Times When Disobeying A Direct Order Is The Right Thing To Do

By Greg Boudonck

Are there any times when a military soldier or officer should disobey a direct order?

Yes, but there are very few.

Some people assume that our military must follow along blindly and just do whatever their superiors order.

I am stepping into another highly controversial subject, so please understand that any views I state here are not necessarily the views of Part Time Commander.

The website is merely a medium and is not responsible for any statements I make.

So why am I bringing this subject to the surface?

A few days ago, my mate asked me if I would like to watch a movie on Netflix.

While I am busy, I did need a break and a movie sounded like a great idea.

Knowing that I write often about military subjects, she pulled a foreign military movie out of the lot.

It was titled The Siege of Jadotville.

I highly recommend that you watch this movie.

To give you just a brief synopsis, it is about a company of Irish soldiers who are missioned as a U.N. peacekeeping force in Congo, Africa.

It took place in 1961 and was an intense situation.

Not actually disobeying direct orders, the Commander of this unit probably should have at one point.

I will not delve further, because it would ruin the movie for you.

In watching the movie, I considered times when soldiers or officers should disobey a direct order.

When a person enlists in the United States military, they are taught from day 1 that obeying the orders of superiors is absolutely mandatory.


Is there any times when disobeying a direct order is the right thing to do?

There is no talk of any reason that a soldier should ever disobey any order.

But when we raised our hands and took the oath:

I do solemnly swear that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; and that I will obey the orders of the President of the United States and the orders of the officers appointed over me, according to regulations and the Uniform Code of Military Justice.

The key here is that I will only obey orders according to regulations and the UCMJ.

If a superior is giving an order against the UCMJ or regulations, it is actually mandatory that the soldier refuse those orders.

But when a decision has to be made in a half blink of your eye, that decision can be difficult.

And, if you disobey a direct order, you are committing a crime under Article 90 of the Uniform Code of Military Justice.

Some scenarios


You are guarding a compound in Afghanistan.

A family is approaching and you see no weapons.

The new 2nd Lieutenant that just arrived 1 week ago tells you to shoot the woman.

You look at him with wonder and he claims that he spotted that she is wearing explosives under her garments.

Do you shoot her?


You are on board a ship.

You are ordered daily for 2 weeks to make coffee for the Platoon leader and the NCO.

They make fun of your coffee making skills and joke about you.

It is getting frustrating and you do not believe you should have to make coffee for them.

Do you refuse?


You are a soldier in a National Guard unit.

There is a major protest and your unit was deployed to it.

The Governor of the State is near your side and one of the protestors grabs the Governor and has a knife to his throat.

Somehow the Governor slips free and the assailant is flailing with the knife.

The Governor tells you to shoot the one who grabbed him.

Do you?

My opinions according to my research

Before I explain my thoughts on the scenarios, I must also tell you that many individuals who have been brought up on charges of war crimes have claimed they were just following orders.

That doesn’t fly in court.

So what would my decision be on the above scenarios?

#1: Of all 3 scenarios, this is probably the most difficult decision.

The fact that you are getting an order from a “green” Lieutenant who has not been in the country for very long plays a huge part in this.

Personally, I would not outright disobey.

I would tell him first that we should try to halt them.

You should start yelling for them to halt or you will shoot.

If they keep moving forward, I believe a warning shot near them would be proper.

If they keep moving, follow the order and hopefully she is wearing explosives.

#2: First off, coffee is not an absolute need of any superiors.

It is absolutely wrong that they are doing that but… Is it worth the possible punishment for not obeying?

I would make the coffee daily and smile doing so.

Ask the leaders how you can do it better for them.

Just suck it up and do it; it could be worse.

#3: This is actually the easiest answer.

Shoot the assailant!

He still has a weapon and he attacked your highest Superior.

The Governor ordered you to shoot, so you shoot without any questions.

Do you agree or disagree?

At the end of this post, there is a comment area.

I would like to hear from all whether you agree or disagree.

Some cases of question

One of the biggest cases is the My Lai massacre in Vietnam.

Lieutenant William Calley was convicted while 20+ soldiers under his command were not.

They committed atrocities against civilians.

They followed orders that they should never have.

And there is Army Specialist Michael New who was told he was being sent from Germany to Macedonia as a U.N. Peacekeeper.

He refused on the grounds that he vowed to protect the U.S. and not be led by a foreign commander as part of the U.N.

He faced court martial and was convicted of disobedience and given a bad conduct discharge.

