The Army played host to many beneficial experiences for me. While in AIT, I felt the stress of learning a lot of information in a very short amount of time, and it is during that time that I discovered Pareto’s Principle, otherwise known as the 80/20 principle. I learned to take the important stuff first and foremost and ‘cut the fat’ where possible. When faced with strong deadlines I know that my quality should not suffer but at the same time I have learned to use my judgement in deciding what is and isn’t actually necessary. It is through the 80/20 principle that I discovered the author Tim Ferriss whom I continue to look at today as a true “T-shaped man”. I used his ideas and the ideas of Christopher McDougall to go from a mediocre runner to maxing out my PT scores in the Army in both running and sit-ups.
My first official station with the Army was at Bruchmühlbach-Miesau, Germany. This was my first time being abroad, and it was certainly an exciting time. A time of note was a field exercise that involved working with the British Army in a joint training exercise. It was there that I received the Army Commendation Medal for meritorious service. My job in the exercise was maintaining the computer, network, and phone systems of a mobile hospital. The exercise lasted for a full month and there was a lot of day/night shift switching for me as scheduling around surprise exercise events made it difficult to work around. Sometimes it was rough, but I see this as a beneficial experience.
Shortly after this I went to the 7th Army NCO academy to attend the Warrior Leaders course. This was my most beneficial time in the Army where I, as an introvert, was able to take an active role in leadership. I was assigned to act as a First Sargent during the three week training and played the role in making sure that each of the four platoons were keeping up with training schedules and achieving the goals laid out before us. As someone who has always been uncomfortable with crowds, the experience of being in front of and briefing 200 individuals every day was an incredible help. I experienced the stresses of management while sticking to my own training at the same time and had great success in both areas.
After my experiences in Miesau, Germany, I moved on to Fort Stewart, Georgia where I was put into a Calvary unit as the only Signal based person. My biggest experience of working 30+ vehicles has already been mentioned on the About Me page. Otherwise, I played a key role in maintaining the units arms room and keeping track of all sensitive equipment such as weapons and communication hardware. We had to take inventory on a seemingly constant basis which was always tedious but necessary in being sure that everything was accounted for and in its proper place. I learned the importance of the little, and sometimes monotonous things that keep the everyday business running through this process.