Having Resiliency with a Twist
January 9, 2014
CAMP HUMPHREYS, South Korea -- Everyone experiences some level of good or bad stress in their lives. Many people are able to manage their stress levels. For one person, 'acting out' is his stress reliever.
A native of Kenai, Alaska, U.S. Army Sgt. Peter Adams starred as Fagin, the play's villain, during the performance of the classic play "Oliver!" Dec. 19, 21, 23, and 24, 2013 at Camp Humphreys.
From acting part-time to being a full-time Soldier, Adams remains resilient even when his job as a Unit Public Affairs Representative with Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 602nd Aviation Support Battalion, 2nd Combat Aviation Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division, is at its most stressful.
The Army attempts to combat the negative aspects of stress with training in the six resilience competencies. These are self-awareness, self-regulation, optimism, mental agility, strengths of character, and connection. A Soldier will be continually exposed to this training and encouraged to develop resiliency skills throughout his career.
Having these skills is important for all Soldiers. According to CareerCast.com's annual rankings, enlisted military personnel have the most stressful job in 2013. Adams's job as a UPAR includes aspects of other careers that appeared on the list. These include the functions of a public relations executive at number five, a photojournalist at number seven, and a newspaper reporter at number eight.
"We have deadlines that we have to make because news is only news for a short period of time so you have to make sure you are on top of it and where you need to be," said Adams. "Sometimes that means you have to be at six different places at one time covering six different events and of course the one you are going to miss is going to be the one everyone is upset you weren't there for. It can be stressful"
Adams handles the stress of his job by staying involved in the community. While for some, performing on stage might be a daunting experience, Adams finds relaxation in the chance it gives him to have a social circle separate from those he works with.
"It adds a different kind of stress to my life because it can be difficult to put on and perform in a
show but it is not the negative kind," said Adams. "It is nice to get wrapped up in something different to take your mind off of what is going on at work. Not to mention, I get to work with just a ton of really fun people and it is another community that is there for you if you had a bad day at work."
This type of activity allows him to maintain the close relationship with his wife, Breanna and their four children, who were also involved in the production of the stage play. Two of his children held starring roles and his wife was the choreographer. The community theater provides his family with an activity that they all can participate in while making friends with people they would not have had the chance to meet otherwise.
"It gives us something to do that we all can be a part of," said Breanna. "We all participate; it is not just something else that pulls him away or me away. It has become part of who we are as a family and it has made our time in Korea really nice."
Their time spent here is drawing to a close, and soon the Adams family will be saying goodbye to the friends they have made here. Adams will be facing unique stresses as he embarks on the newest challenge being offered to him by the Army as he transitions to the chaplaincy. The stress of moving his family and changing career fields is sure to be daunting, however, his family is prepared to face it together and remain 'Army Strong'.