This is still a case that has people reeling.

Should soldiers agree to wear U.N. equipment and be led by other country’s military leaders?

Again, we would love to hear your views on that.

Final Thoughts

We have witnessed many military members who have done illegal acts maintain a defense that they were ordered to do so.

I rate that defense in the same degree as Mom used to tell me when I said that my friends are doing something, why can’t I?

The answer was always, “If your friends decide to jump off a bridge, will you too?”

While there are questionable circumstances normally a soldier knows what is right and what is wrong.

One huge example was the torturing of prisoners at Abu Gharib prison.

Defendants used the “I was ordered to” defense.

Sorry, but that does not fly in my book and it should not fly in the books of those who are passing judgment.

We would say that these terrorists may have committed unreal atrocities to members of our forces, but do 2 wrongs make a right?

We need to stand above that level of revenge and show the world that we are better than that.

When we bow to those levels, we create a hatred for us and we fuel the desire to attack and kill us more.

There are those certain times when disobeying a direct order is the right thing to do.

You may have to face serious consequences for doing so, but such is life.

I would say that isn’t it better to know you did right in your heart and with your Maker than to do wrong and make some officer happy.

That is my opinion, now feel free to give yours.

Thank you and have a great day!


  1. http://historynewsnetwork.org/article/5378
  2. http://www.omjp.org/ArtLarryDisobey.html
  3. http://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb/showthread.php?t=616532
  4. http://www.ucmj.us/sub-chapter-10-punitive-articles/892-article-92-failure-to-obey-order-or-regulation
  5. https://www.quora.com/Law-of-Armed-Conflict-When-and-under-what-rules-circumstances-can-a-US-soldier-disobey-a-direct-order-from-a-superior-officer-When-if-ever-can-they-not
  6. https://www.thebalance.com/military-orders-3332819
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The Upcoming Presidential Election; What Can We Expect For Our Military?

By Greg Boudonck

With the 2016 Presidential election just weeks away, I thought I would take a close look at what we may be facing in military terms depending on the election results.

To do so, we will look at the past records of the candidates.

This will include statements, voting records, treatment of service members, the opinions of foreign leaders and much more.

More than anything, much of this is my opinion.

Keep in mind that it is my opinion and does not necessarily reflect the opinion of Part Time Commander.

So who are the candidates?

If you don’t know the Republican and Democrat candidates for President, you have been stuffed in a box somewhere.

After all, they have been all over the news.

But do you know who the other candidates are?

Yes, there are more; many more.

Now many States have other people on their ballots.

You do also have the option of writing in a selection.

I am providing the candidates who are on more than 15% of election ballots.

But the candidates are:

  • Hillary Clinton – Democrat
  • Donald Trump – Republican
  • Gary Johnson – Libertarian
  • Jill Stein – Green
  • Darrell Castle – Constitution
  • Roque de la Fuente – Reform
  • Evan McMullin – Independent
  • Gloria la Riva – Socialism and Liberation

So you do have other choices than just Trump and Clinton.

Maybe this is a year that a 3rd party candidate would be wise.

Let’s look at what each one has in their minds for our military, but first let’s see which of these candidates have actually served in the Armed Forces.

Other posts you may enjoy:

  1. Officer Politics in the Army
  2. Talking About Politics While Serving in the Army, ARNG or USAR is Dumb!
  3. Games That Can Help With Your Military Tactics
  4. The US Military Budget Compared to Other Countries
  5. United States Presidents Who Served In The Army

What 2016 Presidential candidates served?

Hillary Clinton has never served in the military and neither has her running mate Tim Kaine.

Donald Trump has never served in the military and his running mate, Mike Pence has never served.

Gary Johnson has never served in the military and his running mate, William Weld has not served either.

Jill Stein and her running mate, Ajamu Baraka have never served in the military.

Darrell Castle was a 1st Lieutenant in the United States Marine Corps. His running mate, Scott Bradley served in the National Guard.

Roque de la Fuente has never served.

Evan McMullin has never served.

Gloria la Riva has never served.

World leader views

Go to any country and the majority of people could actually care less about the U.S. Presidential race.

But when talking with nation leaders, they are paying close attention.

Vladimir Putin of Russia is a Trump supporter because he believes that Trump will be open to a renewed cooperation between the countries.

The majority of European leaders are routing for Hillary.

This is probably because of her time as Secretary of State.

If we were to poll world leaders, I believe we would find the majority of support for Mrs Clinton.

