A quick guide to travel for the recently separated.

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?

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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

Getting the call or email for the job interview is not as tough as you may think!

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

Whey Protein Benefits You May Not Have Even Known About

5 Healthy Whey Protein Benefits You May Be Unaware Of

Whey Protein Benefits: What Are They?

Every supplement shop has their featured protein shake, their bread and butter. In particular, whey protein is the most commonly sought after protein supplement. But why? What exactly is the craze? What are some whey protein powder benefits we should really know about?

I’m comfortable saying I’m an avid supplement shop visitor and regular whey protein user. I’ve never taken the time to really explore their benefits, however. All I know is one thing about protein powder: gains. Although there are many more whey protein powder benefits, I’m only going to list these 5 from Healthline.com because they’re mostly related to our fitness health. Here are some of the benefits of whey protein:

1) High-Quality Protein With Essential Amino Acids

Amino acids are key to muscle growth and gains. Packed with all of the essential amino acids, whey protein powder’s also the fastest-digesting kind of protein. What this means is whey protein is best for muscle growth. This is particularly true right after a workout. Your muscle fibers and tissue are broken down and benefit most from immediate repair post exercise. My top high-quality whey protein powder of choice is Optimum Nutrition Gold Standard 100% Whey Protein Powder. The link is Amazon’s Top Choice 5lb tub, but you can also get a smaller sample size with the 2lb tub for only $30, whereas the 5lb one is closer to $50.

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Optimum Nutrition Gold Standard 100% Whey Protein Powder, a popular choice on Amazon and in many supplement shops.

2) It Contains the Amino Acid Leucine to Prevent Age-Related Muscle Atrophy

As we age, our muscles mass and strength decline. The amino acid leucine helps to prevent age-related muscle atrophy. It is also the most muscle-building component of all the amino acids. What does this mean? Whey protein shakes contain plenty of leucine. Consuming this amino acid regularly paired with routine exercise will both increase your muscle mass and preserve your gains.

Can you say win?

3) Glutathione in Whey Protein Powder Increases the Body’s Antioxidant Defenses

Our bodies produce glutathione, a very important antioxidant. It’s a key antioxidant for your minimizing chronic diseases such as cardiovascular disease. An abundant consumption of amino acids, cysteine, in particular, is required for your body to produce healthy levels. Another whey protein benefit is that it’s plentiful with cysteine. It’s just another example of how everything needs to work together in order to keep us at peak optimal performance. This cysteine supplement, Solgar- L-Cysteine 500 mg, an Amazon’s Choice, is a good quality supplement and my choice for this particular amino acid. It has 90 vegetable capsules and has Free Form L-Cysteine, making them easily digestible and absorbed.

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Solgar- L-Cysteine 500 mg, 90 vegetable capsules. Excellent to have in conjunction with whey protein.

4) Whey Protein is Highly Satiating

Protein fills the stomach regardless of source. Not to mention many of us just get the downright bubble-guts anyways, regardless of which type of protein we consume. In my program, if one of my client’s goals is steady weight loss, I introduce some diet theories high in protein. This helps them to “crowd out” the bad foods by eliminating random cravings throughout the day. The great thing about whey protein powder is that you don’t always have to take it in conjunction with a workout. You can wake up early in the morning and drink one, or late at night before you hit the sack, although casein protein is best for this situation, as it’s slower digesting, therefore slowing down the catabolic process (muscle breakdown).

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5) Whey Protein May Have the Added Benefit of Reducing Inflammation

In the world of holistic health/integrative nutrition, inflammation may as well be public enemy #1. Inflammation is the cause of many illnesses and diseases around the world. What’s worse is that we cause internal inflammation to ourselves through poor diet choice. We weren’t meant to consume grains, sugar, and dairy at such high rates. For this reason, our bodies don’t know how to respond, often igniting our immune systems to counter some of this junk entering our bodies.

