The Whole Soldier Model presents an effective framework for developing a wellness plan for law enforcement officers. The cognitive and physical variables work synergistically to deliver a proper strategy for overcoming burnout, getting adequate sleep, and having a balanced diet. The initiative outlined below, which is in line with the Abraham Maslow’s hierarchy of needs model, presents an opportunity for departments to empower officers. The model allows beneficiaries to overcome burnout and eventually helps the selected department to deliver timely services.
Wellness remains an integral concept in the army capable of guiding more people to achieve their goals. Soldiers need to be complete professionals capable of completing a wide range of activities while remaining balanced and focused. Leaders in the army expect officers to possess the right competencies, follow outlined standards, and complete their roles in different capacities. This discussion develops an effective wellness plan founded on the Whole Soldier Model. The emerging framework is applicable in law enforcement to help officers maintain their cognitive and physical domains.
The Whole Officer Model
The Whole Soldier Model has become a common tool for guiding leaders in the army to guide and empower soldiers to manage their physical, emotional, and spiritual wellbeing. According to Jiang (2021), the framework presents three domains that work synergistically to support the welfare and suitability of any given officer. The moral domain guides soldiers to promote and pursue a number of attributes that relate to integrity and commitment. These include purpose, interactive skills, character, motivation, conduct, and self-esteem (Gubler et al., 2018). These attributes guide soldiers to provide selfless service while remaining committed. Character guides them to exhibit justice, courage, honor, and candor. They ought to be mature, reliable, and bearing.
The cognitive domain is intended to guide soldiers to portray knowledge, application, and judgment. The possession of adequate education and the desire to engage in continuous learning results in improved planning, communication, and flexibility (Jiang, 2021). The purpose of the physical domain is to allow officers to maintain the highest level of fitness, have balance, speed, and agility, and record a positive health. The ultimate aim of this model is to create a scenario whereby officers possess wellness in each of the outlined domain. The effort to address all variables is critical if the model is to deliver the much-needed outcomes.
Maslow’s hierarchy of needs has become a common model that describes a person’s source of motivation. The framework presents five levels that present unique demands. The psychological part is the first one and it represents biological requirements that are important for survival. Some of them include food, clothing, warmth, sleep, and shelter. The second include safety demands that relate to predictability, order, and control. Medical facilities, family members, and police officers help deliver some of these needs (Aruma & Hanachor, 2017). The third segment includes belonging and love needs. Individuals need to have stable interpersonal relationships and the affiliation to specific community or group. The fourth level represents esteem needs, including personal dignity, independence, mastery, and the desire for prestige or social status. The final one is self-actualization whereby a person’s is able to achieve self-fulfillment.
Helping Officers Using Stress Domains
Physical: Health, Athleticism, and Fitness
The target goal is to have better nutrition and increase physical activities by having a balanced diet, engaging in pushups, sit-ups, and gymnastics for 4-5 times a week, and getting adequate sleep. This objective is important since it helps meet a person’s esteem and self-fulfillment needs. The goal is a strong predictor of efficiency, wellbeing, and wellness for any individual in law enforcement (Tengpongsthorn, 2017). The formulated plan meets the objective through continuous engagement in exercises, having a balanced diet, and developing a proper time-plan for the outlined physical exercises. By having adequate exercises and sleeping for eight hours every single day, it will be possible to improve wellness and make the body more functional. By promoting fitness, it will be possible to endure a wide range of activities, deliver goals, promote accuracy, and react swiftly to different situation. Such an achievement will increase the body’s level of illness resistance.
The effectiveness of the proposed physical wellness activities will depend on the facility’s ability to engage all soldiers. The use of journal articles will help those in leadership determine whether each individual engages in the outlined activities. Some of the key parameters to monitor for each officer will include weight maintenance, agility, and the percentage of consumed calories (Aruma & Hanachor, 2017). The time dedicated for this variable will be around two hours every single day. The presented records will dictate what needs to be improved, when, and how. The ability to complete a wide range of policing activities would help determine the effectiveness of the implemented initiatives.
By eating well, soldiers will have a good plan for fitness. They will record improved cardiovascular and muscular endurance. The institution will include a health plan characterized by regular medical check-ups, dentist appointments, and weight monitoring for at least once every month. These approaches would help officers manage weight, engage in defensive tactics, and become more proficient with various tools, thereby being able to achieve their goals (Blacker et al., 2018). The involvement of leaders throughout the wellness process would reduce chances for excuses and ensure that every individual becomes better.
