Michael Bluemling, Jr. | Bridging the Gap for Veterans
Michael Bluemling, Jr., is a former Sergeant of Soldiers and author of "Bridging the Gap from Soldier to Civilian," who overcame abuse to become a success story, after his transition from soldier to civilian. He shares his insight with fellow veterans, to help them through this arduous process, successfully.
"Michael Bluemling, Jr.", veterans, military, soldier, Marine, sailor, airman, VA, help, employment, "Bridging the Gap from Soldier to Civilian"
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Bridging the Gap for Veterans

Bridging the Gap for Veterans

(Excerpt from Phase 1: Expiration of Time and Service from the Military, Chapter 1: Information and Data Collection)

Make Up a List of Goals That You Have for Yourself

“As you begin this process you begin to uncover more and more information even at the earliest stages that you did not even consider before. This is great and will really have a positive impact done the road once you have a plan of action that is well thought out and concise. One of the most important steps moving forward requires you to ask yourself the following two questions. What do you want in your life personally and professionally? How am I going to get there?

To answer both of these very important questions, you should sit down and write out a list of thoughts in a logical manner in order to assist you in your ETS (Expiration of Time and Service) process. It is a best practice to try to brainstorm and think outside the box in order to visualize where you see yourself in one to two years. You should also think about where you will be in five to ten years. The key is to look not only at the short-term but also the long-term of what you see in your future in a best-case scenario. You can have fun with it and make your dreams as lofty as you can imagine, because when you believe you can achieve in every endeavor of your life moving forward.”

7 Steps to Transition

  1. Talk to your family about the decision and impacts of leaving the military.
  2. Make up a list of goals that you have for yourself.
  3. Analyze your military skills to determine your best course of action.
  4. Talk to your chain of command about life after the military.
  5. Set up an appointment with a career adviser on base.
  6. Contact a state veteran career adviser where you will be relocating.
  7. Research and collect market data for the field you will be entering.

Being informed is the single most important aspect of making an intelligent decision in your life. As you are beginning to think about leaving the military you have to be aware of everything that is going on around you at a rapid pace. The countdown may have begun months ago to when your last day of service is going to be, but you have a critical job to do before you start to think about your life outside of the military. Your preparation begins now.

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