• Nick Holderbaum

The Jaded Firefighter

C - “Jaded”

H - Years of working for a busy department and long work hours have resulted in occupational burnout. High call volume has led to chronic stress and feelings of factory-like work. Empathy no longer exists. The passion this firefighter once experienced for their job is now fleeting.

A - Overwhelm and exhaustion. Feelings of cynicism and frustration. Increased sick days. Inferior patient care. Increased anxiety and depression. Decreased social interaction and overall morale. Increased risk for type 2 diabetes, high cholesterol, coronary heart disease, gastrointestinal issues, and respiratory problems. Even worse, increased rates of substance abuse and suicide.

R - Practice mindfulness. Avoid being sedentary. Increase daily-outdoor activity. Prioritize sleep and stress management. Delegate tasks. Share your experiences with like-minded people.

Practice negative visualization - consider how it would feel to lose your job to help put things into perspective. Do it for me, I’m a regular practitioner. Today’s leading behavioral therapists are using it! Thank me later. Use your vacation time! When it’s time for a career change, remove the guilt and move on.

T - Unwearied.

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