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Linden Schaffer: Key Player in the Wellness Travel Industry

Today on my daily video sharing what I’ve learned in the Wellness Travel industry, I spoke about Linden Schaffer. Schaffer is a prominent figure in the industry and arguably the pioneer of what it is today.

Linden Schaffer’s story is fascinating because she starts out like most of us. She used to work in the fashion industry, another thing she enjoys. When she realized the work was not making her happy and was, in fact, stressing her out physically, mentally, and emotionally, she decided to find a way for herself to unwind by planning her own wellness trips. This repetitive self-care practice centered around her health began to light a spark in her soul, and she made the decision to become a Wellness Travel expert and consultant.

Schaffer founded Pravassa, a health and wellness travel company where she creates both group and individualized trip itineraries for clients wanting to regain productivity and creativity. She also contributes some of her work to The Huffington Post and MindBodyGreen.com, another wellness site she founded.

A key player in the Wellness Travel industry, be sure to check out her blogs here to stay up-to-date within the industry and possibly book your next fully rejuvenating trip!

Click here for the daily video and let me know if the information was helpful!

 

Copyright (c) 2018 Vitaminvoyager.com, All Rights Reserved

Mobile Health and Wellness Professionals Needed in Alaska!

I’m here in the gorgeous town of Ketchikan, Alaska scouting the area for Wellness Travel hotspots. I’ve talked to several of the locals here now about the different activities and local businesses related to health and wellness, and most of them are saying the same thing: people are looking for health and wellness practitioners up here! Many of the ones here enjoy their clientele and the quiet, peaceful atmosphere the beautiful Alaskan bay town has to offer. Another thing the locals are saying is that those who teach yoga and meditation here are often travelers who come and go or are seasonal. If this is your field and you’re already teaching your own classes, this could be a GREAT chance to expand your clientele while also getting to travel!View of the town of Ketchikan, AK and the New York Cafe from The Inn and Creek Street.

I didn’t have enough time to tour all of the yoga and meditation spots this time around, as my focus on this one was local cool and unique healthy food spots. I’ll be coming back in a couple of weeks with those two wellness practices solely in mind and I’ll be sure to update this blog post to include a list of contacts you can reach who are working within the field up here!

Copyright (c) 2018 Vitaminvoyager.com, All Rights Reserved.

Wellness Travel Blog: My Long Story-Short Excuse as to Why I’m Just Now Visiting Colorado

Colorado Has Been A Long Time Coming…

Back when I worked for American Airlines, Colorado was one of my top destinations to hit first. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to. Seattle and San Francisco were up there on the list as well and was able to hit those spots. Not to mention my first non-rev trip internationally was to the Caribbean (Grand Cayman Island), an area prioritized on my destination list. So I can’t say I should be ashamed of my self for not being able to make it to Colorado during my time working for American.

Well. . .

To be honest with you, I’ve had plenty of opportunities. Right off the bat, I’ll name some factors contributing to missing some of my priority destinations:

1. Work

I held two jobs at the time, working 50+ hours a week, 6 days a week. In such a short time frame I could only do day trips unless I got someone to pick up my hours at the airport job.

2. School

At the time I was working my American Airlines job I was in the upper undergrad classes (the 300 and 400 classes. Sorry if I’m confusing you!). The work was getting more stringent, increasing in both quality and quantity. Buckling down was paramount. This meant sacrificing some potential days to hit some hot spots in Denver.

3. A Toxic Relationship

It’s not that I was in a relationship. Couples travel to Colorado all the time. It’s that I was in a bad relationship. Of course, the smaller issues like our time off not aligning played a role in us not being able to get to some of our destinations. The bigger issues, however, were that we just couldn’t get along. And that’s an understatement. We argued and spoiled one another’s energy so frequently that we sucked any enthusiasm out of the will to travel. On our limited time off, we just wanted to be home.

These are all recipes for missed Colorado opportunities. Well, here I am today to tell you I’m finally en route to the Mile High City, Colorado! Land of the beautiful Colorado Rockies (I’m a mountain man regarding visual vitamins). The greatest difference now from two years ago? I’m single. And no, it’s not bashing on the amazing travel and wellness couples who journey the world and grow together. As a matter of fact, you inspire me! I’m sure if you have an IG, FB Page, SC, Twitter, or website and you post frequently about your adventures together I follow you. By being single, I mean I’m away from a negative situation that held me back in more ways than one. Among those things was travel.

Diving Into The Detail. . .

I’d mentioned earlier that one of the things holding us back from ever getting to Denver was our inability to ever mesh our work schedule. Whenever we traveled, either one or both of us had to get our shift picked up or use vacation time. That wasn’t the biggest issue, however, as we were clearly finding ways around our work schedules not meshing. The greatest impact that relationship had on my not just getting to Denver, but broadening my traveling experiences in general, was on my drive. The constant arguing and problems drained me physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually. It threw its muck onto my passion for travel, culture, and exploration. At one point, I wasn’t too sure why I was still working for American Airline, as my drive and motivation for travel had diminished, becoming wrapped in a constant feedback loop since the more I stayed home and missed travel opportunities after hours of work, school, and maintaining a relationship, the more my drive to get out and travel declined.

