A four year-old-boy is pulled, flatlining, from the bottom of a lake, and rushed to the emergency room. No one knows how long he was underwater, they can only say that CPR was administered, and the boy showed no response. The doctor on call, David Hilfiker, drops everything. Dashing to the operating room, he lets his practiced hands take over.
Strength is what drives an effective unit, just as strength is what a mindfulness master looks for within their self. Such strong commonality cannot be ignored; in fact, military leaders have started to recognize mindfulness as an essential component of any soldier’s arsenal; many military heads now see the benefits of meditation as a sort of armor, offering units a cohesive, fortifying mind-shield which outstrips even the hardest Kevlar.
It’s ironic that although we rely on doctors to care for our health, they are rarely able to devote the same time to their own — least of all their mental health. We’ve talked before about the incredible stresses that doctors face every day, stresses that can’t help but take a toll on anyone’s wellness, no matter how competent you are. It isn’t not only a hardship for the professionals who care for us, though, but also one for patients who rely on a doctor’s sharp observational skills and clear-headed decision making to make the best possible call, every single time.
It’s hard to imagine a traditional cop — full uniform, crewcut, handcuffs snapped in and a firearm on the hip — sitting cross legged on a yoga mat to the sound of a gong. And yet, that’s precisely what more and more police officers have been doing in satellite programs across America and in the UK. That’s right: the latest, cutting edge police training is not in target practice or defensive strategy, but mindfulness.