By Spc. Samuel J. PhillipsJune 16, 2008
There are all kinds of stressors to deal with while you're on deployment. I myself deal with stress from work, lack of sleep, being away from home and recently going through a divorce. Then there are all the little things that stress me out on a daily basis.
The important thing is to know how to effectively relieve stress, before it gets the better of you.
When I first got in country, I could not find a way to relieve my stress. I let everything build up and it started to affect my mood, my work performance and my personal life. I pulled myself away from people because I didn't want to deal with anything else.
For a while I didn't even call my children. Just hearing their voices stressed me out even more because I couldn't be there with them.
I didn't realize not talking to them was stressing me out just as much. I let the stressors in my life take over. I avoided anything that might make things worse and sat doing nothing, which in turn made things worse.
Then one day one of my buddies told me to talk with someone in combat stress. At first I just laughed. I thought, "combat stress isn't for me; it's for guys who have real problems." It took me a while to realize that I did have a real problem.
In talking to combat stress I have been able to take control of most of the things that used to stress me out. Not to mention, I realized the importance of finding ways to relax.
Now, when I get stressed out, I head to the gym. A session on the heavy bag always helps me work things out. Sometimes I head over to a buddy's room and just hang out playing video games or watching movies.
I guess what I'm getting at with all of this, is make sure that you find ways to deal with your stress. If things just don't seem to be helping, talk to someone about it, whether it's combat stress or a friend. Sometimes the best relief is to just get it off your chest