Resiliency: A vital key for successful Airmen

  • Published
  • By Lt. Col. Deborah Dickensheets
  • 627th Force Support Squadron commander
Happy New Year Team McChord! It's hard to believe 2011 is really here and that we're already through January. On top of that, in the past year and a half that I've had the honor and privilege to serve as the Force Support Squadron commander at McChord, it seems that nothing is as it was when I first arrived.

Joint basing has certainly introduced a new face to installation support functions and realigned our operational structure. To most of Team McChord, this has resulted in a degree of change from the status quo. Throughout the uncertainty of it all, I continue to be amazed at the resiliency of our workforce, both military and civilian, across McChord Field as we've come together to make joint basing a reality.

Resiliency, as defined by Webster is 'an ability to recover from or adjust easily to misfortune or change'. I believe our ability to move forward through joint basing is directly related to the professional resiliency of our workforce. The Team McChord workforce, military and civilian, has a remarkable professional resiliency directly attributable to our Air Force culture that focuses on technical training, professional military education and continuous education and development opportunities.

Resiliency, however, is much more than professional capability and adaptability. Just as they are committed to our professional resiliency, our Air Force senior leaders are equally focused on the holistic idea of Airman Resiliency. In fact, Air Mobility Command's Comprehensive Airman Fitness points to four key pillars to help define what it means to be a resilient Airman: mental fitness, physical fitness, social fitness and spiritual fitness. An imbalance in any of these areas can result in the inability to effectively deal with the daily stressors of military life. As leaders and wingmen, we have a responsibility to ourselves, to each other and to the Airmen entrusted to us to help ensure a balance in each of the four pillars.

While change is an inevitable part of Air Force life, know that the resources to help develop and maintain resilient Airmen and families are still available for you at McChord Field. In fact, joint basing has opened new opportunities to bring additional programs and services to your Airman and Family Readiness Center and family outreach programs. Programs designed to help you, your Airmen and their families deal with the daily demands of the military lifestyle and bring balance back into our lives when needed. The decision to keep the Airman and Family Readiness Center 'as is' through joint basing is our leadership's commitment to you, and the Air Force community we serve, to ensure a focal point remains for developing and nurturing resilient Airmen and families.

As we move forward through 2011, remember that Airman resiliency is key to our ability to recover from or adjust easily to change. If you or someone you know needs to find and/or keep their balance, know that the AFRC has the resources, tools and referral information to help.