The Warrior mindset is an important one for police officers. It’s the opposite of the wimpy “I’m just going to take this job and make it work for me” mindset that too many people have. Police officers are specifically trained to develop a warrior mindset, which are extolled from books, videos,1 programs, and interviews intended for a law enforcement audience. A warrior cop will fight bad guys tooth and nail, so to speak, not cower in fear. They won’t be afraid to use force in a situation and they’ll take charge, whether emotionally or physically, which many current and former officers swear by.
In essence, police officers who develop the warrior mindset stand up for themselves, which is rare in today’s society. Most people succumb to fear or become lagging behind in order to avoid being targeted by others in society. Few police officers display a timid attitude. Those who do are true warriors.
There are many success stories of police officers who possess the warrior mindset. Many departments cite statistics that show officers who possess the mentality are much more likely to be promoted to higher positions. The number of officer fatalities has declined steadily over the past few years as officers have been ordered to take a more aggressive approach to policing. In essence, policing has been redefined. And those who possess the mindset are redefining it even more frequently.
Developing the warrior mindset begins with mental readiness. In fact, studies have shown that mentally prepared individuals are far more effective at completing the physical aspects of their jobs. Officers with a high degree of mental readiness are able to handle tough situations with far less stress and are more effective in their day to day interactions. A warrior mindset is all about staying physically fit, which is achieved through proper nutrition and regular exercise.
But physical training alone will not create a physically fit individual. Most police officers fall short of meeting their fitness goals due to a lack of consistent training. And even when officers are physically ready for their jobs, they often do not have optimal levels of physical strength, agility, speed, and stamina. Developing the warrior mindset means that police officers must pay special attention to improving their physical conditioning.
In summary, developing the warrior mindset begins with police officers believing that they are warriors and that they possess the ability to be leaders. It also begins with police officers developing personal identity, understanding the social norms of the communities in which they serve, and embracing a social climate that expects fair and equitable behavior. Through conscious effort and action, police officers can make real and measurable progress toward this winning mindset. Only then can true community policing be implemented.