Yokota shares keys to resiliency with Japan allies

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class David C. Danford
  • 374th Airlift Wing Public Affairs
Resiliency can be defined as the ability to withstand, adapt or recover from life's adversities.

U.S. Airmen around the world are being taught skills and techniques to help them deal with the stress of military life, while maintaining mission readiness as part of Comprehensive Airmen Fitness.

To further the relationship between the U.S. Air Force and the Japan Self-Defense Forces, Master Sgt. Jonas McVey, a 374th Airlift Wing master resiliency trainer, and Micaela Alexander, a community support coordinator, were invited to the JSDF headquarters in Ichigaya alongside members of Yokota AB's senior leaders to share these skills with their JSDF counterparts .

"This course is about giving our troops the tools that they need," McVey said. "The more tools you have the more flexible you are when adversity comes."

During the three-hour briefing, warrant officers from JSDF were shown how to better communicate with their subordinates, co-workers, friends and family using good listening and interpersonal problem solving techniques. The first technique focuses on active listening through responsiveness and body language, while the second is a five-step process to resolve conflict.

"We may not always be able to come up with a solution immediately, but if I treat you with respect, we'll be able to talk about the problem again," McVey said. "It doesn't always mean that I get what I want, but it will be a conversation, not an argument."

After demonstrating the techniques' effectiveness, U.S. forces, Japan; and Chief Master Sgt. James Laurent, the 5th Air Force command chief, and Chief Master Sgt. Paul Elliott, the 374th Airlift Wing command chief, shared their perspective on the resiliency program and the importance in taking care of their Airmen.

"The most important thing that a leader can do is to get to know their Airmen," Laurent said. "If you don't know what is normal for your Airmen, how will you know when something is abnormal?"