Police Personal Behavior and Human Relations: For Police, Deputy, Jail, Corrections, and Security Personnel 0398052239, 9780398052232

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Police Personal Behavior and Human Relations: For Police, Deputy, Jail, Corrections, and Security Personnel
 0398052239, 9780398052232

Table of contents :
Foreward
Acknowledgements
Chapter 1:To Control or be Controlled
Chapter 2:Attitudes Towards Authority-You!
Responsibility Toward Your Profession-and Yourself
Authority V. Authoritarian
Chapter 3:Rational Assertiveness For Law Officers
Why Assertiveness?
Discrimination Between Behavios Styles
Assertiveness
Nonassertiveness
Aggressiveness
Exercise-Discrimination Between Assertivem Nonassertive, and Aggressive Behaviors
Chapter 4:Learning, Thinking, Beliefs
Learning Behavior
Behavior Goal Setting
Rational Thinking
Rational V. Irrational Beliefs
#1. I Should Be Perfect.
#2. You Should Be Perfect.
#3. It's Awful!
Self-talk
Skill-"No Defense"
Skill-Stop/Think
Skill-Thought-Shift
Chapter 5:The Physiology of Thought and Emotion
Body Clues
Autonomic Nervous System
Physical Arousal
Steady State
Adrenaline and Noradrenaline
Need for Stimulation
Stress
Major Stress V. Minor Stress
Control and Use of Stress
Burnout
Psychosomatic Illness
Nutrition
Psysical Exercise
Exercise-Change of Pace Activities
Exercise-Relaxation and Breathing
Chapter 6:Emotions
Anger
Fear
Pain
You Choose Your Emotions, Thoughts, Behaviors
Learning Emotional Control
Labeling
Emotional Control on Your Job
Caring Emotions
Skill-"I" Messages
Skill-"Don't React"
Skill-Do Not Label
Exercise-Behavior Rehearsal
Exercise-Covert Behavior Rehearsal
Chapter 7:Communication
Talk Does Not = Communication
Verbal Communication
Nonverbal Communication
Facial Expression
Eye Contact
Body Posture
Gestures
Crisis Verbal Communication
Withdrawing
Criticism-You or You Behavior?
Compliments
Touching or Brutality?
Humor
Communication Skill-Listening
Communication Skill-Silence
Communication Skill-Asking Questions
Exercise-Nonverbal Behavior
Exercise-Listening/Repearting
Chapter 8:Two Sets of Rights
Personal Rights
Professional Rights
Effect of Feelings on Rights
Responsibility and Consequences
Skill-Owning Your Behavior
Chapter 9:Self-Control on Your Job
Human Relations with Specific People
Superior Officers
Fellow Officers
Kids
Use of Deadly Force
High Speed Chase
Court Appearance
Chapter 10:Self-Control in Your Personal Life
Be Kind To Yourself
My Contract Wiith Myself
Vital Communication
Identifying and Building a support system
You can feel Good about Youself and about your profession

Citation preview

POLICE PERSONAL BEHAVIOR AND HUMAN RELATIONS For Police, Deputy, Jail, Corrections and Security Personnel

By

PRISS DUFFORD Enforce, Inc . Denver, Colorado

Foreword by

Jackie-Lynn Wilson, D.P.A. Professor of Criminal Justice Metropolitan State College Denver Colorado

CHARLES C THOMAS •PUBLISHER S p r i n g f i e ld • I l l i n o i s • U . S . A .

Published and Distributed Throughout the World by

CHARLES C THOMAS •PUBLISHER 2600 South First Street Springfield, Illinois 62708 4709

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This book is protected by copyright. No part of it may be reproduced in any manner without written permission from the publisher.

0 1986

by CHARLES C THOMAS

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• PUBLISHER

ISBN 0 398 05223 9

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Library of Congress Catalog Card Number: 85 29043

With THOMAS BOOKS careful attention is given to all details of manufacturing and design. It is the Publisher’s desire to present books that are satisfactory as to their physical qualities and artistic possibilities and appropriate for their particular use. THOMAS BOOKS will be true to those laws of quality that assure a good name and good will.

Printed in the United States of America

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Library of Congress Cataloging in Publication Data

Dufford , Priss. Police personal behavior and human relations. Bibliography: p. Includes index. 1. Police psychology. 2 . Police Attitudes . 3. Interpersonal communication. I. Title. HV 7936. P 75D84 1986 363.2’01’9 85 29043 ISBN 0 398-05223 9



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FOREWORD

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SYCHOLOGICAL STRESS has been identified as an important causal factor in the breakdown of a police officer’s ability to cope with the complex demands that emerge from a complex occupation . The occupational stress experienced by the police officer may become exacerbated by the stress of meeting the ordinary familial , peer, administrative , and interorganizational expectations that are a part of being an adult who has undertaken responsibilities in a too imperfect world . It is now recognized that an overload of stress can lead to physical , emotional , psychological , and social dysfunctions that have serious consequences, not only for the police officer, but also for those dependent upon the officer’s ability to manage complex and often competing demands, while in a real sense managing his or her own psychosociological needs. Researchers , scientists, and police administrators have recently turned their attention to identifying the stressors in the police occupation and to devis ing ways that will assist police personnel at all levels of their careers in meeting this additional occupational and interper sonal challenge . Priss Dufford has made a significant contri bution to those efforts. Many, upon first encountering this small volume , will, perhaps, be tempted to think: Here is yet another discussion of the already much discussed problems of the American police officer. But those who press on will discover that Police Per sonal Behavior and Human Relations goes well beyond the

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common approaches to police occupation stress and related human relations issues. Dufford avoids the platitudes and cliches of occupational stress and focuses in a fundamental way on the socio-cultural and psychological determinants of dysfunctional responses to stress. At the core of the work is the premise that much of human conflict (and its resultant stress) is fueled by culturally learned , habituated , irrational responses the lanto situations rich in potential or actual conflict. Using guage of the working street officer, Dufford translates the intricacies of several well-chosen psychological premises into practical terms that enable the reader to quickly grasp the underlying emotional contributions to stress. The reader is then led through easily learned techniques and strategies for gaining mastery of “out-of-control” emotions and thoughts through . application of rational-based responses in human interaction In Dufford’s schema, there are only winners. Although Police Personal Behavior and Human Relations most immediately addresses the police officer’s positive responses to stress, others, in similar roles requiring frequent and often intense human interactions, will find Dufford’s work an important means for the enhanced management of their roles, as well as for the management of the stress emerging from engaging in the business of “doing justice” in a society which is not always in agreement regarding what justice is. In an era in which the American police and other criminal justice professionals are striving to come of age , Dufford’s contribution to that goal should not be overlooked . To these considerations, I add a personal note: One of the most rewarding features of the teacher role is to observe the fruition of the student’s creativity and originality of thought . When both are applied in a way that addresses real world hu man problems while contributing importantly to their solu tion , the teacher is handsomely compensated for whatever part , however slight , she might have had in lending en couragement . Priss Dufford , in writing Police Personal Be-

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havior and Human Relations , has applied creativity, empathy, and originality to the problem of police officer’s stress — an endeavor for which I , the teacher, am grateful to the student . Jackie- Lynn Wilson

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS My loving thanks to Heath Dufford for these line drawings, and for his care and support . My loving thanks to Shawn Dufford for the many hours he will spend helping me proofread. Thank you to Michael Welch for her editing of the original manuscript , and for teaching me how to spell “ignore.” Thank you to Max Dufford for providing the word processor without which I would not have undertaken this project . My appreciation to Lt . Olen Barber for his interest and support .

My appreciation to Sgt . Gary Firko for his function as devil’s advocate. And my heartfelt appreciation to my family and friends who gave me tender loving care during the preparation of this manuscript .

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CHAPTER ONE

TO CONTROL OR BE CONTROLLED

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HERE IS increasing concern in the law enforcement profession for the police officer as a whole person . The stereotype of the officer as tough , unemotional , able to stand up under any pressure a superman is being replaced by a more accurate concept of the officer as a human being. It is recognized that officers have high rates of alcoholism , suicide, and family problems. Stress and burnout are the cause of many personal and professional problems for officers on the street and in lockup facilities, and departments are realizing that they must act to alleviate the stress that may lead to burnout , physical , or emotional problems. Police Magazine carried an article about stress and burnout which stated that the increase in stress on officers is the result of increased stress in the society. Daviss reported that burnout symptoms that formerly appeared in officers of seven to ten years duty, now surface in just three to five years on the job. Yet no more than 5 percent of the over 17 ,000 police departments in this country have programs to deal with the stress and burnout in their officers.1 Police officers spend 75-90 percent duty time in non-crime related activities, such as mediating interpersonal conflicts and acting as helping persons; and only 10-20 percent duty time is crime related . It is generally acknowledged that 90 percent





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police training is in areas that deal with crime , and only 10 percent of the training, or less, is focused on service related 2 tasks, that occupy 75-90 percent duty time. A high percentage of service related tasks means a lot of contact with people and a lot of contact with people means a great deal of stress. Many stress and/or burnout programs deal with the result of stress: symptoms caused by stress. And yet experiencing stress is not inevitable! We can control our reaction to stress and thus control the effect it has on us. The “secret” to controlling how we react to stress is controlling our emotions and thoughts instead of allowing them to control us. Controlling our emotions and thoughts is possible by becoming consciously aware of them and learning some simple skills. It is in this way that we reduce our stress and improve the way we deal with people. Human relations training usually focuses on “understanding” people and tells us how we should act toward others. I believe that we must become aware of ourselves and learn the how of relating to people. Lack of training in relating to other people is not confined to police training. In our society we teach kids everything from spelling to sports, but we don’t teach them two important sets of skills: skills for relating to people and personal skills for controlling their own lives. We have all been educated much the same in this area with the result that we all grow up knowing how to spell ( well, more or less) and no practical knowledge in how to deal with people, or ourselves. We have just picked up ways of thinking, feeling, and acting in a haphazard way and simply muddle through life. We tend to pattern ourselves after parents, relatives, peers, friends , and for you , other officers. Unfortunately, we pick up a lot of behaviors and feelings that cause us plenty of trouble. If we come from criticizing, complaining families, we learn to criticize and complain . If we come from a family that hugs , or fights, or talks loud , we tend to do the same. We tend to think that the way we do things is right and to be intolerant of

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To Control or Be Controlled

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other people and their ways and habits. And intolerance can bu are given be particularly troublesome for you as an officer. Y awesome power by your department and your use or abuse of that power affects those you contact , as well as yourself. If you are a hot dogger you cause yourself as much grief as you cause anyone else , because your approach to people affects the way they respond to you. By learning a few personal and interper sonal skills you can make your job easier and less stressful. You can improve your human relations , and that means with fam ily members, fellow officers, and superiors as well. Have you ever failed to say what you wanted to say to your superior officer because you were afraid of losing your job or didn’t know how to say it ? Or worse yet , were you afraid you would blow up? Do you keep your irritations to yourself and live in a constant state of anger or hidden rebellion ? Or do you let everyone know how you feel about everything and make yourself very obnoxious? The most important word in this training is rational . Ra tional is defined as: based on , or derived from reasoning: showing reason; not silly or foolish; and often connotes the absence of emotionalism. Rational must be differentiated from rationalize . “Rationalizing means to devise seemingly ra tional or plausible explanations for your acts, beliefs, or desires, usually without your awareness that these explanations do not hold water. Rationalizing or excusing your behavior, therefore , amounts to the opposite of thinking rationally about it.”3 The concept of rational thinking and emotions is stressed continually in this book and is approached from many angles. I believe that much of the conflict between persons is caused by out-of-control emotions and irrational thinking, and that you , as professionals, must not be victims of your own irra tional emotions and thoughts. Habits of thinking, feeling, behaving, and communication that are troublesome or demeaning for you are the reason for

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this book. There are practical skills that can be used to reduce emotional misery, make you relate more effectively and comfortably to people, and reduce daily stress: including the terrific amount of stress in law enforcement. This book is also intended to dispel the myth that if you have problems you are mentally ill! There has been a stigma attached to seeking help for any problems associated with mental or emotional functioning and perhaps that is the reason for the neglect in teaching us how to live in a more healthy manner. Mental and emotional functioning are very much a part of human relations. The information and skills offered here are a combination of several theories (stripped of the jargon) and a generous dose of common sense. Here is the practical stuff that has made life easier for me, and , my students tell me , for them too. These skills and information are not limited to use by police officers, they apply equally as effectively to deputy, jail, corrections, and security officers as well. Although the examples usually refer to street contacts , officers in a lockup facility may apply the same techniques to situations in their contacts with prisoners. A Lieutenant in a large suburban jail pointed out to me that his officers were more in need of this training than the street officers because they have shift long contact , day after day, with the same prisoners, as compared with the brief contact of an officer with a subject on the street . The officers who have taken the class based on this book have discovered how comfortable it is to decide whether or not to get angry, to shrug off taunting prisoners , and to talk straight to other officers and command staff. They enjoy controlling their reaction to stress, not buying into “games citizens play,” and learning how to deal with the things that bother them. Please join them in their pleasure in choosing how to act , think, and feel. They have contributed in many ways to this book and I treasure the time I have spent with them.

CHAPTER TWO

ATTITUDES TOWARD AUTHORITY- YOU! WHY ARE YOU A COP?

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AN YOU ANSWER that question ? Or is the answer a vague “feeling"? It is important that you spend some time right now to write down your reasons. When you write down thoughts and feelings they become definite in your mind rather than just floating around. It is difficult to identify the problems in your job unless you identify your motivation to serve your profession. Be honest . Don’t answer only to make it sound like you are a good Scout! To help you get started , here are a few reasons you may share with other officers. ‘like to take risks ‘high need for stimulation *desire for authority position ‘family tradition ‘money is not top priority ‘want to catch criminals

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Now that you have nailed down your motivations , weigh them against some of the realities of your experience on duty. You are liked even less than bosses and the IRS! You are the most visible form of law , and the “bad” experiences with the law are the ones that people remember. If you do twenty feats of human service and issue one speeding ticket what are you remembered for ? Sure, the one ticket. Your image as a cop is not created by you . Your identity is one that is assigned to you when you put on a badge. That identity is out of date and not nearly accurate, but it is the one the public believes. You cannot change the image that the public has of you , but you can develop and live by your own , realistic , self -image. Achieving self -control is the process of making choices and changes in your behavior, emotions, and thoughts so that you are comfortable being you. It is an irony that when you are in control of yourself , and therefore comfortable being you , that you most closely resemble the superhuman image the public holds of you .



RESPONSIBILITY TOWARD YOUR PROFESSION - AND YOURSELF Your duties on the street are diverse, but generally involve people. Those of you who joined the department to catch crooks are disappointed to find that 75 90 percent duty is unrelated to crime control. Traditional police training has been indoctrination in policies and procedures, and training in skills. The new humanistic approach to policing includes training the officer in personal and interpersonal awareness and skills. The management of conflict between persons is the largest part of your duty. You are often in a “no-win” position.

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Attitudes Toward Authority



You!

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Someone will disapprove of what you do, or say, or are . Therefore, it is important that you not only have the skills to deal humanely and effectively with people , but to take care of yourself as well. You cannot be one of the most hated and visible symbols in society authority and remain healthy psychologically, physically, and emotionally, unless you have some skills. As mentioned earlier, awareness is the beginning of de veloping control and confidence in yourself. Without aware ness you cannot identify the behaviors, thoughts, and emotions that make you function at your best . We live in a society of “shoulds” and “should nots.” You should do one thing, and you should not do something else. If everyone agreed on what the police should and should not do, you would not be caught in a double bind. But , the public, your superiors, your fellow officers, and you do not agree on what you should do. Let’s look at some of the “shoulds” that translate into expectations of law enforcement people. * always be tough *always be in control and able to handle any situation * be emotionally stable •keep your mouth shut and do your job *don’t get too involved *don’t be enthusiastic •keep a low profile * be polite and “nice” * adapt to peer pressure *don’t get too educated * be strong and protective * always be “right” ( make no mistakes) *never be tired, or upset , or “fed up” You can see how absurd are those expectations of you . The real danger is in whether you believe them . You cannot be ra tional and believe in “shoulds” like those . Y bur expectations of your profession and yourself must come out of you as a person.





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AUTHORITY V AUTHORITARIAN Do you operate as an authority or as an authoritarian ? There is a great difference. The element of authority in your case rests in your position. You are an authority because the state/county/city says you are. That does not guarantee that you have the personal qualities of authority. The personal qualities of authority are self-confidence , positive self-esteem , flexibility, and tolerance. Authoritarianism , on the other hand , is dictatorial in nature , and is identified in a person who is inflexible and rigid in thought and behavior, has a need to feel superior, and feels insecure. For an authoritarian person a perceived threat or attitude of a citizen may be his own projection. A projection is a defense mechanism that a person uses to get rid of unacceptable feelings or attitudes by blaming them ( projecting them) on someone else. For example, it is unacceptable for a cop to hate people, so s/he projects that attitude on the other person and believes that they hate her/him. Likewise, if s/he feels threatened s/he believes that the other person is a threat when in fact no threat exists. DeSanto and Moore said , “A policeman may respond coercively to an action he perceives as defiance of his authority. This perceived antagonism may be a projection of the officer’s 1 own fears, expectations, or defenses.” An action (cue) may be taken as a challenge, i.e. , “gestures, a degradi2ng snicker, an arrogant swagger, or direct words or action.” A tone of voice with particular (degrading) meaning may trigger a confrontation because of a perceived personal affront , e.g. , namecalling, obscene gestures, or laughing at a cop may make him defensive and combative. It is dangerous for an officer to be so easily baited into irrational behavior. Are you aware that your very presence is traumatic for many people? You have awesome power. You are one of the ou affew groups in society who have the right to use force. Y fect citizens’ behavior by the way you act and communicate.

Attitudes Toward Authority

— You!

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You can choose to be belligerent , defensive or rude but we can’t. Y ou can choose to use any behavior that has worked for you in the past. If you have decided that the only way to succeed at your job is to be hard-nosed , that is how you act in each situation. Self-control gives you the choice of different behavior as you go along instead of behaving by a set of rigid rules. When you are free to choose your behavior at the moment , you are more open to receive messages from people and from the environment. When you act only one way, i.e., tough or aggressive , you are so involved in that role that you miss cues ou may be (information or stimuli) that are available to you. Y so interested in whether you look tough , that you pay attention to little else. When your attention is all focused inward , you are not picking up cues from outside . And out there is where you pick up information about the situation you are involved with. You must at times make weighty decisions in a splitsecond. You need till your senses working efficiently without pre-set judgments about your behavior. Your demeanor determines how a person responds to you in many situations: with defensiveness, cooperation, anger. Your emotions trigger their emotions. Your attitudes trigger their attitudes. You can save yourself a lot of hassles by having your emotions and thoughts under control. People base many of their conclusions on appearance (nonverbal behavior). A strong, calm appearance from you can reduce testing of your authority and communicate your concern and responsibility to those you are dedicated to serve and protect .

CHAPTER THREE

RATIONAL ASSERTIVENESS FOR LAW OFFICERS

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ATIONAL ASSERTIVENESS TRAINING has traditionally been offered to nonassertive ( passive) people. However, the concept of rational assertiveness is useful for people who are situationally aggressive as well. As a police officer you are “aggressive” in some situations. However, if you rely on aggressive behavior in most of your on duty contacts , you cause needless conflict. The techniques in this book can make you aware of your behaviors, thoughts , and emotions, and make dealing with people more productive for you.

WHY ASSERTIVENESS ? Assertiveness in law enforcement makes it possible for the officer to control his own behavior in order to more efficiently control the behavior of citizens as the need arises. Although we talk most often about assertive “behavior,” assertive and ra tional thoughts and emotions are equally important . Assertiveness is awareness . It is quite easy for us to become so accustomed to the way we act , think , and feel that we never question whether it is good for us or whether we are just muddling through life . When you become aware of your

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emotions , thoughts, behaviors, physical functioning, attitudes, beliefs, and defenses, you can decide whether you cause yourself needless problems. Awareness is discovering your best self and your best methods of functioning. Freeze in the position you are in right now . Become aware of all of you . Really pay attention to what your body and environment are telling you. Are you tense? Cold? Cramped? Hungry? Comfortable? Angry? Are you hearing birds chirping? Or a TV ? Or traffic noise? Is your chair too hard or too soft ? Are your eyes tired , or does your head ache ? Do you feel your weight on the chair? What do you smell? Taste? Now close your eyes and become aware of what you are picking up through your senses for a few minutes. Did you attend to ( pay attention to) some things of which you are usually unaware? Probably. We block out a huge amount of the stimuli that bombards us each second . We are continually surrounded by sights, sounds, smells, tastes, and touch sensations, that are added to our current thoughts, emotions, and physical condition. We screen out till but the most important stimuli at any particular moment because there is a limit to how much we can handle. We cannot attend to everything, so we screen out the stimuli that is not important to us at that moment. You are reading this material right now and screening out unimportant noise, sights, and other stimuli. If you see a flash of light , or hear someone scream , or feel a sudden sharp pain , you redirect your attention to that stimuli until you decide whether it requires action from you , and then you go back to reading. The purpose of becoming aware of yourself and your environment is so that you can begin to change behaviors, feelings, and thoughts in some situations that are troublesome for you. As an officer you are subjected to different and widely varying situations that sometimes require your best perception, judgment , and action instandy. If you do not have a clear mind , well functioning body, and “in-control” emotions , you are less effective and efficient than is possible for you to be.



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Assertiveness is choice Assertiveness makes it possible to identify and make choices. When living by habit we seldom make conscious choices. Too many times we simply do the same things , think the same thoughts, and feel the same emotions “that we always have.” When we were children and we asked why about something, we were often told “because that is how we have always done it.” When we rebelled we were punished and often decided that we might as well join ’em (conform ), at least in some instances. As adults we must unlearn some of those behaviors, thought patterns, and emotions learned as children , and replace them with others that will work best for us now. Assertive behavior makes it possible for you to stand up for yourself in situations where you usually get “run over,” and to act passively in situations you don’t really care about . Not every situation in your life or your job is significant enough for you to assert yourself. And there are other situations , particu larly on your job, when you must behave aggressively. One primary element of assertion is choice: choice to use any behavior that is right for you in a certain circumstance. Some of my students have missed this point of choice and have become rigid and resistant in class because they believe I am attempt ing to force them to change or become like someone else. Please be aware , this training is for the purpose of making you aware of how you act , think, and feel, and to suggest alternatives for the areas where you have problems with people . If you have trouble saying what you really want to say to another officer, or have problems with a certain “type” of person , perhaps you can apply some of the skills and awareness learned here to make your contacts with “that” officer or “those” people easier and more productive for you . Most behavior is situational. That is, you probably act about the same way you have acted before in the same (or similar) situation . The people involved , the circumstances , and the way you have acted in the past , determine how you act in the present . If you are usually aggressive with your mother -

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in-law , and passive with your superior officer, then you tend to continue that pattern. We all use assertive , nonassertive , and aggressive behavior in different situations and with different people. When a person is usually aggressive or usually nonassertive , they have many problems relating to other people. Aggressiveness makes other people defensive and hostile. Nonassertiveness invites people to walk all over you . Assertive people, especially in the helping professions , find less resistance in people they deal with because they are self-confident but not threatening. Assertiveness makes human interaction and communication clear and honest. Assertiveness is responsibility We can be in control of ourselves only when we take responsibility for what we do and say without denying, blaming, or excusing it . When you think about it , who do you want to control your behavior you or someone else? As a police officer you are traditionally labeled aggressive because people don’t like some of the things you do in the line of duty. We are all self-centered and want our own way, and you , as authority, stop us. Therefore , it is necessary for you to have a very narrow definition of aggression , and to judge your own behavior by that standard . Through this training you can learn awareness and skills to use in dealing with people, and develop a positive self-concept. There are few professions that offer a poorer reputation than that of law officer. You are all things to all people, often negative , and you must not base your self-esteem on what you hear from the public. An assertive self-image screens out the verbal assaults of your criticizing public , and assertive behavior helps bu can be prepared protect you from their physical assaults. Y to act in each specific situation instead of merely re acting. You will note: if you act , you are in control; if you re act , someone else is in control. It is common for veteran officers to instruct rookies to forget what they learned at the academy or in training, parti-



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cularly in regard to dealing with people. They then proceed to show them “what it’s really like out there.” That practice has two effects. The first is to provide on the job experience that is more valuable than strictly classroom education. The second is to pass on personal techniques , prejudices , values , behaviors , and attitudes that may or may not be right for the new officer. The value of assertiveness for an officer lies in his awareness of what triggers his behavior, and in gaining control over his behavior, thoughts , and emotions. Law enforcement would be out of business if all people were in control of themselves. But they are not and that is why we need you. Regardless of how out of control any person may be, you can be in control. bu tire efficient and effective when you are in control of yourY self. You are stable. From this position no person on the street can “bait” you into unprofessional conduct or poor judgment .

