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Veterans: A Source of Strength During the COVID-19 Pandemic

By April 22, 2020 July 8th, 2020 Blog

Many people are focused on the challenges they are facing as a result of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. But these trying times can also bring out the best in us, says Diego Hernandez, Psy.D., Trainer and Master Practitioner in Accelerated Resolution Therapy® (ART).  

“The majority of people will step up in a crisis. Looking out for each other is what we need to do right now. Helping others boosts your own mental health,” says Dr. Henandez.

Hernandez points out all the efforts that people are taking to help others. Most notably, there are the countless doctors, nurses, and other healthcare workers who are making extraordinary sacrifices to care for those with the novel coronavirus. There are first responders who risk their own lives to help those in crisis. Then there are the unsung heroes, the bus drivers, cleaning crews, delivery people, grocery store employees, and agricultural workers who provide crucial services, often risking their own health to help others. 

There are countless examples of ordinary people taking steps to help their community. People are sewing masks for healthcare workers and others, creating protective face shields on 3D printers, bringing groceries to elderly neighbors, running food pantries for those in need, and filming story times and classes for students stuck at home. 

One source of strength for America during this turbulent time are our veterans, says Hernandez who works with many veterans in his Florida-based practice, Balanced Living Psychology. Hernandez explains, “The tension and uncertainty feels very familiar to veterans. They’re used to dealing with uncertainty.”

One helpful mantra which can be applied during this pandemic situation is the military saying, “Embrace the suck,” states Hernandez, meaning people need to accept that times are tough and that they will likely experience a good deal of physical and emotional discomfort.

“We have to accept our circumstances. The more we do not want things to be the way they are, the worse we will feel. Our veterans are really good at embracing the suck. They can do that for a purpose, for a mission,” adds Hernandez.

Once people accept that things are different for the foreseeable future and stop fighting against our current reality, they can focus on improving the lives of those around them. 

Hernandez concludes by saying, “Our veterans are really a resource to society. Veterans can see this as an activation for the social good and society can look to their leadership.”

ART International Training and Research Inc., is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization dedicated to increasing access to Accelerated Resolution Therapy® (ART) for individuals suffering from trauma and other mental health diagnosis through innovative research and clinician training and education. To learn more about the therapy or to find a therapist near you, contact ART International.