How Do Police Deal With Stress?

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It?s no secret that police officers have incredibly stressful work environments. They may see a variety of different heart-breaking tragedies and violent crimes over the course of one shift. Dealing with stress is just part of the job. It?s important for law enforcement officers to have healthy ways of dealing with stress.

Adequate Exercise and Rest

Exercise and rest are two of the most important elements of a low-stress law enforcement career. When cops are on duty, stressful events are going to occur. Being properly rested is absolutely critical for officers that want to handle that stress with ease. Equally important is exercise. Cardiovascular activity is so important for anybody who has a physically demanding job. It also happens to be a fantastic stress reliever. Cops need to make the extra time to work out, especially if they are working long hours.

A Life Outside of Law Enforcement

Having a life outside of law enforcement is one of the best ways that good police officers deal with stress. They need to be able to leave the work at work. Cops regularly see a lot of awful things. They need to leave that behind at the end of the day. They should have hobbies and social environments, so they can realize that people are ultimately good. If one only focuses on the terrible things that criminals do, it?s easy to forget about the goodness in people. Dealing with work stress is so much easier for cops who have balanced lives.

A Strong Network of Friends and Family

Police officers also deal with stress by having supportive family members and friends. Isolation is a dangerous thing for cops. They need to have a healthy support system. Family members and friends can provide great stress relief from the job. It?s also important to have other cop friends too. Police officers can share work-related stories with one another to let off steam.

Unhealthy Stress Relief

Sadly, many police officers engage in unhealthy behaviors to deal with the stress of the job. Alcohol abuse and isolation are bad ways to deal with stress related to law enforcement. These behaviors can be self destructive and lead to career and interpersonal relationship problems. Police officers need to deal with stress in healthy ways to have successful long-term careers. Not handling stress properly can quickly lead to burn out in this demanding career field. Utilizing a few healthy stress-reducing behaviors can ensure cops have long-lasting successful careers.

Cite this page: N., Sam M.S., "How Do Police Deal With Stress?," in, September 9, 2013, (accessed August 11, 2022).