AGGRESSIVE

NONASSERTIVE

ASSERTIVE

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Figure 1 Assertive, nonassertive, and aggressive behavior, shown in Figure 1 as equally divided , is intended to suggest ever changing degrees of behavior. A person displays a type of behavior, or combination of behaviors, e. g. , assertive/aggressive .

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Figure 1 represents a person’s total behavior and at different times in differing situations he may display behavior from any part of the circle. He may swing around to nonassertive when he backs off in a situation , and then around to assertive when he stands up for himself. Most people act aggressively at least once in awhile; some people are more often aggressive. In the circle diagram the behavior styles are divided into equal sections. However, for a law officer, the assertive section may extend into the nonassertive and aggressive sections as shown in Figure 2.

VIOLE NT

AGGRE SSIVE

NONAS SERTIV E

ASSER TIVE

, Figure 2. The behavior choices available to a law officer (on the street in , assertive . Therefore citizen ordinary the of lockup, etc. ) obviously exceeds that behavior extends into aggressive and nonassertive areas. The violent area exists in the border of aggressive/ nonassertive and is to be avoided by the law officer, just as aggressive behavior is to be avoided by the ordinary citizen. The violent area is the only actual area of aggressive behavior for a law officer.

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I believe that the danger area for behavior ( potential for violence) lies between aggressive and nonassertive as shown in Figure 2. It is the insecure, fearful person with low self-esteem who is more likely to blow up in an abusive manner. You have seen this yourself: the rather quiet person who erupts when faced with the threat of arrest or even a traffic summons. Or, the “nice boy next door” who shocks his community when he is arrested for a grisly murder. I believe this potential for violence applies equally to police officers. The insecure, anxious officer is the one who covers his lack of confidence by being badge heavy and violent . It is actually the nonassertive/aggressive officer who can be brutal. The “tough” officer is assertive. The “mean” officer is nonassertive/aggressive. The following definitions will make the distinctions more clear.

DISCRIMINATION BETWEEN BEHAVIOR STYLES This training depicts Assertive , Nonassertive , and Aggressive behaviors as elements of your total pattern of behavior. No one is always assertive , or nonassertive , or aggressive , but is known by the behavior most often practiced .

Assertiveness Alberti and Emmons define the assertive behavior style as: “[ Y ]ou will answer spontaneously, speak with a conversational tone and volume , look at the other person , speak to the issue , openly express your personal feelings and opinions (anger, love , disagreement , sorrow), value yourself equal to others , and hurt neither yourself nor others.”1 The assertive message is expressed without demeaning or humiliating another person. Assertion is choosing when to go after your rights and when to

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act passively. Assertion is communicating honestly with other

people. When acting assertively a person is more likely to achieve his goals and feel good about himself. Assertiveness is rational. Rational is defined as showing reason or derived from reasoning, and the ability to reason logically with an absence of emotionalism. Rationed Assertiveness Training points out irrational thoughts, beliefs , and emotions, and makes it possible to replace them with rational thoughts, beliefs, and emotions. Assertiveness is thinking critically. We are not taught in our society to think critically or to raise questions. We are taught to conform in every respect. However, it is crucial to our very existence that we think critically. We must learn to look at each situation objectively.

Nonassertiveness The nonassertive style gives up your rights in order to avoid conflict. Nonassertion is agreeing without expressing your thoughts , feelings , and opinion . You may be nonassertive with a superior officer just as people that you contact as an officer may be nonassertive with you. Nonassertion is based on fear, and fear is a persuasive behavior modifier. I may be a most assertive person in most situations , even aggressive, but if you stop me on the street I may be nonassertive, particularly if you are badge heavy.

Aggressiveness The aggressive behavior style is described: “you typically answer before the other person is through talking, speak loudly and abusively, glare at the other person , speak ‘past’ the issue (accusing, blaming, demeaning), vehemently expound your feelings and opinions, value yourself ‘above’ others , and hurt 2 others to avoid hurting yourself .” Bennett says, “Aggressive behavior . . . restricts police officers. Through videotaping and role playing, we found that ag-

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gressive behavior was actually inappropriate and dangerous in most policing situations. This constant focus on danger exaggerates the need for aggression , and danger becomes an over stated excuse to avoid trying something new .”3 Ochburg proposes a very different concept of aggressiveness: “It includes all those assertive , instrusive , biologically

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adaptive behaviors necessary for competition , achievement , mastery and survival .”4 He says that those behaviors are not to be prevented , but when they are directed in needlessly destructive ways they are violence, and it is violence that we want to prevent .

Woods writes that [1] aggression will always be a part of police work . There are certain situations where there is no alternative , and in those situations the “behavior should be swift , effective, and directed to the specific problem area with a minimum of publicity. However, the [2 ] aggression that may arise during the normal course of police operations , as a result of internal conflict experienced by the individual officer, is an area that should be of concern to the effective supervisor.”5 I believe that Woods uses the same label aggression for two distinct behavior styles. In [1] he says that controlling a sit uation by using the force necessary and no emotional “payoff ” is aggression. In [ 2 ] he says the internal conflict in the officer that results in aggression carries the same label aggression . I suggest that [1] is not aggression , but assertion . It is doing police duty, which requires use of force, by rational means and with non harmful intent. And that [ 2] is aggression (violence). The conflict in the officer results in rage that explodes in violence. The officer’s use of force is intended to harm. You can see the difficulty in coming to a working definition of aggression as it applies to the law officer. For the purpose of definition I conclude that assertion and aggression (for the law officer ) are alike up to the point of intent to harm another person: violence. At that point they become distinct and different. ( The term harm may refer to physical or emotional damage . )





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Compare the likenesses and differences between assertion and aggression in Figure 3. LIKENESSES

ASSERTIVE OR AGGRESSIVE

INTENT TO CONTROL ( IN AUTHORITY POSITION ) SELF CONFIDENT

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,

, ,

EXPRESS THOUGHTS EMOTIONS OPINIONS FORCEFULLY ( CARING ANGER LIKES / DISLIKES ) COMFORT WITH CONFLICT AND DISAGREEMENT AMBITION AND GOAL SEEKING HONEST AND DIRECT IN COMMUNICATION COMPETITIVE SAY " NO " WITHOUT GUILT LOUD VOICE

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DIFFERENCES

ASSERTIVE

AGGRESSIVE

INTENT TO HARM OTHERS RESPECT FOR SELF PHYSICALLY OR EMOTIONALLY AND OTHERS THOUGHTS IRRATIONAL THOUGHTS RATIONAL EMOTIONS AND BEHAVIOR EMOTIONS AND BEHAVIOR Figure 3. Behaviors listed under likenesses may be considered aggressive for an or -

dinary citizen, but assertive for an officer; those behaviors are considered aggressive for the officer, however, if he is irrational and his intent is to harm (differences ).

The basis then forjudging an aggressive act for an officer is whether the intent is to harm , and the presence of irrational thoughts, emotions, and behavior. As an agent of the city, county, or state, you have the right to stop me . You do not have the right to treat me without respect , or to coerce me , or to threaten me , or to use any unethical procedure against me: aggression. Aggression makes communication difficult . The way you treat me determines how I cooperate with you . You can make your job easier or more difficult . It is your choice .

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As a police officer you are often the target of the anger of citizens for just doing your duty. There was a cartoon published showing a young police officer waking up after hav ing had surgery. He was surprised to feel discomfort not only in the surgery area but also on his chest. When he raised his hospital gown he discovered a four-inch wide strip of adhesive tape firmly attached to the hair on his chest. A message printed on the tape said , “ ‘Get well soon! From the surgery nurse you gave a speeding ticket to yesterday morning.’ ” 6 So you can see that even without aggression from you , you may be the recipient of aggression. When you are faced with aggression in a person on your job, it may be thinly disguised fear. Your communication (both verbal and nonverbal) may determine the outcome. When a person believes that you are criticizing or attacking his per sonhood , the result is different than when he believes you are attacking his behavior He does not react as strongly when his behavior is questioned , as when his personhood is questioned. For example , “What are you tryin’ to do, kill somebody ?” (aggressive) , compared to “You were driving recklessly” (assert ive). Do you see the difference? An aggressive statement is usually an exaggeration and is off the subject. An aggressive statement is a put-down . An assertive statement , however, is specific and makes no evaluation of motive. It is a simple statement of fact. Assertion in a law officer may be perceived incorrectly by the public, however. You are often seen as a threat because of the punishment you hand out . Because you are often punish ing, even assertive behavior by you may be seen as aggressive. You must rely on your own discrimination as to whether you are assertive or aggressive. A key to the difference between the two is the emotion that you feel. If you feel a great deal of neg ative emotion in a situation , you are probably being aggressive, i .e. , “I’ll show him!” Assertiveness is not judgmental , revengeful , nor emotional .

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Assertiveness in a citizen may likewise be perceived incorrectly by an officer. Many people are nonassertive when dealing with you to avoid further contact. Do you know when a person is merely being assertive (standing up for his rights) with you? Or do you think he even has rights when dealing with you? Do you perhaps perceive assertion as aggression and increase your authoritarian behavior ? You give the public a fair shake when you allow for assertive behavior in them as well as yourself . An officer on an authority kick is punishing and ineffective.



Exercise Discrimination Between Assertive , Nonassertive, and Aggressive Behaviors

You must be able to identify the difference between behaviors if you are going to improve your ability to deal with people. Read the statement under Situation and decide whether the Response is assertive, nonassertive, or aggressive.

Situation 1. Your superior officer says, “Can’t you do anything right?” 2. Your partner says, “Let’s go hassle those kids.” 3. Your spouse/ roommate asks you to cook dinner. 4. A gang of kids make catcalls at you as you walk by. 5. Your spouse/ roommate asks you to cook dinner for the fifth time this week.

Response You reply, “What are you referring to?” You say, “Okay.”

YJU yell, “You lazy bum , do it yourself!” You just glance at them and keep walking You say, “no.”

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Situation

Response

6. Your mother asks you to take time off from work to do some errands for her. 7. Y ou are questioning an adolescent about a traffic offense and his friends begin to call you names. 8. You have just given a speeding ticket to a high ranking officer in a local company. He is very an gry and making threats. 9. You stop the same guy the next day for speed ing again. He makes the same threats. 10. Your neighbor asks if he can borrow your barbeque grill again. He re turned it dirty last time. 11. Your brother borrowed your car and returned it with an empty gas tank. bur superior officer has 12. Y just chewed you out in front of the whole watch. our superior officer has 13. Y again chewed you out in front of the whole watch. 14. You answer a call to a house where the wom

You respond , “What do you think I am , an errand boy?”

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You tell them , “We can settle this here unless you keep interrupting and I run out of time to talk to him.” You say, “Well, ur, yes sir, I could be wrong. Maybe , you weren’t speeding.”

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You repeat , “You were driv ing ... in a ... zone” until he gives up the threatening.

You say, “Oh sure, it’s okay.”

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You yell, “You jerk don’t you ever touch my car again!” You respond , “Sir, may I speak to you in private ?” You feel very angry, but say nothing. You shout , “You stupid woman , leave us alone!”

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Situation an obviously wants only your company. 15 . You are sent to the same house where the woman wants your company.

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16 Your friend has agreed to go to a concert with you and you bought the tickets. He calls at the last minute to ask you to give up your ticket so he can take his girlfriend. 17. YJU are returning a lost child to his mother who is yelling at you for not finding him sooner.

Response

You say, “We do not have police business here. If you have no emergency do not call again.” You reply, “Okay.”

You look her straight in the eye and say nothing.

Now compare your answers to the list below . 1. A , 2. NonA , 3. Agg, 4. A , 5. A , 6. Agg, 7 . A , 8. NonA , 9. A , 10 . NonA , 11. Agg, 12. A , 13. NonA , 14. Agg, 15. A , 16. NonA , 17. A. Did you label all the responses correctly? Probably not . It is difficult to discriminate between the behaviors in some of the situations because you don’t know what nonverbal behavior went along with the verbal statement . But you are aware of the differences now , and can begin to classify your own behavior. Keep in mind that you have more behaviors available to you as officers , i. e. , more behavior is within your legal right . Therefore, your assertive area is expanded . Because of your power and freedom you must be more aware of when you near the “danger zone” ( when you are losing control and becoming irrational with intent to harm ).

CHAPTER FOUR

LEARNING , THINKING , BELIEFS LEARNING BEHAVIOR

B

EHAVIORAL SCIENTISTS state that all behavior is learned . Although Behaviorists discount thinking and feeling, other theorists state that those functions too are learned . Children in every culture are socialized to imitate the behaviors that have been adopted and adapted by their culture to assure survival. Visible behaviors that are valued , are reinforced , and those that are not valued are ignored or punished. Unfortunately, the reinforcements and punishments are not always awarded to the intended behaviors. A behavior must be immediately followed by it’s consequence in order to encourage or discourage that behavior. If a child is told , “Wait until your father gets home” to be punished , he will associate the sit uation (father coming home) with the consequence (punishment ) , instead of associating his own behavior with the punishment. If he is smacked immediately for what he did he will associate the two events and make future decisions about repeating the behavior based on the consequences he received . Likewise, in the Criminal Justice System , the consequence is so far removed from the offense that people blame you , the jury, etc. , for the punishment they receive, instead of their own behavior.

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Behavior Modification has gotten a bad reputation because it is misused by so many people. Behavior Modification is intended to do just that change behavior. It’s bad reputation and failure stem from the fact that it is most often misused as a means to control other people. Many have grabbed at behavior mod as a cure-all for controlling “behavior problems.” In our society where individualism is given lip service and conformity rewarded , control has become a most sought after goal. Unfortunately, the goal has been other-control and not self control. Behavior Mod has been adopted as a means to control, although it usually fails when used for control purposes. Behavior change does occur when a person desires to change his own behavior. However, attempting to change the behavior of another person without his consent is manipulation. Children are manipulated into behavior change under the name of socialization. It is little wonder that so many kids are alienated from society and rebel in an attempt to live their own lives. Think back on your own socialization. Against how much of it did you rebel? Assuming that you have some behaviors that you choose to change, here is the process. Behavior, that is followed by a positive reinforcer, will tend to continue. What constitutes a rein forcer varies between people. What is reinforcing to me may be punishing to you. You may like ice cream and I like yogurt. Think about what is actually pleasing and reinforcing to you. Behavior has consequences. When those consequences are pleasant, it is positive reinforcement and makes it likely that that behavior will continue. If you want to get more exercise , you have to make the consequence reinforcing. When the only consequence of exercise is being tired and sore , the exercise is not likely to continue. If you arrange it so that you have to run two miles to get to see your boyfriend three times per week and he agrees not to let you in if you drive over on those days, the exercise will continue. That is, if you really want to see him. If seeing him is not pleasant , you will not continue either the exercise nor seeing him!



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Here are some more examples of positive reinforcement. 1. You smile at someone , they smile back. 2. You do your job, you get your paycheck. 3. You cut your dad’s lawn and drink his beer while you do it. 4. You clean the garage and your spouse cooks your favorite dinner. 5. You bowl a good game and your team cheers for you. 6. You call a friend , they are glad to hear from you . 7. You do a good job and have a feeling of accomplishment . 8. You stick to your budget and have money left at the end of the month. 9. You have struggled to work and finish college , and you graduate. In order to find out whether something is reinforcing, look at the results. If the behavior is continuing, it is being reinforced. If it is not continuing, the reinforcer is no good. You can reinforce yourself or let someone else do it for you. Remember, the reinforcer must be strong enough to motivate you to engage in the behavior. Make a list (yes, write it down!) of the things that are pleasant and reinforcing to you. Before you write each one down answer this question: Do I put this activity/item before others? If not, you may be telling yourself it “should” be rewarding to you , but it isn’t . If you go jogging about three times per year, it is more punishing than rewarding to you. Remember the saying “actions speak louder than words”? It’s true. The way you spend your time shows what you really want or need. For example , you say you like to ski. You ski once per year and watch every ski event on TV. Do you like to ski? No, you like to watch skiing on TV. What you actually do shows what you like or value. Good intentions don’t count because they seldom get done. Of course, if you are hungry, tired , or want a cigarette , the only thing that will satisfy you at that moment is food , rest , or a cigarette . But if you like to eat , or sleep, or smoke, or watch

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TV, or talk to a special friend, or play tennis, or work on your car often , then it is reinforcing. Will you go out of your way to engage in this activity or to get this item ? If you want to stop a behavior you can (1) eliminate the reinforcers, ( 2) replace it with another behavior, or (3) punish it. For example, if you are usually late and want to learn to be on time you can (1) tell your carpool to leave without you if you are late, (2) make only half a pot of coffee or put your alarm where you have to get out of bed to turn it off , or (3) promise to give $10 to your favorite charity every time you are late. (You have to really want to support that charity so that you will feel guilty if you don’t pay up. ) Once you begin to arrive on time it will be self- reinforcing. You will enjoy the feeling of doing what you want to do and feel successful. To begin a new behavior (or continue a disliked one) you must make the reinforcer strong enough to motivate you to engage in the behavior. You will know whether the reinforcer is strong enough if the behavior increases and/ or continues. For example, if you don’t like to cook but you like to eat , you may avoid cooking whenever possible but you will cook when you get hungry enough. We reinforce other people too. When we like what someone does we smile, say pleasant things, give a hug or pat on the back, etc. When we don’t like what they do we frown , criticize , and withdraw attention and affection. These behaviors are how we manipulate each other so that we get what we want . Deliberate manipulation, however, is dishonest and can turn into a power struggle. In chapter seven you can learn how to get what you want and give other people what they want honestly, by communication . Sometimes we accidentally reinforce the exact behavior that we don’t like in another person , e. g. poor work. If a person does a job poorly the first time, and someone else does it over again for him , that is reinforcing to the one who does the poor work. He is rescued from having to do a job at which he

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fails, or dislikes. It becomes his way of coping with life. He seldom has to deal with the natural consequences of his behav ior because there are so many rescuers in the world. We have been socialized to be “nice,” and “nice” people rescue. Nice mothers are an example. They do everything for their kids and the kids grow up expecting life to be a free ride. The rescued person never develops the skills necessary to survive , nor any self-confidence. You deal with a lot of those type people. Their life is crisis-oriented because they have not learned competence and coping skills. We encourage people to be dependent when we do for them what they can do for themselves . We don’t allow them to learn independence. We also keep them from developing self confidence.

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BEHAVIOR GOAL SETTING In behavior change , emphasis is put on setting small , specific goals, and recognizing small successes. We break behaviors down into small steps. We define behaviors concretely, i.e. , we state a goal as “I will call my mother once per week,” instead of “I need to improve my relationship with my mother.” The first goal is specific; the second goal is vague. Set goals

that you can count . If you can count a goal you know when you are/are not accomplishing it. In the above example you will know you have reached your goal if you make that call each week. How will you know if you are “improving your re lationship”? You won’t , the goal is too vague. With vague goals you never see any success and see your effort as failure. Success happens in small steps , not in giant leaps. Recognizing success is not natural for us. We have been trained as children to concentrate on our mistakes, faults, and failures. If we concentrate on our strengths , talents, and successes, we are accused of bragging and being egotistical. That’s nonsense . With training like that it is no wonder that so many

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of us grow up feeling so crummy about ourselves. But we can break that negative habit by noticing our successes, and looking at our failures as no more important than our successes. When you fail to change a behavior, take that as a cue to look again at the goal. You will usually find that the goal is too big. A series of small steps, reinforced by success at each step, is the natural way to accomplish a goal. Trying to reach a goal in one step is like asking a baby to walk without crawling, standing up, or falling. As an example, you are concerned about a serious problem you have in the department. You want to talk to your supervisor but he is difficult for you to talk to. So you set up a series of steps. Each one is a little more difficult for you to do. 1. Talk to your partner about a problem. 2. Talk to another cop who is not as familiar to you. 3. Talk to a family member about a problem you have with

them. 4. Talk to your supervisor about a common interest. 5. Talk to him about an unimportant problem. 6. Talk to him about a departmental problem. 7 . Spring the big one. With each step you gain confidence , experience , and success. Of course, not all problems that you want to work out take this much preparation . But the big ones do. Here are examples of vague v. specific goals.

Specific

Vague 1. Be more friendly.

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2. Take better care of my self.

Speak to someone four times per day. Smile at someone five times per day. Offer to do someone a favor once per week. Go to the gym two times per week.

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Specific

Vague

Eat complete meals twelve times per week. Sleep ... hours per night (or day). Do relaxation exercises two times per day for ten minutes.

3. Improve my relationship with my wife.

Talk to my wife 30 minutes per day. Ask my wife to leave me alone when I am angry or irritable . Hug/ kiss her two times per day.

Set realistic goals. If you know you won’t smile at someone twenty-five times per day set the goal for how many times you may succeed . If the goal is a little too high you will reach for it . If it is much too high you will give up. Remember to set goals in small steps and give yourself credit when you do succeed . You never fail to tell yourself what a bum you are when you fail. So give yourself an equal amount of attention when



you succeed .

RATIONAL THINKING Rational thinking is the basis for rational emotions and behavior. Rational is defined as: based on reason or derived from reasoning, with an absence of emotionalism . The opposite of rational is irrational, and is defined as: contrary to reason ; senseless; absurd . I think most of us would tend to describe ourselves as rational , and other people as irrational; but are we ? Many of our thought patterns, emotional habits , and resulting behaviors

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are not rational! (Thoughts trigger emotions and behavior. ) Our socialization and early training combined with life expe rience determines our thoughts, emotions, and behavior to a far greater degree than does reason. Our society simply does not operate by reason. Emotion (or bu have only to watch emotionalism) is far more popular. Y television commercials and programs to see that our society is emotion oriented . And I am not even talking about the “soaps” that fairly ooze emotion! We are not taught to be rational, with the result that most people are not only uncomfortable with , but downright disap proving of a rational person. Do you say what you are actually thinking in most situations? Are you uncomfortable with peo ple who do? I am reminded of the story of The Emperor’s New Clothes . We all go along with the crowd in many situa tions, but where do we draw the line and free our rational selves ? Are you the one to tell the Emperor he is naked ? I encourage and support rationality. Rational thinking and emotions reduce stress by eliminating the build up of physical arousal. It is stressful praising the Emperor for his nonexistant new clothes. It is by controlling physical arousal (chapter five) and thinking rationally that we gain the personal control that we seek. A rational person is healthy, calm , confident , and de pendable.

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RATIONAL V. IRRATIONAL BELIEFS Albert Ellis states in his Rational Emotive Therapy that people have equal potential for rational (straight) and irra tional (crooked) thinking.1 He says that some of the irrational beliefs that we are taught in our society are kept alive in our thinking by unconsciously repeating them to ourselves. We are not aware that we believe them . They are a habit pattern in thinking. We seldom question what we think or are even aware of many of our thoughts and self-statements. We are not aware

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that we adapt our irrational beliefs to each situation and repeat them to ourselves over and over. These self statements are no more noticed than breathing, but they are there in our minds telling us how we should be , or what we should do. One element common to irrational beliefs is that they are on a two point scale: yes no, happy sad , okay not okay, good bad. They dwell on failures, faults, and fears. Irrational beliefs are taught within the socialization and training of children. Each society teaches it’s children how to think, act , and feel. In our society the shoulds and should nots are the unwritten rules that we have all been battered with since childhood. Consider the following three irrational beliefs (adapted from Ellis), 2 and see if they are part of your belief system. Think about how they rule your life and therefore make some choices unthinkable to you.

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#1.1 Should Be Perfect .

