How a mindfulness instructor is helping police across the country

Virginia

ALEXANDRIA, Va. (WDVM) — 40 percent of Americans practice mindfulness and meditation weekly; it can help raise your awareness and lower anxiety. How can law enforcement incorporate the practice into stressful situations in their everyday line of work?

“This training teaches you to identify what is an emergency and what’s not an emergency so that you can respond,” said Gina Rollo White, mindfulness instructor and founder of The Mindful Junkie.

Rollo White teaches police officers across the country the power of mindfulness through her program Tactical Brain Training®, which is also the framework for her collaboration with The Initiative: Advancing the Blue and Black Partnership, a group aimed at bettering community relationships with officers.

“We collaborated with her and a company called LRN, which is a corporate compliance platform developer,” said Nadine Jones, Founder of The Initiative.

Through the collaboration, agencies will be able to access an online dashboard with interactive modules to mindfulness tools.

“So many things are happening at the same time, sometimes your mind does wander,” said Carl Scott, an officer with the Richmond Police Department who took the course. “It’s good to be focused and have that situational awareness.

Rollo White says practicing breathing and observation techniques help officers think rationally in a situation. Associating peace with gestures can help bring the officers back to a calm state.

“The brain remembers that if you take a breath, you can come back to this quality,” said White.

The Initiative hopes the training will allow the officers to make informed decisions during a fight or flight situation.

“We are not defective. We are simply responding as human beings and here are some things that you can do to bring your mind, your body back to a regulated state,” said Jones.

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