Thankfully for the gym rat, A benefit of whey protein may be that it reduces inflammation. A randomized controlled study published by PubMed in 2015 suggests that people with high levels of C-reactive protein, a regular component in inflammation, is reduced, although more conclusive studies are needed.

There Are Countless Whey Protein Benefits

These were just a few examples of the benefits of whey protein and how you can incorporate them into your daily life. To recap, whey protein powder is a high-quality protein with benefits including prevention of aging muscles, keeps you full, may reduce inflammation, and has many amino acids for muscle-building and antioxidants for immunity and disease prevention. I frequent supplement shops often and buy from Amazon often, so be on the look-out for more articles like this as I expand my online marketplace community for veterans!

If you feel I missed important information or would like to add your favorite whey protein supplement, please feel free to comment below and share this! To schedule a free Health Histories consultation and get your fitness goals going, email me at anthonyjrichard17@gmail.com or schedule it through my FB page at https://www.facebook.com/Anthonyjrich11/!

I do not own any pictures on this blog.

The links in this blog are Amazon links that I do get paid commission for if the reader decides to purchase the items listed on this blog.

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

military to civilian resume

3 Skills Civilian Employers Look For From Potential Veteran Hires

Using Your Military Experience To Gain Civilian Employment Can Be Easy

I know firsthand how difficult it is just getting out of the military and trying to actually put your valuable skills and experience to good use. I knew through friends and family that being a veteran paid dividends in the employment world. My problem was I couldn’t figure out how to prove my value through my resume.

As you go out into the civilian world for the first time (some veterans this may be your second go-around at freedom!), you’ll quickly see that there are more jobs and opportunities out there than advertised. While still in service, you probably heard a lot from peer or friends who separated about how “bad” the job market is. Although thereThe truth is, as long as you keep your nose clean, there is ALWAYS a job opportunity right around the corner. Now don’t get me wrong, the pickings are still slim in some fields, but in general, those positions are usually a rung or two above entry level positions.

The most important trick to converting your military skills and experience to a civilian resume is paying attention to detail. No, I don’t mean this in a soft skill kind of way to add to your skills list (although you could). I’m talking about paying attention to what I call the “flash” words and phrases that employers often put in their job description. These include phrases like “Demonstrate attention to detail,” “Be comfortable working in a fast-paced environment,” “Ability to demonstrate excellent customer service.” These are phrases and words that you can easily connect your military experience to. The second part of paying attention to detail when converting your resume is paying attention to the little details of your past duties.

For example, I was an aircraft mechanic (crew chief) in the Air Force. My skills mostly involved using my hands and getting dirty. My first job when I separated was working as a Ramp Agent for American Airlines. Although I didn’t work on aircraft with tools or anything like I used to while serving, the position still required other commonly asked skills, such as being able to operate a forklift or heavy machinery. As an F-15 and MQ-9 crew chief, I regularly towed aircraft and operated other aircraft ground equipment. Needless to say, that bad boy was an easy one to put in my bullet points when I saw that the job required heavy machinery operation.

This particular job also required excellent customer service and experience in this field as well. Now this one was a tough one to tackle initially, but as I reflected further back on my experiences, I focused on the times I provided good service to someone. I started to remember the times I volunteered for squadron holiday cookouts and dinners and how I demonstrated customer service through preparing and serving customer’s plates (this was also a good one for my first restaurant industry job!).

It really is as simple as keying in on those little details. In the military, we’re required to do a lot more than what some of us initially thought we’d signed up for. However, that “gripe” is paid back tenfold in the civilian world (Remember the days of Entry Control Duty in basic training? Yea you’re now gold to contracted and private security services). Also note that the ability to sell yourself, albeit not coming naturally to many, is critical to your success carving your own path in the civilian world. Without further hesitation, here are three basic skills civilian employers seek when viewing a veteran’s resume.

1) Working In a Fast-paced Environment

This is one you’ll see in almost every job description you’ll see. In today’s day and age, the quickest way to go nowhere fast is to fail to move fast. This bodes well for veterans, as moving fast and with a sense of purpose was drilled into us from Day 1 of boot camp. Not to mention the vast majority of jobs in the military require moving fast in order to keep operations flowing. This is an excellent opportunity for you to give an example of a daily task you had to do with a sense of purpose.

