Fort Riley, Kansas



COMMUNITY CORNER - ATC: Controlling yourself, thoughts, expectations

By Col. Andrew Cole | GARRISON COMMANDER | July 17, 2014

Life happens all around us. No amount of rearranging or juggling our schedule will get us out of events that aren’t what we hope or planned for. It is in that constant status of happening that we learn how few of life’s events we have in complete, total control. When something goes contrary to our hopes and plans, knowing where we can find elements of control is a major asset. An asset that can prevent us from contributing to a worsening situation and can even remove much of the pressure from an event that’s contrary to plan.

The Activating Event, Thoughts and Consequences, or ATC, model taught by our Master Resiliency training Performance Experts at the Comprehensive Soldier and Family Fitness Training Center provides us with the ability to pull apart raw, uncensored thoughts after an event and ultimately peel back the onion on the emotions we feel and reactions we have because of these thoughts.

The thoughts we allow to dominate us are the ones that will determine our reactions to events. The importance of understanding the clout our thoughts carry in our lives enables us to understand patterns of viewing the world around us.

If we constantly interpret events as a violation of our rights, we could find ourselves constantly offended and living in a pretty tense world. We should consider restructuring our thoughts in regard to these events to become more resilient. The ATC model and the training to use it are valuable to defuse our life happening events.

Adversity strikes when it strikes. We can’t help that. We can add control by reflecting on a specific, recent and vivid event and recalling how we thought, felt and behaved afterwards.

We may not have ultimate control over the circumstances within which we find ourselves, but we can employ control over our thought process with a little training and practice.

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