Candidates military outlook

Let’s take a look at the military outlook of each candidate according to their statements.

Hillary states that we need to maintain the best prepared military in the world but like Obama, she is eying cuts in spending.

Many people feel very unclear on how she stands on the military budget, but she does follow a Democrat system which means a cut back.

With the situations we are facing worldwide, is cutting our military wise?

Donald Trump has been difficult to understand when it comes to the U.S. military.

One moment he is saying to cut the military budget and the next he is favoring raising it.

He has said some hard statements about U.S. military subjects, but at least he says what he is thinking.

He has spoke about being hard on Muslims entering the U.S. and at this point in time, that is where the primary attacks are coming from, but is that the answer?

Gary Johnson wants to shut down another 20% of military bases.

He wants us to quit meddling in other fights.

Essentially he wants us to just defend what we have.

And Jill Stein is essentially anti-military all the way around.

So what do we have?

I wonder if the world is looking at the United States and shaking their heads.presidential election

In my opinion, we need Harry Truman or Ronald Reagan.

Who do I support?

It is sad that in our country, 3rd party candidates do not have a better opportunity.

So now my opinion….

Hillary Clinton broke the law.

She knows she broke the law and as the Clinton luck goes, she got away with it.

I do not think that she is a good choice for President.

Remember Benghazi!

And Donald Trump???

A very frightening thought.

Now don’t get me wrong, I have respect for his business wisdom, but his political wisdom is about like me trying to sing. (I spent the money Mom gave me for singing lessons on beer.)

So we go to third parties, and Gary Johnson seems like a wise man, but I do not think he has our defense and security completely in check.

Jill Stein???

Peace, Love, Flower Power and no military.

Yea sure that will work.

I like Darrell Castle and his running mate, but does he have a complete picture of everything.

Nope, the best candidate in my opinion is … Evan McMullin.

Evan worked for the CIA for years and he understands the needs both militarily and civilian of our country with security.

So Evan is my choice.

I am putting the websites of each candidate in my order of preference.

Please study them all.

And tell us your thoughts and if the election process was better able to support third party candidates, who would you choose?

  1. Evan McMullin – https://www.evanmcmullin.com
  2. Darrell Castle – http://castle2016.com/home/
  3. Donald Trump – https://www.donaldjtrump.com/
  4. Gary Johnson – https://www.johnsonweld.com/
  5. Hillary Clinton – https://www.hillaryclinton.com/
  6. Roque de la Fuente – http://www.rocky2016.com/
  7. Jill Stein – http://www.jill2016.com/
  8. Gloria Estela la Riva – http://www.glorialariva4president.com/

Final Thoughts

This election has many emotions coming out.

  • Excitement
  • Fear
  • Suspense
  • Sadness
  • Humor

Whatever happens, we must realize that we control this nation and not the President.

Tell us your thoughts.

You can post all comments and questions below.

I also want to ask you to please vote.

Refusing to vote, in my opinion, gives you no right to “bitch” about the outcome.

I have confronted people with this before.

They start talking bad about the administration and I ask them who they voted for; when they say they didn’t, I just ask them why they are whining.

Also, don’t buy into the talk that by voting 3rd party you are throwing your vote away.

If more people would study the candidates instead of just voting for a party, we would have better politicians in the seats.

Again, just my opinion.

What is your opinion?

Thank you.

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Discrimination: Is It Alive And Well In The United States Military?

By Greg Boudonck

Discrimination… It is something that many people believe we are overcoming.

After all, people like Michael Jackson wrote songs that brought colors together and it does seem that discrimination is not nearly as prevalent as in years past.

But does that hold true for the United States military?

Before I move on with this article, I must tell readers that I am going to step into a controversial subject.

I am apt to throw my opinions into this article even though I am going to attempt to stay neutral but in a subject such as this, I have my doubts I will be able to hold a neutral stance for very long.

I do want to tell you that Part Time Commander and its owner are not any part of this stance I take.

The website is just a medium for my expression, and they have no part in the expressions I am making.

So if you have any issues with what is written here, feel free to contact me personally.

Let’s first take a look at history of discrimination in the United States military

When we research and study the multitudes of documents on discrimination and racism in the U.S. military, there is a plethora of material, but it mainly looks at the plights of African Americans.

While I by no means am trying to take away from that fact that out black citizens were discriminated against, I do want to point out that by no means were they the only people to be discriminated against.discrimination

If we really look closely, people of many cultures and nationalities who had become United States citizens did face discrimination in the United States military.

