The first leg of the hike was the steepest incline I’ve ever seen and probably only 120 yards. Struggling to breathe, legs shaking, tears forming in my eyes I slowly made my way up the incline. As soon as it leveled off, feeling exhausted, I collapsed on a bench trying to catch my breath and praying for the feeling to return to my legs, my husband said: “Come on, get up, that was only the beginning.”
As military spouses, we are constantly conquering mountains and overcoming obstacles while striving to achieve our goals. Whether it’s continuing education, pursuing a career or just making it through the day, figurative mountains are in our path. These mountains make us question our strength, endurance, patience, and desires. We know triumph is waiting at the top, but sometimes we allow weariness, fatigue, and self-doubt to get in the way of reaching as high as we can.
In honor of #ReachAsHighAsYouCanDay I challenge my fellow military spouses to use this day to begin reaching as high as you can to achieve your dreams! Let’s get started, together.
I have always struggled with setting goals, as a teenager, my goal was to get a goal! Goals are difficult to set because they are tied to our wants and desires so in order to set goals we must be completely honest with ourselves and truly understand what we want. I think goal setting is especially hard for military spouses because our wants and desires are rarely taken into consideration by Uncle Sam so we choose not to dream to avoid the sting of disappointment when circumstances change. I’m here to say, don’t let Uncle Sam or your circumstances stop you from reaching new heights!
The first step in setting goals is deciding what YOU want. Do you want to begin or finish a degree, certificate, license? Do you want a career, not just a job? Do you want to follow your passion or discover a new one? Don’t allow military life to limit your goals and dreams!
“Only those who will risk going too far can possibly find out how far one can go.” – T.S. Elliot
Overcome Obstacles and Setbacks
Obstacles and setbacks are inevitable, PCS orders come too soon or not soon enough, college credits don’t transfer properly, financial burdens rise, an anticipated promotion doesn’t come through. Obstacles and setbacks are defining moments in our lives, we have the choice to let them stop us or let them launch us. When you encounter obstacles change your approach. Don’t see it as a roadblock, but view it as an opportunity. Look for ways that obstacles challenge you, help you, and educate you.
“It always seems impossible until it’s done”-Nelson Mandela
Ask for help. We are members of this vast military family, full of people with similar experiences. Odds are, you can find someone to guide you in overcoming your obstacle, or maybe you can be that guidance for someone else. This is a chance to realize your determination and desire. Let obstacles be the fuel for your goals, to push you to break through personal boundaries, and propel you to reach as high as you can!
Reach as High as You Can
I am grateful that my husband forced me from my relief bench and encouraged me to continue with the hike. The weather was beautiful, the company was enjoyable, and the feeling of accomplishment I gained was indescribable. I literally climbed a mountain and each day I pass by it I am filled with a sense of pride, knowing that on that day I did reach as high as I could.
Everyone has a mountain to climb, whether it is an actual mountain (in my case) or a figurative one. The path will twist and turn, obstacles will get in your way, but once you reach the top your reward is waiting!
How high will you reach today?
Written by: Amanda Marksmeier, Employment Specialist