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How many times did you check your social media today? Are you tired of seeing another post of what others are doing while you feel alone and without an agenda? I am afraid you are not alone. A study conducted by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) states in 2019, 18.5% of adults had symptoms of depression that were either mild, moderate, or severe. Due to the unprecedented times in which we find ourselves, I can only imagine those numbers have grown. People have expressed to me that there is an "emptiness" within them during this time of confinement. They cannot do the things they have normally done and they have found themselves without purpose. Well, I have one for you to consider.

Although you may not have ever considered it, serving your community as a firefighter can bring great purpose to your life. Minnesota communities primarily use on-call firefighters to respond to community emergencies. That means over 90% of the firefighters you see doing great things have a full-time job doing something else. They are mothers and fathers who balance their other duties to serve their community. While serving you soon learn how important these people are and the skills they have to learn to serve. From treating someone with a broken arm to entering a burning building, this group has PURPOSE.

Some of the most valuable people in my life were met at the fire station. We have trained together, experienced success and tragedy together, and appreciate one another's talents and skills. We rely on one another all of the time and understand our role in the community. The fire department gives you a place to connect, learn, and provide support to others. Yes, that may be a new concept for you, but I have seen so many people rise to a level they never thought they could hit. Why? They found their purpose. They never worked within a team with so much responsibility. They never felt the love of the community for the work that they do, and they have never been so respected.

One of my favorite Chinese proverbs is, "The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is now." No matter what your age, having personal goals and a purpose will bring much more joy to your daily life. We can open the door, but YOU have to walk in. Please let us connect you with your local fire department so you can learn more.

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