Some other groups that faced discrimination were:

  • Native Americans
  • Mexican Americans
  • Japanese Americans
  • Chinese Americans
  • Irish Americans
  • Puerto Ricans
  • Jewish Americans
  • Women

And for the kicker that I will explain further in… Caucasian Americans.

So let’s move through the time-line:

1500’s to 1774 The Colonial Period

During this period, we found that our country was a mix, but primarily a white mix.

Indians, Mulattos and those of African descent were on the outside of the circle, but when it came to defending the colonies, up until the early 1600’s, and man who could carry a gun was enticed to belong to a local militia.

While the majority of Indians were enemies at that time, there were a few who were friendly and were welcome to fight as allies.

Africans were slaves but were given the ability to fight as defenders too.

But fear took hold of slave owners as blacks began to up rise against owners. Many colonies enacted laws that would not allow a slave to carry a gun.

Many militia laws were adapted to any given area and time period.

If someone would not serve in the militia, small fines were instituted.

So naturally, when militia numbers dropped below acceptable levels, recruitment of Indians, Mulattos and some Africans was instituted.

1775 to 1783 The Revolution

At the start of the Revolution, the Continental Army would not accept any “negros” according to Adjutant General Horatio Gates.

But many people in the colonies were firmly against revolt against the British.

The British also enticed the black population to fight on their side.

Shortly, General George Washington saw the need for the African fighters and reversed that rule.

But discrimination was evident.

No black soldier ever rose above Private, and they were known as negro, or surnames associated with the blacks in the early years of the war.

But as the war rolled on, slave owners began giving their slaves to the effort and there were actually companies of black soldiers led by a black commander.

Some of these black fighters fought brilliantly, but were re-enslaved after the war.

The majority of Indians supported the British which caused an even deeper hatred for them at war’s end.

Many colonists claimed that Indians now had no rights to any land.

After the Militia Act of 1792, it was deemed the only people who could serve would be free, white and 18 to 45 years old.

The Marine Corps abided by that completely until 1942.

1812 to 1815 War of 1812

Here is when we saw military discrimination in a huge way.

General and future President Andrew Jackson offered slaves freedom if the fought and free black men were offered 160 acres of land and the same pay as white men.

When it was over, Jackson took it all back.

The Civil War

When blacks were allowed to fight for the Union, they were always led by a white commander.

Blacks were used as labor primarily in the confederacy.

Indians and Mexicans fought on both sides, but treatment was harsh and anyone who wasn’t white had greater odds of being killed because they were given the weakest weapons and were treated as second rate.

Mid To Late 1800’s-The Indian Campaigns

During this period, trust was difficult.

Discrimination and prejudice was “normal.”

Many Army leaders would not accept blacks in their companies.

Usually, Army leaders would not be promoted because of it, but they would accept that.

A good example was George Custer.

When offered black soldiers, Custer used some derogatory terms and would not accept them.

We wonder how the battle where he was killed would have turned out if he would have had those extra men.

Some black men attended West Point and were commissioned, but they had to endure racial slurs and mistreatment.

The Spanish American War

The War Department felt that black soldiers would be well suited to fight in the Caribbean.

But they were mistreated like usual.

Other posts you may enjoy:

  1. Uniform Code of Military Justice Facts: 10 Things You Should Know
  2. Debate: Should They Eliminate the DA Photo?
  3. Facts About The Women’s Army Corps Service Medal
  4. Debate: Should Citizenship Have to be Earned Via Military Service?
  5. Debate: Women Serving in Combat Arms

And Moving Further

As we moved into World War I and World War II, soldiers of various ethnicity were accepted but segregated.

The skin color determined what unit they would serve in.

Blacks were with blacks and Latins with Latins, but in most cases, they had Anglo Commanders and leaders.

Many would also claim that these groups were given the most dangerous missions.

While discrimination was not supposed to be, it was still evident.

And who exactly would do anything about it?

We moved into Korea, Vietnam and several other smaller conflicts.

Women began to become involved which created a new issue, but I believe it took some of the discrimination away from the other groups.

We then came to a position where homosexuals felt they needed their place and the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” system came into play.

In many ways the military was trying to combat against discrimination at every level, and also trying to combat enemies of the United States.

I wrote the book “Puertorriquenos Who Served With Guts, Glory and Honor.”

I had the opportunity to interview a Marine who served in Vietnam.

He described low level discrimination which I believe is something anyone faced if they were different.