Needless To Say, A Trip To Colorado Is Long Overdue

This Denver, Colorado trip particularly inspired me to write this because there is more meaning to it. While I was working two jobs at the time, I remember coming to the conclusion that my current way of living was no longer sustainable and that something had to give. Unfortunately, my other job paid the larger portion of my bills, so I knew my time at American Airlines could be coming to a close. One of the trips I had to make before making my decision to leave was getting to Denver. I’m going to make it a goal of mine to visit as many mountain ranges around the world as I can so my own backyard would be a start. Well, things didn’t pan out due to more arguments and unhappiness, and that time came when I had to make a temporary hiatus from the airline industry. It was the beginning of some dark and confusing times in my life.

On a positive note, two years and an Institute for Integrative Nutrition Health Coach certification later, I’m back in the airline industry pushing for innovation in the Wellness Travel industry while enjoying the revival of a true passion of mine: travel.

I’ll be sure to post pictures of my trip to my Instagram @vitaminvoyager as well as tweet, make Facebook posts on my page, and create videos on my Snapchat of the same username. If you have any recommendations for great local tea/kombucha/smoothie shops, health and environment conscious restaurants, awesome outdoor activities within reach of public transportation, and yoga and meditation retreats/business, please feel free to share them below!

Copyright (c) 2018 vitaminvoyager.com, All Rights Reserved

Onward To Alaska

Over the years, visiting Alaska has increasing climbed my to-do list. One of the things I’m looking forward to most now that I’m back in the airline industry is the cheap ability to explore. Not just travel and sightseeing the usual attractions, but really veer off course and explore the other parts of what this beautiful world has to offer. Working for Alaska Airlines, I am blessed with the luxury to travel free to many cities in the U.S. and very cheaply worldwide. As you’d expect, the airline has many routes to Alaskan destinations like Anchorage, Fairbanks, Juneau, Kodiak, Bethel, Barrow (the northernmost city in the United States!), and many more.

My Outdoorsman Side Calls

A few weeks ago I had a conversation with my brother about possibly traveling together (family gets benefits too!) to Alaska. To me, the thought of exploring the wilderness and tundra of such a beautiful land as Alaska excites me to my core. I’m a water, green trees, and snow-capped mountains type of man. I’ve discovered over the years that I’m far less inner-city-oriented than I initially thought. The peace and quiet of nature just started to settle in my heart as I grew older. Washington state’s scenery is one of a few factors that lured me here from my home state of Arizona. Even after a year of living here, having the luxury of looking at Mt. Rainier right out my window is one that never gets old.

He’s Not As Thrilled About Visiting Alaska. . .

My brother, however, wasn’t too thrilled of the idea of visiting Alaska. I strongly dislike the cold and wet. Brandon hates the cold and wet about as much as a cat does (well, he is a Clemson Tiger after all). Alaska’s weather isn’t for everyone, and there are plenty of other places Alaska Airlines flies. So Brandon kindly rejected the offer of visiting Alaska.

At least for now.

I’m sitting with my family watching The Cosby Show and I pull out the airport codes I had to study during training. As I was going over them, I started talking about the other benefits we received, such as flying anywhere in the world on a heavily discounted ticket from any other airline. We started talking about visiting Suspension Bridge in Vancouver, Canada as one of our first international trips. With Canada being so close to Alaska, I let her know I’ll be flying all over the place in Alaska to simply explore. Explore everything from the seafood and wilderness to the Northern Lights.

An Unlikely Travel Buddy While Visiting Alaska Later This Year

To my surprise, she said she was just as excited as I am. Sometimes I forget I get my urge to travel and explore from my mother. That is for sure without a doubt. I can’t even express how amazing it is to be able to be planning trips to Alaska and sight-seeing with my Mom! There was a reason I was lured back into the industry after almost a year and a half hiatus. It’s truly a privilege to be able to come to work and enjoy your job in such a positive atmosphere.

Some can’t stand the hustle and bustle of a busy airport. Me? I’m at home. I see thousands of different bodies likely en route to something new and exciting, or onto a new experience and step in life. They may be on a business trip, on their way to see family, traveling for a sporting event, or simply getting away from all of their stresses at home and on their way to vacation. Of course, there may be some negative reasons for traveling, such as a death in the family. In those cases, I just do my best to tune into passengers, making sure their trip is the absolute best it can be despite the circumstances for flying.

