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AFRC to offer class on controlling stress

VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. -- Airmen face problems ranging from issues at home to demanding work conditions on a daily basis. Fortunately, the Air Force takes care of its Airmen. Mental Health and the Military & Family Life Consultant Program are just two options available to help Airmen when the stress starts to become unbearable. (U.S. Air Force photo illustration/Airman 1st Class Heather Shaw)

VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. -- The Airman and Family Readiness Center here is hosting a stress management class at the center here March 8 through 29. For more information or to sign-up for the stress management class, call the AFRC at 606-0039. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class Heather Shaw)

VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. -- The Airman and Family Readiness Center here is scheduled to host a four-week stress management class beginning March 8 at the AFRC.

The stress management class is scheduled to meet Mondays from 2 - 4 p.m. through March 29.

The AFRC conducts the class quarterly to educate people about stress and the impact it has on a person's health. The class will cover such topics as relaxation techniques, mental management, conflict management, effective communication, emotional intelligence and other preventative measures people can use to combat stress.

Physically, stress increases a person's heart and respiratory rates and can lead to more severe, long-term conditions such as heart disease, muscular pain, digestive disorders, auto-immune disorders and anxiety disorders.

"People who come to this class are proactive about their health," said Linda Crowder, a community readiness consultant at the AFRC. "Generally, people will find that they have reduced roughly 15 percent of the daily stress in their lives by the end of the four-week class."

At the beginning of the course, class participants are given a short, written stress assessment test. The purpose of the test is to analyze the current stresses in the participants' lives, so they have a better basis for creating goals to reduce their stress.

"In order to be physically and mentally well, one must possess traits of resiliency against stress," Ms. Crowder said. "This class gives you the tools to be more resilient and effective with stress management."

No matter how resilient a person might be, or think he is, stress is unavoidable.

"Everyone experiences stress and hard times in their lives," Ms. Crowder said. "This class teaches people some very useful, stress-relieving skills for managing stress. Most people will learn at least one important way to reduce stress in their lives."

For more information or to sign-up for the stress management class, call the AFRC at 606-0039.