Would it be ok with you if transitioning from military to civilian employment and education got easier?
If you are comfortable in your adjustment back into the civilian sector and are just looking for resources to help you in your job/career search, jump to the bottom of the page and get going.
If you are experiencing moderate to extreme difficulty in your adjustment, you may want to invest a few minutes to read the following.
We know we need employment, a job, but for many separating Veterans there is a phase of homecoming where something seems to be missing. Something in our daily and moment to moment motivation that just feels absent.
Like a missing piece of a complex puzzle, some figure out this void and how to move through it faster than others.
So what is it?
It can be described as a lack of meaning and Purpose
or as it is known in the military,
Everyday, when you woke up in the service, you knew your mission, whatever your job function. Now when you wake up back home, there may be a void or a lack of purpose.
If this describes what you are experiencing then guess what, you are right where you are supposed to be.
There is an old saying
"If you don't have a goal, make your first goal, finding a new goal"
Here is your first mission as a civilian
Your first mission is to find a new mission
As simple and obvious as this sounds, you would be amazed how many Veterans waste months or years wandering around wondering what is missing in their personal motivation. If we are waiting for someone else to tell us what to do, to give us our next mission, what happens if they don't show up?
You already know that a mission is more than a job or someone telling you what to do.
A sense of mission has meaning, purpose and fulfillment all wrapped up together.
If you want to go to college, your mission is to become the best student Veteran. If your mission is to find a meaningful career path, take what you need now to pay the bills and start buiding your bigger mission.
Your objective is to convert your "can do" into a self directed new mission for your life, your family and career.
If you are hurting, raging or numb from your experiences, you may not know what to do.
For most of us, not knowing what to do is uncomfortable and we can invest a great deal of energy walking, talking and acting certain and confident. And to compound the problem, the military trains you to get the job done, not to complain or ask for help.
If you are experiencing something close to this, you are right where you are supposed to be just like most everyone else coming out of the military.
You may know you are special but in this regard, you are as normal, believe it or not.
Since before Homer wrote the Illiad, no one has figured out homecoming but it seems to have a lot to do with how we repurpose our lives and how we create an expanded understanding of ourselves.
A heads up about the work environment.
Technically, you are no longer a full time warrior so carrying this personna into the civilian work environment may not serve you unless you are moving into law enforement or a similar environment. People can be intimidated by us even when we are not paying attention let alone when we interact with them. If you had to reach out and choke someone, could you do it? of course, but you will probably never have to for as long as you live. So you might as well get busy sooner that later, lightening up and discovering who you are and who you are now becoming in addition to being a warrior. If you choose to do so, you will find it to be some of the most challenging inner work of your life to date but it will also come with the highest possible reward.
Here is a low cost and low risk suggestion
If your identity is still wrapped up in your military persona, go to the closest bookstore, to the self-help section and find anything that jumps off the shelf at you and start learning about who you are now becoming. If you don't like to read, get an audio book and if you drive a lot, turn your car into a classroom. This is a good first step that seems to make a big difference. When you light your brain of fire with personal development, you won't be standing still reuminating on your problems. Kind of like being thrashed by a drill instructor, he's got your attention.
"Empty the coins of your purse into your mind and your mind will refill your purse with coins"
And by the way, employers love this stuff. They want to know about your personal development journey, it tells them you are not stuck in your past and your one dimensional military mode.
“First, say to yourself what you would be, and then do what you have to do”
You Already Know You Are The Best
Now Get Out There and Make it Happen!
Here are some credible recruiting organizations to prime the pump. More will follow as they figure out who is not included in the following list.