Thankful For Horizon Air

Even when having to work in the gloomy and soggy atmosphere Seattle is notorious for, I know that it’s a job I take pride in. I know I’m good at it. Both my seven years on the flight line in the Air Force and my year and a half of experience at Piedmont (American Airlines) gives me all the confidence I need in performing my tasks. My job is to stay safe first and foremost and ensure my passengers are safe and their luggage is taken care of. That way, I come home, travel, blog, and live life.

Pretty sweet gig, really.

But getting back to Alaska, I look forward to what awaits me. My mother booked my brother and I on a whale watching tour up here in the Canadian waters back in July 2017 and it was a spectacular thing to witness. I can only imagine the kind of wildlife I’ll see up there. And I’ve heard stories from my buddies from the Air Force who were stationed in Alaska, so I have a fair idea of what to expect. I love listening to people’s travel stories. If there’s anyone from Alaska or has lived or visited there, please feel free to share your experiences!

Top Alaska Travel Books and Guides On My Radar

Alaska by Cruise Ship: The Complete Guide to Cruising Alaska – Includes Inside Passage and Glacier Cruises

3 Things I’ve Learned Since Starting My Blog

Blogging is an Art

From the day I officially started my online blog (Feb 4, 2017) to this very moment typing, I can honestly say starting a blog is one of the best things I’ve decided to do in my life. Blogging gives me the freedom to be me, write in my own voice, and write about my own life experiences. It also gives me the freedom to demonstrate my expertise in my fields, holistic health, nutrition, fitness, writing, and veteran resources. Although there’s technically no way I can fail at this, as I can blog about whatever I want to blog about, if you’re goal-oriented, chances are you set some expectations. Here are a few expectations I set for myself, and my experience with them thus far.

1. Gaining Followers is Not as Easy as Sprinkling a Few Key Words Around

When I first began writing my first articles, I couldn’t stop raving about the benefits of learning SEO (Search Engine Optimization). Knowing even the basics of SEO can certainly result in an increase in organic traffic, but oftentimes than not, it takes time for a considerable increase. I was reading plenty of ebooks and different articles on the ins and outs of SEO, so naturally, I hyped it up in my head before actually waiting for the results I was envisioning. Each article I put time, heart, and soul into it (as we all do in our blogs), but I received nary a view in a single day sometimes, much less a visit. As I learned more about social media marketing, I started connecting my social media sites such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn, with my blog site. Doing this I immediately started to notice a spike in my visitors. But then the graph goes back to its regular, flat state about two days after the post and shares.

Needless to say, gaining followers is no walk in the park. It takes time, patience, research, hard work, and plenty of content to get noticed and gain regular followers. There will certainly be some inconsistencies in the beginning, but as you gain your voice and combine that with some basic SEO skills, you’ll see your efforts paying off.

2. Neither is Gaining Clients/Customers if You Are An Entrepreneur

I’ll be the first to admit: I underestimated just how challenging it would be to market myself as well as my services and products through writing. I’ve always loved to write ever since I learned cursive in the third grade. English, Writing, and Literature also happened to be my strongest areas in school. This meant blogging about a few things here and there and posting them on my popular social media sites would generate followers and clients in no time, right?

Wrong.

I couldn’t have been more wrong. There is so much more to marketing your business than just having a website and posting a few blogs. Copious amounts of hours are poured into learning about SEO techniques, social media marketing, and business plans. Countless time is spent brainstorming different content. Sometimes those brainstorms are for taking your business in another direction, something you’ll notice will happen a few times throughout your venture if you’re an entrepreneur.

Some Categories Just Don’t Get as Much Love

Another thing you’ll quickly learn is that some categories will get more love than others, simply for what they are. For example, travel is a crowd-favorite. Nearly everybody loves to travel in some form or fashion. It’s also often a way to get away from daily struggles. With these reasons in mind, it’s no wonder travel blogs are chosen more often to read over say home tool blogs.

As a blogger, the best thing you can get out of this is just to blog about what comes to heart. I’ve gone a couple weeks at a time without blogging but then published three articles in a span of 36 hours on the same scale. I write my best work when I feel it in my very bones. It has to come from the soul. If I feel pressured to write, whether if it’s for freelance work or I feel obligated to keep up with my blog, then I won’t feel as inspired.

Just do you and write whatever you want to write about. Write however you want to write. Write when you want to. Write where you want to. Whenever you’re feeling inspired, just write. The blogs where you’re not focused on a popular category or what keywords you’re going to use, but instead on unique, original content true to yourself are the ones that generate the most interest.

I do not own the photo used for the featured image.

Copyright (c) 2017 Vitaminvoyager.com, All Rights Reserved

Back in the Airline Industry

This Time It’s for Horizon Airlines

A buddy of mine from Piedmont at American Airlines once told me the airline industry’s addictive. We’d both just been hired and were going through orientation. The only difference was he’d already been in the industry before, whereas I was brand new. This being my first job since getting out of the Air Force, I was just excited that my efforts paid off.

And boy did they.

