When thinking of physical security, the mind is most likely left at the bottom of the contemplation pile; after all, the word "physical" concerns the body, correct? However, upon further review, the link between mind and body cannot be denied. People have been known to conjure up actual sickness if they ruminate long and hard enough. On the positive side, a focused and forward-thinking mind can lead to great physical gains. The IFPO's new partner, The Professional Security Officer, has a great post about the concept of mindfulness in its latest issue titled "The Benefits Of ‘Mindfulness’ For Front Line Security," by Tony O’Brien. Here is an excerpt:
Mindfulness was a subject that I scoffed at when I was introduced to it many years ago. I like many of you had visions of Buddhist monks and endless hours of chanting in the corner of a dark temple.
I was first introduced to mindfulness by an old martial arts instructor about 18 years ago. It was taught to me as a method to control breathing and relax during sparring sessions. At first, I thought it was absolute craziness, but I saw my instructor roll and spar numerous opponents without wheezing while I was gasping after a few rounds.
Once I started taking it a little more serious, I found myself improving not just in my martial arts but in everyday life as well. Later in my security career I found t not only to have many positive applications, but I also met other successful security professionals who engaged in this practice.
So, what is mindfulness? For me, mindfulness is being aware of your thoughts, your emotions and your physical conditions. Being aware of these things not only helps you focus and relax but gives you much more control over them in a subtle way. I’m sure we can all agree that the items I mention above are all important factors in performing successfully in the security industry regardless of the sector you work in.
A few myths and a reality.
Myth 1: Mindfulness is a Zen like calm only achieved by monks.
Reality: Mindfulness can be practised by anybody. It isn’t about being ultra-calm (although calmness is a by-product). It is simply about being aware of your emotions and having control over your emotional state.
Myth 2: You need to sit and chant for hours to meditate
Reality: What’s being described here is meditation as a practice of mindfulness. This can be done in as little time as you wish, and you can sit in absolute silence to do it. It can be done in 30 seconds or 30 minutes. I recommend 10 minutes to start. (Surely you have 10 minutes to sit in silence)
Myth 3: You need to sit cross legged on a carpet while being mindful.
The International Foundation for Protection Officers (IFPO) is dedicated to providing meaningful and cost effective security training for security guards and protection officers.
We believe that education is a necessary and essential part of professional security training and the security officer’s background. IFPO serves individuals, security companies, and organizations that have their own private security staff. Our students and members benefit from the recognition and standing that the prestigious IFPO certification conveys.
International Foundation for Protection Officers Mission Statement
Mission Statement Part I.
The International Foundation for Protection Officers provides professional learning opportunities for security practitioners, to impart the knowledge, skills, and competencies required to maximize job performance and enhance career potential.
Purpose: to make a positive difference in the quality of the participant’s job performance and elevate the professional status of students who partake of our learning opportunities.
Business: to supply committed security practitioners with a quality education to help achieve their highest potential and provide recognized accreditation for successful completion of educational goals.
Values: commitment, integrity, responsibility, and standards of excellence, provide the platform that supports our journey as we pursue our mission.
Commitment to Excellence: To be the recognized center of excellence and primary provider of education and training products and services to the security industry.
Mission Statement Part II.
“The International Foundation for Protection Officers is committed to the support and professional development of protection officers and supervisors. Through advocacy, promoting training standards, and providing accessible training, education and certification opportunities, we seek to enhance their professional standing as well as increase and diversify the value of the vital services they provide.”