Home : Media : News : News Article View
NEWS | Oct. 25, 2019

Resiliency: 613th Air Operations Center Hosts First Mindfulness Class

By Staff Sgt. Mikaley Kline Pacific Air Forces Public Affairs

JOINT BASE PEARL HARBOR-HICKAM, Hawaii -- The first Holistic Health Team mindfulness class was held at the 613th Air Operations Center, Oct. 16, 2019.

Mindfulness is defined as a mental state achieved by focusing one’s awareness on the present moment while calmly acknowledging and accepting one’s feelings, thoughts and bodily sensations.

“Mindfulness is actually a performance enhancement skill,” said Maj. Kirsten DeLambo, 15th Medical Group mental health flight commander. “Mindfulness training has been shown to be effective among professional athletes, Navy SEALs, special [operations] units, and corporate executives. It has been shown to improve concentration, response times, decision making, and to reduce stress.”

In the short term, DeLambo would like to see participants feeling more relaxed as a result of using an hour to take care of themselves.

“In the long run, however, the class is a starting point for living in the present and seeing things more clearly. When someone can practice mindfulness in this way, it can lead to being more focused, a better communicator, and a better decision-maker,” said DeLambo. “This has long-lasting effects for being ready to meet mission requirements, as well as being happier with a life outside of work.”

The Holistic Health Team is comprised of representatives from the helping agencies and medical community to include mental health, flight medicine, health promotions, Sexual Assault Response Coordinator, chaplain, and violence prevention integrator.

“My goal, that I think we have accomplished, is to be a presence and a trusted resource so that we can inform, educate, and be available for situations where members may have otherwise felt alone in figuring it out for themselves,” said DeLambo.

The team visits the 613th AOC and the 56th Air and Space Communications Squadron twice monthly in order to reduce the stigma associated with getting help and to provide health and safety information to unit members.

“As evidenced during walkabouts and an anonymous survey, a majority of unit members reported good morale, job satisfaction, and cohesiveness,” said DeLambo. “However, sleep problems, mental health difficulties, and burnout were also commonly reported. To address these problems a sleep skills class was offered and was well-received.”

The idea for the HHT creation came from an initiative that originated out of Hurlburt Field, Florida.

“The program was designed to bring care to our warfighters in the form of embedded support teams,” said Master Sgt. Tonya Poole, 613th AOC and 56th ACOMS first sergeant. “After hearing about this idea, I immediately fell in love with it and began working diligently to bring this concept into our organization.”

Poole believes proactively seeking help for yourself is a sign of strength and maturity.

“I always make sure to emphasize and reinforce the fact that simply seeking mental health care does not typically have negative impacts on a security clearance,” said Poole. “I think what does cause issues with a clearance is when someone neglects an issue that they are having and allows it to manifest into something that negatively impacts their duty performance, trustworthiness, or reliability.”

The Holistic Health Team name was chosen so that members know that it's not just about mental health or any of the other entities involved, it's a holistic approach to wellness.

“I always tell people who are on the fence about perusing mental health care, ‘You wouldn't lose your clearance if you went to see the doctor about a fractured ankle,’” said Poole. “Your mental health is no different than your physical health; when you have an issue that is causing pain or preventing you from reaching your full potential, you must seek the help you need.”

DeLambo urges those that may be struggling with an issue to not try and fight it alone.

“You may not require or desire formal mental health treatment, which is completely okay,” said DeLambo. “Instead, talking to a wingman, loved one, co-worker, or friend can make a big difference in feeling less alone, better understood, and ultimately less troubled by the situation.”

