Officers have plenty to be dissatisfied with in this climate.
We are writing the story of our lives, are you satisfied with yours? I have talked with officers who have an empty feeling. It comes from dealing with poor leadership within their departments, local media, and politicians condemning their every move.
What better time to write a new chapter of your life?
How we respond to this current noise makes all the difference! I have always been impressed with veteran officers, especially an old partner. He would just mumble – hmm. Nothing scared him or impressed him. He would always tell me, “You don’t get scared until I get scared!” This meant, keep your composure.
For some officers, including me, the tendency for us is to react to dissatisfaction in our lives with unhealthy coping mechanisms. For some, it is taking last-minute vacations, online shopping (see Amazon), overeating, or working more. We each have favorite ways of distracting ourselves from looking at the real issues in our lives.
My old partner taught me the incredible beauty of growing mature as a police officer and a human. As we grow as a cop, we learn to respond rather than react. My old partner wasn’t the fastest, fittest, or smartest person, but he was wise. He knew when to use his energy and when not. He knew when to speak and when to listen.
REACTING VS RESPONDING
The difference for so many of us is our reaction versus response. We must make time daily to examine our conscience. Investigate our behavioral responses / reactions by asking ourselves a series of questions which are designed to help us understand what is really happening within and around us.
Examine your day, write down things that upset you, and work to change your response. You may be dissatisfied at work because of many things in this hostile climate. If you find yourself losing focus … examine yourself by changing the way you give energy to futile causes.
What really matters is how you respond to dissatisfaction. Become the best version of yourself by listening more, talking less and examining yourself daily. The silence might help you discover what is needed: better sleep or possibly a healthier diet? It could be as simple as drinking more water: proper hydration is critical to sustaining life!!
I’LL JUST PRETEND IT ISN’T THERE …
Many of us know what needs to be done, but put it off. This option to ignore a problem and pretend that everything is OK is downright dangerous. You become the proverbial, ‘hamster on the wheel,’ – going and going – to nowhere.
Work hard to tune out and turn off the noise that contributes to your dissatisfaction. For example,
- Turn off the news.
- Take your spouse out for a nice meal at a great place.
- Get a massage.
Some may think, “It’s too late!” I can assure you that, it’s not. There are many stories you are currently writing.
Perhaps your story is one of redemption from regret and hopelessness. Maybe your story will have a nice surprise ending. Officers see much evil and death. We must remind ourselves that life is precious and short.
What better time to pick up that hobby you’ve put off for years? Rebel against the norms and expectations society has placed on you.
MAKING TIME FOR YOU
It’s time to pay attention to your story. Great stories move and inspire others. If yours isn’t inspiring you, then it probably isn’t going to move anyone else, either.
What better time to live a life that makes you happy and healthy? It may seem grandiose or impossible. It isn’t. All of us carry the possibility of greatness if we do ordinary things in a great way, which are unique to us.
There are many ordinary things we can do daily to get inner peace and satisfaction. This is a reminder to police officers: continue your good works.
The job offers you daily opportunities to create positive moments through interactions. Continue to unleash goodness, generosity, and compassion on every call. The current world is dark, but we are not dead.
Let’s awaken from the dissatisfaction in our lives and start writing a new chapter today!
If I can, anyone can.
“Above all, it’s about going home at the end of the shift … “
We couldn’t agree more.
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