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We have all grown up with this irrational belief to some de gree. We “should” be perfect as persons and able to do something “important” perfectly. Therefore , any personal quality or any performance that is less than perfect is not worthwhile. Our value as persons depends upon our perfection: we are approved or disapproved of on the basis of how much fault people find in us. The fact that none of us are perfect and fall short of this irrational standard gives us all the reason we need to put ourselves down continually. It becomes a habit. We don’t even realize we are condemning ourselves . When you become aware of your self- talk, you become aware of your irrationally negative opinion of yourself. This first irrational belief is also responsible for much of the guilt and shame that we feel, and prevents us from being assertive. When we feel crummy about ourselves we tend to be either nonassertive or aggressive out of a need to be selfprotective (defensive ).

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Believing that we should be perfect also prevents our feeling successful about what we accomplish. There is usually a room for improvement in what we do but that does not mean less than perfect performance is a failure. We must learn to level. accept our functioning at a realistic rather than a perfect Here are some examples of irrational beliefs based on #1 and rational beliefs to counter them . Irrational 1. I messed this up too. I can’t do anything right! 2 . He thinks I am stupid because I blew that arrest. I guess I am stupid. 3 . I should let him borrow my car; he is my brother.

Rational 1. I give myself permission to make mistakes and to correct them. 2. I blew that arrest but that doesn’t make me a bad cop. 3. I don’t think my brother drives safely so I won’t lend him my car.

#2. You Should Be Perfect . This irrational belief is the basis for putting other people down just as we put ourselves down in #1. When we believe that other people should be perfect , we can interpret it to include that they should behave perfectly toward us, i.e. , give us what we want . If people do not give us what we want , then we feel justified not only for putting them down , but for blaming and punishing them as well. We live by a whole lot of “shoulds.” This irrational belief is responsible for much of the anger felt toward others because of the expectations we have of them. We are usually not even aware of the expectations we have of other people and are unable to work out the anger until we be come aware.

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This irrational belief is also where we pick up believing that others are responsible for our emotions. It is true that what we do and say affects other people , and sometimes the actions of another will have negative consequences for us. Nevertheless , we still have the choice to act or react to any person or situa-

tion.

Irrational

1. He is so stubborn! I know how it should be done. 2. She should feel terrible because she got my job. 3. Today is my birthday. Why hasn’t someone remembered?

Rational 1. We will have to compromise because we can’t agree. 2. I am disappointed that I didn’t get the job but I will keep trying. 3. It’s my birthday and I want to celebrate. I think I will call someone and ask them to go with me.

#3 . It’s Awful! This belief is called “awfulizing.” Every event is blown way out of proportion and takes on life and death importance. Awfulizing is like crying wolf. When every event is viewed as just awful, an event of real tragedy is overwhelming When we buy into this belief we complain about most everything that happens to us and generally have a negative attitude. Often “It’s awful,” is concluded with “and I can’t stand it!” The two point scale in this belief limits solutions to the prob lem: stay leave, good bad , happy sad. An “I can’t stand it” philosophy is usually untrue. A person has usually stood “it” for a long period of time , perhaps years. When we operate with this belief we feel helpless and are not likely to act , much less act assertively or rationally.

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Along with this belief is a fantasy about how people and situations should be. A desire for this fantasy life makes it possi-

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ble to complain without making any effort to change or accept life as it is. It is a way to put the responsibility for personal unhappiness or failure on an outside source. Irrational 1. What am I going to do? I can’t find a parking space! I’ll be late! 2. My supervisor said I have to rewrite this report and I just can’t! 3. I have got to have that car.

Rational 1. Getting upset won’t help me find a parking space. Next time I will have to leave earlier. 2. I don’t want to rewrite this report so I will talk to him to see what he thinks is wrong with it. 3. I would sure like to have that car but I can’t afford it. These three irrational beliefs account for much of our messed up thinking and feeling. Let’s go back to irrational belief #2: people cause other people to feel emotion. I believe that overcoming this belief is a key to rational thinking and controlled emotions. We have the capability of choosing how to act toward any person in any situation . Do you agree or disagree with that statement ? Why? We have been socialized to believe that we cause other people to feel emotion: “He made me mad ,” “She hurt my feelings ,” “You make me happy.” That belief is false. We are responsible for our own reactions and feelings. A person may have direct control over the physical behavior of someone else by physical force. But no person can have direct control over the thoughts or emotions of another person. If we did have that control it would be magic or voodoo. Think about it , if I can make you angry, or make you feel hurt (emotional pain) , then I have a lot of power over you. That is not rational. If I can make you angry then I control your behavior and feelings . I can make

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you angry any time I want to, so that you can’t feel any other way at that time. Do you believe that I have that control over you ? Of course not. I may do something and you may choose to get angry, but I can’t make you get angry. You can choose your response to me. You can laugh , yell , ignore me , tell me what you think, or you can get angry. But you decide. You think your own thoughts and feel your own feelings as you choose. What you really mean when you say “You made me mad ,” or “You hurt my feelings,” is that I pushed your buttons and you reacted by getting angry or hurt . The things that “push our buttons” are the things that we are defensive about , or feel badly about , that produce emo tional responses. If I am sensitive about my weight , I wear a WEIGHT button right up front where anyone can push it. And , like a good machine , when my button is pushed I react . Every time you say something about weight you push my WEIGHT button and I react. However, if I am not defensive about my weight , then there is nothing you can say or do that will make me react emotionally to your comment about my weight. You can say, “Boy are you getting fat ,” and I will laugh at you. You can say, “Does the scales still hold you ?” and I will be bored by your comment. However, I have other buttons that you can push and I will react emotionally. Think of the things about which you are defensive. Do you have a PIG button ? (Or whatever is the current derogatory term for you.) A lot of officers have several buttons related to their profession. In one incident locally, an officer reacted to a name calling incident and it escalated into two unarmed young men being shot to death and the officer standing trial for their deaths. Those young men triggered the officer’s behavior manipulated him into reacting so strongly emotionally that he shot them. He probably still believes that they made him angry: that they made him react. Yes , they were the stimulus to his behavior, they triggered his emotions , but he chose to get angry and emotionally out of control. He allowed them to control him . Could that happen to you ? Can juveniles

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push your buttons? Macho males ? Drunks? What do you react to by blowing up ? Or with unnecessary force ? Think about your buttons. What are you sensitive about and what names are you sensitive to being called ? This may be something you do not want to write down , but give it a lot of thought. Be honest. If you deny that a certain name makes you react then you are a set- up for anyone with that name on the tip of their tongue. You don’t want anyone but you to control your behavior so don’t set yourself up. The exercises and skills at the end of the chapters can help you get into complete control of yourself. The flip side of believing other people are responsible for making you angry, etc. , is you believing that you are responsible for making them angry, etc. We are more willing to take responsibility for someone else than we are for ourselves. That " does not mean that you are free to say or do anything. Your freedom stops at the end of my nose. If your intent is to get me to feel angry or miserable, then you are being aggressive. You are not responsible for how I feel but you are irresponsible if your intent is to harm. Now that you are aware of irrational beliefs and what effect they can have on you , you are in a position to change them to rational beliefs. You are less likely to operate with tunnel vision. The exercises at the end of this chapter are designed to give you skills and practice in controlling your own thoughts and emotions, and therefore your behavior. Before you do the exercises read the next section on self-talk.

SELF-TALK Do you know that you talk to yourself ? Oh , it’s okay, we all do. We base our talk to ourselves on our beliefs , learned behavior, and how we feel about ourselves (self-esteem). When our beliefs are irrational we put ourselves down. For an example, let’s go back to irrational belief #1, that we should be per-

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feet . Now imagine that your superior officer chews you out for your failure to hand in a report. Your self talk might sound like this: “Boy, did I blow it. Now he thinks I’m a bum. And he’s probably right. Good cops hand in all reports. I’m a lousy cop. I’m a lousy person.” Sound familiar? Perhaps. You have to learn to tune in on what you tell yourself. Self talk is not done consciously. It is like breathing we are not usually aware of it . Dr. David Bums and Dr. Aaron Beck write of their work with Cognitive Therapy: they train their patients to become aware of the negative train of thought that runs parallel to con scious thought . “He [Dr. Beck] began to coach patients in ob serving and declaring their unreported , self critical thoughts. ... He found they are usually quite specific (‘I’m no good’) , and they occur in a kind of mental shorthand with no logical sequence. And the negative thoughts tend to distort reality.”3 The doctors and their colleagues agree that moods (emo tions) don’t trigger thoughts. It is the other way around. Thoughts trigger emotions.4 Ellis , Meichenbaum , and others believe that what we say to ourselves about an event is what causes the emotional reaction. Their theory is:

-



-

-

-

-

A

+

(event)

B (self- talk)

C ( reaction)

That is , that the event does not cause the reaction , A C . But that the self talk , B , causes the reaction , C . (We usually think that the event produces the emotional reaction . ) In the example:

^

-

A B + ( your supervisor (you self-talk chews you out) negative comments)

C (you feel badly)

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It is not the event (A) that makes you feel badly (C ), it is what you think about the event what you tell yourself about the event (B) that makes you feel badly. Until you are able to tune in on your own self -talk, you can judge whether you are in fact self- talking if everyone would not feel like a lousy person if their supervisor chewed them out . If you believe that A (event) produces C ( reaction), ask your self if everyone would react the same way. Would Bruce the Bad feel lousy? If not , then A ÿfcC . A + B C. The self-talk produces the miserable feelings. Physical pain and emotional pain are completely different . In physical pain A = C: you get hit: you hurt. In emotional pain A + B C . The situation + self-talk = feeling. Identify physical or emotional pain that you may feel in the examples that follow.



-

=

=

ou stub your sore toe. 1. Y 2. You are called a #!* + ! on the street. 3. Your spouse says , “I hate you .” 4. I get hit by a baseball. 5. A suspect kicks you. 6. A suspect spits on your badge. 7 . I am tired from working 22 hours straight . 8. The Chief steps on your foot . 9. I am not invited to my friend’s party. 10. You get a call that your son is in Juvenile Hall. 1 . P, 2. E, 3. E , 4. P, 5. P, 6. E, 7. P, 8. P, 9. E , 10. E.

Is the idea of self-talk causing emotional pain clear yet? It

works the same for emotional pleasure too.

A (your brotherin-law is coming for a visit)

+

B (you tell yourself you will enjoy seeing him)

C (you feel pleasure)

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Let’s use the same example to show that what you say to yourself determines your response. B A + (you tell your( your brotherself you will in-law is enjoy seeing coming for him) a visit)

C (you feel pleasure)

Now let’s change the B and see if the C changes.

B A + (your brother(you tell yourself how much in-law is you dislike him ) coming for a visit)

C (you feel anger and dread toward his visit)

Can you see how what you think and say to yourself about an event produces the emotional reaction ? It is difficult to tune in on your self-talk because you have been unaware of it for so long. But it is like learning to notice suspicious people and events when you become an officer. It can be learned . Begin to notice your self-talk in one particular situation that happens over and over, and remind yourself to pay attention to what you tell yourself. Choose a situation that makes you feel angry. Perhaps you feel angry every time your friend asks to borrow your car. Or maybe you get angry when someone keeps you waiting. The exercises at the end of this chapter can help you identify the statements you make to yourself to cause the feeling of anger. If you have real difficulty in tuning in on your self-talk, look for mental pictures instead of words. Mental images are a shorthand way of giving yourself messages. Whether it is selftalk or mental images, the message is the same. It is probably negative if it is based on irrational beliefs. A

+

B

C

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(your child is late coming home from school)

(you tell yourself she has surely been abducted )

(you see mental images of her being forced into a car)

B ( you tell yourself your supervisor won’t believe you)

C ( mental images flash through your mind of your getting fired)

Or: A (you call in

sick)

+

Negative self-talk and mental images usually come from irrational beliefs. Remember, irrational beliefs are based on a two- point scale: good bad , do don’t , early late , yes no . That is what the irrational belief theory calls catastrophyzing or awfulizing. A situation is either good or it is awful It is putting catastrophe value on almost every event . Is it really awful if you can’t find a pairking space (irrational belief #3), or if your boss chews you out (#1), or if your best friend doesn’t call when she said she would (#2)? There are times when those situations might be catastrophic, but not all the time. Yet we often look at every event as being critical. We take ourselves too seriously and get far too emotional over minor incidents. Begin to tune in on your self-talk or mental images in one situation. When you can identify the words or images and the irrational belief behind them , do the same in another situation . It gets easier as you become more aware. The same self messages take place in pleasurable events too if the message is rational. C B A + (you feel (you tell your(a new friend pleasure) self it will asks you to be fun ) a party)









.

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Go back and make B irrational and it will change C .

(a new friend asks you to a party)

(you tell yourself he must want something)

(you feel uneasy and suspicious)

(The irrational belief comes from #1 because you know you are not perfect and can’t understand why someone would invite a bum like you to a party.) You can see that events that might be pleasurable can be unpleasant if we give ourselves negative messages about them. We refer to two kinds of people as optimists and pessimists. Optimists give themselves positive messages and pessimists give themselves negative messages. The best of both types is to think critically and give yourself accurate messages, and to choose what your emotional responses will be. For now , learn to tune in on your self- talk and mental images.

Your expectations in a situation may cause you to misinterpret an event. If you expect certain things to happen in an event , you sire not open to actual cues and stimuli coming to you. For example, you expect a suspect to be behind that door all your attention is focused there. Therefore, you may not hear him behind you . Or, you expect your wife to give you that sweater she has been knitting, for your birthday. And when she gives you your package you wonder how she got the sweater in a tie box. Learn to be receptive to what is actually happening instead of what you expect. Your decision making and behavior will be appropriate to the event more of the time when it is based on stimuli rather than expectations. Also, don’t get so set in your ways that you are rigid and unable to change. There is more than one way to do most everything and sometimes new ways are better. Strive to be open , receptive, and flexible.



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SkUl “No Defense” Do this exercise with a partner, a classmate , friend , or family member.

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-

Make a statement that you would previously have de fended , like “I like being a cop,” and tell your partner to say anything they can think of to get you to defend your statement (get mad , blow-up). But you have “No-Defense.” You may: 1. remain silent, or 2. repeat only the same words. This skill is intended to help you avoid arguments and be ing put on the defensive. You are often confronted with argu ments and “topic-jumping” that lead to emotions getting out of control. When you make a statement or request and the other person begins to argue or change the subject , use “ No Defense.” Remember, remain silent or repeat the same words. By remaining silent or repeating the same words (a broken re cord ) you don’t get hooked into a verbal game , you remain in control, and stay on the subject you choose. How did it work? How did you feel? Did you get hooked into defending or arguing? Begin to use this technique in your interactions with other people as you become more comfort able with it. Remember, make a statement and: 1. keep silent , or 2. repeat the same words. Does it work ? What is their response? Do you feel like you are in control of yourself and the situation? I hope so. Con tinue using this skill when you want to state your opinion , but not argue. Knowing this skill doesn’t mean you will never argue or defend again. But you will only argue or defend when you choose to do so.

-

-

-

-

-

SkiU STOP/THINK This skill may be used to: 1. identify problem situations and people for you and help you cope with them; and 2. change your self-talk.

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When you realize that you are thinking or acting “the way you always have” and you would like to think or act differendy, STOP/THINK about the situation you are in and how you would like to act or how you would like to change your selftalk . Set a goal and then STOP and THINK when you find yourself in that situation . Example: “When I say ‘Boy am I dumb!’ I will STOP and change that self-talk to ‘I am not dumb . The mistake I made was dumb , but that does not make me a dumb person .’ ” Or, when you get into a situation where you choose to think differendy, STOP/THINK “This guy is trying to manipulate me (push my buttons) to get me to react . No way! I am going to stay in control of myself and the situation .” Then when you succeed in a STOP/THINK , congratulate yourself. Give yourself credit for your success . It will encourage you to continue your new “in control” behavior. Success is not permanent and neither is failure . Learn to recognize and feel good about your success. It is not egotistical or bragging , it is rational . The attention you give to success must equal the attention you give to failure . All our mistakes are not front page headlines and our successes back page news . When you begin to give yourself credit when due and accept responsibility for your mistakes only in proportion to their importance , you begin to have a rational self-concept . Skill

— Thought-Shift

A Thought-Shift is a conscious move from thinking about one thing to a different thought . It means the same as getting your mind off something , except , you zero in on how instead of what you are thinking . You shift your focus from the words (content) to what is happening (process) . You know from experience that you tend to focus on words . When you become aware that you are dwelling on “over and over” thoughts about something that is bothering you , Thought -Shift to change

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your thoughts and self talk. When you get involved in a situation where you want to stay in control, Thought-Shift and begin to focus on what is going on. Is someone trying to manipulate you ? change the subject ? divert your attention ? talk you out of doing your duty ? Instead of running the same “tape” of thoughts through your head again and again make a conscious decision to question how you are thinking. Ask yourself questions, and answer them. 1. Are my thoughts mostly negative and self condemning? 2. Are they rational? 3. Am I angry? hurt? afraid? 4. What are my self-statements? 5. Is my body tense? where? The new thoughts begin to crowd out the “over and over” thoughts and your view of the subject grows. Each time you become aware that you are dwelling on the same thoughts and not getting anywhere Thought Shift. For a big problem you will have to Thought-Shift many times. And other times you will just want to wallow in your misery. Sometimes it feels good to be miserable. Go ahead . But when you want to gain control of your thinking, Thought-Shift.

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CHAPTER FIVE

THE PHYSIOLOGY OF THOUGHT AND EMOTION BODY CLUES "

Y

OUR BODY gives you information all the time about your physical state. But you may not listen. You may tune out some internal messages just like you tune out some external stimuli. Your body not only tells you when you are hot , cold , hungry, or hurt , it tells you when you are anxious , afraid , calm , or angry. Your body tells you when you are under stress and when you are comfortable. If you don’t pay attention early to messages of distress, you may pay later in physical illness.

AUTONOMIC NERVOUS SYSTEM The Autonomic Nervous System (ANS) is made up of two divisions, the Sympathetic branch and the Parasympathetic branch. The two divisions affect the same organs and glands in opposing ways , depending upon which is activated. The sympathetic branch prepares a person for emergencies, the para sympathetic branch returns him to normal , or his steady state.

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49

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Adrenaline , hormones, and neural connections work together to activate the sympathetic. AUTONOMIC NERVOUS SYSTEM ( ANS )

SYMPATHETIC

"FIGHT

OR FLIGHT "

DILATE PUPILS INHIBIT SALIVATION ACCELERATE HEARTRATE RELAX BRONCHI INHIBIT STOMACH SECRETE ADRENALINE RELAX BLADDER

PARASYMPATHETIC

"CALMING" CONSTRICT PUPILS STIMULATE SALIVATION

INHIBIT HEARTRATE CONSTRICT BRONCHI STIMULATE STOMACH

CONTRACT BLADDER

Figure 4. The Autonomic Nervous System is composed of two divisions: the Sympathetic and the Parasympathetic. Activation of the sympathetic produces physical arousal, and the parasympathetic produces a calming effect . The physi cal arousal of the sympathetic is involved with emotion , i. e. , it produces the “feeling” of emotion .

-

Carol Tavris tells us that physical arousal is neutral. If you combine the arousal you feel with angry thoughts , you feel anger.1 She quotes Psychologist Joseph de Rivera when she says, bodily sensations are involved in emotion but , are not the emotion itself . 2 The mental component of labeling deter mines the emotion that we feel.

PHYSICAL AROUSAL

-

As we have seen , the sympathetic branch of the ANS pre pares us for emergencies: dilated pupils , increased heart rate ,

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activation of adrenal glands , increased glucose release , and slowing down of functions nonessential to arousal. The ANS is part of emotional behavior and is sometimes called the emotional response system . It is your level of arousal that determines whether you are able to function productively in an emergency, or emotional , situation. The Yerkes-Dodson Law explains this principle: the optimal level of arousal depends upon difficulty of task.

BERSERK

EL

-

STATE OF FRENZY

SIMPLE PHYSICAL TASKS ( OR WELL LEARNED TASKS )

L

US

COMPLEX PHYSICAL TASKS ( OR SIMPLE MENTAL TASKS ) COMPLEX MENTAL TASKS

SLEEP

COMA

.



-

Figure 5 At low levels of arousal it is possible to perform mental tasks in de creasing complexity: the higher the level of arousal the simpler the task must be . At midlevels of arousal the mental functioning is less efficient , but complex physi cal tasks may be accomplished. At higher levels of arousal most mental function ing is lost and only simple or well learned physical tasks may be accomplished .

As you can see from Figure 5, the higher the level of arousal , the less control you have over your mental and then physical functioning. At a low level of arousal you may perform well on complex mental tasks. In order to perform well on oral boards, in exams, studying, interviews, etc. you must remain at a low level of arousal: low enough to think and speak clearly, but not so low that you go to sleep .

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ADO LOUD TALKING BEST PERFORMANCE LOST

BEST LEVEL OF AROUSAL FOR

WRITTEN EXAM GO TO SLEEP BEST PERFORMANCE LOST

Figure 6. A low level of arousal is required for complex mental functioning such as taking tests , interviews, etc., where you must be able to think clearly. When that level of arousal rises (someone begins talking loudly in the testing room ) , or the level drops ( you fall asleep) , your optimal level of arousal and your best performance are lost .

A slightly more than moderate level of arousal produces optimal performance in complex physical tasks . You may also perform simple mental tasks at a moderate level . At this level you perform well on physical agility tests , athletic events , target practice , etc .

BECOME ANGRY BEST PERFORMANCE LOST

BEST LEVEL OF AROUSAL FOR PHYSICAL ' AdlLITV TEST BECOME DISCOURAGED BEST PERFORMANCE LOST

.

Figure 7 A moderate level of arousal is required for your best performance in physical tasks such as physical agility testing , athletic events , etc. A rise in the level of arousal from anger, frustration , etc. , interferes with your best performance. Likewise , if you become discouraged and your arousal level drops , you perform poorly.

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As you apply this principle to your own activities, you can imagine the effect of arousal on citizens in crisis. You are pre pared , to a greater or lesser degree, for the events in your test ing, and later, on the job. The average person is seldom , or never, prepared for the event which brings them into contact with you. You must , therefore , be aware that they are func tioning at a high level of arousal, and know that their reduced mental functioning and emotionalism triggers less than desir able behavior. They may be less than cooperative or they may be compliant; they may look agitated or calm on the surface. Regardless of the arousal state of the people with whom you deal, you must control your own level of arousal so that you may continue to perform complex mental tasks. This principle helps us understand the seemingly unex plainable panic reaction , particularly in crowds of people. We hear of tragic fires where people are trampled at exits from a building making their escape , and the escape of those behind them , impossible. As we sit reading the newspaper in our quiet , safe , well lighted homes, we wonder how people could be so stupid and inconsiderate. We are not considering the overwhelming level of arousal that prevents their clear thinking, or even reacting from habit . We are aware of the desirability of remaining at a low to moderate level of arousal, alert , and ready for action. Unfortunately, most of us have learned to overreact and think later how we would like to have acted in a situation . We know from experience that in times of emergency, or in highly emotional situa tions, we do not think or act “normally.” Emergency service personnel are taught to give concrete directions (commands) to highly emotional individuals so that they understand and cooperate: “Sit down here,” instead of “If you wouldn’t mind , I would like to have you find a place to sit down.”

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STEADY STATE Your body attempts to maintain a steady temperature , eating schedule , sleep schedule , level of arousal , etc. That steady

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state is called “homeostasis.” When your senses signal your

brain that there is danger, the sympathetic branch of the ANS gears up for “fight or flight .” You are ready for action. When you face real danger you use the energy and keen perception that is made available by the sympathetic. When you have either fought , or escaped from the danger, your parasym pathetic branch of the ANS takes over and returns you to nor mal: your steady state. However, if you react to imagined danger, or if you live in a constant state of anxiety, you do not deplete the aroused energy and your level of arousal does not return to the steady state. If this pattern continues over a long period of time , your body eventually adapts to that higher ho meostasis. Your mind and emotions may choose to live in the fast lane, but your body may suffer from it. An adapted steady state may result in permanent tissue damage .