2) Demonstrating Excellent Customer Service

You won’t find a job or business in the civilian job market where some form of customer service isn’t required. You worked with people and serving people in the military and you’ll be doing it a lot outside of it. Giving examples of duties where you demonstrated good customer service can be a tricky one, as this can be a really easy one or one that will have you thinking, depending on your job in the military. As I mentioned earlier, if you weren’t in a customer-oriented career field, focus on some of the miscellaneous tasks you performed or your volunteer service throughout the course of your military career. You’re bound to dig up some form of people-related duty you had to do (Kitchen Patrol Duty anyone?).

3) Taking Initiative (Being a Self-Starter)

Nobody likes to be babied. More importantly, however, is that nobody likes to play babysitter. Many civilian employers get a veteran’s resume and their eyes light up because they already know this person won’t have to have their hand held. They also know there likely won’t be a steep learning curve, as we were often thrust into “sink-or-swim” situations during our careers in the military, no matter what field you were in. For this reason, they know this is already half the battle and means they won’t have to spend time looking over your shoulders when they could be productive elsewhere.

You can be an E6 out after six years or you can be an E4 and done after four. No matter what you did or how long you served, the military provided plenty of opportunities to step up, take initiative, and be a leader. If you can’t think of not one instance or duty where you had to take initiative and get the ball rolling for a daily or frequent task, you may have bigger issues to worry about!

Transitioning Into A Civilian Job From The Military Is Easier Than You Think

The key to getting those employers to blow up your email and phone is to remember the key thing I mentioned before I went into the list: Attention to detail. Pay attention to the words and phrases in the description. Actively focus on what they’re looking for in you. Then think of times during your decorated service where you demonstrated what’s in that particular description. From there, use those experiences and tie them into what your targeted position duties. Remember that in today’s day in age, employers often have working in a fast-paced environment, demonstrating excellent customer services, and taking initiative on top of their priority list when looking for potential new hires. It’s up to you to color your skills and experience with the words you use on your resume!

For more articles with resources and information related to finding a job while transitioning from military to a civilian, visit my site here at anthonyjrichard.com. I update my posts weekly! For information regarding scheduling Health History Consultations feel free to email me at anthonyjrichard17@gmail.com or leave a comment!

I do not own any photos used in this article.

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

5 Credible Websites With Jobs and Companies Hiring Veterans Now

They’re Actively Looking For You

Nowadays, there aren’t many companies not seeking out and hiring veterans. As a vet myself, I always keep an eye out for companies hiring veterans now. Even though I currently have a comfortable job, it never hurts to be aware of the opportunities out there given to veterans. Nobody knows you better than you do, and when it’s time to move on to bigger and better things you’ll know. Being a veteran in this country not only makes moving up the ladder easier; it makes starting fresh easier as well. Employers’ eyes widen when they see veteran service on the resume in front of them. Why? Your military service automatically says well-disciplined, self-starter, a superb leader, and humble professional.

Because of this, your veteran status gives you advantages in ways you’d never even imagine. I was an F-15 (Strike Eagle HUAHHH!!!) and MQ-9 (Reapers baby!!) aircraft mechanic in the Air Force for seven years. Of all the six jobs I’ve had since being a civilian, NONE required my mechanical skills. Instead, I highlighted other valuable skills I used during my time as a crew chief.

For example, for my job as a security guard, I keyed in on the action words and phrases from the job description posted on Indeed (such as “Demonstrate a sense of urgency” or “attention to detail), thought of a time in my service when those descriptions fit the task I was doing at the time, and worded that bulletin in a way that accentuated those skills and actions. I had four contracted security agencies contact me in a span of two weeks just by doing that.

