Transitioning from 'work mode' to 'mom mode'

August 14, 2014

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Nancy Fatura Unleashing Your Inner Warrior
with Nancy Fatura

Tip: Transitioning from 'work mode' to 'mom mode'

Every morning at oh-dark-thirty — without fail — I get stopped on my way home from work at the same traffic light. It’s always red and it doesn’t change for at least five minutes (I’m not exaggerating… I’ve had plenty of chances to time it). 

The other night I had a profound — or possibly crazy — thought: What if that light (or someone upstairs) is trying to tell me something? 

Every morning I’m forced to stop. My brain is rattling with the events, frustrations, and chaos (and sometimes, horror) of adrenaline-filled shift, and I have to stop. I immediately stop thinking about work and start thinking about that stupid light. 

By the time it turns green, I’m thinking about getting home and tucking in the kids. 

That traffic light is my decompression switch. 

It says, “Let go. Go home.” 

No, I don’t think a traffic light actually talks to me, but it does seem to help me prepare for home. It gets me from work mode and into family mode. 

Is there anything that gets you prepared for your family? If so, maybe you can share a few words about it in the comments area below. In doing so, you may help a fellow-officer improve their relationships at home. 


About the author

Sgt. Nancy Fatura has been a law enforcement officer since 1999. She attended the University of Wisconsin/Madison before joining the US Army Reserves in 1993. Nancy became a Behavioral Science Specialist, and upon her return from deployment to civilian life she joined the Tucson Police Department in 1999. Her duties have included patrol, field training, and hostage negotiation.

As a trainer, Nancy teaches Mental Health Awareness, Cultural Awareness, Psychology of Survival, and Stress in Field Training for her agency, she is a subject matter expert for the online PoliceOne Academy, and she presents her signature class, “Unleashing Your Inner Warrior” at conferences and events around the United States. Nancy can be reached at

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