Classes like these help provide Airmen with information and tools to increase their confidence and competence in their ability to seek help for themselves and others

CONNECT WITH USINDOPACOM
Facebook

Like Us
Twitter
324,270
Follow Us

ENGAGE & CONNECT MORE WITH PACOM

                                                 

IN THE USINDOPACOM NEWS
Coast Guard Cutter Steadfast Returns Home After 55-day Counter Narcotics Patrol
The crew of U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Steadfast takes a photograph in Manzanillo, Mexico, with two men they rescued during a deployment in the Eastern Pacific Ocean June 10, 2022. The men were lost at sea for 23 days after their vessel was beset by weather. (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Seaman Brad O'Brien)
June 24, 2022 - ASTORIA, Ore. — The United States Coast Guard Cutter Steadfast (WMEC 623) returned to homeport Saturday following a 55-day counter narcotics deployment to the Eastern Pacific Ocean.The 210-foot medium endurance cutter and...

Army Alaska National Guard, HHC 297th Regional Support Group Soldiers Contribute To Role Playing Operations During Khaan Quest 2022
On June 20, 2022, Khan Quest 2022 ended with the official closing ceremony. Over the past two weeks Mongolian Armed Forces (MAF) hosted 15 nations in this 18th iteration of the exercise. By participating in Khaan Quest, nations were able to showcase their resolve in peacekeeping missions around the world.

Soldiers, Spc. Hunter Mains and Spc. Kyle Johnson with the Army Alaska National Guard, Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 297th Regional Support Group contributed a major role in CPX operations which had them role play in several different scenarios. 

Both Soldiers also participated at the end of the exercise mock press conference. The press conference is designed to prepare peacekeepers and military leaders for questions that may be asked of them during stressful situations. Johnson and Mains roleplayed as journalists asking the questions. 

Pictured here the CPX participants listen to the news conference brief given by the military leadership in a role playing scenerio.
June 23, 2022 - Mongolia -- On June 20, 2022, Khan Quest 2022 ended with the official closing ceremony. Over the past two weeks Mongolian Armed Forces (MAF) hosted 15 nations in this 18th iteration of the exercise. By participating in Khaan...

Juneteenth Celebrated by Department of the Air Force Leaders in Pentagon’s First Official Ceremony
Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. CQ Brown, Jr., speaks to a crowd of attendees during a Juneteenth Celebration at the Pentagon in Arlington, Va., June 21, 2022. Brown’s message highlighted the importance of promoting an inclusive culture for all Airmen and Guardians to be able to serve to their fullest potential. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Elora J. McCutcheon)
June 22, 2022 - ARLINGTON, Va. (AFNS) -- Hundreds gathered to celebrate the Juneteenth holiday through song, dance, poetry and storytelling at the first official Juneteenth ceremony held at the Pentagon June 21.  Attended by...

Pacific Partnership Kicks Off in Vietnam
PHU YEN, VIETNAM (June 20, 2022) – Captain Hank Kim, Pacific Partnership 2022 mission commander, left, delivers remarks during the Pacific Partnership Vietnam opening ceremony. Now in its 17th year, Pacific Partnership is the largest annual multinational humanitarian assistance and disaster relief preparedness mission conducted in the Indo-Pacific. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Brandie Nuzzi)
June 21, 2022 - PHU YEN, Vietnam -- Now in its 17th year, Pacific Partnership is the largest annual multinational humanitarian assistance and disaster relief preparedness mission conducted in the Indo-Pacific. In Vietnam, the Pacific...

SECNAV Visits Innovative Forward Deployed Marines and Sailors with MRF-D 22
U.S. Secretary of the Navy Carlos Del Toro greets U.S. Marine Corps Col. Christopher Steele, the commanding officer of Marine Rotational Force-Darwin (MRF-D) 22, during a visit with MRF-D 22 at Royal Australian Air Force Base Darwin, June 18, 2022. Secretary Del Toro visited Marines and Sailors with MRF-D 22 and Australian Defence Force personnel as part of the Indo-Pacific battlefield circulation. (U.S. Marine Corps photo by Cpl. Emeline Molla)
June 21, 2022 - DARWIN, AUSTRALIA. – The Honorable Carlos Del Toro, the 78th Secretary of the Navy, visited Marines and Sailors with the Marine Rotational Force-Darwin (MRF-D) on June 18.As part of a battlefield circulation tour in the...