How To Find Meaningful Work After The Military: Focus On Teamwork
Here’s the 20th and final entry in our contest about finding meaningful work after leaving the armed services. I’ve really liked these. I’ve learned some things. I hereby declare every entry a winner. Thank you.–Tom
The military is a team sport, not an individual sport, and the lowest echelon of this team is the two-person team. While the specific nomenclature of this two-person team can sometimes differ by service branch; battle buddy, shipmate, wingman, or simply brother/sister, these are all byproducts of our fixed, collective, and ‘we’ based military culture.
I had a team once, my battle buddy. We looked out for each other, whether in combat or in garrison. My battle buddy always ensured that I knew one thing no matter what: ‘I’ve Got Your Back.’
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Upon separation from active duty, I had a hard time finding a new battle buddy right away. I had been severed from the daily collective military culture and bond of the two-person team. I could not re-create this bond, but I did find a way to re-connect to it by encouraging myself to find parallels. A parallel can be seen as anything in life that is similar in comparison. Some people say that good parallels have interwoven components of metaphors, analogies, or allegories. I like to simply see them as healthy and positive tools to help ‘re-frame’ your life focus in a new light or perspective. A parallel does not necessarily have to take the form of a physical person or individual. Some possible parallels might include: