Riptides or the proper name rip currents, are currents that occur suddenly in the water when one is swimming. The outcome is they always pull you further away from the shore. They are the number one cause of death at beaches.
In life and swimming we find occurrences that pull us further away from our goals and sense of security. Perhaps some of the advice that experts give to folks should they encounter rip currents can apply to us as well:
- If caught in a rip current, remain calm to conserve energy and think clearly.
- Don’t fight the current. Swim out of the current in a direction following the shoreline. When out of the current, swim toward the shore.
- If you are unable to swim out of the rip current, float or calmly tread water. When out of the current, swim toward the shore.
- If you are still unable to reach shore, draw attention to yourself: face the shore, wave your arms, and yell for help (Taken from NOOA).
Have you been hit with sudden bad news or sought out to solve someone’s problems recently and found yourself farther out into the deep? If so, the advice given for natural riptides can also be true for mental ones. Follow these steps when you face one:
- Remain as calm as possible and “think clearly.”
- Are you fighting a battle too big to handle and it’s overwhelming you right now? Don’t fight it; exit it. Get out of the situation and return only if you believe you should tread those waters again.
- If you can’t leave the current situation in spite of all your efforts, sit tight, conserve energy, remain as calm as possible and seek help by using your energy to draw attention to the dire situation.
- Lastly, be humble enough to let someone more able and experienced to assist you and show gratitude when they do.
We all have many shores in life we are traveling to. Cherished relationships, employment, places of worship and leisure activities all fall into this category. Remember, rip currents only pull people away from the shore and never under the water. People drown when they lack the stamina to get to shore and don’t get assistance in time. You don’t have to drown in your situation. You can make ashore.
Hakim Hazim is the founder of Relevant Now Consultancy and L.E.A.D.E.R.S.H.I.P. 1ST Intervention Specialist. Hakim has been immersed in research for at risk populations since 1993. His successful results confirmed first-hand that: “The price of incarceration in terms of expense for housing offenders is too much for society to consistently pay, and the future grows darker. Bluntly put, we can’t sustain the cost in lives or resources. It is my fervent belief that a productive tax-paying citizen is a far better option. Given the right tools, young people can change and lead positive lives.” As a certified Crisis Prevention Institute Senior Trainer and Behavior Intervention Specialist he specializes in the following various areas of security: counterterrorism, radical religious sects, gangs, juvenile delinquency and law enforcement approaches for mentally ill or challenged individuals. Hakim is also the creator of the 4Cs of Leadership trainings and MC2U: “Mentoring Challenge to You” initiative.