Cognitive: Knowledge, Judgment, and Application
The specific goal is to improve personal knowledge, judgment, and application skills by 50 percent through continuous experimentation, scenario training, simulations, relationships with friends, and improving emotional intelligence within a year. This goal is important since it helps in the expansion of a person’s abilities and knowhow while being able to plan and execute activities in a timely manner (Blacker et al., 2018). Such an objective is relevant since it contributes to overall personal efficiency and the realization of group objectives. To achieve the intended goal, engagement in practical exercises, reading a wide range of published materials, and interacting with more people with diverse backgrounds will be critical.
Emotional intelligence is essential since it helps individuals to handle job-related stress, manage financial stress, and reduce chances of burnout. Continuous training in the specific areas is necessary to improve such abilities and deal with any form of tension in life and at the workplace. Such a gain will result in improved self-esteem and personal contentment in accordance with Maslow’s theory (Blacker et al., 2018). The best approach to measure this goal is to keep journal entries and allow leaders in the enforcement departments to gauge the recorded progress.
A time-plan is practical to measure the milestones recorded after every week for two months. The eighth week would be critical to identify areas of weaknesses and the best strategies for further development. The ultimate aim is to develop the required knowledge, judgment abilities, effective communication, adaptability, and the ability to implement new ideas (Gubler et al., 2018). Additionally, the targeted officers would be required to attend simulations and scenario training classes to learn more about coping with stress and improving emotional intelligence. One session per week would be appropriate for each soldier for the next twelve months.
Overall Wellness Considerations
While focusing on the outlined objectives, police officers need to consider a number of emotional intelligence areas that need lifelong improvement. The key ones include social awareness, intrinsic motivation, and self-regulation. The officers will be in a position to tackle burnout and crises that are directly linked to workplace stress. Improvements in these areas will make officers resilient and capable of pursuing their goals (Jiang, 2021). To improve resilience, officers will remain connected, establish desirable relationships with workmates, and learn from past experience. A proactive approach coupled with optimistic can help deliver positive results.
At times, grief, loss, post-traumatic stress disorder, and trauma might happen. When such predicaments emerge, there is a need for the facility to have a counseling center or unit to help affected officers. The responsible leaders will guide the individuals to get personalized help from the professionals. Individuals will need to be committed if desirable results are to be recorded. At the institutional level, competitive financial remunerations would be recommendable to help meet most of the levels outlined in Maslow’s levels (Aruma & Hanachor, 2017). The facility can improve the wellness plan periodically to ensure that all procedures are on the right track. Timely improvements would be relevant to meet the demands of more people.
The formulated wellness plan combines the physical and cognitive variables associated with the Whole Soldier Model to help more officers purse their missions. The approach will guide all individuals to be physically fit, self-aware, and capable of remaining resilient. Such attributes will result in improved personal worth and endurance. The presence of a counseling unit would help in addressing personal emotional difficulties ad allowing all officers to make ethical decisions. The model would help address feelings of anger, emotional difficulties, and betrayal. By introducing this specific wellness plan, the department will achieve its aims and provide efficient services to community members.
Aruma, E. O., & Hanachor, M. E. (2017). Abraham Maslow’s hierarchy of needs and assessment of needs in community development. International Journal of Development and Economic Sustainability, 5(7), 15-27. Web.
Blacker, K. J., Hamilton, J., Roush, G., Pettijohn, K. A., & Biggs, A. T. (2018). Cognitive training for military application: A review of the literature and practical guide. Journal of Cognitive Enhancement, 3(1), 30-51.
Gubler, T., Larkin, I., & Pierce, L. (2018). Doing well by making well: The impact of corporate wellness programs on employee productivity. Management Science, 64(11), 4967-4987.
Jiang, Q. (2021). Stress response of police officers during COVID-19: A moderated mediation model. Journal of Investigative Psychology and Offender Profiling, 18(2), 116-128.
Tengpongsthorn, W. (2017). Factors affecting the effectiveness of police performance in Metropolitan Police Bureau. Kasetsart Journal of Social Sciences, 38(1), 39-44.