The Opportunities Are Out There

I have literally countless examples of ways I turned my experience as an Air Force mechanic into golden opportunities in diverse career fields. It’s a daunting task at first (as is working on any resume for that matter, much less working on one using experience from an unrelated field), but it’s well worth the time and effort. Again, I don’t know if I would’ve got offered half the jobs I worked if my veteran experience wasn’t on my resume. During the interviews, my service always comes up, and they always gush about the professionalism and leadership of the veterans they already have onboard their team.

With no further hesitation, here is a list of 5 credible websites containing companies hiring veterans now:

  1. https://www.veteranjobsmission.com/companies
  2. http://www.gijobs.com/6-companies-that-want-to-hire-veterans-right-now/
  3. http://www.military.com/hiring-veterans
  4. http://www.diversityjournal.com/15431-25-of-the-most-influential-companies-for-veteran-hiring-2015/ (NOTE: The jobs on this list still hold true for 2017)
  5. https://www.job-hunt.org/veterans-job-search/veteran-friendly-employers.shtml
A snapshot from Job-Hut.org of companies hiring veterans now.
A snapshot from Job-Hut.org of companies hiring veterans now.

Literally Hundreds Of Companies Hiring Veterans Now. . .

So what are you waiting for? You, my friend, have a golden opportunity in your hands. Take advantage of it and cherish it. Your service to this great nation can never be taken away. On top of that, this is a nation full of citizens who support their servicemen and women. One of the best ways the people, businesses, and companies in this country show their appreciation for us is through the job market. It’s all up to you to gather your resources, take this opportunity, and run with it like it’s your last PT test!

Check out other articles regarding companies hiring veterans as well as the transition process here on anthonyjrichard.com. More articles are on the way as I continue to develop my Holistic Health & Life Coach for Transitioning Veterans business and program. For information regarding my services, please feel free to email at anthonyjrichard17@gmail.com!

I do not own the rights to the featured image on this blog.

Copyright (c) 2017 Anthonyjrichard.com, All rights reserved

How To Find The Perfect Job Fit As A Veteran

Just A Veteran Trying To Find The Right Job Fit

As a vet who’s held six jobs since I separated from the Air Force in 2012, all of which were in different fields, I can honestly say I have a good feel for what is considered being satisfied with what you do for a living. My positions ranged from a Ramp Agent at Piedmont Airlines (Transportation Industry) to a Client Advocate for Freedom Debt Relief (Financial Industry). I’ve been paid minimum and I’ve been paid some pretty hefty bucks. There were some great bosses and supervision, and there were some I felt weren’t worth the stress of working for (harsh, but true). With that being said, here is a list of things you should heavily consider as a veteran when trying to find the right job fit.

Discover Your Passion(s)

I want to stress this isn’t the same thing as discovering what you’re good at. For example, I’m really good at empathizing with my customers and clients, but that strong soft skill didn’t equate to personal happiness at my job at Freedom Debt Relief. Although great at connecting with people and de-escalating problems, the stress of overbearing, irate clients on the phone worried about being sued by their creditor was too much. It was enough to have me seeking a something different despite the excellent pay and great leadership the company provided.

Instead, focus on things you truly enjoy doing, whether you’re good at it or not. If you’re fascinated by crime scene investigations, law and order, and the criminal justice system in general, try looking for employment as a security guard (in-house or contract). Maybe while doing that, use your resources to search for schools or programs that give you some training in law enforcement to further advance in your passion and goals. Many of these programs accept your G.I. Bill.

As an Integrative Nutrition Health Coach, I enjoy being around fruits and vegetables. I like to learn about the different kinds of a single type, where in the world it’s grown, whether or not it’s organic, how it was grown, and all that good stuff. I even enjoy simply being around the vibrant colors of fruits and vegetables. For all of these reasons, I sought employment handling fruits and vegetables in some form or fashion.

Best Job Fit For Veterans Produce Clerk
My baby (the vegetable wet rack). The fruit tables look even better.

