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EMS: It's Not About Ego

Stop and reflect for a minute. Are you ego-driven or are you values-driven? If you are driven by ego, your focus is mainly on yourself. If you are values-driven, you are focused more on others.

People who are values-driven tend to be humble. Humility is an important element for the EMS provider, since it keeps things in perspective. Norman Vincent Peale once said, “People with humility don’t think less of themselves…they just think of themselves less.”

EMS is not about ego; it’s about caring for the organization for which you work. It’s about helping make that organization better today than it was yesterday.

Ego is about a flight nurse or paramedic making three attempts to intubate a critical patient instead of passing the task off for someone else to try. Ego is about being afraid to admit you were wrong at the expense of the patient or coworker.

EMS is not about ego; it’s about maintaining and promoting a positive attitude, not a negative one. EMS is about looking for the good things in the organization. It’s about being part of the solution, not part of the problem.

Ego is about “me” instead of “we.” EMS is about being a team player. It’s about building trust with the patient and with your team members. It’s about supporting the team and cooperating with other team members. It’s about searching for a win-win situation instead of a win-lose.

Ego is about putting yourself before the patient. It’s about putting on a show instead of caring for the injured. Ego is about talking more than performing. It’s about telling people how much you know instead of mentoring and guiding the new EMT.

EMS is not about ego; it’s about being authentic. It’s about being a real person who doesn’t play games. It’s about being honest and straightforward. EMS is about standing firm on your value system and speaking out when those values are compromised by others.

EMS is about a commitment to the job and what that job stands for. It’s about being willing to do what others are unwilling to do. It’s about dedication. EMS is about doing your very best for the critically ill and the not-so-critically ill.

EMS is not about ego and it’s not about being special because of the position you hold. EMS providers are special because they choose to care for those who cannot care for themselves. They embrace the fragile elements of life.

EMS is about making a strong comeback when you fail. It’s more about how you respond when you lose than how you respond when you win.

Ego is about the conflicts you have back at the station when you are trying to get your own way. It’s when you lose your focus and forget why you’re here. It’s about never saying you’re sorry when you hurt someone.

EMS is not about ego; it’s about maintaining a high level of customer service. It’s about understanding both the internal and external customer. It’s about knowing the needs of the customer and then exceeding those needs.

EMS is about listening to the elderly man who just lost his wife. It’s about giving your time to the Boy Scout troop that wants to tour your station. It’s about the little girl who is not only injured, but frightened.

EMS is about being a good neighbor both on and off duty. It’s about being involved. It’s about respecting life and understanding how fragile it is. It’s about being a good citizen.

EMS is not about ego and it’s not about saving every life. It’s about making a bad situation better than before you arrived. It’s about the love for mankind and leaving everything you touch just a little better.

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