When I first applied for the position at Piedmont, I hadn’t really explored the travel benefits. I’d heard about people in the industry flying around the world for free before. I just figured it was more of a too-good-to-be-true sort of deal. It was only when I received the official offer and went on to the onboarding process that I began to realize what was in store for me. The recruiters and onboarding members went on and on about the travel benefits. They told colorful stories of different adventures they’d gone on by flying standby. I was just in complete awe.

And Thus Marked the Beginning of My Love for The Airline Industry

Once out of training and officially on the clock, I began with a simple, short trip to San Francisco. I was with an ex of three years, and the domestic partner benefits extended to her. We chose San Francisco because 1) I’m a die-hard 49er fan 2) I’d been there once before and I’d told her how beautiful it was there 3) This flight commonly guarantees standby seats back home.

It was crazy to think I was there for free. Just hours ago we were at Sky Harbor sipping on margaritas. Next thing we know we’re at the famous Pier 40 eating clam chowder from a bread bowl and sipping on margaritas. What was even crazier was that we were initially planning on traveling to Hawaii. Unaware of how the system worked at that time, a coworker talked me out of it. He noted I wouldn’t make it back in time for work. We decided to let those seats go and instead chose San Franciso. But we were far from disappointed, and damn if it wasn’t an amazing experience.

Brief Hiatus

About six months into working at Piedmont, a combination of school, another job, and maintaining a struggling relationship began to consume a considerable amount of my time and energy. Since our trip to San Francisco, we’d only been to Santa Barbara, CA, San Diego, and Ogden, UT. The physicality of the ramp job in that scorching Arizona heat had taken its toll on me physically and mentally. The stress was honestly wearing on me. I’d rather have been home much of my free time. A few more trips to San Francisco later, the ex and I had decided we were long overdue for something more exciting. Her birthday was coming up in about a month, so I decided to really do some planning and put these benefits to good use. Before you know it, we’re poolside at a local hotel on Grand Cayman Island with a stunning view of the infinite turquoise ocean, sipping on margaritas.

My Separation from the Airline Industry Was Only Brief

Unfortunately, unforeseen circumstances forced me to choose between the amazing world the airline industry has to offer or the job that paid the bills. On August 2016 I put in my two weeks notice at Piedmont. Believe me when I say it was one of the toughest decisions I had to make in life. Here I was blessed with a golden second opportunity to take advantage of traveling cheaply (the first being the Air Force) and I didn’t even do that. I allowed my toxic relationship, school, and work to consume my time and energy.

I ended up moving on from that security job to bigger and better things, but neither filled that void like the airline industry. The excitement of seeing giddy passengers every day, knowing they must be on their way home or on vacation. The rewarding feeling of knowing you damn near did the impossible physically to load up that quick turn flight and send it on its way on time. Knowing that through all of that hard work and effort, I’ll be in another state or another country when the weekend rolls around sipping margaritas.

I’m Baaaaaaack!!!

I’m proud to say I am now part of the Horizon Air Lines family, a subsidiary of Alaska Airlines. After over a year out of the industry, I’ve been given a third chance, and dammit the third time is always a charm. I’m more confident than ever that because of the amazing stories I’ll be able to tell from adventures, and the people I’ll connect with along the way, including the new veterans and clients I’ll now have more access to, thus completing a piece to the larger goal of expanding my health coaching services, that I’m on the right path.

I love to pass on resume and interview tips as I constantly tweak my work. If you’re interested in getting a few resume, cover letter, and interview tips, please leave a comment or email me at anthonyjrichard.com for my resume-building part of my health coaching services. Also, be sure to follow me on my Twitter @Anthonyjrich11 and my Facebook page by the same name!

Road Trips Through Washington State the Unconventional Way

I Took A Road Trip Today.

It wasn’t your typical road trip though. Recently I left my temporary job to pursue something more related to my field (health coaching) now that I’ve officially graduated. Today marks a full month since I’ve been on the job hunt. There have been some downs, but plenty of pending ups. It’s been tough at times, especially when the savings dwindle and you’re not where you want to be just yet. No doubt the month has been trying. However, there have been some silver linings, although it took plenty of mental willpower to see it. The best part of my job search adventure isn’t what one may normally think when you think of job searching though.

Since moving to Washington, unforeseen circumstances (vandalism leading to subsequent towing of my car) led me to rely heavily on public transportation, i.e. taking the bus or the Sounder everywhere I go. This has proven to be one of the most rewarding experiences since moving to the beautiful PNW. Of all the places I’ve been in my life, and I’ve been to quite a few places being military, nothing compares to the Pacific Northwest. From the plush green coniferous trees to the endless bodies of water, all the way to the elegant mountain ranges that surround the area, there isn’t anywhere else I’d currently want to live at the moment.

