When a disaster happens, our first goal is usually to get as far away as possible. We want to make sure that we are hurt by what is happening. Our instinct is to protect ourselves so that we can survive another day.
But there is a group of people who will always run towards the disaster. You can see this in the first-responders in any emergency. The fire crews, police, paramedics show up as the flames are getting hotter, not dying down. You can also see people running towards disasters when natural disasters occur, when there is war or famine, or when people just run into trouble. People throw themselves in harm’s way so that they can help other people escape, cope with, or mitigate, the harm that might happen.
Moving away from a disaster feels like a sure thing. You are taking action that will keep yourself safe. You feel that things are under control. It is a good thing that many people will run from disasters, and this keeps many people safe.
Moving towards a disaster when it happens is a sure investment that has a good return. Being a person who can help or save others means that there is less loss. Being able to make sense of what is happening when others are confused gives you the advantage of being a signpost and a leader that can help them to safety.
You can be a person who invests in moving towards trouble when people need help. You can take little steps, like getting first-aid training. You can take bigger steps, like joining a medical trip to a nation in need.
You can also start the habit of moving towards trouble in your everyday work. Don’t make excuses or deflect blame when something goes wrong. Walk towards the problem and have a solution for the next steps. Don’t worry about how you got here, or what the problem is, run towards the ‘disaster,’ and offer to help people.
Prepare. Run towards the fire. Help people.