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First Responder Resiliency

 

When disaster strikes it is normal for a person to run away from whatever dangerous situation arrives, whether it is an automobile accident, a fire, a severe weather event or some other type of horrific situation. That response is normal and people should not feel badly about trying to save themselves. That job belongs to the First Responders who have been trained to deal with a multitude of emergency situations.

First Responders are brave, fast thinkers and are always being challenged to come up with creative solutions to problems that they encounter while out in the field. They recognize that an average person may not know how to handle the stress and anxiety that comes with even just witnessing a traffic accident. It is up to the First Responders to anticipate things before they happen, and to act accordingly. They not only have to deal with the physical aspects of doing their job, but the emotional aspects as well. Coping with accidents, injuries, fires and other disasters on a daily basis can take its toll on First Responders who seek to put others’ safety before their own.

In order to be “the best they can be,” and also take care of their own physical and emotional health, a First Responder needs to:

  • Care for others and themselves – most First Responders are wired this way and are dedicated to this premise.
  • Be aware of the many resources that are available – training in the classroom and also in the field will help First Responders do their job more efficiently.
  • Always be available – this means not taking sick days unless really necessary, and being available to assist with other shifts if necessary.
  • Work through the many emotions that arise as a result of their job – First Responders need to take care of their mental health and not fall into the trap of unhealthy coping strategies, such as drinking, smoking or illegal drug use.

 

  • Have a positive attitude at all times – despite the many challenges a First Responder will run into on a daily basis, having a positive attitude can make all the difference in the world.

As a First Responder, you will have the opportunity to serve your community and build relationships that are very meaningful. Your job may have you interacting with police offices, firefighters, doctors, nurses, security forces and other disaster response personnel. Being at your best mentally, physically and emotionally will help you perform your job and save lives when the need arises.

Sometimes, however, a First Responder may need to speak with a professional mental health counselor to deal with stress, PTSD and any number of emotional issues that come with their job. Feelings of grief, sadness and a range of other emotions are common after traumatic events. Resilient individuals, however, must be able to work through the emotions and effects of stress and painful events and rebuild their lives.

Our counselors work with all different types of First Responders and can be an invaluable resource in helping you cope with the stresses and traumas that are encountered in the field.

If you or a loved one are working as a First Responder and could use some extra help dealing with the effects of the job, give us a call today to see how we can help! – (616) 499-4711