Washington State’s Beauty Can’t Be Matched

Washington state fits perfectly with my personality as well as represents everything holistic health stands for: the great wide open outdoors and a perfect place to connect with nature, all while honing a peaceful state of mind. I use each bus ride as a time to delve into a meditative mindset. I get on the bus, backpack in hand as always and full of resumes, DD214’s and all that good stuff, go over interview routine for 5 minutes, then tune out of my mind and focus on breathing and being present in the moment. Washington is just too damn pretty not to do so.

As I focus on my breathing, I become very mindful of my surroundings: the people in the bus from different walks of life, the traffic on the road representing the typical hustle-and-bustle of American life, the color of the leaves on the trees (right now many are leafless due to the changing season), the random bodies of lakes and rivers we ride by, the majestic mountains in the background with Mt. Rainier ominously looming over the landscape. Washingtonians, be very thankful for where you live. You won’t find this kind of beauty anywhere else in the country.

Of course, those from places like the Rocky Mountain area and Appalachians may beg to differ, and it’s certainly debatable. I just know there’s nowhere else on the mainland you’ll find a place with so much geographical diversity, down to the 5 active volcanoes that speckle the lands here.

Nope. And I guarantee that much.

Studying holistic health forces me to practice it as well. That means practicing techniques like deep breathing and meditating to bring me to a mindful state. Don’t get me wrong, Arizona, where I come from, is beautiful land in its own right (nowhere else will you find brilliant pink sunsets and open, golden skies). But Washington…..I just can’t get enough of that green (and noooo not that “green,” although certainly a perk for this here veteran).

Take A Step Back. Focus On The Present. Count Your Blessings.

Even though the job hunt still continues, I’m not at all stressed anymore. This is the time to take a step back from the hustle and appreciate where I am not just geographically, but in life. This past month has allowed me to stop and think about just how far I’ve gone, especially considering where I was last year physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually. Once a modest lost soul in life, through humble perspective, I’ve really come into my own and have learned to appreciate the finer things in life, as cliche as that sounds.

Parting Knowledge and Call-To-Action:

My advice to you if you get nothing else from this post is to take a step back from the busyness and stress of life and really look where you are in every way. Count your blessings, because believe me when I say it can be a hell of a lot worse. As someone who has to listen and observe for a living, I’m more than interested in hearing others’ personal experiences with their location, whether if it’s where you’re from or somewhere you just moved. Please share any experiences or tips in the comments! Also, for holistic health tips and posts related to travel, job search, and social awareness, and overall feel-good posts (lame, I know!) be sure to follow me on Twitter @Anthonyjrich11 as well as my Facebook page by the same tag!

Copyright (c) 2017 Anthonyjrichard.com, All Rights Reserved.

Oscar

I’m not a believer in a god. I don’t believe in heaven or hell. But I do believe in divinity. It shows Itself in the most unexpected times. Particularly in the subconscious of my dreams. Some believe sleep is akin to death. To me, sleep is akin to life.

I was with a friend of mine, a female friend. She may have been The One from San Francisco. I’m not too sure. My brother was there too. We were having a Thanksgiving-like dinner at an apartment. Oscar’s two daughters were there. For some strange reason, his daughters really took a liking to me. It shocked me because I’m not the most fun person with children.

Oscar is someone I once called brother. An older role model to me I never had growing up. A Mexican immigrant, Oscar represented adversity and strength unique to that culture. Although our cultures and upbringing starkly contrasted one another, we had similar souls. He helped sculped the current man I am through his work ethic and commitment to what was his; his family, daughters, and skills that carried him through life.

When dinner was over, he gave my friend a call to let Her know he was coming to pick up the girls. While waiting, the youngest daughter decided it was time for 21 questions. She is such a bright young lady, and those questions were the very reason. The oldest had always been more closed off to those she wasn’t used to. But this night she allowed those walls to be let down. Maybe it was because she observed the trust from her little sister.

When Oscar arrived to pick up his girls, he came with a surprise; a newborn baby boy. I’ve always been uncomfortable with newborn babies. I don’t know what it is, but that’s just how it’s been. But he asked if I wanted to hold him. Without hesitation, I held out my arms and held the newborn. He looked just like him. I then signaled if it was ok if my friend could hold him, then gave the baby to Her. She absolutely adored him.

As my older brother was getting ready to head off, my youngest brother ran over to the car to ask him one last favor before he drove off. I have an idea of what it was, but I wasn’t at the car to hear their conversation, so it’s all speculation. She and I were talking amongst one another while they continued to chat. As with my dream in San Francisco, the whole world suddenly turned a brilliant gold, the Sun became larger than life and shrouded in clouds, and everything seemed to lift to the heavens.

I love sleeping for this very reason. It’s not necessarily to get away from this amazing life I have but to get a glimpse of the life ahead. My dreams reassure me I’ll see my loved ones again.

