I suppose you have clicked on this article because you want to know how a cop dad has found his balance — I would assume you have come for some advice or maybe some hope — Maybe you’re stuck in some deep s*** and feel lost — I would guess you have dreams and goals — Well, let’s get this party started!
How about we start off on a small journey? Don’t worry; I am not an “empath.” This article is not going to take your struggles and pains away from you (Trust me, I don’t want your issues. I have my own); Instead, I’m going to let you fight through your own journey, and hopefully I can help. If not, I’m sure someone has a better article (Good for them — (insert middle finger).
My life hasn’t been and isn’t easy. I don’t believe yours should be either.
Life shouldn’t be easy for those who dream — Robert James Walter
Finding balance is a journey for everyone. My goal is to help my readers, by sharing how one cop is finding his balance.
I am no different than anyone else — Did you read that? I AM NO DIFFERENT THAN ANYONE ELSE — I have dreams, goals, and needs. I also have a full plate of s*** on the table, most days. I work a full-time job, run a police K-9, help my wife raise our five kids — All while she runs her own business. Oh, and don’t forget an essential part of my life, I am a churchgoer. I dedicate much of my free time to the activities of my church — Hell, I even try to have the greenest lawn on the street (I know this sentence doesn’t really fit, but I added it to pour salt on some wounds.)
So, if I am no different than any of my readers, why may it seem like I balance everything on my plate better than the s*** on your plate? Well, I don’t want my plate to fall. I don’t like to clean up a mess.
I sure as hell don’t want to clean up anyone else’s mess. That’s “y’alls” damn chore — No, I’m not southern, but I have twangy friends in low places.
So, let’s figure this out.
To fall is human; to rise, responsibility.unknown author
At the end of the day, we will lie down in our bed. We will have won the days battle, or we will have learned. Notice how I didn’t say “lost”? I don’t EVER go to bed a loser. I am not a loser and neither are you (Get that s*** out of your head). We either win, or we learn. This paragraph is how I started finding my balance. It’s how I started motivating myself.
I never go to bed thinking I dropped my plate of s*** and lost. I contemplate in my head “How did I drop my plate of s***” and “How am I going to equalize the s*** on my plate, so I don’t drop it again tomorrow?”
We live in America, and I believe in God. With those two things, I can dream, and I can make mistakes.
I go to bed knowing I live in the greatest damn Country in the World and I am protected by a supernal being who wants me to make mistakes and learn; not fail — I have responsibilities that I have added to my own plate. Remember, “To fall is human; to rise, responsibility.”
Now, ask yourself, are you ready? Okay then, let’s dive into this.
I have always had a wondering mind (My eye is always on my prize, though) — I want to do this, and I want to do that, or I need to do this, and I need to do that.
Why can’t we do everything we want and get everything we need to accomplished?
Well, that’s just it, we can.
It is all a matter of how focused and dialed in we can be —
How disciplined are you?
How much time and effort do we focus on a task?
How much time do I spend with my wife, kids, work, K-9 partner, church assignments, etc — There are so many things I do, yet, I have and always will learn how to balance.
NOW “Y’ALL” LISTEN UP
I FOCUS… I WRITE DOWN MY IDEAS… I FIGURE OUT WHAT DREAM I WANT TO TURN INTO MY NEXT GOAL — Dream’s are just that, dreams. They don’t happen, you make them happen. THEY ARE NOT AN ACTION. They can stay floating in your mind or scribbled down on a piece of paper; however, they mean absolutely nothing until you turn them into a goal.
Did you read that? THEY DON’T MEAN S*** UNTIL YOU TURN THEM INTO A GOAL — Like I said before, I focus.
I am in my early thirties, and I promise you this works. I have accomplished a lot of my dreams that I turned into goals. A few prominent examples:
- I played on 5 State Championship Football Teams
- I received the Eagle Scout Award
- I served a two-year proselytizing mission.
- I learned, and I am fluent in the Spanish language.
- I became a Police Officer at the age of 21.
- I owned my own home by the age of 22.
- I have interviewed and been hired by three police agencies.
- I taught myself how to ride a motorcycle and obtained my motorcycle endorsement.
- I have two adopted children.
- I became a K-9 Handler and member of a Criminal Interdiction Team with only two years in the agency.
