Before you became a first responder, what kinds of activities made you happy? Weekend outings with your family? Going to the gym or attending sporting events? Pursuing the arts or doing something else creative? It’s not uncommon for the long, odd working hours as well as the stress of the job to leave first responders feeling like they don’t have enough time for the hobbies and pastimes they once enjoyed. If you’re finding you’re spending less and less time doing the things that used to balance out your life, it might be time to reevaluate how you’re managing your time.
Aggressive time management, in public safety, means being assertive about recapturing your free time to restructure your life and amplify your happiness.
As Dr. Rachelle Zemlok says in the clip below, “If you live in this cycle long enough, things will flip upside-down on you. You’ll spend energy and time on work, and you won’t have any left for home and hobbies.” In the long run, you may shut yourself off completely from the things (and people) that bring you joy.
Video: Healthy Habits with Aggressive Time Management
Aggressive time management, in public safety, means being assertive about recapturing your free time to restructure your life and amplify your happiness. In many cases, it’s the best and only way to make sure you set aside the hours you need to do those things that give your life meaning. If you wait until you’re motivated to do something, it’s unlikely you’ll ever actually do it. Instead, block out the time in your schedule and make it happen! In the words of Dr. Kevin Gilmartin, “You can’t wait for spontaneity off duty, ’cause spontaneity isn’t coming for first responders.”
If your agency subscribes to Lexipol’s Cordico wellness solution, you can get even more in-depth content from Dr. Zemlok and others on time management in public safety, mental wellness, and a host of other important topics.