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NEWS | Feb. 24, 2011

An Ounce of Prevention

By Chief Master Sgt. Anthony Brinkley 11th Wing/Joint Base Andrews command chief master sergeant

Many of us have heard the statement "an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure." Lately, I have really been reflecting on how much work, pain, frustration and aggravation we endure when we don't apply this adage.

An ounce of prevention when going out drinking, such as having a good plan to execute, can save damage to one's life and livelihood. When I was a first sergeant, I cannot tell you how many people expressed remorse when they were in my office after receiving a DUI. They clearly knew the simple steps that could have been taken to ensure the safety of those around them as well as preventing the loss of career and finances.

An ounce of prevention can also lead to better quality of life. Yet, many people don't apply this principle. The ill effects of smoking or carrying excess weight can lead to a poor quality of life down the road. I can reflect on family members who battled through tough times due to not practicing proper health considerations. If you are fortunate enough to have good health, it's important to do all you can to maintain it through proper diet and exercise.

In our professions, we can save time and efforts by following established procedures. When we violate safety or checklist discipline we all end up stopping our work because we have injured someone or compromised a mission. Yet, if we approach our daily tasks with attention to detail, we will not have to do repeat the same task twice.

In our families, showing you care and clearly communicating can limit the amount of stress you endure due to misunderstandings. At the end of the day, I truly believe if we take the daily dose of an ounce of prevention, we will all lead better and more prosperous lives.