I’m very blessed to say I now work as a Produce Clerk at my local Safeway while simultaneously building up my Holistic Health coaching business. Although I don’t get paid as much as I did at my previous place of employment (Freedom Debt Relief), the work itself is not nearly as stressful. I get a full night’s sleep, feel energetic and enthusiastic during the day, and come to work genuinely happy and ready to display some well-culled, scrumptious-looking fruits and vegetables for my customers.

Once you get a feel of exactly what it is you enjoy doing and separate that from what you’re good at doing, from there you can begin researching jobs related to that.

Find A List Of Places Hiring Veterans

Luckily for you, I’ve already done most of your homework! Provided in this link is my favorite list to go to when I feel it’s time to move forward in my professional career. You wouldn’t believe the amount of companies actively seeking veterans like yourself to be a part of their team. Even better, you wouldn’t believe just how much of an impact your veteran status on your resume has on almost any employer. For example, even if the skills you used for your military job don’t directly correlate to the position you’re applying for, employers still see military experience as leadership experience. They also immediately know they’re getting someone with discipline and a self-starter attitude.

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Veterans Jobs Mission. Literally hundreds of companies looking for YOU!

 

Be Open To Change

The most important thing I want you to get from this article is that you have to be open to change. As a young service member fresh out of the military, you have the world at your fingertips. My articles and services are mostly geared towards my specific clients (single newly transitioning veterans) but this tip applies to everybody.

We may not be able to see it right now, especially during a time of transition and such a life-changing decision as separation from the military, but a lifetime is a loooong time. Take advantage of that. Use this newfound freedom to truly discover yourself and what you would like to do for 8-10 hours out of your day that you would actually enjoy. Even if you initially get it wrong (remember, I’ve had SIX different jobs in SIX different fields since separation!), keep that resume sharp and up-to-date, always add to it and never rule out moving on to bigger and better things!

Part of my Health Coaching service is 1-on-1 resume-building sessions focused on structure and what employers look for, so always feel free to reach out to me at provided in the last paragraph for any questions!

Find The Right Job Fit For You!

Even when it seems like you may have made a mistake by separating from the military or feel like you’ll never find your calling in the civilian world, the key is to never lose sight of what you genuinely enjoy. Even if that means working a job you’re unhappy with for a few months while you plan your next move, try doing something related to what you want to do. For instance, you could always read up on a job or position to prepare for it or even volunteer to get yourself some free experience. No matter what you choose to do, remember that no decision is permanent in regard to your future and the rest of your life!

For more information regarding my Veteran Holistic Health Coaching services, please email me at anthonyjrichard17@gmail.com. In the meantime, look for more articles like this on my site here on Anthonyjrichard.com!

I do not own the rights to the featured image or the Veterans Jobs Mission image.

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

 

3 Things To Ask Yourself When Getting Out Of The Military

Getting Out? Ask Yourself A Few Things…

Getting out of the military is an emotional roller coaster. You’re excited because you’re taking off the shackles, yet putting on the uniform for the last 4-6 years has become ingrained in your daily life. So much pride goes into that uniform and everything you’ve done in it.

The greatest thing about being a veteran is that the status never goes away. No one can ever take away your experiences, skills, and the comradery you gained while in. With that being said, relax and enjoy the good feelings! You deserve it, and Lord knows the pride you take in your country. Getting out of the military is one of the most euphoric things you can experience. So many opportunities await you on the outside. The possibilities. . .

And keeping on that thought, try not to get overwhelmed with thinking you need to know exactly what you’re going be doing for the rest of your life now. That is simply unrealistic and unfair for you to do that to yourself. BUT, there are some questions you do need to ask yourself both before you get out and as you’re embarking on your new journey. Here are some things you should ask yourself through this process:

1) What Kind Of Lifestyle Am I Seeking?

Before getting out of the military, ask yourself this: What is my main goal? Is money my motivator? Time? What about structure and order? Maybe I’m ok with a minimalistic lifestyle after all bills are caught up?

