I just completed reading the book Relentless Optimism: How a Commitment to Positive Thinking Changes Everything by: Darrin Donnelly. The book is a motivational book that provides a million and one ways that positive thinking can better not only your life, but those around you as well. It uses the story of a major league baseball player that is bumped back down to the minors and his struggle to make it back to the big leagues. The book had two very memorable quotes that I needed to share.
"Be grateful for every moment you get to be out here. You're a ballplayer and any day you step onto this sacred ground is never wasted. You're part of this game. And nothing can take that away from you." -Darrin Donnelly
Take ballplayer out and replace with firefighter. We have all felt this way stepping off the rig or walking into the bay at the beginning of our shift. Pride in not only our job, but ourselves for the sacrifices that we have made over our lifetime in the pursuit of being a firefighter. Remember everyday that you are granted the ability to run emergency calls and have a direct impact on others lives in their time of need is a blessing, because one day you will no longer have that ability. One day you too will be on the sidelines and in the stands watching the players take part in a game that you used to play.
"Regardless of what the results are, a man can live with the fact that he gave his very best. What a man can't live with is not giving his best and wondering what would have happened if he had. What a man can't live with is growing bitter and developing a pessimistic attitude. What a man can't live with is the regret that he didn't enjoy and embrace every opportunity he was given to do what he loves because he was so caught up in thoughts about the future or the past." - Darrin Donnely
As motivated firefighters and professionals, we all have wants. Some want to move up the ranks and become chiefs, others want to be at a certain station or on a certain crew. When these wants don't immediately transpire, we as humans can become distraught and begin to believe that it never will. If we take one day at a time and do our very best at our job, no matter what that job may be, we will be successful in every meaning of the word. This job is about doing our very best every time we show up to the station, every time the tones go off for an emergency run. There is no room in the fire service for bitterness and pessimism. Stay positive and keep fighting the fight, because one day you will no longer have that honor.
-Lt. Michael DeStefano
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