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ADRENALINE AND NORADRENALINE

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Tavris writes, “[Ajdrenaline is an all purpose fuel. It is the energy behind most of our emotional states: fear and anger, yes, 3 but also excitement , anxiety, jealousy, and joy.” She adds that adrenaline secretion is a response to overstimulation (stress), as well as to understimulation (boredom). Adrenaline and nora drenaline give us the “feeling of a feeling,” and affect all bodily 4 organs reached by the sympathetic branch of the ANS. Levels of adrenaline rise sharply due to noise , heat , exer cise, hunger, frustration, or crowds, and we often make the mistake of attributing the feeling of arousal to a person or situation (human provocation), rather than background stimu lants (physical state). 5 You may feel angry at a prisoner, while actually the feeling is caused by working the street on a hot day with no time for lunch ; sometimes called nonspecific arousal. There are several reasons for nonspecific arousal:

-

-

1. background stimuli (noise , heat , etc.); 2 . physical condition ( hunger, fatigue , illness) ; 3. mislabeled emotions (discussed in chapter six );

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4. combined emotions; 5. projected emotions; 6. denying arousal (“Those punks don’t bother me!”). Keeping this information in mind may ease a hectic day for you , and encourage you to maintain a professional demeanor. It is all too easy to blame your arousal (perhaps labeled anger) on another person and behave in a punishing manner. It is bad enough when you inflict this treatment on family members, but it is unprofessional and damaging when inflicted on the public.

NEED FOR STIMULATION Bullard writes that adrenaline is a natural stimulant and is experienced by many people as a “rush” or “high”: natural speed “In a sense, police officers get hooked on their own adrenaline. It might be referred to as getting high on natural juices. Of course, not everyone enjoys the thrill of responding to a felony in progress. But then , not everyone enjoys a roller coaster ride either.”6 Zuckerman writes that there are high and low sensation (stimulation ) seekers. He defines boredom as “the negative feeling produced by lack of change in the environment ,” and states that high sensation seekers become bored more easily and demand increased stimulation. He believes that stimula tion is one of man’s basic needs and is the source of much creativity as well as discontent and destructiveness.7 Bourne and Ekstrand reprinted an article about eight bored firemen who set forty fires in abandoned buildings and grass fields over a period of three years. When caught and charged with arson one fireman explained , “ “We’d hang around the station on the night shift without a thing to do. We just wanted to get the red light flashing and the bells clanging.’ ”8 Becoming aware of the fact that your behavior may be mo tivated by desire for stimulation makes it possible to control or direct that desire into productive and positive channels.

.

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A chemistry professor at a local college teaches that “[A]c tivity can be an addiction, too.” In one of his non-technical courses, The Chemical World Around You , he teaches how high arousal and risk taking activities are similar to amphe tamine addiction: “The physiological process that causes ad diction to the activity is the same as the addiction caused by amphetamines.”9 He explains that doing something arousing over a period of time changes the chemistry of the central ner vous system (the enzyme level), to a point where it becomes a true physiological addiction.

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STRESS Stress has a bad reputation. We are bombarded with information about stress. There is distress (bad), eustress (good); mild and extreme stress; big and important or small and annoying stress. We are instructed how to cope , avoid , manage , use, tolerate, and reduce stress. We are stressed being told we are stressed! Dr. Paul Rosch , who is Director of the American Institute of Stress in Yonkers, N.Y. , says that although stress may have been an occasional calamity in the past , it is now “ ‘a chronic, »10 relentless psychosocial situation.’ Life without stress is no life. Yet for people living in sophisticated , post-industrial West-

ern cultures, the degree of stress has become excessive and deleterious. Modem man has developed a social and eco nomic structure and a sense of time urgency which subject him to more and greater stresses than have been experienced at any other time in human history.... Most individuals feel of stress as that they have no choice but to accept these levels 11 . a fixed component of their Western heritage Pelletier goes on to write that time pressure is highly stressful. We learn to be pressured by time not only in our jobs, but at home, social occasions, etc. Even leisure time is pressured .

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Many people feel guilty about non- productive use of leisure time which negates its value as time to function under reduced stress.12 He makes the point that too much activity as well as 13 too little activity is stressful. Boredom is stressful too. Extremes in stress particularly apply to law officers who spend hours in boring routine only to be called upon at a moment’s notice to act in a highly dangerous, tense situation. Stress is defined by Forbes as “any action or situation that places heavy or conflicting demands upon you that upset your 14 body’s equilibrium or the normal flow of your daily activities.” There is no “common stress reaction.” People respond differently to a given condition or event . Some people become stressed quickly, some become more alert and performance is improved, and others seem to be “immune” to the same stressor.15 What is perceived as stressful to one person may not be to someone else, e. g. , reading of a tragedy in the newspaper may be highly stressful if you discover the name of a friend , or may produce no reaction if you have no personal interest in the event or people involved . You recall it is what you tell yourself about an event that determines your reaction. Whether we are consciously aware of a stressor or not , it alters our “neurophysiological activity, endocrine and immunological balance, blood supply and pressure, respiration rate 16 and pattern , and digestive processes.” Stress may be perceived as positive or negative, good or bad , but regardless of how it is perceived , stress requires an adjustment. The important points to consider about stress are not whether it is good or bad , but whether: 1. it is perceived as a stressor, and 2 . it is coped with successfully. If not , it will probably continue to be stressful and may lead to illness.17 We are under stress every time we must “adapt or adjust to personal , social , and environmental influences,” whether we perceive them as positive or negative.18

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We must learn to distinguish between non-injurious and in is a jurious stress responses. A non-injurious stress response to return y normal reaction to identifiable stress and we quickl normal functioning. An injurious stress response occurs when the source of stress is unclear, prolonged , or coming from sev eral sources at one time and we do not return to a normal level 19 of functioning (homeostasis or steady state) quickly, or at all. , “[T]he most important fact is that generalized , prolonged and, m ilibriu unabated stress places a person in a state of disequ which increases his susceptibility to a wide range of diseases and disorders.”20 University of Washington Psychiatrist Thomas Holmes has found evidence of physiological change as a result of simply dis cussing upsetting events. He cites an experiment that showed and after a tissue damage by comparing biopsies taken before 21 discussion about a mother-in-law coming to visit! Again, what we tell ourselves about an event triggers our reaction. One fact generally agreed upon is that “[s]tress is neither good nor bad . . . the effect of stress is not determined by22the stress itself, but by how we view and handle that stress.” In other words, what we tell ourselves (self- talk ) about stress determines our response to it , i.e. , how high our level of arousal rises and how long we maintain that level. If I am in a minor car accident , my sympathetic (ANS) gears up, adrenaline flows, heartrate increases, etc. If I tell myself reassuring and positive messages, my parasympathetic takes over and calms me down: returns me to my normal steady state. (“ No one was hurt.” “I am sorry that he wasn’t watching traffic and hit me, but I too had to stop suddenly and I’m thankful I could stop ”) However, if I tell myself agitating, negative messages , I perpetuate my high arousal level. (“That jerk must have been zonked!” “He could have killed me!”) It is not the accident , nor the initial arousal that determines my reaction to the accident . It is my self- talk after it has happened that determines how high my arousal level rises and how long

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it remains at that level. In the example , I know I have been in an accident , and I know that I am aroused: those two things have happened without my making a conscious choice. How ever, I do have a choice in whether I calm down quickly and save that much wear and tear on my body, or continue to be agitated and aroused . There is ample evidence to show that stress kills. Hyperten sion and heart disease tire known to be stress related . There are an abundance of stress management classes and techniques available. So why are most of us living stress filled lives if we know it can kill us and that we can alter the pattern if we choose? Because we have to learn to control our thoughts and emotions and few of us are trained to do that .

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MAJOR STRESS V. MINOR STRESS It is possible to be overwhelmed by “litde” stressors. Have you ever handled a big crisis and then come unglued over a broken shoelace? We are more likely to attend to (pay attentiop to) big stressors and ignore the little ones. Maybe you better check to see whether that dripping faucet really does bug you. You may be irritable with your family every night in the kitchen because you are blaming your irritation on them instead of on the dripping faucet . ( Human provocation instead of background stimulant . ) Many little things bother us but we ignore them because we want to think we are more stable than to be bothered by some little thing, right ? It has nothing to do with stability. We have to be aware of what is bothering us before we are able to ignore it. Until recendy, research has concentrated on major life stresses. There are now some researchers studying the impact of minor stress. Dr. Richard Lazarus and his colleagues have been measuring the impact of daily hassles as compared to major stress. Lazarus suggests that the cumulative effect of small stressors may sabotage health and interfere with our coping

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system . He reports , “ ‘Daily hassles

... may have a greater ef-

fect on our moods and our health than the major misfortunes of life.’ ”23 Whether major life events or everyday hassles cause more stress may not be the issue. A major life event may increase daily hassles. For example, the loss of a job may not cause the greatest stress, but the gradual domestic and psychological changes that it triggers might , says sociologist M. Harvey Brenner, who is a professor in the Health Services Administra24 tion at Johns Hopkins. Take some time to identify your “litde” stressors, such as: * poor vision * odd jobs to be done

* * * * *

*

* * *

mow lawn replace burned out light bulb fix dripping faucet not living up to someone’s expectations dirty windows subtle change in life style food you dislike work schedule barking dog loose tooth missing button empty toothpaste tube

Now go back and think about why they are stressful. Are any of them related to irrational beliefs ? Is a missing button important enough to get upset over ? Perhaps , if your Sergeant

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will reprimand you for a messy uniform . Perhaps not if it is based only on the irrational belief “I should be perfect.” What do you want to do about your little stressors? Some you can’t change and you have to live with. Others will cease to stress you when you simply become aware of them (an empty toothpaste tube is not a crisis use salt). And others you can assign a specific time to take care of , e. g. , “I will wash my car windows on my lunch hour,” or “On Saturday morning I will go talk to my neighbor about his dog barking all night .” What is your reinforcement to actually do those things when you say you will? (Being able to see whether it is night or day outside is enough payoff for me to finally wash my windows.) Now what about the stressors that you can’t do anything about ? Are you at the mercy of some stress? No way. Uncontrollable stressors do not produce uncontrollable stress! Only you can choose that consequence. You can also change your reaction to it. Yo u can learn to control uncontrollable stress by:



1. rationed self-statements (chapter four); 2. “Don’t React” skill (end of chapter six); 3. relaxation exercises (end of this chapter); 4. Thought -Shift (end of chapter four); 5. STOP/THINK (end of chapter four); 6. talking to someone (chapter seven); 7 . change of pace activities (end of this chapter ). So you see , you may not be able to control the situation (stressor) but you can control it’s effect on you. You can control your emotions and thoughts that control the stress you experience. You are not a victim of stress , you axe a target of stress. Targets can move, victims can’t. Police officers face some stress that is not common to people in other professions: handling domestic disputes , abused children, use of deadly force, dead and mangled bodies, scenes of homicide or suicide, negative public image , shift work , court procedures , and frustration with the Criminal Justice

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System. You must learn to exercise control over yourself that will keep you in good mental, emotional , and physical health. In some situations you must put your emotions and personal thoughts on HOLD until you have finished performing your duty. Putting yourself on HOLD means to remain detached and uninvolved (emotionally) , and consciously suppress any reaction to the event at that time Afterward you may attend to your own emotions and thoughts. Too often officers believe that they are immune to the horror of violence and isolate their emotions. The result may be a cold , callous person who loses the ability to feel compassion and caring. Recall, there is a fine line between being objective (focus outside self ) and subjective (focus inside self ). When you are objective you are able to separate yourself from the event , and when you are subjective you identify too closely with the people involved , and their problem becomes your problem , their pain becomes your pain.

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Objective Thoughts 1. I am sorry for these people but I have to get this accident cleaned up and traffic moving. 2. This boy is badly hurt but I have done all I can. 3. This child is in danger of more abuse. I have to get her out of here. 4. I will call for medical help for this girl and try to calm her down.

Subjective Thoughts I have a car just like that wrecked one. That boy looks just like my son! What if he dies!

I can just feel how much that little girl hurts. How could anyone do such a thing! That poor girl. If someone raped my wife or sister I would kill them!

The danger in subjectively reacting to tragic events is taking on more problems and human misery than you can stand (as well as performing ineffectively as an officer). The danger

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in becoming too objective is becoming hard and callous. You must learn the fine balance between drowning in other’s mis ery and becoming cold and callous. You must set limits on your compassion. When an event calls forth more emotion (arousal) in you than can be easily discharged after the inci dent , use one of the six activities suggested earlier in this section. Be honest with yourself. You are vulnerable in certain situations just like anyone else. Remember, you are not trying to live the “supercop” image now. If you have no feeling or compassion you may be damaging to people. You are often dealing with recently shattered lives, and may be in a position to offer comfort and hope at a crucial moment .

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CONTROL AND USE OF STRESS As we have seen , we control the effect stress has on us. “The implications become even greater when people realize the large part they play in regulating their own disease and dis tress.”25 “[T]he challenge for each person is to find the level of manageable stress that invigorates life instead of ravaging it.”26 Stress management courses typically teach relaxation techniques, imaging pleasant and relaxing scenes , breathing techniques, nutrition , and exercise. I do not deny the importance of relaxation , breathing, diet, and exercise: in fact some informa tion on those topics is included in this chapter. However, I believe those techniques treat the symptoms, and do not touch the source , of stress. The symptoms of continued arousal of the sympathetic branch of the autonomic nervous system , and irrational thinking and emotions, are a reaction to stress. The source of stress is irrational thinking and self-talk. And all the relaxation and exercise in the world will not relieve such mental and emotional functioning! Negative self talk and irrational thinking prolong physical arousal, which is stressful, and that stress is not reduced until the arousal is allowed to subside: i.e. , by rationed thought and consciously reducing arousal.

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In order to control our stress we must also become aware of patterns of behavior that have become no more than habit. I find that in my own life I am less competitive and ambitious (and therefore more calm ) in areas where I feel confident , or have made a decision that something no longer matters to me. But I must make that decision consciously or I will continue to react from habit.

Pelletier writes: For most people , making a radical change in life style is simply not feasible. To eliminate the major sources of stress in one’s life might involve a change of job, spouse, friends, en vironment, philosophy, and goals. Not many people are sufficiendy bold, free enough of commitments to others, or

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willing to forfeit the security of a place in the system.27

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Nevertheless, we can control the effect such uncontrolla ble stressors have on us by learning mental and emotional con trol. We can learn to control our level of physical arousal .

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BURNOUT

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Burnout seems to be a stress reaction to human service re lated jobs. It is caused by having highly emotional interactions with people over a long period of time for which we are not prepared. Seldom in childhood training, schooling, or profes sional training is any attention given to dealing with emotions, or with people. We reach adulthood with a set of life expe riences and beliefs that are often irrational and troublesome. We have discussed emotional control skills and will cover people relations skills in the last chapters of this book. Hopefully, with this training you can avoid burnout . You are becoming aware of your emotions and thoughts and learning the skills that can prevent burnout . This list of symptoms of burnout will alert you to possible stress leading to burnout in yourself or someone else.

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"* irritability

* increased substance use

*loss of

*loss

sense of humor

* cynicism/ negativism

*disrespect for persons

*defensiveness "loss of perspective "overreaction to frustration

of productivity lack of communication " "labeling/name calling * boredom " withdrawal from personal contacts

"hostility

" rigidity Several of those symptoms listed , in a group, may

mean

burnout. We all display some of those behaviors at times, but with burnout they are constant and appear in a cluster that forms a general pattern of negative behavior. One caution about burnout in other people. Y bu don’t have to buy into their burnout! 'You may point it out to them and suggest they seek help. But it is their problem. Burnout can be contagious. If you buy into their complaining and negative attitude you will join them in their misery. "Your self- talk will become irrational and self-defeating, and you will bum out too. If you feel sorry for them or want to help, don’t listen to their con stant complaining. Let them talk to someone who is trained to counsel them. A quickie street course in what you have learned to do to control your emotions and thoughts will not change them. Y bu are not as objective as someone who is not as close to them. Want to help them ? Don’t feed into their negativism. In sist they talk to a superior, police psychologist, etc. When you listen to them you reinforce their belief that everything is wrong but them. It has been shown in mental hopitals that if the staff pay attention to “crazy” talk, the people talk “crazy.” If the staff ignore crazy talk and listen attentively to normal talk , up to 65 percent of the crazy talk disappears.28 The same behavior principle applies here. Constant complaining and negative comments continue only if they are reinforced: if they are listened to. Don’t listen. And let them know you won’t listen. A half-hearted attempt at tuning them out with a few “uh-huh’s” is still construed as listening. Don’t listen.

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If it is a superior that is burned out and you can’t quit listening or advise that person to get help you get help. You talk to someone to get the situation recognized and dealt with. If that is not possible , separate yourself emotionally from that bu can’t expect yourself to deal with all stress. You person. Y have a limit. So don’t let someone you work with dump their burnout stress on you. If you notice burnout symptoms in yourself , review this training and/ or talk to a counselor. What are your selfstatements? Are you denying or repressing emotion? Are you too involved in your job? Are you thinking or feeling irrationally ? Review this material and identify what is burning you out . Then work on regaining your perspective.



PSYCHOSOMATIC ILLNESS It used to be that psychosomatic illness meant “it’s all in your head” to most people. It was thought that psychosomatic illness was imagined or faking illness. Most people better understand psychosomatic illness now that it has been so widely discussed in the popular press. Psychosomatic disease is the result of the mind and emotions causing changes in the body that trigger illness. Please be aware that although we can have more control over our health than we ever realized , it requires relearning to take the place of life long habits of thinking and feeling. Therefore, we may not callously comment that a disease “is his/her own fault .” The combined effect of life experience , learned patterns of thinking, feeling, and behaving does allow disease to develop , even cancer. But most of us are unaware of the effect we can have over our physical health and are therefore forced to cope as well as we know how: how we have learned. We may be able to help a person to learn more healthy habits, but we may not judge him as deserving a disease.

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Bieliauskas defines psychophysiological disorder as one “ ‘in which organ and visceral symptomatology is produced by emotional factors acting through the autonomic nervous system.’ ”29 Preventive medicine must teach people not to ignore or misinterpret clues from their bodies. “Many individuals be have as though they are anesthetized from the neck down and seldom take the time to listen to the wisdom of the body.”30 We must become aware of our own individual physical responses to stress in order to protect ourselves from excessive stress and psychosomatic illness.31 We must not accept clenched teeth , churning stomach , and headache as normal! One of the most disasterous effects of excessive stress is on the immune system. The body can usually protect itself from disease , but not from stress because stress immobilizes the im mune system.32 In an article, The Healing Brain, we read that we are exposed to microorganisms daily that are de stroyed by functions of the immune system. Scientists specu late that a few healthy cells may become malignant every day but are destroyed by white blood cells. However, if the im mune system is suppressed , the infection or malignant cells may spread. In the article , the story is told of a man who de veloped bone cancer eighteen months after his two children had been killed in a car accident . After chemotherapy, whose side effects made him feel worse , he consulted a psychologist. He began talking about his feelings and his cancer regressed . He is quoted as saying, “ ‘My immune system was at a very low ebb ... I think that subconsciously I wanted to punish myself in some way, and my body simply obliged me.’ ”33 Researchers have for years suspected a link between cancer and emotions. New studies show that cancer victims who ex press their emotions, anger in particular, and who seek help in coping with their disease may have fewer recurrences of the disease. Patients who suppress their emotions and exhibit a stoic attitude fare poorly, because they have a lower activity level of cells fighting the spread of cancer in their immune system.34

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At the Pacific Northwest Research Foundation in Seattle , Dr. Vernon T. Riley says that although stress does not cause cancer, it permits it to take place in animals. “Riley said it is now clear in animals, and probably in people , that stress can lower the body’s defenses and unleash cancer under certain cir35

cumstances.”

Although all stress is not emotional (physical stress includes heat , cold , hunger, pain, etc.), buildup of emotional reaction via the ANS is stressful. Forbes reminds us that stress is stress when she writes that a person is equally stressed by losing $100, 000 in the stock market or winning a like amount in a lottery.36 Physical arousal is the same in each event ; one is labeled bad , the other good. We also need to differentiate between arousal (emotional reaction) that is discharged immediately, and that which is kept inside. When emotion is expressed immediately the parasympathetic is activated to return the person to his/her normal steady state. It is when the sympathetic arousal (fight or flight) continues to function that prolonged emotion or stress damages the body. In his article, Emotional Problems ? Don’t Be So Sure , Dr. Mike Oppenheim cites cases of physical disorders that are often misdiagnosed as mental or emotional problems. He writes, “Physical illnesses can trigger symptoms usually considered psychological. As a result , some people with treatable medical disorders are branded neurotic , hysterical or just plain crazy.”37 He goes on to describe a woman who went to her doctor with a long list of complaints and requested tranquilizers. She reported she felt extremely nervous , jittery, dizzy, with pounding heart. Her doctor first thought of sending her to a psychiatrist , but decided to do a physical exam first. He found she had a mitral valve prolapse, a heart condition found in 5 to 10 percent of women , generally harmless and without symptoms. “Those women who do have [ symptoms] , though , were 38 once dismissed as neurotic.” There are physical (or organic)

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causes for illness and there are emotional or stress related causes for illness. We must be aware of what is happening in our thoughts, emotions, and bodies so that we may cooperate with physicians when necessary, and make changes in our selves when that is necessary. “Most standard medical textbooks attribute anywhere from 50 to 80 percent of all disease to psychosomatic or stress related origins.”39 Evidence is accumulating that specific personality configurations may be associated with heart disease, cancer, and arthritis, as well as ulcerative colitis, asthma, migraine, and other disorders generally designated as psychosomatic or stress induced. As more research information indicates a con nection between personality and illness, the value of a holistic, preventive approach to health care becomes increasingly apparent. If personality traits and certain modes of responding to life’s vicissitudes can be clearly defined and shown con clusively to be destructive to health, it may be possible to teach people how to modify or avoid this destructive behavior well before it leads to physiological symptoms.40

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We may take both warning and comfort from Pelletier’s writing and the research behind it. We may change the very behaviors, attitudes, and habits that make us vulnerable to these serious diseases. If we lack motivation to make mental and emotional changes for any other reason , perhaps the knowledge that we are not passive victims, but active participants in allowing our own disease is enough motivation to prompt us to work at change. Please be aware , none of this research information is in tended to suggest that a person who has contracted one of these diseases has consciously welcomed the disease. However, through his reactions to life experiences he has learned a set of behaviors, thought patterns, and emotional habits that work together to make him vulnerable to a particular disease. By becoming aware of behaviors , thoughts , and feelings an individual may change those self defeating patterns. It must be stated

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l that a healthy self-concept, calm and clear thoughts, rationa of use in emotions, peaceful relationships, and right priorities time and resources help to assure a healthy person.

NUTRITION What you eat and the effect it has on your health also has a bearing on your emotional response. It has been found that low blood sugar (hypoglycemia) is partly responsible for aggressive or very active behavior. Hypoglycemia is a rapid fall in blood sugar level that causes a disturbance in the body. The brain needs a continuous supply of glucose (a form of sugar) and if the glucose level drops the brain is deprived of food and 41behavior is affected. The thinking part of behavior is impaired. A faulty diet is responsible for low blood sugar, and some people are more susceptible to it than others. Law officers work such crazy hours that often your diet suffers. You may rs eat too few balanced meals and too much junk food . Docto have discovered that too much sugar ( pop, candy, donuts , gum) increases the likelihood of a strong reaction to stress. Dr. Yaryura-Tobias is convinced that too many refined carbohy drates (dry cereal, spaghetti, white bread , cake, pizza, alcohol) react in some bodies to produce a glucose metabolism distur bance, or low blood sugar. And during periods of low blood sugar aggressive and violent behavior is not uncommon . Once the blood sugar level has dropped , a candy bar or other source of quick sugar will provide a rise in the sugar level for a few minutes. But after a brief rise it will drop even lower. When that happens brain functions are severly affected and behavior 42 may be irrational and aggressive. It is just as hard to change your diet as it is to change any other habit. Especially if you have become a sugar “addict.” But you can break the sugar habit by substituting rather than just quitting. You can nibble on nuts, cheese, fruit , vegetable sticks, hard boiled eggs, and drink milk. Those foods sound

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very boring and “health faddish ,” but it may be worth substituting them for some sugar to help control your arousal level. It will also help if you need to lose weight . Coffee is another “substance” that affects your health and behavior if consumed in sufficient quantities. Coffee, tea, cocoa, and cola beverages are classified as nondrugs because they have been domesticated 43 However, caffeine in small amounts stimulates the cerebral cortex and other parts of the central nervous system; cardiac function , i.e. , heart rate , heart rhythm , cor onary circulation , blood pressure; and the secretion of gastric juices. In very large doses caffeine is a very potent poison. Caf feine produces tolerance and withdrawl effects at some levels of consumption. Brecher speculates that if a drug such as marijuana, LSD, or amphetamines produced these effects in rats it would make headlines around the country. 44 If you drink a lot of coffee, tea, cocoa, or cola cut down or switch. Decaffeinated coffee tastes about the same , caffeine free teas are available and many soft drinks contain no caffeine. Beware of pain relievers too. Some contain substantial amounts of caffeine, and caffeine in concentrated form sold under such trade names as No Doz® can induce an acute toxic effect.45

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PHYSICAL EXERCISE

Just a note about exercise. If you would like to get more ex-

ercise, don’t set a big goal. Set a small goal at which you will succeed with some effort . For example: “I will walk up stairs instead of taking the elevator,” or “I will park at the far end of the parking lot and walk.” Set the goal small enough to succeed and then set another further goal. Remember small steps.