As someone who is getting out and making strides towards complete independence, it’s wise to have answers for at least a few of the above. You don’t need to have your ten-year plan calculated down to a Prison Break-like schematic, but you should at least have an idea of how you’re going to start out making a living on your own.

 

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Getting out of the military. That’s all that matters.

 

It’s important to keep in mind that your plans will frequently change. The key is just to have a plan or two. Not to mention having some money saved up can really come in handy when you least expect it. When I first separated from the Air Force, I had about $6,000 in savings and a USAA credit card with about $3,000 credit left on it; I wound up using all but about $2,000 of it ($1,000 savings, $1,000 credit card). In other words, expect the unexpected. You never know how long it will take to land a job. And this, of course, depends on the kind of job you’re looking for. Not to mention other expenses such as moving and personal issues in the form of vehicle problems or hospital treatment. You never think it will happen to you until lo and behold, it does.

Whatever your motive or goal is when you separate, just make sure it’s sturdy and smooth. Even if your initial plans fall through, at least you have an idea of where your next paycheck is coming from.

2) Do I Have A Strong Support System?

I can’t stress the importance of having a strong support system when getting out of the military. No matter which route you take, if you don’t have anyone to share your experiences with, both the ups and downs, the joys and the fears, it could do you a lot of harm in the long run.

When I got out, my heart was set on moving to California. As an Arizonan (a Yuma, Arizonan to be exact) and living so close to Cali, I frequently visited there. I immediately fell in love with the scenery, the weather, and the vibes. My awe of the state inspired me to vow to live there one day. With the GI Bill covering my out-of-state tuition for many California community colleges, I found my golden ticket to the Golden State. Two of my military buddies, one of them happening to get out of the military the same time as me, were from California. We all decided to room together to ease rent. While it was a great time, with both some good and bad times, they were the only people I knew moving there. There were times where we just sort of got tired of one another’s company and did our own thing. That wasn’t a bad thing always until I wanted some human interaction again.

I wound up joining a veteran’s cohort program at Pasadena City College, a program geared toward helping veterans from all branches find transition smoothly into student life while having a support system of veterans who are going through the same thing they are at the same time. This decision proved to be one of the best decisions I made throughout my college years, as I found some people in that group I can call brothers to this day.

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Your plans may sound great and look flawless on paper, but when things get tough and life starts throwing curve balls at you (and it’s not a matter of if but when), you’re going to need people who understand you and know where you’re coming from. This may be family, close childhoods friends, former military co-workers who are now civilians, or people you just met through a community event or group. What’s more important, when Plan A involuntarily turns to Plan B, you’re going to need the kind of company around you who support your decisions, not push you towards something you may not want to do just because it sounds like the “natural” path.

3) Am I Willing To Press Reset Again If Necessary?

Finally, as a single man or woman with no dependents newly separated from the military, are you willing to reset if necessary? I want to put emphasis on this point because it is one that is often overlooked. Why? Because no one likes to admit restarting because it’s equated to failure. Many see it this way: they hyped up their plans to all their former co-workers in the military and bragged about how good they were going to have it on the other side, so if things don’t go according to plan, they feel ashamed or embarrassed.

But why? Understand that you’re still young. There are many successful businessmen/women and entrepreneurs who started out trying to do one thing, failed at it, then came back at it with something else. Since getting out of the military in 2012, I’ve held six different jobs, switched my major once (adding two years to my plate), and enrolled in a year-long course that wound up changing my life in more ways than all four of my years at Arizona State University combined. I went from nearly being engaged after a three-year relationship in my mid-20’s and moving up the ladder in a plush corporate job in Phoenix to living with my mother and brother in Tacoma, Washington, a state none of us had ever lived. My new occupation(s)?: certified Holistic Health Coach and Produce Clerk at Safeway, a job I take so much pride in because of my direct involvement with healthy foods. One year before I took this job, I never would’ve considered this position within my pay range.

