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Are you comfortable with your identity? What defines you, and do you feel owning your identity is important for self care?

What attributes and characteristics would you use to describe yourself? Smart, funny, clever, kind, or crafty? Would you go right for the positive or for your own jugular? When asked, “What makes you you,” would you start with negative self-perceptions such as overweight, unorganized, defensive, flaky, or forgetful?

Seeking out a journey to find yourself might sound self-centered, but it’s quite the contrary. To truly embrace one’s self is an achievable evolution. How do you know what you want out of life if you fail to realize the person you’re meant to be?

It boils down to owning who we want to be and choosing the path that gets us there. Remember the old saying, “What you put into life is what you get out of it” and use this to sharpen your identity.

I had the opportunity to be involved in not one, but two military spouse conferences last month. I left both events feeling empowered, courageous, and motivated in my never-ending quest for personal growth…to sharpen my identity.

JBSA emBOLDen team members

The first military spouse conference was emBOLDen hosted by Military and Family Readiness at Joint Base San Antonio, Texas. The two-day conference offered interactive workshops, training, and networking opportunities centered on embracing the demands of military life.

Military spouses endure countless moves, career changes, stressful deployments, and separations in support of their service member’s success. In response, the emBOLDen conference team featured multiple sessions tailored to embolden military spouses to encourage one another. They even included hot topics, such as employment, transitioning, retirement, health and wellness, safety, and self-improvement.

The second military spouse event I attended was hosted by the Great Lakes Recruiting Battalion in Lansing, Michigan. Soldier and Family Readiness Group volunteer leaders received a Master Resiliency Training. Topics included avoid thinking traps, energy management, mental skills, effective and constructive responding, real time resilience, and “Hunt the Good Stuff,” beautifully presented by the Fort Knox, Kentucky, trainers Maegan Guevara and Adam Williams.

The training not only enhanced our individual abilities to lead as military family members, but the training skills can help us hone our character strengths and identify triggers, all coupled with specific skills sets to combat negativity. We had the opportunity to learn, collaborate, and grow as a team and, in turn, take the training to each company in the footprint.

My identity revolves around my core values: mutual respect, integrity, service, capacity for love, friendship, kindness, passion, creativity, and abiding by the Golden Rule to “do unto others as you would have them do unto you.”

That’s pretty much it, in a nutshell.

I encourage you to take advantage of every opportunity available to sharpen your identity. Set personal goals for yourself—know what you want and who you’re meant to be. Craft your identity with your beliefs, goals, values, and dreams.

Allow yourself to soar.

Great Lakes Recruiting BN SFRG Leadership

Author

  • Sara Jane Arnett

    Sara Jane Arnett is a seasoned Army spouse of 15 years, mother of dragons (four boys), and considers supporting fellow military families one of her greatest joys. She serves in various leadership roles through military and civilian organizations such as Soldier and Family Readiness Groups, community events, non-profits, and schools. Sara Jane currently serves as a USARCENT (located at Shaw AFB) Soldier and Family Readiness Assistant and an HHBN SFRG Volunteer; she is an AFTB and Four Lenses Self Discovery Instructor and travels the country delivering keynote addresses, customized trainings and workshops catered to the military spouse. Sara Jane actively coaches and collaborates with SFRG leaders, volunteers, military and civilian leadership in multiple commands, ensuring all families are taken care of and remain valued. She is currently pursuing her Doctorate in Strategic Leadership from Regent University and plans to use her education to make a positive impact for military families across all branches.

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EIN Number: 88-1604492

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