Exercise Change of Pace Activities Identify the activities that are enjoyable and reinforcing to you . These activities must not have any shoulds attached to

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them because that detracts from the pleasure they give you . Do you like to play soccer, watch TV, read , play pool, listen to music or play an instrument, cook, or talk to a special friend? Make a list of your favorite things to do. I use the term “change of pace” because you might feel guilty for taking the time to do what you like unless you know that it is healthy for you . After a period of stress, or to change your perspective , do something you like to do.



Exercise Relaxation and Breathing Freeze just as you are and pay attention to how relaxed or tense your body is right now. Check your neck, shoulders, hands, stomach , and legs. We seem to think we are relaxed most of the time until we really pay attention to our body’s messages. Before you can learn to relax you need to know how it feels. Have someone slowly read the following paragraph to you (or put it on tape), pausing at each set of dots for a few seconds. “Get into a comfortable position. Close your eyes. Now tense every muscle in your body . .. tighten . . . tighten .. . hold it for 10 seconds ... relax ... let your body relax completely . . . feel the warmth flow through your body . . . feel the tension flow out . . . now tighten every muscle again . . . even your face muscles . . . tighten . .. tighten . .. hold it for 10 seconds . . . relax ... let every part of your body drain out all of it’s tension... . Now blow all the air in your lungs out through your mouth ... start inhaling through your nose and fill the bottom of your lungs . . . then the middle . .. then fill them to the top (don’t raise your shoulders) ... hold it for 10 seconds ... slowly exhale all the air out again through your mouth .. . inhale . . . bottom of the lungs ... middle ... top . . . hold it 10 seconds .. . slowly exhale ... and again , inhale ... bottom ... middle . . . top ... hold it 10 seconds . . . and exhale. Slowly open your eyes and feel relaxed and full of oxygen .

CHAPTER SIX

EMOTIONS

E

MOTIONS CAUSE more conflict in human relations than we think. We tend to believe that we have little or no control over our emotions. Yet emotion need not cause conflict , nor are we mastered by our emotions unless we allow it to occur. I am concerned that by using the term emotional control , however, that I may give an incorrect message. My working definition of emotional control is: 1. to exercise authority over; direct; command ; and , 2 . to curb ; restrain ; hold back: as, control your grief. Therefore , emotional control in this writing means to exercise authority over your own emotions. And at times to curb or hold back emotions as a choice; but not the only choice . Flip Wilson’s line , “The devil made me do it ,” is an excuse. If someone “ makes me” do or feel, then it is because I have given up my control over myself to them . I am allowing them to control me. We are very good at accepting responsibility for the emotions of other people but not our own . “I hurt her feelings.” “He made me mad .” For an emotional response to take place we perceive an event ( see , feel, hear, etc. ) , think about it (label , self- talk), and feel the sympathetic branch of the ANS activate. Tavris tells us that thoughts transform bodily arousal into a specific emotion depending upon our interpretation of the event . 1 And Ellis and



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Harper write that a large part of emotion stems from biased , prejudiced , or strongly evaluative kinds of thinking.2 For many years it was thought that different physical arousal produced different feelings. Researchers now believe that the arousal (ANS) is the same , and different feelings are experienced by how we label the event. You can prove this to yourself by recalling an event when you were intensely angry, only to discover you were mistaken , and then feeling embarrassment in the same intensity. Or the opposite , feeling intense pleasure, discovering more information that turns the pleasure into disappointment , and feeling that disappointment in the same intensity. For example, you exclaim angrily that you have been shortchanged in the grocery store , only to dis-

cover your own mistake in figuring your bill and feel embarrassed to the same degree that you felt anger. Or, you feel a great deal of pleasure that you have been promoted , only to feel the same degree of anger and disappointment when you find your source of information to be in error. It is the same physical arousal you attach a different “feeling” label to it. Another important point to learn about emotion is that you have a choice in whether or not you sustain your level of emotion. High levels of emotion that continue over a period of time are a choice, not an inevitable result of becoming emo tionally aroused. If you discovered in the Physiology chapter that you are a stimulation seeker, you may be sure you are choosing your high arousal level at least some of the time. The subject I want to address here is when you do not choose to continue to feel highly emotional. We have all experienced strong emotion over a long period of time. It seems to keep itself going. We seem to have no control over it. Little do we realize we are keeping it smoldering by rehearsing it! We continue to think and self talk about the event over which we are feeling emotional arousal. It is like we replay a videotape , over and over, rehearsing the event again and again , and maintain a high level of arousal .



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Emotions

“[Sustained emotion normally requires repeated evaluative thought.”3 Arousal of the ANS subsides naturally. Build-up of arousal does not require release unless the reason for the arousal is rehearsed (repeated over and over) by thoughts and self- talk. There are many psychological theories stating that intense aroused must be expressed. Those “ventilationist” theories are a popular reversal of the “hold-everything-in” methods of dealing with emotion , but have been found to be equally as damaging. Neither holding emotion in , nor letting it all out , is the answer to dealing with emotional arousal. Arousal must be dealt with , i.e., controlled , before it builds to an uncomfortable and unmanageable level. An unproductive method for dealing with emotion is displacement . When you get angry at your boss and go home and kick the dog, you are displacing the anger you feel at your boss to the dog. In displacement you transfer your emotion to a safer target . You may not be free to kick your boss (!), but the dog is a safe and available target. Displacement is a disguised way of getting rid of emotional energy. Disguises often used by cops to express emotion are cynicism , recklessness , getting badge heavy, displacing aggression , clowning around , heavy smoking, drinking lots of coffee , popping pills, sleeping a lot , sex, or alcohol.4 It is critical to the performance of your job that you consciously control your emotions. Do not ignore them. You have emotions just like everyone else. You can self-talk yourself into believing that you don’t have emotions , but they are still part of you. The rough cop game a calm facade, repressed emotions, and living and working as though it is a “big game” is a road to disaster. Too many officers do ignore their emotions. Perhaps that explains , in part , the high rates of suicide and alcoholism among officers. Regardless of what your public image is, you are human and need your emotions working for you .







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Two ways to ignore emotion are: suppression , which is consciously holding feeling in ; and repression , which is forgetting or denying emotion. Both ways cause many problems . It is possible to have healthy, controlled emotions and consciously choose how , if , and when to express them.

ANGER One emotion , anger, needs to be explained . Anger is often called aggression , but they are not the same. Anger is feeling. Aggression is behavior. Anger is a natural and healthy emotion. The way it is expressed determines whether it is destruc tive or constructive. The fact we need to learn about anger is that we not only have control over our anger, but that we may choose not to get angry in the first place! Carol Tavris writes , “In the last several decades, biology and psychology have deprived anger, and our5 other emotions, of the human capacity for choice and control.” Yes , we do have control over when , or whether, we become angry. However, we have some relearning to do before it is possible for us to exercise that control . “Anger is responses of your body and mind to a stimulus. When the stimulus is withdrawn , the anger responses will cease that is , if you do not continue to tell yourself how unfair and unjust your treatment has been and how miserable 6 you are because of it .” In other words , the arousal from anger will cease if we do not continue to rehearse it. Virginia Satir, a pioneer in the field of family therapy says7 we must separate the feeling of anger from the act of anger. We must separate anger from aggression and hostility. Anger is a feeling, aggression is a behavior, and one may be present without the other. We may feel angry without acting it out . Conversely, we may act it out without feeling it ( becoming aroused ). There are times we feel angry and keep it to ourselves, and other times we act angry but do not feel it .

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There are few situations where aggression is appropriate , and even in the case of acted out aggression it may not include the feeling of anger. You recall the definition of aggression as it applies to you as an officer: irrational thoughts and emotions, and intent to harm. You may appear to be angry and not feel it (arousal) in order to carry out your duty. Rational anger is: 1. feeling anger without acting it out , or 2. acting or talking it out without harm .

We know that anger works: anger is effective in causing change. Anger is a demand . When dealing calmly with another person we may get no results. By showing anger we increase the chance of some change taking place. Anger is not bad . The expression of anger may be bad , i.e. , aggression. It stands to reason that self-talk plays a big part in anger. If we continue to repeat “awfulizing” statements to ourselves after a situation has passed , we are rehearsing our angry feelings and keeping them alive. As you become aware of your selfou make the same statetalk , you tune in on your “rehearsal.” Y ments to yourself over and over. And as a result your arousal level remains high. Not only can this continued high arousal level damage your health , it can damage relationships. Recall from Figure 5 in chapter five that you are not rational when your arousal level is high , and you are unlikely to settle grievances in that state. The important point to grasp about emotional arousal is that when the stimulus is withdrawn the anger response should cease. That means that once you have become angry at your partner, you talk to her, and she walks away, the stimulus to your anger is gone unless you keep it going: unless you rehearse it. Brief periods of anger are natural. A flash of anger remains just that , a quick, transient thing unless we prolong it. A flash of anger is a brief episode of physical arousal that is labeled anger by self - talk , and a reaction occurs. This short-lived



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surge of emotion subsides naturally if it is allowed to do so. We prolong anger, i.e. , maintain an elevated level of arousal by telling ourselves the same thoughts over and over. And when , we do that we also change the anger from a feeling, a process into an object: from “I am feeling angry,” to “I am an angry person.” The first statement is transient and constandy changing, and the second is permanent. When anger (or any emotion ) becomes an object , we tend to believe it is permanent and justifiable because we can’t change it . “I have a bad temper,” is an announcement warning the world that you excuse yourself from control of your temper and you expect to react in the same way to all situations that provoke anger in you. To “have” a temper makes it permanent. To “feel” anger at times gives you a choice. Although we have been socialized to believe that we can’t help getting angry, we can help it , we do have choices. We can choose: 1. whether or not to get angry ; 2. how long to continue the angry feelings ( arousal) ; and 3. how to react rationally to the situation . Anger is not an inevitable result of disappointment , frustration , etc. We have been socialized to believe that it is , but anger is not inevitable. Most anger that we display is irrational and performed out of habit. We have to learn to control the habitual activation of the sympathetic (ANS). We have to learn to do a STOP/THINK and make a choice whether we want to become angry in a situation in which we have habitu ally become angry. We must first control our anger by changing the self-talk that is no more than habit , and then decide what rational action we do want to take. We may decide to allow the sympathetic to activate and become angry, or we may decide that we do not choose to become angry, at this time , and remain in the steady state. But we must learn to make the choice while still in a rational state. (Please review Figure 5 in chapter five. )

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We are able to make rational decisions only when our arousal level remains at the lower end of the scale. Once our level of arousal has risen above “complex mental tasks” we no longer have adequate control over our thinking. While it is a fact that we may make the choice to control our emotions , we must make the choice while still at a low level of arousal . We are unable to make rational choices at a high level of arousal .

FEAR Your stereotype as an officer does not allow for you to feel fear. Therefore, when you do feel fear you also feel guilty and punish yourself for being human . Show me a person who says they never feel fear and I will show you a liar or a very dangerous person . Fear is a defense mechanism meant to make us alert and prepared for possible danger. If a person truly never feels fear then he is out of touch with his self- protection system and his environment . And if he is unconcerned about himself he may be a real threat to others. Fear is often equated with weakness. Balderdash . Fear is a signal to prepare for possible danger. The body gears up via the sympathetic ( ANS) for fight or flight . When you feel fear as a result of information coming in through your senses, the sympathetic triggers changes that prepare you for action. Like any other self-preservation mechanism , fear may be overused . When a person lives in a constant state of fear without clear and present danger, or has a free-floating anxiety ( nonspecific fear ) , his fear is counter-productive. His fear does not work for him when he is actually faced with danger. Irrational fear is based on irrational belief # 3 ( It’s awful!) , and the result of faulty learning. Everything is not to be feared , but rational fear is productive. You can begin to destroy the myth that cops should be fearless when you give yourself permission to feel rational fear.

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PAIN Although you may still believe the myth that you shouldn’t be vulnerable to pain ( physical or emotional), you are. It is difficult to wear a tough facade and also be able to admit to feeling emotional pain. Men in our society have been socialized to hide their emotional pain . Boy, what we do to you guys! Yes , you have feelings. Yes, you feel hurt. Yes , you have to deal with it. Emotional pain generates the same amount of arousal as any other emotion , and that arousal must be dealt with. Emotional pain is the result of fear, disappointment , anger, guilt , shame , etc. And , here too , irrational thoughts and selftalk get out of hand . Use Thought -Shift and STOP/THINK to deal with the over and over misery. If it is one specific person with whom you must talk in order to ease your pain go talk to them . It may not be easy. It may mean that you have to make yourself vulnerable. But please don’t deny your pain , nor your responsibility for allowing yourself to feel pain .



YOU CHOOSE YOUR EMOTIONS , THOUGHTS , BEHAVIORS We usually think of choosing as something of which we are aware. However, we are unaware of many of our choices. When we allow someone to manipulate our behavior we are making a choice. The reason for the choice may be irrational, but it is a choice nevertheless. In the comment , “I don’t want her to get mad at me so I will do what she wants ,” I made a choice . So there goes all my good excuses for my being manip ulated by other people . I believe that we have learned the skill of making excuses so well that we have to unlearn it before we can truly take responsibility for what we do , think, and feel. How often do you say “I did ... ” and not add a reason (ex cuse)? Begin to count the number of times you “excuse” your-

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self in a day. I think you will be surprised at the number of times you do it without thinking (from habit ). One time I was teaching a group of delinquent boys about making excuses and I told them that earlier that day when meeting my friend he said , “You are late,” and I replied , “Yes I am .” The boys thought my response was aggressive. When I asked them to explain why they thought it aggressive , they could not. “Yes I am ,” was a rational statement accepting re sponsibility for my being late. Instead of blaming heavy traffic, or my clock stopping, or oversleeping, or, or, or: I took responsibility for being late. We are so accustomed to hearing excuses that we don’t recognize a simple statement accepting responsibility for our behavior. The “Owning Your Behavior” skill at the end of chapter eight will not only alert you to how often you excuse , explain , blame , or just plain lie about what you have done , it will encourage you to take responsibility for yourself and gain the feeling of freedom and being in control that goes with self- responsibility. You may be surprised at how easy that skill sounds but how difficult it is to practice, much less accomplish! Try it. Work on it. It is well worth the effort. Likewise, we must accept responsibility for our own feelings. In the following example identify the comment that ac cepts responsibility for personal feelings. 1. “You make me uncomfortable.” 2. “I am uncomfortable around you.” See the difference ? The first is a blaming statement and the second is a statement of responsibility for personal feelings. The first says “You make me ... ” the second says “I am ... ” Once you understand that only you can make choices for you only you can control you you must choose whether you want to be in control of yourself. You must decide whether you want to take responsibility for yourself. If you do , you have to become aware of the times you blame , excuse, lie , explain , etc. , and then change your thinking, self- talk , and behavior.

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LEARNING EMOTIONAL CONTROL Learning emotional control is not ignoring or isolating your emotions. You must be in contact with your feelings in order to “sense” your environment. You feel through your five senses as you perceive what is happening around you. As the information comes in , you screen out what is unimportant to you , filter it through your beliefs ( rational or irrational), and then act on that information. When you perceive danger run away, you are befeel fear tell yourself to be afraid having irrationally. There may have been no danger for you to tell yourself to be cautious run from. If you perceive danger feel alert deal with any actual danger, you are using all your faculties in the most productive way to protect yourself without running from everything. Not all perceived danger is dangerous. If we react to all things that appear to be dangerous in the same way, we build up irrational fears. The difference seems to be in whether we act or react. To act means I am in control. To react means someone or something outside of me is in control. If I react to perceived danger by running every time I am out of control. If I act by becoming alert and then doing what that particular situation calls for I am in control. It is particularly important for law officers to be able to act instead of merely reacting. A primary reason that police officers isolate their emotions is the unpredictable nature of the job. One minute you are enduring the boring routine of patrol and the next you may be involved in a life-threatening situation . This up and down physical and emotional roller coaster can be stressful. An obvious solution seems to be to operate without emotion. Unfortunately, your body won’t cooperate and you deny emotion (arousal) that is actually there. A healthy way to live this up and down job is to control how far up and how far down you allow your arousal to go. That means making choices. That means being aware of yourself and your environment . Emo-

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tional energy, i.e., physical arousal labeled an emotion, must be allowed to subside naturally. Put an end to rehearsing your emotions and prolonging them. You must learn to remain at a low level of arousal so that you can think clearly (complex mental tasks in Figure 5 , chapter five) in any situation. Put an end to carrying emotion from one call to the next . When you do not prolong emotion you are not a walking time bomb just ou are actually waiting for your next contact to detonate you. Y calm during boring hours and energized in emergency situa tions. You do not live in a state of stress all of the time. Some elements you need for rational emotional control are: awareness; rational beliefs; rational thoughts and self-talk; and clear communication. Y ou also need skills like STOP/THINK , Thought-Shift, “Don’t React ,” and Owning Your Behavior. It is possible for you to be in control of yourself , and the situa tion. You control where your hands and feet go, and you can control where your thoughts and feelings go too. You can choose to react angrily or ignore a remark , blow your top, or remain calm. Some days everything seems to fall in on your head. You can let a day like that really get to you , or you can handle it. Emotional control does not mean you never get mad or feel super happy; it means you choose how to feel and not simply react from habit or from out of control physical arousal.

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LABELING



The names we put on people, objects , and events the labels often determine how we feel about them. If you label going to the dentist as awful, then you react by dreading every appointment . Unless , of course, you have a toothache and your dentist makes it quit hurting, then you might label the event as relief. If you label leisure as good and work as bad , you react with pleasure to leisure and with displeasure to work.



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Labels are often vague and merely a reaction to past information. Labels make a pre-judgment that this person is just like that person, or this event is just like that event, and we temreact the same way to both . Beliefs like “redheads have pers,” “cops are aggressive ,” “kids like candy,” hook us into letting beliefs and past behaviors dictate our present behavior. Labels keep us from being aware of the real person or the real situation. The blond you meet may or may not be dumb. The kid on the street may or may not be a punk. The small car driver may or may not be a nut . If someone on the street calls you an “eggplant” you question their sanity. But if they call you a “dirty cop” how do you react ? Why should you react at all? What power does their label have over you? None, unless you give it the power to make you react. If you react to a label (name-calling), you are being manipulated. Do you choose to let anyone with a mouth have the power to manipulate you ? To make you react ? No way. You are in danger if you do. You are buying into their game of “watch me make him lose his cool.” Labeling, or name-calling, has a lot of power if you let it. What can make you lose your cool? Being called names? Taunts of brutality ? Being spit on? Can a guy on the street push your buttons and get you to react ? Are you an eggplant ? Disconnect your labeling mechanism. You are more alert to the stimuli in your environment when you disregard labels and ou might look at pay attention to actual people and events. Y are objective when this as being objective v. subjective. You you do your duty without getting emotionally involved in the event . You are still concerned but detached. You are subjec tive when you label people and behavior and feel anger, pity, scorn, etc. When you feel with people you are not able to iden tify objectively: “whose problem is it ?” By getting your emo tions involved in the incident you become part of the problem . You are too busy feeling angry, sympathetic, or disgusted to work effectively in the situation .

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I am not suggesting that you isolate or ignore your feelings. Don’t let them begin. Consciously control your physical arousal and prevent its build-up. One way to prevent arousal is to consciously relax your body by self-talk. “Relax, my shoulders are tense , relax.” Another is self-talk about the situation. “I don’t want to get involved in this problem: I want to take care of it and then go get a cup of coffee.” Another is to retain a slighdy amused attitude in a stressful situation. Amusement reduces tension and puts the focus on a nonstress state. I have done this in situations when I didn’t dare show emotion or lose my ability to think and speak rationally. I don’t mean to laugh or to take the situation less seriously, but to change the focus. When tense , give yourself the command “stay calm” and what happens? Not much. But if you self-talk “amusement” you can feel relaxation in the facial muscles that can encourage you to relax other muscles. It sounds dumb, but it has helped me control my arousal in situations where I have felt emotional arousal but was not at liberty to express it. These techniques can work for you because they do three things. 1. They change your focus of attention. You do a ThoughtShift. You shift your attention from content to process: from what is being said and done to your involvement in the situation. It gives you a new perspective and makes you aware of your action/reaction . 2. They present incompatible behaviors. It is impossible to think relaxing thoughts and remain tense. 3. They interfere with the arousal of the sympathetic (ANS). When you change your focus of attention and remain relaxed you don’t give your body the message to prepare for “fight or flight.”

It is easy to get caught up in an incident and forget to use one of the methods above to keep your emotions in control . Use a STOP/THINK as a reminder. Pick a behavior that you do when you get into a tense situation: maybe you pull your hat down , glance at your partner, spread your feet , step back ,

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or move into a particular posture. Make that behavior your STOP. STOP your total involvement in the situation and THINK your self-message. If you get totally involved again , STOP/THINK. Even in a" life-threatening situation you give yourself many messages. You can learn to make those messages ones that control your arousal level, and make you more aware, and better able to function effectively. Don’t expect to be good at those skills to begin with. They take time to learn to use well. Like every other step in rational self-control, start small. Begin to use your STOP/THINK in minor events and work up to major events. Tell yourself you did well and showed improvement when you succeed . When you fail to keep your arousal level in control , think about what you could have done differendy and what you want to do in the future. It takes time to learn to choose and control your emotional arousal just like it takes time to learn any skill.

EMOTIONAL CONTROL ON YOUR JOB When your thoughts and emotions are within your control you feel self-confident . You are able to maintain a rational perspective. Some incidents are potentially deadly and some are not . When you are rational you are able to think of more than one solution to a problem. A large part of your job is based on your use of discretion. When your discretion is rational , your “sixth sense” is more likely to guide you correcdy. As a trained observer you distinguish what seems normal from what predicts trouble. With your senses and training working for you , you sense the need to check out a person or situation. After the initial stop and check, you use your discretion to decide on further action. If your emotions have become aroused , you are now involved in the problem instead of being only an observer. You now have a personal stake in the outcome. You are no longer only a trained law officer, you are now an individual emotionally involved with the situation. You have lost your de-

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tached concern and your distance is now too close to be objec tive. You may use unnecessary force or go through unnecessary procedure to get the event to turn out the way you want it to. Yo u may have let someone hook you into a confrontation . Either one or both of you may end up the loser. Or, you might perform your duty with sympathy as the motive and be equally as ineffective. Confrontation produces fear and stress in most people , even you. When an officer carries a build up of emotion (arousal) around with him on his daily tour of duty, he is under constant stress and is unable to function at his best . When un der stress, rational thinking is reduced. An aggressive ap proach may be used to discharge emotion or as a cover up for fear. Confrontation makes each person feel like he must pro tect- himself. In your on duty confrontations you have legal power. If that power is backed up with self confidence and self-control you are in a position to make that confrontation less threaten ing to the citizen , and to encourage his cooperation . Remem ber, being contacted by a law officer is traumatic for many people and when you use an aggressive , irrational approach , a contact becomes a confrontation. Hostility or frustration may be directed toward you in the form of verbal or physical abuse; this is where your self confidence and self control affect the outcome of a contact. I just heard about a man who charges 25 cents to let some one yell at him for three minutes. That’s cheap! But he has the right idea. He knows that the people are yelling at a human target not at him . He doesn’t take it personally. Can your work be done by the same philosophy ? People are not yelling at you , they are using you as a target . You are a symbol to them of all that makes them mad at “the system.” Y ou are the authority that controls their behavior. You are a symbol not a person to them . See the difference? And when you think about it , they are probably getting their 25 cents worth . You can use that situation to STOP/THINK . When someone

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starts to yell at you or tell you off , STOP and THINK “be

amused.” It is amusing that all that verbal garbage is worth 25 cents. And for 25 cents it isn’t worth your effort to react . Confrontation may appear to be an attack on personal val ues and self-esteem. When you use very specific communication in confrontation , it eases the hassle. Direct your statements at the behavior, not at the personality. For example , “You are making too much noise,” instead of “Whadaryadoin’ big mouth ?” Or, “Get in the back seat of the car,” instead of “Get your fat can in that back seat!” The first examples in each set are directed toward behavior and the second attack personality. You will have fewer hassles if you confine your comments to what people have done/need to do. As a professional officer you lose the right to express your personal opinion of a person. As an officer you must confine your comments to professional exercise of duty.