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You never know what your heart has in store for you when you allow yourself to really explore what you like and what you want. At one point you may be focused on racking up the Benjamins (as I initially was), until you realize the things you wanted to do with that money, you could do for a lot less or even free. It’s always important as a single man or woman with no dependents that you take advantage of the golden opportunity your veteran status gives you. You can explore and try so many things. Not to mention there are companies literally looking to hire veterans!

You’re Young And Now A Civilian: No Need For Clear-cut Answers

If you ask yourself these three things and even vaguely dwell on them so you know exactly where you stand in terms of your immediate future, you’ve already set yourself up for success. It’s important to note that these questions are all very broad, open-ended questions with no right or wrong answer. They’re just questions to ask yourself and to give you basic guidance in what you both need and want.

As you’re getting out of the military and dipping your toe into civilian waters for the first time, recognize that the kind of lifestyle you want (and more than likely a major factor in your decision to get out of the military), the support you have around you, and the ability to roll with life’s punches and be willing to start over again are extremely critical in determining how soon you reach you find your calling!

For information regarding my Holistic Health Coaching services to veterans, please feel free to email me at anthonyjrichard17@gmail.com. Otherwise, check out more articles like this one geared toward helping veterans smoothly transition into civilian life here on anthonyjrichard.com!

I do not own any photos in this post.

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

Getting out of the military

Ways To Be Successful Outside of the Military

Getting Out Of The Military Is Scary. . .

But it’s exciting. One of the first things that come to mind as your time nears and that DD214 slip is put in your hand is stability: Where is your next steady paycheck going to come from? How hard is it to hold a job in the civilian world? What about medical benefits and vacation? Will my pay be enough to sustain me since Uncle Sam is no longer paying for my roof? I know these were all questions that came to mind when I first got out of the Air Force in June 2012. I wound up going to school full-time and putting off my job search until a few years later when I separated from the California National Guard in August 2015.

One thing I will say; I wish I’d started the process sooner because I’d have even more experience now. There are so many opportunities for veterans it’s almost hard to remain without a job. As part of this series of blogs, I’ll be researching and interviewing veterans, the different jobs they have, and the routes they took to get those jobs. I’ll be interviewing single, married, divorced, and veterans with children to cover the different jobs and careers required for them to sustain themselves and/or their families. However, the jobs in this post are primarily for single veterans with no dependents, as the pay in these jobs is not enough to sustain a family. Here are some excellent jobs you can apply for once the shackles are off and you get your first taste of freedom!

1) Work For An Airline

Sometimes the thing you’ll miss the most when getting out of the military is the traveling. Whether you were Air Force, Army, Marine, or Navy, unless you CHOSE to stay close to home, Uncle Sam brought you somewhere you’d never been before. Many of us actually joined the military for the opportunity to travel. I know that was an excellent pitch by my recruiter when I enlisted in 2008.


This is why working for an airline is an excellent job and opportunity for the military travel bug at heart! I worked for Piedmont at American Airlines for about a year and a half, and I can honestly say it was the best job I’d ever held at that time. I was only part-time and didn’t qualify for the medical benefits or 401k, but the travel benefits were beyond amazing. You can travel on standby anywhere in the United States for free as long as seats are available. Furthermore, you can add a spouse OR domestic partner (girlfriend, roommate) to your travel list and they too travel for free! Well sort of. The seat is free, but the tax of their ticket comes out of your paycheck, which, by the way, is chunk change usually. I’m talking about like $20.

It should be noted that starting pay for a ramp or gate agent is usually minimum wage. When I first started at Sky Harbor in Phoenix, AZ, I started at minimum wage, which was $8.05/hr. Thankfully I was going to school and I was receiving my GI Bill money. In other words, this job is EXCELLENT if you are single and/or don’t have any children, or if you are with a spouse who makes a great deal of money doing. This way you can put your whole family on your travel benefits list and use the money you make from your hours at the job to spoil the fam bam!

You could always check for jobs and position availability here at www.jobs.aa.com. You can also check out other airlines, as many of them have very similar benefits and some start you off with more than minimum wage pay.

