Episode 95 | Peer pressure can impact situational awareness

          This episode explores our basic human desire to be liked and respected. Not only do we want to be liked, but we also have a very strong internal drive to avoid embarrassment. These traits of human behavior can result in peer pressure that can, in turn, impact your situational awareness.   […]

Peer Pressure Can Impact Situational Awareness

The social interaction between coworkers may not be on your mind as you think about first responder situational awareness. But the fact is we are all influenced by our relationships with others. We have an inherent internal desire to be well-liked and respected. We also have a very strong internal drive to avoid embarrassment. These […]

Crawl, Walk, Run Theory of Skill Development

The inspiration for this article comes from Situational Awareness Matters member and Fire Chief, Todd Johnson, and the members of the Woodbury Fire Department. I was invited to observe a skills-based training evaluation that was more than a year in the making and involved over 100 practice exercises. The crews were dispatched to a structure […]

Explanations for Situational Awareness Insanity – Part 5

This is going to be, admittedly, an uncomfortable read for some. But, nonetheless it is a conversation we need to have. I need to discuss the “F” word. No, not THAT “F” word. The “F” word that is more dreaded than the F-bomb – Fear. Many first responders enjoy discussing fear as much as they […]

Explanations for Situational Awareness Insanity – Part 2

In this segment, we continue our discussion about the seemingly insane things that firefighters do at structure fires. I use the word insane not because the firefighters suffer from a mental affliction. Rather, I use the word insane because we keep doing the same things over and over again while expecting different results.  [tweet this] […]

Resistance to Change

Imagine for a moment that you’re part of a 4-person first-due crew responding on to an apartment fire. On the way to the call the dispatcher announces over the radio that a caller is reporting the fire to be on the first floor of a three-story apartment building. Your company officer tells you that on […]

Seven ways frustration can impact situational awareness

Anyone who’s been frustrated knows it can consume a lot of your mental energy and thinking space. This can significantly impact your situational awareness. In fact, depending on the level of frustration, your brain can be hijacked by  all-consuming thoughts about what is causing the angst. While operating at an emergency scene, frustration may draw […]

The Normalization of Deviance

It’s an odd term… normalization of deviance. But the term, and the premise behind the term, provides a valuable explanation as to some of the behaviors we observe in the first responder world. Defining the terms Normalization: To make normal; to make an established standard. Deviance: Departing from the norm; performing in a non-standardized way.

Fifteen Situational Awareness Barriers

The mission of Situational Awareness Matters is to help you see the bad things coming… in time to change bad outcomes. SA is a complex neurological process and I go to painstaking efforts to ensure that what I teach here, on the podcast and in classrooms is “first responder friendly.” I don’t ever want a […]

Radio Show

Available on iTunes and Stitcher Radio! (Click the icon below or search SAMatters Radio)       __________________________________________________________________ Episode 157 This episode is part seven of a nine-part serious on dangerous mindsets that first responders can develop and I offer some advice for dealing with each. This week we talk about the super hero mindset. […]

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