22 ARW launches ‘Bounce Back Better’ campaign during resiliency day

  • Published
  • By Staff Sgt. Tryphena Mayhugh
  • 22nd Air Refueling Wing Public Affairs

It is often said that the Air Force’s most important asset is its Airmen, and to prove that bases across the world host resiliency days to provide training so Airmen can better cope with any difficulties or struggles they may be facing.

“Our next High-End fight will require us to rely on the skills of resilience – mind, body and craft – to be prepared in all aspects,” said Chief Master Sgt. Laura Hoover, 22nd Air Refueling Wing command chief. “Growing and exercising these skills is a critical part of preparedness.”

The 22nd ARW’s resiliency day is slated for April 3 and is the first event under a new campaign.

“The theme for the day is ‘Bounce Back Better’ with a focus on [Gen. Minihan’s] Warrior Heart – mind, body, craft,” said Master Sgt. Cory Gussman, 22nd Aircraft Maintenance Squadron lead production superintendent, who is running this year’s resiliency day. “I am hoping Airmen will leave with all the tools and resources necessary to build their own resiliency and pass along the knowledge acquired to fellow Airmen and wingmen.”

The day’s main event is a seminar by U.S. Air Force retired Chief Master Sergeant Anthony Brinkley, On the Brink Consultants CEO. His company teaches leadership development with a special focus on resiliency training. Going hand-in-hand with the Wing, “Bounce Forward” is the theme for Brinkley’s seminars.

“Resilience is important because life is full of expected and unexpected challenges, and building a skill set based on knowledge and fortitude will lead to a more fulfilling life,” Brinkley said. “Bouncing forward is about examining, learning and applying what they have learned from the challenges experienced.”

There is more than one way to “bounce back better” or “bounce forward,” and the Air Force highlights four pillars of resiliency: mental, physical, social and spiritual. In this vein, the Wing event will also include physical competitions such as basketball, dodgeball and a 5K run, classes to cover a variety of topics and morale events hosted by individual squadrons.

“Participation is key,” Gussman said about the Airmen who will be participating in the events. “The more you put in, the more you get out of it. Come into the day’s events with a positive attitude and open mindset, and I guarantee you will benefit from everything we have to offer.”

From marital or financial difficulties to depression or anxiety, there are a number of factors that can add stress to Airmen and their families. Brinkley recalls his time as an Airman at McConnell and the problems he faced, offering advice on the best way to manage it.

“[It] would be the same advice I gave myself and used: simply stated, understand that no one person has all the answers, and we must seek help when things start to close in on us,” he said. “When I was a young Airman at McConnell, I went to alcohol treatment when I realized I was using alcohol as an escape, and this and other things helped me become a more resilient and well-rounded person.”

When Airmen are at their best, the Air Force is at its best. The 22nd ARW plans to host more events throughout the year under the “Bounce Back Better” umbrella, making resiliency for its Airmen a priority not just one day, but year-round.