2) Security

Sure, this may sound like a “demotion,” but I’m here to tell you there is no job not worthy of taking when it puts money, and therefore food, on the table. Now bear in mind that this particular list is geared primarily towards single individuals with no kids. If you’re getting out of the military after 4-6 years, you’re still young and have plenty of time to figure out exactly what you want to do. In the meantime, great jobs like security are all over the place. Think about it; everyone needs security. You could do in-house security or go for a company who’s outsourcing security via contracting. Hospitals, schools, retail and grocery stores, and apartments/condominiums are great places to start looking for security jobs locally. When I got out of the military completely in 2015, my Air Force experience got me instantly hired for IPSA Security at the Phoenix Convention Center. If you live in a city with heavy public transportation services such as light rails or trains, they’re always looking for veterans to hire.


The pay working as a security guard varies. First, you’ll have to get your security guard card (check your local government laws on working as a guard and how to obtain your card). I only had to sit through an eight-hour course, most of the material of which I already knew from my military training and background. It wound up costing me about $75, as I had to get my fingerprints and background check and all that good stuff. Once all of that was completed, I got my card (I was already hired at the time), and was put to work immediately the following day. I started out making about $10/hr before receiving a $1 raise for both time (six months) and performance.

Security is an excellent job to have when you get out of the military because it’s fairly easy to get and the job itself is not that stressful. Of course, this all depends on where you work and who you work for. As a single man with no kids and a GI Bill to take care of other bills, what I was making as security walking around the convention center asking transients to leave (my least favorite part of this job), securing doors, and performing simple routine tasks was more than enough to be thankful for!

3) Grub Hub Delivery

When I first got out of the military, there was no Uber or Lyft. I started from scratch on my job search, attending resume shops and driving around the city handing out hard copies of my resume. Now all you have to do is have a car.

Literally.

Signing up for Uber and Lyft is excellent and you can really make good money on your own time and dime. Unfortunately, though, you can’t predict awful passengers. Enter Grub Hub, a contracting company that partners with restaurants that don’t normally deliver. The best part about Grub Hub is that you’re driving all alone and never have to pick up passengers. This means you can have your music up and cruise the city on your own time, enjoying life all while making money. It doesn’t get any better than that, right?


All you have to do to is sign up is have a vehicle, current insurance, a quick background check (mine was done in 24 hours), and fill out the online application. The pay varies, as times of the day, holidays, and weekends can all affect how many deliveries you make that day. Whenever I drive, usually for some extra money for a trip I’m planning, It’s for about six hours. On average I make between $75-$100 depending on tips. Now keep in mind that you’ll be driving around a lot, so take gas into consideration when adding up expenses. This is very handy money, especially when it’s just a few hours spent on the road in a day on your own time.

Plenty Of Opportunities Outside Of the Military

If you’re planning on getting out of the military or you’ve already gotten out and you’re just getting your feet wet in the civilian job world, hang in there! I know the mixture of worry, anxiety, and excitement can be overwhelming, but we have support, community, and plenty of resources to be successful outside of the military. Not to mention the skills gained in the military that transition to civilian jobs is unmatched.

The three excellent jobs I mentioned in this blog post are just a few of a slew of jobs I’ve been blessed to gain experience from. As I cull experience from other previous jobs and current jobs as well as gain more experience in my own business and services I’m growing, I will be writing more blog posts regarding this subject. What these three jobs all have in common is that they are perfect stop-gap jobs for the single person still finding out exactly what they want to do as a career. The pay is great, especially if you’re going to school, and all of these jobs offer some form of flexibility, especially Grub Hub. No matter what job you choose when you get out of the military, just remember that this is only the beginning of a wonderful experience. Most importantly, you have a support system and resources at your disposal if you’re willing to reach out and look for it!

For my Lifestyle Coaching services related to transitioning from military to civilian, please feel free to contact me at anthonyjrichard17@gmail.com. Otherwise, look for more articles like this here on Anthonyjrichard.com!

I do not own any photos in this blog post.

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