Copyright (c) 2017 Anthonyjrichard.com, All Rights Reserved

A Quick Guide to Travel for the Recently Separated Veteran

Some Things I’ve Learned About Travel After Separating from the Military

One of the primary reasons people decide to join the military is for the travel. This aspect highly appealed to me, and as soon as my recruiter picked up on it, he took it and ran with it. Don’t get me wrong, I certainly appreciated him selling me on this. In the Air Force, travel is almost guaranteed, particularly for the AFSC I was in (Tactical Aircraft Maintenance,  or Aircraft Mechanic in layman’s terms). Not only did we have superb duty stations such RAF Lakenheath in England, Spangdahlem, Germany, and Kadena, Japan just to name a few, but we had the opportunity to TDY with our jets, giving us the option to basically travel anywhere there were U.S. training operations.

I Totally Choked Away My Travel Opportunities in the Military. . .

Needless to say, all the traveling I did in the military spoiled me. And the worse part of it was that I didn’t even take full advantage of my opportunities because I simply took them for granted. However, I quickly figured that travel opportunities do not end upon separation from the military. As a matter of fact, it’s arguably easier to travel when you’re out. Why? You’re not tied down to things like getting your leave approved or sudden unexpected deployments.

Since getting out of the Air Force, I got a job at Piedmont at American Airlines for about a year and a half. Working there, I quickly re-discovered my passion for traveling. I’d learned about the many different places in the country and around the world that I could travel for free or discounted. Through experience flying standby, I’d learned all the odds and ends of traveling wisely. This includes researching the weekends with good discounts on cars and hotels, such as Veterans Day weekends and other holidays. I’d also quickly learned how to travel lightly and the things I considered a necessity on my adventures.

You’ll Learn the “Life Hacks” As You Travel More

For example, after my first trip flying standby (just one of many benefits for working for an airline!), I learned that bringing things such as an extra pair of shoes was unnecessary, as they took up a large amount of space in my travel backpack. I also learned what not to forget, such as phone chargers (whoopsieee!!), my computer charger, and hygiene items such as my toothbrush and hairbrush. Now I know the latter really aren’t that big a deal, but when you arrive at your destination and realize you have no toothbrush to neutralize the dragon breath within, after hours of being on a flight, and you’re just ready to get the vacation weekend started, it can be quite inconvenient making a trip down the local CVS for these things. Although I also learned that many hotels actually have these items downstairs. It just depends on what time of the day you arrive and check in at the hotel.

A few key things to keep in mind as you explore your many different travel opportunities as a newly separated veteran:

  1. Travel lightly

    – This may seem like a no-brainer, but you’ll be surprised at how quickly your travel bag starts to fill up with unnecessary items. Leave the extra pair of pants and shoes at home. I guarantee you’ll find a way to make it work if you arrive and feel you don’t have enough outfits.

  2. Travel cheaply

    – Try and base your adventures around certain deals and discount packages going on at the time. For example, I found excellent hotel and car rental deals for Labor Day weekend in Ogden, Utah. The deal was so sweet I couldn’t resist the offer. I’d never been to Utah before either, so this was just a win-win situation all around. And if you’ve never been to Utah before, I highly recommend it. My word what a beautiful state.

  3. Travel with the right company

    – Even if this means traveling alone. There’s nothing worse than traveling with a buzzkill who wants to do nothing but drink their night away, sleep all day, then wash, rinse and repeat. Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for the nightlife, but when you’re hungover all day from drinking yourself into a stupor and unable to truly experience where you are, regret quickly consumes you. That regret is even worse when peer pressure is a large factor in that. The most important thing about traveling is experiencing new things, different cultures, and immersing yourself in different lifestyles you’re not accustomed to. Why not just save the heavy drinking for when you’re at home?

Related image
With whom you travel with makes all the difference in the world. And you’re never too old for Disney.

Travel Wisely My Friends

These are just a few tips for traveling wisely. I’ve been to quite a few places on my journey to finding my passion and calling. I’ve also written a few pieces on the ins and outs of traveling. As an Integrative Health and Life Coach for Transitioning Veterans, part of my amazing job is to guide my clients towards their passion and freedom, which often includes travel and exploration. If you enjoyed this article or have any questions regarding the airline industry or cheap travel deals, please leave a comment below and I will be sure to get back to you. You can also email me at anthonyjrichard17@gmail.com for any questions about this as well as any inquiries about my 1-month health coaching program!

I do not own any photos in this blog post.

Copyright (c) 2017 Anthonyjrichard.com, All Rights Reserved

How to Land the Job Interview in 3 Easy Steps

Landing the Job Interview is as Simple as These 3 Key Steps

If you’re just separating from the military, the idea of putting together a resume and converting it to job interviews can seem like an extremely daunting task. This is especially if you’ve never had to interview for a job prior to entering the service. Although the job hunting process can very much be difficult and frustrating, it doesn’t have to be. Guidance, direction, preparation, and a blueprint can go such a long way. Believe me when I say once the ball gets rolling, the calls and emails keep pouring in like weekly CBT’s. In this article, I’m going to cover how to land the job interview with these 3 easy steps.

