The personality profile of an emergency first responder describes the individual as having “high control needs,” meaning they value being in control of a situation. “I’ve got this,” or “It’s not a problem,” are just a couple of the phrases frequently heard from this personality type.
It can lead to a person’s downfall, however, in dangerous situations. A trapped or lost firefighter doesn’t want to admit it, so he hesitates calling a “mayday.” Drugs or alcohol aren’t a threat, they’re just a means of coping with the stresses of the job. “It’s not a problem – I can quit whenever I want.”
The two situations are identical – both are potentially deadly, and the type of personality required to be an effective emergency first responder doesn’t want to admit that, instead of being in control, they’re being controlled. And they sincerely believe that there’s not a problem.
But… “Denial” isn’t a river.
Wondering if maybe you have a problem? Good. No judgement here. If all of us were honest with ourselves and others, we would be forced to admit that we all have problems in one way or another. Maybe you don’t have a problem. Do you really want to take the chance?
Get someone to help you do a 360 and and label any potential hot spots, smoke showing, or maybe even full involvement. Early prevention will keep you Free From The Fire.
See if any of these indicators sound familiar.
- nvfc.org/help 1-888-731-FIRE (3473)
This free, confidential helpline is available 24/7 to members of the fire, EMS, and rescue services and their families.