Transforming Post-Traumatic Stress into Post-Traumatic Growth

Returning home after combat can be an extremely difficult transition. The brutalities of war can leave physical, mental, and emotional wounds. If avoided, the invisible scars of war may show up as chronic pain, insomnia, depression, domestic violence, substance abuse, or other mental health challenges.


At Harvesting Happiness for Heroes (HH4H), we recognize that exposure to combat situations can have a profound negative impact on a person’s mind, body, and spirit. 

When stressed, the body’s fight-or-flight response activates, which prepares us to deal with the immediate danger by either defending ourselves or fleeing the threat. Exposure to extreme stress causes a flood of physiological effects including: increased heart rate, rapid breathing, dilated pupils, and muscle tension. 

Chronic stress from combat trauma may cause life-shattering havoc on soldiers and their families. Prolonged exposure to stress and the accumulation of multiple traumatic events can lead to Post Traumatic Stress (PTS). 

Usually, after a threat has passed, the body returns to a state of equilibrium where it can relax naturally. However, people who experience the brutality of war, cannot fully leave the stressful state—which overtime leads to symptoms such as avoidance, difficulty concentrating, dissociation, intrusive thoughts, mood disorders, insomnia, and other sleep problems. 

The symptoms that were once referred to as combat fatigue, shell shock, soldier’s heart, and war neurosis are now known as Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Our philosophy and methodology views Post Traumatic Stress (PTS) as a normal reaction to abnormal events that must be addressed in order to regain quality of life.

Our mission for HH4H is to assist war torn soldiers as they transform Post Traumatic Stress (PTS) into Post Traumatic Growth (PTG). 

“Warriors truly want to feel normal, they want to be like they were and what you would like them to be again, but that is impossible; they have changed forever. Help them to help themselves by understanding what they have been through, what horrors they have experienced and how they long to be loved and accepted for who they’ve now become.”

- The Warrior’s Guide to Insanity, Sgt. Andy Brandi, U.S.M.C.

Harvesting Happiness for Heroes partners with local volunteer corps of licensed and insured professionals, including equine facilitators and other specialists in the healing arts who are dedicated to people suffering from PTSD.

This community partnership structure involves local businesses and corporate sponsorships that foster ongoing, sustainable support for services, workshops and retreat participants. 




Harvesting Happiness for Heroes provides positive psychology coaching tools to facilitate greater well-being. Our content is provided for education and inspiration. This content does not constitute mental health treatment nor is it indicative of a private therapeutic relationship. Individuals desiring help for trauma, addiction, and abuse related issues or other psychological concerns should seek out a mental health professional.

Harvesting Happiness for Heroes services and/or products are not a substitute for medical or psychological diagnosis and/or treatment. Participation in all HH4Heroes programs is voluntary and does not replace, supercede or conflict with guidance and/or treatment from a medical professional. The Veterans Crisis Line provides 24/7 immediate and confidential help. Call 988 and select 1 or text 838255.

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