In the last decade, veteran organizations have worked hard to increase awareness regarding the mental consequences of wars. Although the general public is acquainted with PTSD, they still cannot comprehend the chaos veterans go through upon returning home.
Finding peace is often difficult as the veterans are constantly haunted by war images. Most of them will carry a trauma for the rest of their lives. However, there are a few tricks you can use for PTSD, anxiety, and depression.
In this article, we will focus on activities that will lead to a better quality of life and inner fulfillment.
1. Going to Church
A lot of people find religion when times are tough. Whether you’re a Christian, Muslim, or Jewish, the church can bring peace into your life, helping you look at things from a different perspective.
Keep in mind that you don’t necessarily have to be a believer to find solace in religion. You can go to a few masses and see if the activity helps you.
What’s even more important, going to church is a form of socialization. It is definitely better than staying at home, with all your dark thoughts. In time, you can meet some interesting people becoming valuable members of the congregation.
Most of the churches and their believers organize local activities. Whether it’s humanitarian work or some other types of events, you can try participating. Furthermore, you can also organize activities yourself. There are lots of church bulletin board ideas you can share with the congregation.
2. Helping Others in Need
Often, deep trauma can make us better individuals. War veterans are some of the people who suffer the most, and they know how hard it is to reintegrate into society after walking a dark path.
You can find peace by helping others and sharing with them your experience. You don’t necessarily have to talk about the cruelty of war, but you can definitely share your traumas, fears, and struggle. Many veterans are proactive members of their communities, helping recovering alcoholics, drug addicts, sex workers, victims of abuse, etc.
Sometimes, veterans are reluctant to help people who are struggling. Things may seem gloomy from their perspective, and they think they cannot help anyone as they’re depressed themselves. But this isn’t necessarily the case. You can make someone’s day by just lending your ear or chit-chatting with them.
In the end, by helping others, you’re also helping yourself recover.
3. Relinquish All Your Preconceptions
One of the main issues veterans are facing has to do with their expectations.
When we’re little, we have a general idea of how our lives will look. As time passes and we encounter more and more bumps in the road, we quickly realize that the world doesn’t care about our needs and wants. This is a hard pill to swallow, especially if you’re coming back from war and are struggling to reintegrate into society.
The first thing you need to do is drop all your preconceptions and stop chasing happiness. You need to accept life as it is and to cherish small things and moments. Only then will you be able to find fulfillment.
4. Turn To Music
Everybody likes music regardless of their background. Experts believe that music can help adults who have suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder. Although there are limited studies on the topic, all the data suggests that this activity can help with various symptoms.
It is worth noting that it’s irrelevant which genre you’re listening to as long as it creates an emotional response. In fact, scientists believe that some aggressive forms of music, such as rock and metal, can help by purging negative emotions and excess energy.
Besides listening to the music, you can also try playing an instrument. This would be even more beneficial, as you would have an active role. Furthermore, it would keep you mentally engaged, thus preventing overthinking.
5. Try a Group Sport
First off, it is worth mentioning that any type of sport can help you deal with mental issues. Simply put, the activity will regulate the chemicals in your body and brain. It is also a great way to maintain discipline.
However, certain sports are much better for PTSD sufferers. Groups sports, in particular, allow you to work out and socialize. Like going to church, it would allow you to create new acquaintances leading to even more activities and less free time.
Many veterans like yoga because of its nature. But almost anything will help as long as you’re consistent.