1) Make Sure Your Resume Matches Keywords From the Job Description

Honestly, I feel this one is often overlooked. It’s too easy to put together a resume for one job and then use it for other jobs similar to the one you just applied for. Sometimes this may actually work, depending on where you apply and their need for employees. However, I’ve discovered that when you tailor each resume for the desired job, you’re far more likely to get an email or call-back. Believe it or not, this is one of the very few times you could actually get away with copy and pasting online. Do it with certain clauses from the job description and add your own words around them to show you at least put some effort and time into carefully sculpting your resume. This is actually recommended because many jobs now have a system of weeding out resumes that don’t fit their description and have those literal words and phrases.

2) Send a Cover Letter Even If It’s Optional

I used to be one that got right onto Indeed.com and sent my automatic resume from there. Needless to say, I did not get too many of the pleasant emails. The practice of scanning resumes and determining a candidate’s qualifications in 6-7 seconds is still alive and well. With that in mind, to land the job interview, you really have to understand that you must stand out. There is no better way to stand out from the crowd than to put a sincere, well-thought-out cover letter together thanking them for the opportunity to be a part of their team while highlighting your experience and strengths at the same time. This is also the document to explain any gaps in employment or the credit hours you’ve taken that relate to the position if you do not have your degree just yet.

3) Send An Email Thanking Them for Their Time and Consideration

In my honest opinion, this is the most important step of the three for standing out above the others. Why? It shows you’ve taken the time to research their company and human resources. That time and effort alone shows them the caliber of employee you could potentially be for their company, especially if it’s customer service related. The email doesn’t have to be long and drawn out; remember their day is extremely busy as well. It just needs to be sincere.

The Job Interview Is the Best Part of It!

Now that you know 3 excellent ways to land the job interview and stand out from the rest of the workforce crowd, fine-tune that resume, go out there, and get that job! I’ll be writing more on this subject as my clientele continues to grow, including what to expect in the job interview process itself. In the meantime, if you need any assistance with converting military skills to civilian skills on a resume, please feel free to leave a comment or contact me at anthonyjrichard17@gmail.com. I also have an excellent template that employers really take notice of. If these tips helped, please share with fellow veterans and friends and let me know they work!

I do not the rights to any pictures in this article.

Copyright (c) 2017 Anthonyjrichard.com, All Rights Reserved

3 Veterans Day Gifts Every Booze-Lover Will Swoon Over

Veterans Day 2017 Is Upon Us

Well, it’s that special time of year again. The trees are changing to beautiful shades of orange, red, and brown. The air is starting to get nippier. Those holiday season feels are upon us again.

That’s right, Veterans Day is finally around the corner. The day we as service members are recognized with gratitude. This kind of recognition comes unnaturally to most of us. Oftentimes when I was in uniform (great big grin just shot across my face) and someone would thank me for my service, I wouldn’t know how to respond. Saying, “you’re welcome” just sounded too arrogant in my opinion. As cliche as it may sound, I put on my uniform, went to work, and did my job like the vast majority of Americans in this country. I usually ended up just saying, “thank you [for your support]” but still felt uneasy.

Don’t Feel As If You Haven’t Earned Those “Thank You’s”

It wasn’t until after I separated in 2012 and went to school on the G.I. Bill that I learned not to be too modest about my service. A classmate and buddy of mine at Pasadena City College had thanked me for my service. I was really awkward about it and he asked why. As I was explaining to him how it sounded arrogant to just say, “you’re welcome,” I realized it was an irrational thought. At that same time, my buddy was telling me exactly as it sounded in my head: How? After a great visit from a doctor, does a doctor say, “thank you” after I thank him for his help and advice?

This perspective allowed me to kick back a little and appreciate this day belonging to only a select few of us in this great nation. It’s been easier to accept veterans day gifts and discounts, primarily because those gifts and discounts are usually things I hold dear to my heart: booze and food. With that being said, I’ve done some research as well as gathered some responses from good friends and family from the military about some of the things that widen their eyes with excitement when they receive them as Veterans Day gifts. Here are some of the top 3 gifts regularly brought up.

1) Beer Keg Refrigerators

I should’ve known this one would be high on the list. As a younger Airman first legally exposed to alcohol at the ripe young age of 18 courtesy of luck (RAF Lakenheath, U.K. was my first duty station), I know firsthand that drinking is in our DNA. And if it wasn’t before, it is now. So it’s no surprise that receiving a beer keg cooler as a Veterans Day gift would brighten any veterans day. The EdgeStar KC2000 Size Kegerator & Keg Beer Cooler is a top choice for many of those who do have one. They note that its portability and convenient nature are what make it stand out. Not to mention it can pour almost any craft beer you could imagine.