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CARING EMOTIONS The caring emotions are as difficult to learn to express as the negative emotions are to learn to control. We have been socialized to believe that outward display of affection or caring, except in certain situations, is taboo. Men and boys have been particularly restricted in showing, or even feeling, caring and the tender emotions. But that is beginning to change . We all want love and affection. We all need strokes. Caring emotions make us feel good . Caring emotions do not denote weakness. Caring emotions mean that we are free enough to let ourselves be vulnerable and to value other people. Caring emotions can be expressed either verbally or nonverbally. * a smile *“I love you.” * a hug *“I’mglad to see you .” * a pat on the shoulder *“I’msorry.” They all say “I care .”

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If it is difficult for you to express caring emotions , you are not alone. We can all be afraid of being rejected , misunderstood, or put down . We are often afraid to let people know how we feel about them because they may not feel the same about us. When we are free enough to express caring without consid

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ering the reaction of the other person , we possess rational emotions. Talking about feelings can be scary, particularly when you are “supposed” to be tough. Talking about vulnerable feelings (sad , lonely, afraid) , makes people uncomfortable in our so ciety. Very often if we talk about those emotions, people try to joke or talk us out of them . “Oh, it’s not that bad ,” or “Come on , quit having your own little pity party,” But feelings can be talked about. Very often you can improve a relationship or open channels of communication when you talk about how you feel. On your job you see and handle tragic events. If you isolate your emotions they will continue to build up and come out in some disguised way. If you say you don’t feel anything, you have probably isolated your emotions and are in for a big surprise. You must be aware of your feelings and control them . For you , expressing your emotion on duty is not okay. Although we are advised to discharge emotion at the time it is aroused , for you , on duty, that may not be possible or acceptable. When you pick up a battered child , you probably feel some emotion. But you are a professional and you have a job to do. You may not express your personal emotion at that time. You must put your feelings on HOLD. You do not have the right to express your feelings even to the abusing parent. You are a professional. The docter who treats that child may not express personal emotion either. S/he is a professional too. You can let your feeling out only after you have performed your duty. Take a few minutes to exhaust your arousal. (Ex haust , not rehearse.) Then go back to work. As cold as that may sound , it is the only healthy way you can operate. Your sympathy for that child will not help him.

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Your hate for the abusing parent will not hurt him. So don’t you carry your emotion over to your next call and trigger some parent to go home and abuse their kid because you took your emotion out on them. (Displacement , remember? ) Oh yes, don’t fall for the line that other cops are the only people who understand . That is true only if you make it true. You have to teach the people in your life how to listen to you. You don’t want them to sympathize, preach , advise, or talk you out of how you feel: you just want them to listen while you talk it out . Use “I” messages, (end of this chapter) “I feel ... ” It is your own fault if your spouse or friend doesn’t listen to you anymore. You have probably shut them out. You have quit talking to them. They don’t have to understand They only have to know how to listen. Tell them you don’t want advice , sympathy, or to have them talk you out of how you feel . You just want them to listen. This discussion of caring emotions has been limited to the caring emotion you feel and can’t express direcdy. There are many times when you can express caring direcdy to a person while you are on duty. Perhaps you may only lower your voice, or express caring by the look on your face , but the message will be received. Be aware of your emotions and what you do with them. It is your choice.

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Acting out emotion , (hitting a pillow in anger, etc.) in creases or sustains the emotion. Talking out emotion , does not increase it , unless you “rehearse” it. Talking out emotion is a rational way to discharge emotional arousal that you have allowed to build up. You can talk out emotion by using “I” messages. Don’t use “you” (blaming) messages. Using “I” messages prevents you from making a lot of irrational, blaming statements that keeps your arousal level high . “I” messages do two things. They tell the other person how you feel and keep you talking about why

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you are feeling the way you are now. Not why you were feeling that way a week ago. If you were angry a week ago and you are bringing it up now it means you didn’t get rid of your emotional energy at that time. An “I” message makes it possible to deal with conflict immediately and honestly. When you use I messages you take responsibility for how you feel. Y bu don’t blame the other person or situation for your feelings. Another person is less likely to feel threatened and defensive when you do not blame, and is more likely to talk to you. Remember, be specific both about naming your emotion , and naming their behavior. Sometimes we say “I am mad ,” when we are really hurt or disappointed . We also say “You blew it,” when we mean “You disappointed me.” Here is the form for an “I” message for you to fill in the blanks.

“I am . .. because you ... . I would like you to ... ” “I am (emotion you are feeling) because you (behavior of the other person). I would like you to (new behavior).” Example: “I am disappointed because you said you would meet me for dinner and you didn’t show up. I would like you to keep a date or tell me you won’t be there .” Another example: “I am angry because you didn’t tell me until the end of my shift that I had to rewrite that report . I would like to have you tell me earlier next time so I don’t have to stay after my shift to rewrite it .” You are more likely to get the action you want with “I” statements than if you use “you ,” blaming statements. Look at the difference.

“Boy, you really messed up my evening! You can’t even be responsible enough to keep a date!” Or, You made me stay after my shift yesterday to do that dumb report . Don’t do that again!”

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Notice the exclamation marks ? They indicate strong emo tion. Strong emotion stirs up strong emotion in the other per son too and you are less likely to get the action you want.

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SkiU “Don’t React” This is another skill we have discovered that works to control emotional arousal. It is a STOP/THINK method to keep you from getting hooked into a behavior. When you begin to get upset or angry STOP and THINK (self- talk) “Don’t React.” That message will remind you to consciously relax your body and change your self-talk. It is impossible to feel upset or angry when your body is relaxed . Try it. You must be tense to feel strong emotion . Here again start with the little things that bug you , not the big ones. For example , if you get mad when someone cuts in front of you Don’t React. Consiously change your self-talk to rational statements and relax your jaws, hands, shoulders, etc. Part of Don’t React is controlling the reaction that shows on your face. A “nothing look” is what you want to show . A nothing look is what we also call a “dead pan” look, or poker face. It is nothing, no smile , no frown , no tenseness , no nothing, just a look. A relaxed face. Not a stare , just wide open eyes . Notice how much less emotion you feel. When you Don’t React you do not allow emotional energy (arousal) to build up. You can spend your energy on the biggies instead of sweating the small stuff. There are so few people in control of their emotions and behavior that when you are in control you are the exception to the rule. It feels good.



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Skill Do Not Label Think about the things on the list below but Do Not Label them good or bad. Spend a minute thinking about each one but no labels. * vacation * money * dentist ‘alcohol



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•drugs *pizza

•abused child •rapist *new car

Now think back, when you read those words did you feel any emotion ? You probably did even though you were trying not to label them. We have “tapes” in our heads that label the things we see, hear, taste, feel, and smell. It is only when we challenge those tapes that we can think rationally about things. I am not saying to change the label from bad to good , but to change it to BLANK. Then you can act in every situation instead of merely reacting. The words “repeat offender” may have some labels in your mind. Therefore, your behavior and attitude toward a person arrested for “another” offense is preset. Are you actually going to hear what that person says? It is possible that the wrong person has been picked up and you are treating an innocent person according to what your label says a repeat offender deserves? You become judge and jury. Become aware of your tapes and give yourself the chance to function as an unbiased , rational officer. Remember the twopoint scale ? Everyting is not good bad, black white, or yes no. Keep yourself open to the actual information coming to you in a situation.









Exercise Behavior Rehearsal The purpose of this exercise is to experience how you want to act in specific situations. We have all wished we had done or said something different at times. Behavior rehearsal makes it possible to be ready to handle a situation better the next time it occurs. You need a partner or group to do this exercise. Tell your partner/ group who they are supposed to act like and explain the problem you have with that person. Tell them what you have said to that person in the past and then practice what you want to say the next time . This is a safe way to practice rational communication and to see how you can control your

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feelings. If you don’t say just what you want to the first time do it again. Rehearse the situation as many times as necessary to do it the way you want to handle it If you don’t know what to say, your partner or group can give you some ideas. But it is your behavior, and you do it the way you want it done , not the way they want it done. Perhaps you have difficulty talking to a superior officer, or to people on the street in a specific situation. Go through this exercise until you are ready to try it in real life. For your first behavior rehearsal choose a minor situation , not the person or group with whom you have the most difficulty. Start small and work up to the situations that make you uncomfortable and give you the most trouble. With practice you will learn to maintain a low arousal level and be able to speak calmly and rationally. In the next chapter you will learn the nonverbal behaviors that go with the words. Continue practicing talking rationally and assertively to people. Become aware of your emotional level and your conscious choice in whether to feel any emotion at all. You may not get the response from people that you think you deserve for all your hard work, but your behavior and feeling do not depend on their reaction. If you feel more calm and in control of yourself their reaction does not

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matter.

People expect you to be many things. You are free to be the kind of officer you want to be in spite of their expectations. I guarantee that some people will be less frightened , less hostile, and more cooperative with you . When your approach is rational and assertive instead of authoritarian and aggressive, people will not feel the need to become defensive. You call the shots. You have the choice of many behaviors instead of reacting in your usual , though unproductive, manner.



Exercise Covert Behavior Rehearsal The preceding behavior rehearsal is overt , it can be seen . This exercise is a covert rehearsal, which means it cannot be

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seen. You do this one in your head . It might also be called daydreaming or fantasizing, except that you do it consciously and with a purpose. Think through a situation that is usually troublesome for you and picture someone you respect going through it for you . (It is easier to picture someone you admire going successfully through a situation because you may not be able to visualize yourself being'successful.) After you have visualized the other person handling the situation the way you would like to handle it , visualize yourself going through the same situation just like they did. This is a good way to visualize yourself as successful and confident. When you next find yourself in that situation you will have a “success memory” to give you confidence to handle it . Give yourself credit then for the success that you have in the real situation and dismiss the failure . Remember, work on small successes and work in small steps. You won’t succeed in giant leaps. Give yourself credit for small steps: they will add up to

giant leaps. Don’t expect the real situation to be an instant replay of your covert rehearsal. The purpose of this exercise is to make you more confident and comfortable when the real life situation comes up again . When it does , you will be more at ease , which will enable you to think, feel , and behave rationally. Using covert rehearsal prepares you for many different reactions to the same situation. When there are many possibilities , you can rehearse many ways a situation may evolve. You can be prepared for any reaction and be in control of the situation .

CHAPTER SEVEN

COMMUNICATION U R H A B I T S a n d patterns of communication are often than effective. Communication based on irrational thoughts and emotions causes many conflicts between people. Do you tell the people you contact on police business what you are doing with them ? Police business is less threatening to people when you explain your actions to them . They are more likely to cooperate and to be less fearful and defensive if you take a few seconds to put them at ease with your procedures. In the same way, if a doctor explains what he is doing to you , it lessens your anxiety, if not your pain. It has been found that in a confronting situation , the lack of communication skills on the part of an officer may trigger, rather than avoid violence. Most contacts that you make are less traumatic to you than to the person you contact . To you , that contact is routine business , to them it is probably an unexpected event . We never expect to have to deal with cops, or tragedy. When we do, it is stressful: the more stress, the more difficult we may be to deal with. Therefore , the more skills you possess, the easier your job will be.

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The word communication means more than just talk. What we say ( verbal) is about 35 percent of our communication and 97

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how we act ( nonverbal) is about 65 percent of our communication. When the verbal message disagrees with the nonverbal message , we tend to believe the nonverbal message. To prove this, turn to your neighbor and say “I hate you,” with a big smile on your face. Or say “You did a great job,” while looking down and frowning. Which message (verbal or nonverbal) is believed? What you say is believed only if it agrees with what your body language is saying. There are probably many times in your job when you think someone is lying. Why? Because their verbal and nonverbal messages disagree. Policing produces a “sixth sense ,” i.e. , the ability to identify suspicious behavior. A patrol officer has a feel for his beat and knows what is suspicious. It is nonverbal cues that give him that feel.1

VERBAL COMMUNICATION The verbal part of your message makes up about 35 percent of the total message. However, of that 35 percent , less than 10 percent is the actual words. Your pitch and loudness of voice, inflection , choice of words, etc., make up the remaining 25 percent of the verbal message. This 25 percent might be described as the emotional overlay of the verbal message. You may speak the same words in two different states of emotion ( anger and pleasure) and give a totally different message. “I knew it was you ,” spoken in anger gives a completely different message than the same words spoken in pleasure. Your voice has a bearing on the people you contact. A highpitched, loud voice, accompanied by rapid speech, heightens anxiety and defensiveness. Whereas, a low , even , moderately slow speaking voice reassures, calms , and reduces hostility in a person with whom you deal.

NONVERBAL COMMUNICATION Your nonverbal communication includes facial expression , eye contact , body posture, and gestures. In addition , your

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clothes, profession, education, where you live, and those with whom you associate likewise convey a message. So you can see why nonverbal communication carries more weight than verbal. You can remain silent and still you are communicating. You can’t not communicate. Even silence is a statement. It has been said that you can remain silent or lie , but your nonverbal behavior always tells the truth. I have to qualify that “always” by saying that most people are unaware of their nonverbal be havior. An actor, or a “con ,” however, can make their behavior “lie.” But most of us are quite unaware of our nonverbal behav ior. People who have appeared on videotape can recall their verbal message but recall little of their nonverbal behavior before they see the replay of the tape. Following are contrasts in the elements of nonverbal behav ior, to point out the effect your nonverbal behavior may have on people.

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Facial Expression A demeaning or bored expression raises levels of hostility and anxiety. A calm , interested expression reduces hostility and encourages cooperation. A “nothing look” is particularly useful in situations that are potentially explosive. With a nothing look people don’t know what to expect from you because they are receiving no cues from your facial expression . They don’t know whether you are going to act or react. You do not give clues to your intentions, but do not seem to be threatening either.

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Constant eye contact a stare makes a person feel threat ened and like they are “getting the third degree .” No eye con tact may be perceived by a person as lack of interest , fear, rejection , or lack of regard , and they may escalate their behavior so that you will “ notice” them . Some cultures have definite customs regarding eye contact.

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A comfortable level of eye contact differs between people and you can tell when you and the person to whom you are speaking are both comfortable.

Body Posture This behavior can turn into a power struggle if you allow it. If you are taller, or standing up, when the other person is shorter or sitting, he may feel threatened. The smaller/lower person may feel powerless. Shoving and stabbing in the chest with a finger usually elicits a hostile reaction. If you “assume a posture of casual indifference with one leg rigid , one leg bent , hands on hips or hands on gun butts or nightsticks ... it can be misinterpreted and appear quite intimidating.”2 In your desire to remain in control of the situation you may stand in a rigid position and be viewed as rigid and unfair. An “expanded chest and rigid erect stance” is perceived as confident , even arro gant.3 A nonthreatening posture, relaxed but alert , and turned slightly away from the person you are talking to may facilitate communication. When you mirror the posture of a person you convey understanding. When you can get a person to assume a more relaxed posture (to mirror your posture) it can have a calming effect. Spatial position also affects how your posture is perceived . Of course, you must assume a position with your safety and your control of the situation in mind. However, you may in vade personal space and increase hostility by standing too close, standing over a person , or by restraining his movements unnecessarily.

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Gestures Your gestures can be very threatening/humiliating, so keep them to a minimum . Pat-downs and full searches, and handling a gun or nightstick are gestures that convey specific mean

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ing. Be aware of your gestures and the effect they have on people. Gestures have been called the universal language. It is possible to communicate with gestures when a language barrier exists.

CRISIS VERBAL COMMUNICATION The word crisis may have a narrow meaning to you , but to the public, they are in crisis if they even have to call you. What becomes routine to you is a crisis to them. There are some forms of communication that work well with people in a crisis situation because they are under stress: probably highly emotionally aroused and irrational. Therefore , you cannot deal with them by logic. When feelings take over, logic ( rational thinking) is lost. (That is why there is so much emphasis on emotional control and rational thinking in this training. You must be rational because people you deal with are often out of control and irrational. ) Please review Figure 5 in chapter five. You recall that high levels of arousal interfere with mental , then physical, functioning. When a person is highly emotional and irrational you must deal with them at a feeling level, i.e. , recognize their feelings and give rational support . Rational support does not feed into their emotions as would sympathy, for example. You are possibly their only source of strength at the moment. Make very specific requests and suggestions. You may request a person to sit down and get results. Y ou may request a person to calm down and get no results; sit down is specific, calm down is vague. In a crisis situation use a firm , even tone of voice and speak clearly. Use a minimum of words. Explain briefly what you are doing and tell the person exactly what you want them to do. If you are not getting through , repeat the instructions in the same, firm , even , voice until they hear you. They may be listening but not hearing. Don’t speak or move quickly unless it is necessary. Don’t jump from topic to topic they won’t follow you .



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Use minimal encouragers to keep them talking, i.e. , “Yes,” “Mm hmm,” “I see ,” “And then ?” And be aware that your nonverbal behavior affects their excitability. Your calm manner and support has a calming effect on them. Don’t ask “why” questions! Why questions seldom elicit information. Any , answer that you do get will probably be an excuse , defense , justification, explanation , etc. Stick to the who , what , where . r ) chapte when , and how questions, or nonquestions (later in

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WITHDRAWING Withdrawing for you as an officer and for you as a person are two different situations, but in either case it requires strong self-esteem. Be careful that you don’t get hooked into a debate that keeps building up until you feel like there is no way out but aggression. Withdrawing from a situation may only require having the courage to walk away. If someone wants to fight or argue, and you walk away, they will probably vent some of their anger at your back: namecalling, threatening, etc. But if you have made the choice not to buy into their game or argue with them , or in any way react to the verbal garbage they are throwing at you, then withdraw walk away. Treat garbage as garbage leave it alone. Of course, there is more personal choice in this course of action as a private citizen than there is as an officer. Nevertheless, there are situations when this is your best course of action as an officer as well. Let your rational discretion make the choice not your emotions!







CRITICISM - YOU OR YOUR BEHAVIOR ? Why are we taught to believe criticism and deny or explain away praise ? Somehow we have been taught that to accept praise and question criticism are both wrong. Also, we hear

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more criticism than praise. Criticism is usually said so that we get the message that we are bad . Praise isn’t that way. We are made to know when we are praised that it is for a specific thing, not that we are A-Okay. And there is always “You did a great job, b u t . I f your Captain says, “Y ou messed up that arrest ,” it probably carries the message “you are a failure.” If he says, “You made a good arrest ,” it probably carries the mes sage , “Well , at least you did something right.” It is because of the different messages that go with criticism and praise that we tend to believe the worst about ourselves. The negative messages tell us what to believe and we usually do. Unless we know we have a choice. We don’t have to believe everything people say about us, or to us. We can decide whether they are right or wrong because we know more about ourselves than anyone else. It takes courage to believe good things about ourselves when we hear more than enough criticism. But you have the right to decide whether what is said about you is right or wrong. You also have the right to say (assertively not aggressively) what you think about criticism . If you agree with the criticism you have the choice of changing the behavior. If your partner criticizes your off- tune humming, you can choose to keep humming, quit when you are around her, or improve your pitch . Your choice does depend on whether you are taking away the rights of another person by what you are doing. You get your rights and they get their rights. But that does not mean that everyone must keep from annoying us. We are responsible for our own reaction when we are annoyed by someone . Sometimes you can work out a compromise . “If you will/ won’t do.... I will/ won’t do... ” If you think some criticism is wrong then you can say you don’t agree. Criticism is sometimes used to get even , or as a put down , or to manipulate you into doing something. Criticism is a heavy weapon unless you know what to do with it . It

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can make you feel badly about yourself or it can show you where you might want to change . Criticism is not bad . The way it is used can be bad . Your aggressive reaction to it can be bad too. Learning to handle criticism is part of learning to control your emotions and thoughts. You can change your reaction to criticism and decide whether to change the behavior. Helpful criticism keeps the person and his behavior separate. “You did... ” instead of “You are... ” “You did a stupid thing.” Not “You are a stupid person .” Helpful criticism is specific. “Your loud talking is bothering me,” instead of “You are driving me crazy!” And helpful criticism doesn’t attack the person , or make exaggerations. You were driving erratically” instead of “What are ya tryin’ to do, kill somebody?!” When you get criticized pay attention to whether it is attacking you or your behavior. If it is attacking you , you probably won’t make any changes. If it is attacking your behavior you may listen and think about it . When being criticized you can “Don’t React” by relaxing your body. When you are physically relaxed you can think more clearly and make choices. Remember, this information applies to giving criticism too. Criticism is not helpful when it is taking pot shots at someone . And they will probably get defensive and not listen anyway.



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COMPLIMENTS Giving and receiving compliments or “strokes” can be embarrassing or uncomfortable, especially if you have a tough guy image to uphold. When you act tough, you are treated as tough and you get locked into that behavior. As a human being you deserve more behavior choices than that. I read a prayer once that said, “Lord, make us truly tough and truly tender, as only the truly tough can be tender.” That says a lot. If you are truly tough you have an equal capacity for tenderness. If you are aggressive and loud and bullying, you are

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not tough. Tough is strong and confident and caring. When you are truly tough you don’t have to put on a “tough act.” One danger in becoming a callous, cynical cop is losing your ability to feel and care. By learning to control your caring emo tions while you are on duty, you are free to use them freely in your personal life. It’s okay to be tender. It’s the flip side of tough. Compliments are a part of caring emotions. The word compliment may sound phony to you. “Saying what you feel,” is more accurate. Flattery, insincere compliments, and hearing more criticism than praise has taught us to be wary of compli ments. Compliments are sometimes used as a means for ma nipulation. But a real compliment is given without expecting anything in return. And you don’t have to deny a compliment , or put yourself down, you can just say thank you. We all think and feel a lot of things about the people we are close to, but we often don’t tell them. Sometimes a loved one dies and then we tell others how we felt about them. Don’t wait! Put your caring into words and actions.

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TOUCHING OR BRUTALITY? Touching is a natural behavior that has gotten the label of a “no-no” in our society. Men and boys are especially restricted in touching. We need to touch. We can starve from “touch hunger”: the need to feel contact with other people. Touching that is natural and comfortable depends upon the rights of both people involved. It is okay to pat a hand or shoulder or give a hug. Touching says “I care” better than words. Remem ber, our nonverbal behavior is 65 percent of the message. In policing, however, touching may have different meaning because you are an authority figure. The physical touch of a law officer may trigger an explosive reaction. If you give a brief explanation of your actions in advance, especially for a search , you may avoid unnecessary problems. Your touch may be an invasion of personal space. In some instances you may

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bur touch may also be be accused of brutality for a touch. Y frightening to a child or person who has been threatened with “If you don’t do this, the cops will ....” You must be sensitive to the citizen’s reaction to you and not simply vow never to touch so as to avoid problems. Often your touch is reassuring and very welcome! This section does not , of course , apply to the situations when you must use physical force to subdue and take control of a suspect or hysterical person . In that instance you do what needs to be done with the least force necessary.

