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3 Ways Pandemic Changes Support Positive Growth for Veterans

Author: Julia Merrill

The coronavirus has likely had an impact on multiple aspects of your life. In some cases, you may be making choices that bring about change. Other times, it can seem like circumstances beyond your control are wreaking havoc on your life. Regardless of how you feel about the changes, consider that each one can result in personal growth – and possibly even positive outcomes.

Coping Strategies Give You Tools for Life

A staggering 90 percent of Americans report experiencing heightened stress due to the pandemic. But with stressful situations comes a need for adaptation. Learning how to cope now equips you with healthier strategies you can use immediately – and well into the future.

To that end, Mazak ETS offers wellness support you can trust to relieve stress and recenter your body, mind, and spirit. For example, Reiki therapy can promote relaxation, relieve insomnia symptoms, and even lessen pain. This type of alternative therapy is especially beneficial for veterans with PTSD. Consider what type of therapy – or a combination of treatments – feels most comfortable to you and make it a habit.

A New Career Expands Your Skillset

Losing your job may not feel like a positive bump in the road. And according to the World Economic Forum, the civilian employment-population ratio has recently reached a staggering low – meaning more people than ever are out of work.

But the truth is that changing career paths may be just the inspiration you need to expand your skill set and embrace professional and personal growth. Odds are, there were probably a few things you disliked about your former job. The opportunity to see what else is out there is valuable – and countless other workers are navigating the same scenario. Brushing up your LinkedIn networking skills and polishing your resume can help in your next job search. But returning to school is another option that makes good use of your time outside the professional realm. By heading back to school (even online), you can sharpen your abilities and learn something new. Earning an online accounting degree allows you to pursue a career path as a CPA, while other degree options could propel you into business, healthcare, marketing, and more. You may even choose to transition to a career with the VA – a viable and rewarding path, no matter your expertise or education.

Adopting a Pet Expands Your Horizons

While adopting a pet isn’t a necessity during the pandemic, it’s surprisingly common. Spending more time at home (perhaps alone) has resulted in more folks seeking companionship of the critter kind. Choosing to add a dog, cat, or another animal to your life is both challenging and rewarding. Pet adoption can involve many costs, especially when it comes to food, supplies, and veterinarian visits. But pandemic pet ownership is proven to reduce stress – and The Conversation explains that it helps people feel less lonely. The benefits to veterans are even more significant. Vets who adopt dogs, especially, often find that their canines help alleviate fear, paranoia, PTSD symptoms, and even sleep disruption. Plus, programs like Pets for Patriots allow service members to adopt pets at a discount and with special perks. With all that in mind, if you’re considering adding a pet to your household, the pandemic may be the ideal time to do so. The benefits for both you and the shelter pet you bring home are significant. Living through the pandemic presents many personal and professional challenges for countless people. For veterans especially, tough times can mean more stress, anxiety, and lack of motivation. But in these three ways – and many others – the pandemic is also forcing positive change. The personal growth you experience now will carry through the rest of your life, even if it feels impossible in the moment.

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