicing gratitude, and participating in religious activities that promote spirituality are often helpful aspects of the holidays. However, the holidays may also create stressors that are unique to this time of year.

Extra travel, new financial obligations and increased exposure to strained family relationships can create new forms of anxiety. In particular, this time of year can be difficult for those that have recently experienced a significant loss or disruption to an important relationship. Relatedly, other major life challenges, such as marital problems, loneliness and mental health issues, can make the holidays a time of unhappiness rather than one of enjoyment.

Promoting Comprehensive Airmen Fitness and ensuring a culture of wingmanship are fundamental concepts that are especially important during the holidays. The significance of these concepts only increases when work schedules are altered and social networks may temporarily change.

CAF consists of ensuring engagement in and balance between, physical, social, spiritual and emotional resiliency. Participating in activities that are related to CAF promotes well-being and is one reason that the holiday season is so memorable.

Wingmanship increases awareness of difficulty that a fellow wingman may experience, which allows action to be taken to support an individual in need. Use ACE, or ask, care and escort, should you recognize someone that needs support to provide the guidelines and steps to take in order to help someone. Listen to their concerns, demonstrate caring, and escort them to an appropriate helping agency or supervisor.

If you or a wingman are in need of support, the Air Force has many helping agencies to utilize, such as Mental Health, Psychiatric Health, employee assistance programs, military & family life consultant and your local chapel.

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