HUMOR One of the most common sounds heard from children is laughter. Children laugh until we convince them that they must be serious about life. We teach children that it is okay to laugh at jokes or comedy or at oneself , but never at someone else . We teach a beautiful open , trusting, playful , questioning, et the power of laughter is naturalness out of children. Y enough to reduce stress, change an attitude , act as a safety valve, relieve a tense situation , and make people comfortable with one another. Laughter is a release of energy and that is why a problem doesn’t seem as big if we can find the humor in it . There are things that can be said in humor that would otherwise be embarrassing or uncomfortable to say. And there are times when looking at the funny side of a situation can ease tension . Of course this doesn’t mean to make a habit of saying “I was only joking,” or making unkind remarks with a smile. Humor can be misused as a weapon. When it is misused it is aggression not humor. Laughing is known to change our breathing, pulse rate , and brain waves. It relieves the body of tension . Laughter is one of our best ways to cope with life . Humor is powerful . There was a book written by a man who actually laughed himself well from a very serious illness. Norman Cousins had a



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painful, crippling disease that doctors believed could not be cured . With his doctors’ cooperation , Cousins learned all he could about the disease and became an active participant in his own healing. He discovered that painkillers made the disease worse so he quit taking them. He took high doses of vitamin C that was thought to be beneficial. He discovered that if he laughed hard for ten minutes he could sleep pain-free for two hours. He used the healthy chemicals released by laughter to make him well. He recovered much to the amazement of doctors.4 Remember the suggestion to maintain an amused attitude? The relaxation of mind and body is what we want to achieve. However, laughing or a smirk on your face is not an amused attitude: it might be interpreted in some instances as aggression. Humor can be a way to discharge hostility if used carefully. Use humor as a tool.



Communication Skill

— Listening

Too often we are not listening when another person is talking, even when we have asked a question. Listening really hearing is critical for you . Only by active listening will you pick up the information and cues to danger or guilt that you need. To actively listen , look at the person and focus on his whole message. What is he saying verbally? What is he saying nonverbally ? Do the messages agree? When you make personal judgments while people are talk ing, you may hear only what you want to hear. Put your thoughts and feelings on HOLD and listen . Listen uncritically and allow the person to vent his feelings ; don’t get sucked into his feelings , just listen and ask questions to get the most information possible. When you try too hard to be a good listener, you may get worse. If you think, “I’ve got to listen. I can’t miss anything,” you pay more attention to your thoughts than to listening. Just listen. You can ask questions to clear up the points you miss.





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Communication Skill Asking Questions A closed ended question can be answered by specific, limited information and is efficient for getting answers to: “Are you hurt ?” “Is there anyone else in the house?” and personal in formation questions. An open ended question is intended to get additional, ex panded information: “What led up to ... ?” “What were you do ing when you found ...?” “How did you know ...?” Questioning can become boring. Nonquestions can also get the answer you want. “Tell me more about . .. ” “Give me some more information about . .. ” “Please describe . . . ” Don’t ask why questions! You seldom get any information. Any answer that you do get is often an excuse or defense.

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Silence Few people are comfortable with silence. Yet silence can be used as a tool in communication. In many situations no re sponse is best: particularly when someone is trying to bait you into a confrontation. Silence accompanied by a “nothing look” and relaxed but alert posture gives the message , “I am not on a power trip, but I am in control here and you don’t have to test me to prove it .” When you are comfortable with silence you can give people a few moments to compose themselves instead of bombarding them with comments and questions. Highly anxious people will do almost anything to fill up a silence. When you are comfortable in a silence it puts pressure on the other person to fill up that silence if he is uncomfortable with it. Y ou may get some information you want by waiting quietly Your advantage is lost if your nonverbal behavior in forms the other person that you are as uncomfortable as they are , but not saying anything. Check out your nonverbal messages in a silence situation . The use of silence can also be punishing and aggressive. It can be used as a weapon. Use silence with care, i.e., with re spect for the other person. It should be unnecessary to state that you try to put a “ non suspect” person at ease so that you

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can get the information you need. Yo u might , however, use silence as a tool in questioning a suspect. Again , you are a pro fessional with the right to use your discretion: you are expected to use it wisely.

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Exercise Nonverbal Behavior We are often quite unaware of our own nonverbal behavior. Check up on yours to see if it is helping or hindering you. You may be making your job more difficult by the message you are giving nonverbally. Do this exercise in a group or get two people to help you. (A videotape machine is helpful: you can watch your own nonverbal behavior rather than having another person describe your nonverbal behavior to you.) Do a behavior rehearsal with one person and have the other person be an observer. Have the observer sit at a distance (or turn off the sound when you replay the videotape). You will have to speak normally so that your nonverbal behavior is natural, but you want the observer to pay attention only to your nonverbal behavior. Have your partner in the rehearsal take the role of any person with whom you have difficulty communicating. * superior officer *“punk” flirting suspect drunk city official suspicious person disputant in family disturbance What message does your nonverbal behavior give? 1. Are you threatening and intimidating? 2. Do you make moves that make you look unsure of yourself ? 3. Do you want to change any of your nonverbal behavior habits? 4. Can you change your behavior and still be in control?

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Now repeat the rehearsal until you are comfortable with your nonverbal behavior. Keep it real. If you are faking, or adopting a role, it won’t improve your nonverbal communication.



Exercise Listening/Repeating This exercise makes you aware of how well you listen. You and a partner choose a subject that you can talk about for several minutes. Choose a topic on which you disagree. One of you begin speaking and the other one listen. Before the listener may start to talk he must repeat the general idea and important points the speaker made; only then may he answer. That is the rule for every time one person stops talking and the other begins. This exercise does two things. 1. It shows you how ( and if ) you listen , and 2. keeps emotional arousal at a lower level. Emotions remain at a lower level because you actually hear bu are not just thinking of what the other person is saying. Y what you want to say next. That is true even if you are arguing. This is a good way to learn to actively listen.

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CHAPTER EIGHT

TWO SETS OF RIGHTS PERSONAL RIGHTS

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S A LAW OFFICER you have two different sets of rights: one off duty ; one on duty. You have only personal rights when you are off duty. You share the rights of other citizens when you are not policing. We all have rights, but only our own. My rights stop where yours begin , and likewise , yours stop where mine begin . We all share the right to: *choose, *feel and express emotion, *ask for help, •judge our own behavior and not “explain” it , •make mistakes, *have opinions and beliefs, *be successful, * care/not care, •change, * say no/say yes , * agree/disagree , •disappoint , •like/dislike, * and many more.

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other words, my rights stop at the end of your nose. We all have to compromise and give up rights in order to live in the same world , and that requires self control.

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PROFESSIONAL RIGHTS The fact that rights, or assumed rights, collide is why you have a job. When people intrude accidentally or purposely on the rights of others, you are usually the first one called to mediate. Therefore , you need to have a set of professional rights. As an officer you have the right to: * use force, *intrude on personal space and privacy, *carry and use weapons, *arrest , *break laws, e.g. , exceed speed limit, *give orders, *use discretion, *ask questions and demand answers, *detain, *demand compliance, *and others. Now identify the personal rights you give up when you are on duty. That’s right , you have to give up most of your personal rights if you are doing an effective job of policing. Bad cops don’t give up personal rights when they put on the uniform. They continue to demand their personal rights and inflict themselves (opinions, feelings, prejudices, etc.) on the people they deal with .

EFFECT OF FEELINGS ON RIGHTS Why is it so difficult to give up your personal rights while you are on duty? Because you are you 24 hours per day in or out of uniform . You think , believe , and feel just the same. But the fact that you have such awesome power ( professional



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rights) makes it impossible for you to have personal rights and that power. So how do you shut off your personal rights when you go on duty ? By exercising emotional control. Emotional control can allow you to mediate a conflict without taking sides, to deal fairly with people you “dislike,” and to control people without having an ego trip. In earlier chapters you learned the methods for emotional control and that it does not mean to deny what you feel . It does, however, mean that you “Don’t React” in the first place and prevent the build- up of physical arousal. Or else, you put your feelings on HOLD while you do your duty and then deal with your own feelings privately.

RESPONSIBILITY AND CONSEQUENCES Consequences are not always bad. Consequences make us learn cause and effect and what choices to make. If we learn that consequences are “awful” we run from them. Conse quences are no more than the natural result of an action. If you eat too much , your stomach hurts. If you cheat on your income tax, IRS may request the pleasure of a visit from you. And in your daily duty you hand out a lot of consequences. I tun sure that you hear more blaming, excuses , and lying than most of us. “Why did you have to be there this time ?” It’s your fault they got caught. Sure it is. Now look at yourself. How good are you at accepting consequences? Probably no better than anyone else. But when you take responsibility for yourself it is a free feeling. You are in control of what you do. You are facing people and situations head on. Try it. It’s a good feeling to say what you did or said without an excuse or explanation for your behavior.





Skill Owning Yo ur Behavior Make a statement to another person: “I did ....” “I said ... ”

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But with no explanation , excuse, blaming, or lying. When you admit something you are not locked into a pattern to do it again. You have a free choice. Did you fail to mail the car payment and tell your wife and the finance company tall tales? Own it! Remember: 1. it didn’t get lost in the mail (lying); 2. you didn’t forget (excuse) ; 3. she didn’t say she would remind you (blaming); 4. you didn’t lose it down behind the seat of the car ( explaining). You didn’t mail the payment period. You may have to pay a late charge, and your wife may yell at you , but it feels good to own your behavior and not explain , defend , or lie about it.



CHAPTER NINE

SELF-CONTROL ON YOUR JOB

P JERHAPS WE SHOULD pull this all together now and

JL see what a controlled , rational law officer is like , and see if that is the behavior style that you choose to develop. Let’s look at how we might describe the rational officer: *emotionally stable and cannot be “baited” into confrontation or unprofessional conduct ;

*aware of his needs, likes, and dislikes, attitudes , thoughts and his effect on people;

•assertive in his dealings with people ,

respecting the other person and himself; *able to use only the force necessary to the situation; •able to be passive in situations where he chooses not to as sert himself without feeling like he has “lost ;” •aware of his feelings and is comfortable being both tough and tender; he controls his emotions, they do not control him ; •aware of his body and what clues it gives him for it’s care; * an active listener; •able to communicate clearly and directly: his verbal message agrees with his nonverbal message; •able to make mistakes, correct them and admit them without excuses or condemning himself ; •comfortable with silence and uses humor as a tool in tense situations; * a trained observer: he does not think everyone is out to get him but is always alert ; he is suspicious not paranoid ;

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*sensitive,

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Sound superhuman ? No, it’s just the way we were meant to function. Defensive behaviors were meant to be used against danger, not as a way of life. Man has the potential to function as a rational being, but rational people are rare in our society. A rational person is not bought off by the media and public relations gimmicks and doesn’t go along with the crowd. A rational person thinks for himself/herself. Rationality is not a popular position in our society, but is desirable nevertheless.

HUMAN RELATIONS WITH SPECIFIC PEOPLE

Superior Officers

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The policing profession is based on a quasi-military struc ture. Military structure may work for the military, but it places stress on the police officer. In the military there are few deci sions left to the lower ranking members. Yet in a police department , jail, etc. , the lower ranking people are on the line where weighty and often life and death decisions must be made in-

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stantaneously. The pressure to conform to the system and procedures is in tense in law enforcement. Being assertive and rational with those in the hierarchy of your department may be your most bu may speak out in fewer situations involving difficult task. Y the brass than you do with people on the job or in civilian life. However, you can choose when to make yourself heard and when to “play the conforming game.” Whether you choose to speak out or not , you can still be in control of your thoughts

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and emotions. When you are called on to answer for your behavior or procedure in a situation , you have the skills to respond confidently and with rational thoughts and emotions so that you can “think on your feet.”

Fellow Officers It has been mentioned that peer pressure on police officers is severe. Elliott writes, “The police system has somehow managed to build within itself a mechanism for destroying its good people. A policeman who sincerely wants to take his job seriously and do some good soon finds that , by becoming involved , he will be spending most of his time justifying his actions.... Policemen , in general, do not support or encourage outstanding performance or initiative within their organiza-. . tion.”1 He further states that police departments do an outstanding job of protecting those of it’s members most guilty of incompetence, mistakes, inefficiency and stupidity. 2 If Elliott’s statements are true in your agency, you have to decide when you will conform to mediocrity and when you will perform outstandingly (even if it means fighting the system). Keep in mind that peer pressure is manipulation and you must decide for yourself how much you will be manipulated . Rational thoughts and emotions are less vulnerable to irrational peer pressure.

Kids If you are a “typical” adult, kids can push your buttons. And they know it! If they can get you to lose your cool , they get their payoff ( reinforcement) for their behavior. A rationed adult is such a novelty to them that their attention is diverted by the event. (Remember the Thought-Shift ?) Kids forget what they were doing so that they can explore this new creature a rational adult . Kids want limits, and the security of adults in their lives who are stronger than they. I don’t mean



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stronger only physically, I mean stronger mentally and emo

tionally as well. A rational cop? Kids do not soon forget the experience. They generally expect you to be rough, cynical, and unfair. If they discover you are not what they expect they may try you on to see whether you are for real. And if they discover you don’t have any buttons to push they just may cooperate with you . What is your attitude toward kids? Are they people or punks ? Do they have rights, or do you have all the rights? Do they deserve respect? Kids are people too. It appears that children are not disturbed, but are , as Thomas Szasz says, ‘disturbing.’



The police feel an obligation to elicit respectful behavior from juveniles, and youths have a need to establish and maintain their autonomy and freedom... . The youth’s de meanor more than his actual conduct may be the major factor in determining whether he is brought before the court.... Goldman (1963) reports that ‘defiance on the part of a boy will lead to juvenile court quicker than anything else.’ Humility is a great virtue when dealing with a policeman who is authority conscious. Porterfield commenting on the area, wrote (1946): ‘And we may conclude from our data , that no small part of the conflict with youth grows out of the many cases, peevishness, impatience, irresponsibility, an in 3 . t ’ complainan of the attitudes ic the criminalist Remember, kids are kids first , and delinquents or behavior problems second . A strong but flexible approach and emo tional control equips you well to deal with them. Of course , it helps if you like them they can tell but if you at least respect

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them as people you will have far less hassle with them .

USE OF DEADLY FORCE The use of deadly force is an area of police work that evokes strong reactions in both officer and public. Reiser states that

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the philosophy on the use of deadly force is “that the minimum force that reasonably appears necessary should be used.”4 His philosophy is the ideal The officer on the street making a split second decision is in the real situation. It is true that there are some things you can do to make the decision wisely, but it is tragic when an officer is second guessed in an investigation of his use of deadly force. With the benefit of hindsight we all make better decisions, but on the street there is neither unlimited time nor hindsight . Reiser further states that justification for the use of deadly force must be based only on the informa tion known or perceived at the moment the officer decides to shoot.5 The later addition of information he should have known must not be considered . The physical factors that affect the judgment of the officer include his physical condition , including fatigue, and his level of arousal. Keep in mind that diet , primarily sugar and refined carbohydrates, and caffeine, also affect judgment and be haivor. “An officer who has just used fatal force may acknowledge his horror, yet control himself. He may allow himself to become upset in private , but maintains his determination not to remain upset ,” writes Bullard .6 In other words he realistically faces his action and his thoughts and feelings about the event , and yet retains his stability. He chooses to remain in control of his thoughts and feelings rather than becoming emotionally overwhelmed or retreating into drugs or alcohol. His self - talk is the key to whether he sinks into depression or copes with the reality of his action. Your conscious thought after using deadly force is affected by your environment , i.e. , an investigation , suspension , financial status, and supportive or hostile people around you . However, your automatic self- talk will be working full time to distort reality and dump you into depression . There are sev eral things you can do to counteract your self- talk and promote a rational perspective.

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Police Personal Behavior and Human Relations 1. Become aware of your self-put-downs and argue with them. Write the statements down and then write positive rational statements to argue with them. 2. When you become aware that you are again repeating negative self-condemning thoughts to yourself STOP/ THINK positive, rational statements. For example, “I am not bad because I shot a person. It was justifiable. Everyone may not agree, but with the information I had at that moment my action was justified.” Every time ( and it may be many) you become aware of the negative thoughts, STOP/THINK. Sometimes you will sink into your misery because it takes too much effort to fight it. But the next time, or the next, you can decide to fight it. 3. Bullard suggests forming a “Traumatic Incident Corps.” Officers who have experienced a shooting and who are7 interested in counseling their peers are likely members. The purpose of such a group is to provide someone who “understands” and can give rational support. The coun selors must be distant enough not to get sucked into emo tional misery and yet be close enough to give support and rational empathy.



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A family member is liable to give sympathy which only intensifies emotional misery. There is a vast difference between sympathy and empathy. Sympathy is entering into the mental and emotional state of another person: thinking and feeling “with” a person. Some definitions of empathy also focus on feeling with a person. I define rational empathy as recognizing the thoughts and feelings of another person without getting sucked into those thoughts and feelings, and retaining emotional stability and separation. I believe that only from such a stable position can one person help another work through problems. If the helper is immersed in the thoughts and feelings of the one he is supposed to be helping, he has the same tunnel-vision . When the counselor does not deny the existence of the thoughts and feelings of the counselee and yet remains rational, he is able to help identify self-defeating thoughts and feelings , and encourage the counselee to actually deal with his situation.

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In the absence of a support group, and with the awareness and skills you have developed in this training you might make yourself available for talking and support to a fellow officer who has had an experience with which he has difficulty dealing. Just letting him know that it is okay to have feelings and want to talk about it may help. If he believes the “Supercop” stereotype , he may be trying to get through it alone.

HIGH SPEED CHASE

“Except for the question of when and how a police officer should use his gun , the high speed chase engenders more discussion , and more controversy, than perhaps any other aspect of patrol work.”8 My purpose here is not to discuss the pros and cons of the high-speed chase, but to draw attention to the officer’s arousal level as it affects his/her driving ability. Referring to Figures #5 , 6, and 7 in chapter five , you recall the effect your arousal level has on your mental and then physical functioning. Although driving might be considered a “well learned task” under normal conditions , it certainly might not retain that same label during a high speed chase . During a high-speed chase, clear mental functioning is as important as acute physical functioning, and arousal level must remain low for that clear mental functioning to take place. Therefore , an emotional approach to such an event is highly dangerous. And a humorous approach is likewise dangerous: a chase may make good comedy in a movie, but not on the street. You recall that in movie chase scenes, the of ficer is usually depicted as a bumbling, highly excitable comic figure, while the “bad guy” is seen as cool and in control. Don’t adopt a comic role for yourself. You are a professional and must be in control at all times. If you enjoy a high-speed chase you are experiencing emotion , and , depending upon the level of that emotional (physical) arousal, your mental and physical functioning may be less than adequate . In a chase , as

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in any other policing function , you must remain in control of your mental and physical, and thus your emotional , functions, and perform in a professional and safe manner.

COURT APPEARANCE The necessity of court appearances can be a timeconsuming irritation to police officers. You may have “an in9 nate distrust of the legal system , and of juries.” You see juries " acquit people you know are guilty. Vet sometimes you are partly responsible for the acquittal! Defense lawyer Mike Makaroff teaches veteran Denver police officers how to avoid making mistakes in favor of the defendant . Makaroff says, “ ‘I go to court believing the jury wants to convict my client .. . . I believe the jury is going to believe what the police officer says. But my experience is that you guys are going to blow it on the witness stand. All I have 10 to do is aid and abet.’ ” Of course, you do not intend to help the defendant, but that is often the result . Makaroff lists several errors you make that influences the jury to see you as less than a credible witness. 1. You let the jury know that you have already decided the defendant is guilty. 2. You are resistive, hostile, or unresponsive to the defense attorney: you seem to be in competition with the attorneys. 3. You stretch your testimony beyond your knowledge of the facts. of 4. You fail to be prepared , often relying on your memory ’ »11 . jargon ’ police jumbo mumbo , use the incident. Or “‘ So what can you do to assist in obtaining a conviction ? 1. Be natural. Don’t put on an act and stick to the facts. Review the case before you go into court and relate the facts as you know them . 2. “Don’t React” to what you see or hear. The jury has sworn to defer judgment and expects you to do the same. ou are a witness. 3. Don’t try to be the prosecutor. Y r

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Just being aware of the effect you may have on the jury can improve the image you present. Your nonverbal behavior dictates the message that is believed. When you display negative, judgmental , disrespectful behavior, your credibility as a witness is questioned . Remember, the jury may want to believe you even though they don’t like authority, or distrust the system. Encourage a feeling of teamwork: you are working together to assure that justice is done. It is the combination of your verbal testimony and nonverbal message that influences the judge and jury. Be sure you give the message that you choose; not a mistaken message simply because you are not in control of your emotions and behavior.

CHAPTER TEN

SELF-CONTROL IN YOUR PERSONAL LIFE BE KIND TO YOURSELF

W

E SEEM TO NEED to be told to take time for our own needs and wants. Although the focus of much of this training is interpersonal (between people), it is beneficial intrapersonally (within yourself ) as well. Please pay attention to and enjoy your small successes: they are often your only reward. When you handle an accident scene efficiendy while giving support and hope to the victims, give yourself credit . You will never know how much you affected their lives at a critical time. You may assist at an accident every day, but it is a traumatic event for the people involved. Y> u can keep from getting callous and insensitive by noting your performance in each separate event. It is your job , yes, but that does not mean you cannot feel good about a job

well done. How much leisure time do you take ? Some of us have to be told to take time for leisure activities because we feel guilty when we are not working. Review your change of pace activities (end chapter five) and set aside a specified amount of time each week that you will spend for yourself. Then take that time! 125

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Fill in this contract. Be specific. Adjust the contract to fit your needs.

My Contract With Myself I need time for myself. I recognize that need by setting hours per week as follows. aside (Amount of time) per day for exercise on one day for golf on three days just to be alone on two days for study or reading on four days to spend time with family and friends Total time per week

(Signature)

You have just given yourself permission to take time for you. This is the difference between doing and wishing: doing is active ; wishing is passive. Now if you still feel guilty about spending time on yourself , look at the total number of hours on the contract and compare it to 168 hours in a week. You deserve some of your own time! Studies have shown that cops tend to associate with other cops and become isolated from other social contacts. When you expect to be disliked and misunderstood , it becomes selffulfilling prophecy you make it happen . You make every comment or action by an “outsider fit into your expectation of being disliked and misunderstood , and believe it to be true. Actually you do much of the distancing yourselves, even with each other. Isolation happens when you cease to communicate with people and withdraw into yourself. Isolation is not the same as choosing to be alone at times. Isolation puts a permanent distance between you and other people.



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It is true that outsiders” don’t share your problems and experience. It is also true that people resent authority, and you are authority. Nevertheless , you can still have friends outside the department if you so choose. Your old friends may joke about your profession , and new acquaintances may treat you with suspicion , but your expectations and behavior help determine whether you remain/become friends. Not everyone you associate with has to understand and support you . You can differentiate between friends and acquaintances. A friend really wants to know how you are when they ask. An acquaintance asks , “How are you ?” out of conversational habit . You don’t need, or want , all friends. Acquaintances are valuable too. Sometimes you want to escape into social conversation and forget about problems. You can develop tunnel vision and take life and yourself too seriously when all your conversation is “shop talk” or discussion of serious matters. Social conversation does have value when you look at it as a safety valve: as a tension reducer. A surgeon does not go to a party to discuss the life and death matters that he works with every day. He socializes to get away from his job . You can too. Most professionals , whether doctors , lawyers , or police officers, are asked awkward questions in social situations. 1 It may be helpful to think up a stock answer for use in those situ ations. For example , “Talking about police work upsets a lot of people , so I make it a rule to stay away from that topic when I am relaxing.” Remember to “choose your battles.” Some events and some people are not worth your effort to respond. Kick back sometimes and just be passive when you don’t want to get involved . There are things you care about and things you don’t care about . It’s okay not to care regardless of what society expects. There are a lot of things you don’t care about and no one can make you feel guilty unless you let them . You can’t be baited into a reaction when you believe it is okay not to care about everything. We simply do not care about everything .



