You Can Manage Stress by Living on Purpose

Working as a first responder is hard, but you sought out that work because you believed there was a great purpose behind it.  If you have lost it, focus on finding it again.  The good news we’ve found out at Call for Backup is that only about 12% of first responders say they either “Never” or “Rarely” derive a sense of purpose from their work.

One of the greatest exercises in which you could engage is to create a personal mission statement.  Franklin Covey has an online tool for building a personal mission statement, and I would highly recommend it:  Stephen Covey, author of the best-selling book, 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, has this to say about personal mission statements:

“What is a mission statement you ask? personal mission statements based on correct principles are like a personal constitution, the basis for making major, life-directing decisions, the basis for making daily decisions in the midst of the circumstances and emotions that affect our lives.  When we create a mission statement of our own and choose to live by it we can flow with changes.  We don't need pre-judgements or prejudices.  We don't need to figure out everything else in life, to stereotype and categorize everything and everybody in order to accommodate reality.  As we go deeply within ourselves, as we understand and realign our basic paradigms to bring them harmony with correct principles, we create both an effective, empowering center and a clear lens through which we can see the world. We can then focus that lens on how we, as unique individuals, relate to that world.”

What can you do, starting today, to live with a sense of purpose?

  • Arm yourself with a plan and the knowledge of what you need to do.  Make every single day count and you live each day on purpose.
  • Make decisions intentionally, and only choose those things that are consistent with your purpose and what you value most.
  • Be an example and take pride in the fact that you can also inspire others to be purpose-driven in their lives as well.

Self-Reflection Questions:

  1. How can I better plan my days for success?
  2. How can I make my life count today?
  3. What is one thing I have been putting off that I can accomplish today?

If you’d like to speak to one of our peer support specialists about how to manage the stress of work or life in general, feel free to reach out to us at and someone will be happy to chat with you.  If you are in crisis, please text the keyword BADGE to the National Crisis Text Line where you can be connected to a trained crisis counselor, 24/7/365.  Always free.  Always confidential.

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