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Story in Time about Pentagon efforts to address mental health deterioration in combat veterans. Apparently it has now been determined, the more combat one experiences, the less mentally healthful one is. Unsurprisingly perhaps.

This is relevant to PSA in a number of ways, because it turns out the holistic view of learners “has” to be addressed in some way if “learning effectiveness is to be enhanced”…… just as employers need mentally healthy employees, and have to somehow deal with the larger picture of “what’s going on in a person” (family, community).


Which is where “soft skills” come in.

But it’s very hard to assess the effectiveness of soft skill “training”, and “overall mental health”. If one is addressing a person “holistically” where does one start that process?… and where does it end? Is one eventually needing to address whole communities and region’s needs, just to address a person’s learning effectiveness?

If so, powerful new communication tools such as we are developing today, and we will be ever better at tomorrow, may be needed to take on the enormity of that task. Has anyone done a study yet on the mental health “effects” of spending time on Facebook and other social media, from the standpoint of a “support system” for coping and dealing with soft skill needs?

History generally teaches that it’s quite possible some of our “traditional” ways of doing things are quite harmful to individuals or counterproductive to a “good economy”.

The good news here is that PSA holds hope that DIY learning, healthcare etc, versions of “self help” can be greatly empowered, and latent human capabilities that we see expressed “in part” here and there in various programs and communities… and lean startups…. can be “scaled up” as the Army is trying to do.