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VITAL COMMUNICATION One reason that law officers tend to isolate themselves even from their families is because of the dangerous nature of the job. Families worry about their loved ones getting hurt or killed and are upset by knowledge of actual dangerous events involving a loved one. As a society we tend to treat illness, injury, and death like a “giraffe in the living room .” It is there, but we don’t talk about it. It is uncomfortable, but we talk all the way around those topics without ever mentioning them. Communication that must stay away from specific topics prevents honest communication. You cannot really open up and get involved with another person when there are topics that make you uncomfortable, but that you avoid. You are both aware of what you are not talking about , and it puts distance between you. It is particularly sad when you cannot talk openly to the one with whom you want to be most intimate. Failure to communicate openly builds walls between people in stead of bridges. Alcoholism , suicide, and family problems, known to affect high numbers of law officers, are the result of isolation and despair. Walls are built to keep others out. Don’t build walls; build bridges. Good communication for you is a particular necessity. The fact that you have such a highly visible and unpopular job makes you a likely candidate for isolation and stress. Stay in contact with your family and friends as well as other officers. You now know that it is okay for you to feel even to feel emo tional pain. Therefore , it is okay for you to want to talk about an incident that really gets to you . We are all vulnerable to different things. Seeing a battered child might rock your boat and handling accident victims might not. YJU need to talk about the events and people that really bother you. Part of your communication is also expressing the caring emotions. You deprive yourself of the pleasure of your human ness when you refuse to have a “tender side” to you. We can all

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129

choose to have and to show a tender side. You are not living the rough “Supercop” image now , so you can choose to be a whole human being.

IDENTIFYING AND BUILDING A SUPPORT SYSTEM A support system is the collection of people that are supporting and reinforcing to you . And it does not necessarily include the people who “should” support you. People in your support system are the ones you first think of telling when something happens to you . They are the ones you can go to and pour out your joy or misery and they may not understand, but you know they care. You can really feel their caring. If you are lucky, they are also rational and don’t sink into your misery or soar in your joy with you. They hold on to you so that you don’t get lost in your emotion. One person in my support system often gives me a good swift kick in my emotionalism when I need it . He is caring but rational, and brings me back to rationality and reality. He doesn’t say “Oh that’s too bad ,” and pat me on the head and turn away. He is often responsible for me getting my perspective back on target. Take time right now to take stock of your support system. Write down a list of the people who are supportive to you in any situation , and another list of those who are supportive to you in only a specific situation. The people in your support system may sympathize or criticize on occasion , but their usual response to you is caring and listening. Maybe you have an old neighbor, or an aunt , or a real good friend that you can always depend on to listen to you and to share your joys and sorrows. They are there for you when problems arise . They are your support system. It is great if a spouse and/or other close family members are your support , but often they are too close and have a stake in

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what you do or say. Family members are emotionally involved with you and are often a poor source of support. Instead of lis tening to you they may argue , scold , manipulate , shame , or inflict their wants and needs on you . That isn’t support . The people who are the greatest support to you are probably not emotionally or financially involved with you . Other officers probably belong on your “specific support” list. You have common problems and common goals. However, fellow officers must never make up your total support system . Your support system list is probably very short . We are very fortunate to have two or three people who support us at any one time in our lives. Those people change too. We lose them and gain them throughout our lives. Identify who they are and how much they are worth to you . They are not necessarily people with whom you have a lot in common . You may not even see them very often . But you know they are always behind you and value you.

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YOU CAN FEEL GOOD ABOUT YOURSELF AND ABOUT YOUR PROFESSION We have talked a lot about your poor public image as a law officer. I hope that by looking at that image and at yourself through new awareness you may have developed in this training, that you now have a positive concept of yourself and your profession . You are an absolute necessity in our ever increasingly violent world , and we should value you highly but we don’t. We don’t value you according to your contribution to society because we are all so self-centered and want to have our own way, which you as an authority prevent . Therefore , you must give yourself credit and feel good about yourself for doing a very unpopular, but crucial job. When President Reagan was shot , he, of course, received continuous media coverage. His accused assassin (and his



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family ) received a secondary amount of attention and his press secretary ( wounded) received some attention. But the police officer who was also wounded received almost no media attention . How can we value law officers so little? Very easily it seems. Our national value system dictates high prestige for na tional figures regardless of their contribution or destruction to society, and ignores the little people who contribute so much. You can’t change society but you can change how you feel about yourself. You can take pride in the job you do without the approval of the public. I once saw a bumper sticker that read:

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HATE COPS? CALL A MUGGER THE NEXT TIME YOU NEED HELP Thank you for being an officer of the law and doing your duty in spite of the way you are treated . We cannot live without you. I hope this training will make your job and your life less stressful and more rewarding for you .

ENDNOTES Chapter One 1. Daviss , Ben : Burnout. Police Magazine. May 1982 , p. 11 . 2 . Steinberg , J. Leonard , and McEvoy, Donald W.: The Police and the Behavioral Sciences. Springfield , Thomas, 1974 , pp. 47 -48. 3. Ellis , Albert and Harper, Robert A.: A New Guide to Rational Living. North Hollywood , Wilshire , 1975 , p. 74 .

Chapter Two 1. DeSanto , Fr. Joseph A. and Moore , Edmond M . : Some Psychologi cal Considerations of Police Citizen Confrontations . The Police Chief . February 1980 , pp. 46 47 . 2 . DeSanto and Moore , p. 47 .

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Chapter Three 1 . Alberti, Robert E . , Ph. D . and Emmons , Michael L. , Ph . D . : Stand Up, Speak Out, Talk Back! New York, Pocket Books, 1975 , p. 24. 2 . Alberti and Emmons , p . 24. 3. Bennett , Barbara: The Police Mistique. The Police Chief. April 1978, p. 48. 4. Ochberg, Frank M., M.D. : On Preventing Aggression and Violence. The Police Chief. February 1980 , p.52. 5 . Woods, Brett F.: Control of Inner Conflict. The Police Chief. April 1980 , p.62. 6. Readers Digest . May 1982.

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Chapter Four 1. Corey, Gerald: Theory and Practice of Counseling and Psychotherapy.Monterey, Brooks/Cole, 1977 , pp.143-144. 2. Ellis, Albert and Harper, Robert A.: A New Guide to Rational Living. North Hollywood , Wilshire , 1975, pp.88-195. 3. Ziegler, Edward: Think Your Way Out of Depression. Readers Digest. December 1980 , p. 125. 4. Ziegler, p.125.

Chapter Five 1. Tavris, Carol: Anger: The Misunderstood Emotion. New York , Simon and Schuster, 1982 , p.153. 2. Tavris, pp.93 94. 3. Tavris , p.87 . 4. Tavris, pp.86-87. 5. Tavris, p.177 . 6. Bullard , Peter D. , Ph.D.: Coping With Stress: A Psychological Survival Manual. Portland , ProSeminar Press, 1980 , p.47. 7. Zuckerman , Marvin: The Search for High Sensation. Psychology To day. February 1978, p.39. 8. Bourne, Lyle , E. and Ekstrand , Bruce R . : Psychology: It’s Principles and Meanings. 2 nd Ed. New York, Holt, Rinehart and Winston , 1976, p. 206. 9. Melrose , Frances: Activity Can Be An Addiction, Too, Unorthodox Metro Professor Says. Rocky Mountain News. October 13, 1980, p. 6. 10. Wallis, Claudia: Stress: Can We Cope ? Time. June 6, 1983, pp. 4849. 11. Pelletier, Kenneth R.: Mind as Healer, Mind as Slayer. New York , Delta, 1977, pp.3 4. 12. Pelletier, pp.96 97. 13. Pelletier, p.93. 14. Forbes , Rosalind , Ed.D.: Life Stress. New York , Doubleday, 1979 , p.13. 15. Pelletier, p. 78. 16. Pelletier, p. 15. 17 . Bieliauskas , Linas A., Ph.D. : Stress and Its Relationship to Health and III ness. Boulder, Westview , 1982, p.53. 18. Pelletier, p.83. 19. Pelletier, p.5 .

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20. Pelletier, p. 76. 21. Wallis, p. 49. 22. Culligan , Matthew J . and Sedlacek, Keith , M.D.: How to Avoid Stress Before It Kills You. New York , Gramercy, 1976, p.23. 23. Davis, Flora: Stress. Ladies’ Home Journal. January 1985, pp.38 40. 24. Wallis, p.50. 25. Culligan and Sedlacek, p . 68. 26. Wallis, p.54 27 . Pelletier, p.9. 28. Whaley, Donald L. and Malott , Richard W.: Elementary Principles of Behavior. Englewood Cliffs, Prentice- Hall , 1971 , pp. 47 -48. 29. Bielauskas, p. 65. 30. Pelletier, p.24. 31. Pelletier, p.25. 32. Pelletier, pp.62 , 66-67. 33. Garr, Douglas: The Healing Brain. Omni. September 1981, pp.81-82. 34. Findlay, Steven: Angry Patients Give Cancer Best Fight. USA Today. August 29 , 1984. 35. Leary, Warren E.: Cancer, Stress, Linked in Test. Denver Post. April 1, 1982. 36. Forbes , p.13. 37. Oppenheim , Mike, M.D.: Emotional Problems? Don’t Be So Sure. Woman’s Day. March 8, 1983, p.24. 38. Oppenheim , p.24. 39. Pelletier, p. 7. 40. Pelletier, pp.119 120. 41. Smith , Lendon H .: Improving Your Child’s Behavior Chemistry. New York, Pocket Books, 1976, pp. 47-48. 42. Feltman , John.: The Sweet Side of Senseless Violence. Prevention. June 1976, pp.108 111. 43 . Brecher, Edward M.: Licit and Illicit Drugs. Boston , Little- Brown , 1972 , p.205. 44. Brecher, pp.199 , 203, 205. 45. Brecher, p.204.

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Chapter Six 1. Tavris, Carol: Anger: The Misunderstood Emotion. New York, Simon and Schuster, 1982 , p.89 . . 2 Ellis, Albert and Harper, Robert A.: A New Guide to Rational Living. North Hollywood , Wilshire , 1975, pp.21 22. 3. Ellis and Harper, p.25.

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4. Bennett , Barbara: The Police Mistique. The Police Chief. April 1978, p. 48.

5. Tavris, p.23. 6. Backus, William and Chapian, Marie. Telling Yourself the Truth. Minneapolis, Bethany Fellowship, 1980, p.53. 7. Hartman , Diane. Anger Is Healthy If It’s Controlled, Therapist Says. Denver Post. October 9 , 1981.

Chapter Seven 1. Hicks, Robert D. Ill and Dolphin , Gabrielle. Avoiding Family Violence: The Nonverbal Behavior of Police Intervention at Family Fights. The Police Chief. March 1979, p.50. 2. Hicks and Dolphin , p.54. 3. Hicks and Dolphin, p.54. 4. Cousins, Norman: Anatomy of An Illness. New York, Norton, 1979.

Chapter Nine New”Police. Springfield , Thomas, 1973, p.8. 1. Elliott, J.F.: The“ 2. Elliott , p.8. 3. Wright, Jack Jr. andjames, Ralph Jr.: A Behavioral Approach to Preventing Delinquency. Springfield , Thomas, 1974, p.9. 4. Reiser, Martin, Ed.D.: Practical Psychology for Police Officers.Springfield , Thomas, 1973, p.150. 5. Reiser, p.150. 6. Bullard , Peter D. , Ph.D.: Coping With Stress: A Psychological Survival Man ual. Portland, ProSeminar Press, 1980, p.105. 7. Bullard, p.105. 8. Chapin, Kim: ‘If a Guy Goes Flying by, the Decision is to Get Him...’ Police Magazine. November 1978, p.38. 9. Daviss, Ben: A Denver Lawyer Teaches Police How to Testify. Police Magazine. July 1981, p. 43. 10. Daviss, p.43. 11. Daviss, p.44.

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Chapter Ten 1. Bullard , Peter D. , Ph.D.: Coping With Stress: A Psychological Survival Manual. Portland , ProSeminar Press, 1980, p. 59.

1

NAME INDEX A Alberti , Robert E. , 19 , 133

Dufford , Dufford , Dufford , Dufford ,

Heath , xi Max , xi Priss , iii, vii , viii Shawn , xi

B

E Backus , William , 136 Barber, Olen, xi Beck , Aaron , 41 Bennett , Barbara, 20, 133, 136 Bieliauskas, Linas A . , 66 , 134 , 135 Bourne , LyleE. , 55 , 134 Brecher, Edward M., 71, 135 Bullard , Peter D. , 55 , 119 , 120, 134,

136 Bums , David , 41

C Chapian , Marie , 136 Chapin , Kim , 136 Corey, Gerald, 134 Cousins , Norman , 107 , 136 Culligan , Matthew J . , 135

D Davis, Flora , 135 Daviss , Ben , 3 , 133 , 136 de Rivera, Joseph, 50 De Santo , Fr. Joseph A . , 10 , 133 Dolphin , Gabrielle, 136

Ekstrand , Bruce R . , 55 , 134 Elliott, J. E , 117 , 136 Ellis , Albert , 34, 35 , 41 , 73 , 133, 134 , 135 Emmons , Michael L. , 19, 133

F

Feltman , John , 135 Findlay, Steven , 135 Firko, Gary, xi Forbes , Rosalind , 57 , 68 , 134 , 135

G Garr, Douglas , 135 Goldman , 118

H Harper, Robert A. , 74 , 133 , 134 , 135 Hartman , Diane, 136 Hicks , Robert D . , Ill , 136 Holmes , Thomas , 58

137

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J

James, Ralph , Jr. , 136 L Lazarus , Richard , 59 , 60 Leary, Warren E. , 135

M Makaroff, Mike , 122 Malott , Richard W. , 135 McEvoy, Donald W. , 133 Meichenbaum , 41 Melrose, Frances, 134 Moore, Edmond M. , 10 , 133 O

Ochburg, Frank M. , 21 , 133 Oppenheim , Mike, 68, 135

P

.

Riley, Vernon T , 67 Rosch, Paul, 56

S

Sadr, Virginia , 76 Sedlacek, Keith , 135 Smith , Lendon H. , 135 Steinberg , J . Leonard , 133 Szasz , Thomas , 118

T Tavris, Carol, 50, 54, 73, 76, 134, 135 , 136 W

Wallis , Claudia , 134 , 135 Welch , Michael, xi Whaley, Donald L. , 135 Wilson , Flip, 73 Wilson , Jackie- Lynn , iii, ix Woods , Brett F. , 21 , 133 Wright , Jack Jr. , 136

Pelletier, Kenneth R . , 57 , 64, 69 , 134 , 135 Porterfield , 118

Y

R

Z

Reagan , Ronald , 130 Reiser, Martin , 118, 119 , 136

Ziegler, Edward , 134 Zuckerman , Marvin , 55 , 134

-

Yaryura Tobias , 70

SUBJECT INDEX A Adrenaline characteristics , 54 natural high addictive , 56 need for stimulation , 55 56 nonspecific arousal , 55 Aggressiveness basis forjudging behavior as , 22 behavior styles available, diagram , 18 comparison with assertion , table , 22 concepts of , 20-21 description , 20 identification situations as , exercise , 24- 26 misuse of label , 21 perception of by others , 23 24 police officer as recipient of, 22 23 total behavior, diagram , 18 Anger, 76 79 { see also Aggression ) choices of person , 78 control activation of ANS, 78-79 control of , 76 definition , 77 flash of, 77-78 rational anger, 77 self talk and , 77 separation feeling from act of , 76 to “have” a bad temper, 78 use of , 77

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Assertiveness as awareness of self , 12 15 purpose, 14 as choice, 15 as rational , 20 as responsibility, 16 17 as situational, 15-16 behavior style available , diagram , 18 comparison with aggressiveness , table, 22 danger area for behavior, 19 definition , 19, 20 identification situations as exercise , 24- 26 total behavior, diagram , 17 use on duty, 15 value of to officer, 17 Authoritarianism , personal qualities of , 10 Authority, personal qualities of , 10 Autonomic nervous system , 49-50 as emotional response system , 53 divisions , 49 parasympathetic branch , 49 activation of, table, 50 role of , 49 sympathetic branch activation of, table , 50 physical symptoms , 50 51 role of , 49 , 52 Awfulizing , definition , 44

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140

Behavior goal setting, 31 33 steps of, 32 vague v. specific , 32 33 Behavior modification and socialization , 28 change as goal , 28 for self , 30-31 positive reinforcement , examples , 29 self-examination , 29 30 Behaviors , choosing, 80-81 Boredom , definition , 55 Burnout , 64 66 { see also Stress) cause of , 64 response to in others , 65-66 symptoms , 64 66 time of onset , 3

involved , 97 humor, 106 110 { see also Humor ) listening/ repeating exercise, 110 listening skill, 107 108 nonverbal behavior exercise, 109 110 percent verbal and nonverbal, 97 98 praise, 102- 103 silence skill, 108-109 touching or brutality, 105 106 verbal , 97-98 withdrawing, 102 Compliments , 104-105 Court appearance , 122 123 attitude toward , 122 errors made that help defendant , 122 helping obtain conviction , 122-123 need for self control , 123 Criticism , handling of, 102 104

C

D

Cancer, link between emotions and , 67 Caring emotions, 88-94 behavior rehearsal skill, 93-94 covert behavior rehearsal skill , 94 95 “do not label” skill , 92-93 “don’t react” skill, 92 expressions of , 88 handling tragic events, 89 “I” message skill, 90-92 need to control, 89 talking about feelings , 89 Catastrophyzing { see also Awfulizing) definition , 44 Coffee, effect on health and behavior, 70 71 Communication , 97-110 asking questions skill , 108 compliments , 104 105 criticism , 102 104 disagreement verbal and nonverbal , 97 98 explanation official actions to people

Deadly force, use of, 118 121 difference sympathy and empathy, 120 philosophy of , 118 119 physical factors affecting judgment , 119 use of self-control, 119

B

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-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

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£ Emotion choosing, 80 81 difference expressed and kept inside, 68 link between cancer and , 67 production of feeling of , 50 Emotional control , definition , 73 Emotional pain , 80 Emotional reaction examples , 41-42 , 42 -43 formula, 41 Emotions, 73-95 accepting responsibility for, 81 anger, 76 79 { see also Anger) caring { see Caring emotions )

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Subject Index confrontation , 87-88

control of level of , 74 control of on the job , 86 88 confrontation , 87-88 definition , 73 displacement , 75 elements for rational control of , 83 emotional control defined , 73 emotional response, 73 fear, 79 labeling , 83 learning control of, 82 83 pain , 80 physical arousal and feelings , 74 prevention arousal, 85 rational self control , 85-86 techniques to use , 85 sustained by rehearsing , 74 75 ways to ignore, 76 Empathy, rational, definition , 120

on body, 106 on health , 107

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F Fear as a signal , 79 irrational, 79 nonspecific, 79 use of, 79

H High-speed chase , 121-122 effect aroustd level on driving ability, 121 need for clear mental functioning, 121 Homeostasis, definition , 54 Hypoglycemia, definition , 70 Humor effects of laughter, 106-107 discharge of hostility, 107 on a tension situation , 106

141

I Irrational beliefs (see Rational beliefs) Irrational fear, 79

L Labeling as prejudgments, 84 handling of , 84 Learning, thinking, beliefs behavior goal setting, 31 learning behavior ( see Learning be havior) no defense skill , 45 -46 rational thinking, 33 34 rational v . irrational beliefs , 34- 40 self- talk ( see Self talk) stop/ think skill , 46-47 thought shift, 47-48 Learning behavior as a habit pattern , 34-35 behavior-consequence, 27 emotional reactions to, 38-40 “I should be perfect” belief , 35-36, 38 , 39 40 “it’s awful” belief , 37 38 negative self talk and , 44 scale for, 35 , 44 teaching of, 35 “you should be perfect” belief , 3637

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-

-

-

-

-

-

N

-

No Doz®, effect of, 71 Nonassertiveness basis , 20 behavior styles available , diagram , 18 definition , 20 identification situations as exercise ,

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24 26 total behavior, diagram , 17 Nonverbal communication , 98 101 body posture, 100 eye contact, 99 100 facial expression , 99 gestures, 100 101 Noradrenaline ( see Adrenaline)

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-

-

-

-

-

-

O Occupational stress , factors in exacer bation of , vii Optimists , self talk of , 45

facing aggression , 23 human relations with specific people , 116 118 fellow officers, 117 kids, 117 118 superior officers , 116 117 importance self control, 11 motivations for being , 7 noncrime related duty time , 3, 8 power of , 10 11 purpose in isolating emotions , 82 rational assertiveness ( see Rational as sertiveness) relationship approach to and response of persons , 5 service related training , 3 4 “should’s” for, 9 tendency to associate with other cops socially, 126 tendency toward isolation , 126 unique stressful situations facing, 61 use of deadly force, 118 121 ( see also Deadly force) Professional rights , 112 Projection as a defense mechanism , 10 perceived antagonism as, 10 Psychological stress , role in office breakdown , vii Psychophysiological disorder, defini tion , 66 67 Psychosomatic illness , 66 70 cause, 66 definition , 66 67 effects extreme stress on immune sys tem , 67 misdiagnosis , 68 69 need for awareness reactions to life , 69 70

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-

-

-

-

P Pain , emotional , 80 Personal rights, 111 112 responsibilities with , 112 shared rights , 111 Pessimists, self- talk of , 45 Physical arousal effect on citizens in crisis, 53 level for complex mental functioning,

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52 level for physical tasks , graph , 52 nonspecific arousal , 55 relationship arousal and control, table, 51 role ANS in , 51 Yerkes Dodson Law , 51 Physical exercise change of pace activities, 71 72 goal setting for, 71 relation and breathing , 71 Police Officers authority v. authoritarian , 9 11 balancing objective/ subjective reactions to stress , 62 demeanor of and response of others , 11 description controlled , rational, 115 116 diet of and behavior, 70

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-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

R Rational, definition , 5 , 10 , 33 Rational assertiveness , 13- 26 awareness of self , 13 14

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143

Subject Index purpose of , 14 Rational Assertiveness Training, pur pose of, 20 Rational beliefs v . irrational beliefs , 34- 40 ( see also Irrational beliefs) responsibility for one’s own thinking, 38- 39 Rational thinking, and personal con trol , 34 Rationalize, definition , 5 Rights of police officers effect of feelings on , 112 113 personal , 111 112 professional, 112 responsibility and consequences , 113 114 good consequences , 113 owning your behavior skill , 114

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S

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Self control, achievement of , 8 Self control in personal life, 125 131 Self control in personal life, 125 131 awkward questions in social situations , 127 being kind to oneself , 125 126 enjoyment of small success, 125 use of leisure time, 125 communication with family, 125 contract with oneself , 126 127 differentiation friends and acquain tances , 127 feeling good about self and profession , 130 131 identifying and building a support system , 129- 130 isolation from social contacts , 126 vital communication , 128 129 expressing the caring emotions , 128-

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129 family,128 friends , 128 Self -control on the job , 115-123 court appearance, 122 123

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eed ll .ase , 121 -122 11 sp prom > t ion rational perspective after use of , 120 Self talk , 40 48 Cognitive therapy and , 41 emotional reaction ( see Emotional rear tion ) in pleasurable events , 44-45 negative , 44 of optimists , 45 of pessimists , 45 reality v . expectations, 45 role of in anger, 77 use mental pictures , 43-44 source negative , 44 Stress adaptation to, 57 58 burnout ( see Burnout ) control and use of , 63 64 control of uncontrollable , 61 controlling effect of on person , 4 , 6 definition , 57 faced by police officer, 61 placing hold on emotions , 61-62 fatal , 59 individual responses to , 57 injurious responses to, 58 limits stress management courses , 63 major v . minor, 59 63 minor choosing consequences to, 61 identification , 60 importance of , 59 60 need for in life, 56 57 noninjurious responses to , 58 objective thoughts , 62 occupational ( see Occupational stress) psychological ( see Psychological stress) reaction to as involuntary, 57 response immune system to excessive ,

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67

response to a situation , example , 158 159 results of overload , vii

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144

Police Personal Behavior and Human Relations T

subjective thoughts , 62 types of , 56 Sympathy, definition , 120

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Thought , choosing, 80 81 Touching , as a police officer, 105 106

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Thought and emotion psychology, 49 72 adrenaline and noradrenaline, 54 55 autonomic nervous system , 49 50 body clues, 49 burnout ( see Burnout) physical arousal , 50 53 physical exercise, 71 72 psychosomatic illness , 66-69 steady state, 54 stress ( see Stress )

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Verbal communication , 97-98 crisis , 101-102 giving rational support , 101 importance voice in , 101 102 importance voice, 97 98

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Yerkes Dodson Law application of, 51 53 definition , 51

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