Do you want to start or enhance a police wellness program in your small law enforcement agency?
What do you say when the public and media ask: how do police officers stay healthy and fit for the job?
Small law enforcement agencies deserve the best possible wellness initiatives to keep their people physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually fit.
For small agencies, usually with less than twenty-five employees, paying for training, both in time and money, can be daunting. It’s hard to get everyone together for a class and then sometimes that information is lost without regular reinforcement.
What would you say if I told you that for less than $300 you can harness the makings of a full wellness system and get started immediately. The scheduling, implementation and reinforcement are totally within your control and it will create the foundation for a life-long learning experience for your people.
The Law Enforcement Survival Institute (LESI) is launching a series of short Resilience Building Challenges to expose you to new ideas about resilience enhancement from a group of experts within our wellness field, and specifically targeted to benefit emergency responders. So whether you want to armor your Self, build your emotional survival skills, your spiritual survival skills or just want to learn new and simple ways to add resilience building techniques to your life, we’ve got something for you. I believe that the police need to be more resilient!
Are you in?
Here is the first LESI Mini Resilience Building Challenge:
Topic: Building Resilience Using Awe
Title: Try an “Awe Walk”
The Oxford Dictionary defines awe as: a feeling of reverential respect mixed with fear or wonder.
Law Enforcement Survival Institute Associate Director Eric Potterat, PhD has just announced the pre-release of his book Learned Excellence with co-author Alan Eagle the former Managing Director, Sales and Executive Communications at Google, Inc.
Learn how to perform at your very best, from the psychologist who has advised elite military operators, Olympic medalists, big wave surfers, neurosurgeons, cliff divers, first responders, Cirque du Soleil acrobats, professional athletes and coaches, Fortune 500 business executives, and CIA analysts.
Learned Excellence is a comprehensive and practical guide to the mental disciplines of high performance, from the expert who developed the US Navy SEALs mental toughness curriculum and has worked with thousands of top athletes, elite military personnel, business executives, and first responders.
Is Your Agency Just Dabbling in Law Enforcement Wellness?
There are three reasons why most law-enforcement wellness programs aren’t making their people healthier, safer nor more professional. First, they’re not comprehensive enough. Second, they’re not doing anything more than just adding new training programs and creating more “flavor of the month” initiatives. Third, they are not investing time in their people, but rather using “band-aid” measures to try and fix complex problems.
The Law Enforcement Survival Institute is proposing a new policing initiative we call Wellness Focused Policing.
Wellness Focused Policing is a people focused policing strategy to promote wellness within law-enforcement first, and then to spread that sense of care, and focus on well-being, outwardly to the people served by the police.
When we are appalled by police officers doing things that are abhorrent and we want to fix the entire profession with new legislative initiatives, I think our society is focusing on the wrong solutions and those solutions might actually hurt the first responders who are doing everything right.
First, I believe that in order to be effective, change in policing practices must come from within the policing profession itself, and secondly, I believe the solutions lie in leading the people working within the profession to be their best, then supporting and sustaining exceptional performance. We must challenge everyone within the profession… Continue reading
For those of you who loved the Armor Your Self book, but wanted to share that information with your peers, the Law Enforcement Survival Institute has just released several different Study & Discussion Guide Packages designed to assist individuals, small study groups and law enforcement book clubs.
The two study packages, built around the book Armor Your Self: How to Survive a Career in Law Enforcement, include either 5 or 10 copies of the Armor Your Self: How to Survive a Career in Law Enforcement resilience building textbooks. These collections are a Do-It-Yourself package for book clubs, small groups or academy classes that can’t afford more expensive training, but want to explore the Armor Your Self textbook more deeply. These two packages include… Continue reading
I recently signed up for an online, zoom-style writing course.
I am attempting to learn more about how to write with purpose and structure.
This past session, which was an hour long, focused on letting go of an outcome or agenda. I did not really understand what that meant in its entirety when applying it to writing.
As students, we heard the topic from the moderator and then began writing, without stopping, for 10 minutes. The goal is to listen to our minds, keep the pen moving and not focusing on perfection. We were instructed to focus only on what our mind was saying. Then, she reads a second topic, and we repeat the process. Just keep moving the pen and listen.
So, that is what I did or so I thought.
After the first ten minutes, we took a minute or two to finish our thoughts and get ready for the second topic.
This time, the moderator repeated the first topic, word for word, and then said, “Go.”
I sat there for at LEAST 2 minutes. Did she forget she already read this topic? Do I type her error in the chat to let her know? There are over three hundred people on this Zoom, didn’t anyone else catch that? What the heck is going on?
And then…the AHA moment.
I already had it in my head, we were doing this session the same way we had done it before.
I was attached to the outcome.
I expected a second topic.
The moderator ignored the chat comments (from all the participants) and continued forward. After the second ten-minute writing session, the moderator told us she repeated the first topic on purpose.
She gave us a live experience of what it is like to be attached to an outcome. Man, That. Was. Good!
Looking back, I recalled several ways I had been “attached!” I thought for sure I would be married at least five years before I had a child. I was pregnant within six months of my wedding. I thought for sure I would work in the medical field my entire life. I changed careers at age 34 to law enforcement. I thought for sure I would work in law enforcement for at least 20 years. I retired after 13.5 years.
EDITORS NOTE:The Law Enforcement Survival Institute was approached by The University of Colorado Colorado Springs School of Public Affairs about promoting a new research project investigating the concept of moral injury within law enforcement. The findings from this project entitled: Advancing Officer Wellness: A Study of On-Duty Experiences and their Impacts among Law Enforcement Professionals, can be used to raise awareness of officer’s experiences and to develop programming that supports officer wellness. The Law Enforcement Survival Institute wholeheartedly supports this very interesting research and we encourage you to investigate further, join the project, and help us spread the word to others.
Here’s some information to get you started and you can connect with the links below:
Purpose Statement: In light of the stresses of police work, recent years have brought heightened attention to the tolls of the job on individual officers. These can include illness, mental and behavioral health challenges, and even suicide. There is thus a strong push for proactive efforts to advance health, wellness, and resilience among officers. This study seeks to support and advance those efforts.
Background: Policing professionals face traumatic and morally injurious events in the line of duty. the effects of trauma and moral injury can include posttraumatic stress, depression, anxiety, suicidality, substance misuse, spiritual and religious struggle, and more. This study is an important step in bolstering resilience among those working in the policing profession. Findings can be used to raise awareness of officer’s experiences and to develop programming that supports officer wellness…
This wellness and resilience information is suitable for all first responders and your family members. We will have a live audience and will record it for others to watch, later for free, on the CopsAlive.com YouTube channel.
With all that is happening in the world today maintaining your health and wellness is of paramount importance. Law enforcement professionals, other first responders and members of the military are normally faced with the most challenging situations in the world and now with a new global pandemic to face your personal wellness is mission critical.
John Marx, CPP
Law Enforcement Chaplain Cary Friedman
NYPD Detective First Grade (Ret.) Mordecai Z. Dzikansky
Sgt. Clarke Paris, LVMPD (ret.)
Tracie Paris, RN, BSN
Lois James, Ph.D.
Stephen James, Ph.D.
Christie Ward, CSP
Time: Duration 129 minutes
Who: All First Responders and Your Family Members
What: Online discussion of everyday wellness challenges and resilience strategies