Preventing and Managing Combat and Operational Stress

Preventing and Managing Combat and Operational Stress

Cohesion and Morale

2-3. Unit cohesion and morale is the best predictor of combat resiliency within a unit or organization. Units with high cohesion tend to experience a lower rate of COSR casualties than units with low cohesion and morale. High cohesion and morale enhance adaptive stress reactions in Soldiers and organizations. The foundation for any stress-reduction program includes trust and confidence in—

l Leaders.

l Training.

l Unit.

l Equipment.

Confidence in Leaders

2-4. Leaders must demonstrate effective leadership to earn their subordinates’ confidence, loyalty, and trust. Leaders are responsible for—

l Committing the unit to missions commensurate with their abilities and training.

l Planning operations carefully and thoroughly.

l Preparing the unit to accomplish the mission.

l Leading and guiding the unit to mission accomplishment.

l Showing consistent good leadership that convinces subordinates their leaders know best what should be done, how it should be done, who should do it, and how long the task should take. Authority accompanies leadership beyond the automatic authority given by military rank and position. Authority and respect are earned based on confidence in a leader’s ability to guide the unit to success.

Confidence in Training

2-5. Training helps Soldiers develop the skills required to do their jobs. Confidence is the result of knowing they have received the best possible training for combat and are fully prepared. This confidence results from—

l Realistic training that ends with successful mastery.

l Relevance of training to survival and success on the modern battlefield.

l Refresher training and cross-training.

l Systematic training development process for individual and collective training.

Note. An occupational therapist, a member of the COSC team, can assist in selecting...

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