- And most recently, I have had several articles of mine published.
Yes, my list could continue — The question still exists, how did I find a balance to do all of these things?
I PICK ONE DREAM — I then take my selection and I put my heart and soul into it. It almost becomes somewhat of an obsession (I will master this s***).
Don’t get things confused, I still have all of my other responsibilities, but I pick one dream, and I obsess over it. Why wouldn’t I?
IT’S. MY. DREAM!
IT’S. MY. NEXT. BIG. THING!
IT’S. A. BIG. DAMN. DEAL!
I take this dream, and I make it my goal. Did you see what I did there? My dream is no longer a dream, I put it into action. IT IS NOW MY GOAL! Hell yeah! Now my next step — I make this s*** (goal) stay on the plate!
I do my very best to hold that one thing on the plate. MY VERY BEST!
How do I keep it secured on the plate?
I would suggest you put that goal RIGHT SMACK CENTER of your other responsibilities. Your other duties will help maintain your goal on the plate. Sounds crazy, huh? I can tell you, it works!
Visualize what I am saying – Surround your goal with all your other responsibilities. Your goal is the centerpiece.
What if some of the other responsibilities fall off your plate? That’s okay; the idea is not to drop the plate.
Remember what I said, “I don’t want to clean up a mess.” So, if I drop one “responsibility” from my plate, I don’t have as much to clean up, and it’s not that big of a deal. I also have my plate balanced well enough to secure my other responsibilities, which are protecting my goal in the center.
Remember, I don’t go to bed as a loser. I either win, or I learn.
The only way to make this possible is by balancing the s*** on my plate; ESPECIALLY, the goal!
I know I have a busy life and I know I am going to drop a few “responsibilities” during the day, week, month, and year. This is why I only have the essential items on my plate. The title to this article explains the most important things I keep on my plate — “My wife, her business, children, church, career, and entrepreneurial goals”:
- I make sure my wife knows I love her, daily. Yes, this is a daily thing. I am a dickhead and it can be extremely hard to live with me. She would have divorced me a long time ago if I didn’t let her know I love her and show her I love her.
- I support her and her business. If you want to know how I do this, I suggest you read the article I wrote explaining how. It’s important to her, and it is vital to our family.
- I absolutely adore my children. They know how much I love them and there is not a day go by I do not hug them and tell them I love them. I consider them my best friend’s. I even say to them every day “I love you.” If you don’t do this already, start! It’s the most powerful thing you can do for your family.
- I love the Gospel of Jesus Christ. It’s intriguing to me. I like to study, serve humankind, and fulfill my church assignments. It probably fills a vast majority of my plate. It’s helped my other items stay secured on the plate, as well as my goals.
- Work is work. I am a responsible human being, and I do what I need to do to pay for the beautiful things in my life. I don’t work a lot of overtime because it doesn’t balance what is on my plate and I sure as hell wouldn’t want work to be the reason I spilled my s*** all over the floor. I put in the time I need, and I come home. I would suggest you balance your plate a little better if you need constant overtime or don’t put as much on your plate. Overtime is nice and it’s needed every now and then. Just keep that plate weighed out even. I have five children, and 11 years as a police officer. You can’t tell me you can’t make it work. Remember the goal is to not spill s***. You want some things on your plate so you can keep your goals held tight in the middle. Constant overtime isn’t going to secure that goal in the center. I PROMISE YOU!
I have been able to figure out what is and what isn’t essential to be on my plate, always remembering my primary goal is in the center.
Once this goal is complete, I move it to the outer side of the plate.
This goal is now strong enough to help the others with the balance.
When all is said and done with my current goal, I go and grab another dream. This dream is now my current goal and I center it on the plate.
I try never to overload my plate with a bunch of goals. If I did, I would spill the major s*** keeping my dreams alive. Sometimes I elect to place two or three goals center plate, because I have learned how good my balancing capabilities are. I have learned what to adjust on my plate.
Let me make a suggestion: If you find yourself unbalanced, look at your plate. Organize 5 to 10 significant items in your life and determine which ones will help you establish the perimeter of your plate. Before you set off with your goal, make sure you’re able to balance what you have on your dish. Then go grab a small dream and place it into the center as your goal. When you’re ready, move on to your bigger dreams.