 

Image result for edgestar kc2000 full size kegerator & keg beer cooler
The EdgeStar KC2000 Full Size Kegerator & Keg Beer Cooler, a portable kegerator, is a Veterans Day gift they’ll remember (sort of).

 

Another budget-friendlier beer keg fridge is the SPT-BD-0538 Mini Kegerator and Dispenser, Stainless Steel. This one is small and has an adjustable temperature complete with an LED temperature display.

2) .50 Cal Bottle Opener

Sticking to one of our favorite topics and adding icing with another loved topic of veterans, this came up on the list of favored Veterans Day gifts that vets found both creative and thoughtful. An Amazon Customer’s Choice is the IKAXA 50 Calibur BMG Real Bullet Bottle Opener- Real Bullet Bear Opener. This, as its title suggests, is a bullet bottle opener. What’s special about this one is that it was actually fired from a military Browning Machine Gun (BMG)!

 

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3) Beverage Koozies

Of course, the theme here is all too familiar, but if you’re reading this, you’re not judging! Everyone likes to personalize their belongings, and that goes for Veterans Day as well. A beverage koozie wins not only because it keeps our beer cold, but also because it can come in multicam. This American Made Military Tactical Multicam Beer Can/Beverage Cooler By Empire Tactical USA is a winner because:

  1. Empire Tactical USA is American-made.
  2. The multicam is authentic.
  3. It encourages more drinking.

You see how this is a simple, yet effective winner for a Veterans Day gift? Beverage koozies ftw.

 

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Empire Tactical Multicam Beer/Beverage Koozie….anyone thirsty yet?

 

Embrace Veterans Day, and Show a Loved One this List!

Of course, these were just the top gifts that showed up frequently in my own personal research. Also, my question of the best Veterans Day gifts ever received wasn’t supposed to intentionally turn into a top 3 booze-lover must-have gadgets for Veterans Day list either, but again, don’t judge us!

If you have any memories of good Veterans Day gifts that you received one time that you would like to share, please share in the comments!

For my Health Coaching and Resume-Building services, to schedule a free phone consultation, send me an email at anthonyjrichard17@gmail.com and I’ll send you the Health History forms!

This is an Amazon for Veterans/Spouses Blog post, and I do receive revenue from purchases from the links on this post.

I do not own any photos used in this blog post.

Copyright (c) 2017 Anthonyjrichard.com, All Rights Reserved

Proud Veteran Health Coach: My Background and Integrative Nutrition

Hello and welcome to Anthonyjrichard.com. I’m an Integrative Nutrition Health Coach and a proud U.S. Air Force Veteran of seven years. I became a Health Coach to fulfill my desire to keep the comradery and bond only found in the military while also serving as a guide to my brothers and sisters through a pivotal point in their lives. I decided the best way to achieve this is to develop a 1-month program to work with transitioning veterans to improve their health and guide them towards clarity as they embark on civilian life, a new and exciting chapter in their lives flooded with opportunities!

I received my training from the Institute for Integrative Nutrition, where I received in-depth training in nutrition, health and wellness, coaching skills, and business development. I lead workshops on nutrition and resume building and offer individual health and nutrition coaching to veterans entering the civilian world again.

Contact me today to schedule a free consultation!

Anthonyjrichard17@gmail.com

(803) 609-7940

 

Integrative Nutrition Health Coach for Transitioning Veterans

Education Background:

Institute For Integrative Nutrition:

1-Year Program Covers:

  • Primary Nutrition (Relationship, Career, Spirituality, Physical Activity) and Secondary (Food) Nutrition
  • Importance of Nutrition to our Health & Wellbeing
  • 100+ Different Diet Theories
  • Healthy Eating Habits
  • Meal Planning
  • Bio-Individuality (One person’s medicine is another person’s poison)
  • Healthy Habits for Energy and Better Sleep
  • Importance of Physical Fitness to Wellbeing
  • Fitness Planning
  • Self-Care
  • Breathing Techniques
  • Benefits of Yoga
  • Meditation Techniques and Benefits of Meditation
  • Coaching Techniques and Practices
  • Business & Entrepreneurship Growth
  • Marketing Techniques and Social Media Marketing
  • Legal Business Practices and Contracts

Arizona State University:

Nutrition, Health, and Wellness Related Classes:

  • Advanced Human Nutrition I
  • Applications in Human Nutrition
  • Applied Food Principles
  • Community Nutrition
  • Cultural Aspects of Food
  • Food Services Purchasing
  • Health Communications
  • Human Nutrition
  • Intro/Plan Therapeutic Diets
  • Intro/Prof/Nutrition/Dietetics
  • Nutrition Counseling
  • Nutrition Management & Leadership
  • Nutrition In the Life Cycle
  • Western Diet

Business, Marketing, and Finance Related Classes:

  • Accounting and Financial Analysis
  • Essentials of Selling
  • Macroeconomic Principles
  • Management and Strategy

 

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