This is where I go beck to something I stated earlier; even white people are sometimes discriminated against.

You have a bigger nose or curly hair, you may be different.

My last name, Boudonck garnered hateful and rude comments.

So is there discrimination in the military now?

I have read many articles pointing out that we have a high percentage of African American and Latin soldiers, but not an equal percentage in leadership positions.

I tend to agree with the “Brass.”

They claim that these soldiers are choosing MOS’ that have an overload of leaders.

It is combat units that need leaders, but these soldiers are going into non-combat units.

It isn’t discrimination, it is numbers.

But there STILL IS prejudice and discrimination in the military.

There always will be.

When you have humans and one human is not like the other, there can, and will be prejudice.

That is life and we must face it.

My View On Affirmative Action

There has been a push to add equal numbers in the military in leadership.

I have watched corporations institute similar policies and to be blunt…They suck!

When a person is promoted just because of their nationality and not because of their achievements, the system creates a new hatred.

As an example, you have Frank who is an African American who has has had some brushes with regulations and has been below average on APFT exams.

You have Dave who is white and has excellent numbers and has the best abilities in the role that is open.

But Affirmative Action states there needs to be an African American in the position, so they promote the less qualified Frank because of his skin color.

Now I am not picking out just African Americans here; this is the case with women and other minorities.

I believe the promotions should never be based on anything but qualifications.

I watched where a certain individual at a corporation I worked for was a minority.

He missed work, no call, no show for 3 days.

They gave him his job back and 1 month later he was promoted to shift supervisor.

During that same period, a Caucasian man was late to work 2 days (car issues).

He was fired and could not get his job back.

He was a hard worker and never complained.

I watched as underlying prejudice built throughout the corporation.

White workers who were under the new shift supervisor began to do their work at bare minimum.

The system had created a monster.

Affirmative Action does not work!

Do I have the answer?


I will say that if any military leader is “caught” using discriminatory practices, they need to be removed immediately.

This goes for any.

Because even minorities do discriminate against majorities at times too.

We will never completely rid prejudice and discrimination.

But if certain individuals who show that they have those tendencies are put into positions of working with or for the people they are prejudice against, they may learn that there is a different side.

Final Thoughts

So what do you think?

Do you believe that discrimination is rampant in the military?

How do you think it should be attacked?

Please post your views below.

Again I must say, I was not trying to attack any certain group in this post.

Part Time Commander does not have any part in the views I am expressing here.

If you have any issues with what I wrote, just remember it is me and you should confront me and not the medium I am using to express these views.

Thank you.


  1. http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2014/09/11/army-officer-corps-dominated-by-white-men/14987977/
  2. https://blogs.longwood.edu/amandaeng400blog/2013/05/23/gender-discrimination-in-the-military/
  3. http://www.history.army.mil/html/faq/diversity.html
  4. http://www.nytimes.com/2014/05/15/opinion/discrimination-in-the-military.html?_r=0
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Weight Loss Programs & Diet Plans: The 35 Most Popular

By Greg Boudonck

We have often discussed the problem of obesity in the Army National Guard and Reserves.

As a matter of act, obesity is a huge issue in the complete United States.

As people realize the problem, weight loss programs and diet plans have become more important to many people.

Now the issue can be choosing the best weight loss program and/or diet plan for your needs.

There are just so many choices that the decision can be difficult.

So in today’s post, I have decided to provide you with the 35 most popular weight loss programs and diet plans.

This may help you decide on a good plan for you.

Not only will these programs and diets help you lose weight, you will learn to live a healthy lifestyle and they can also help other body functions.

Weight loss

Here are the top 35 weight loss programs and diets

I will start at #35 and work up to #1.

I will tell you some things about the plan and provide a link for more information.

#35: The Traditional Asian Diet

Studies have shown that people in Asian countries tend be less obese overall than Americans.

Plus, they have less cases of cancer and heart disease.

Much of this is believed to be related to their diet pattern.

The Asian Diet consists of:

  • rice
  • noodles
  • whole grains
  • fruits
  • vegetables
  • seeds and nuts
  • daily fish or shellfish

Red meat is only allowed once per month.


#34: The Atkins Diet

The idea behind the Atkins diet is to reduce sugar and carbohydrates.

By doing so, your body is forced to burn the fat to create energy.

The Atkins diet has had a fair share of critics, but there are many people who swear by the program.

So it is low carbs and high fat.

Dr. Atkins’ New Diet Revolution

#33: The Vegetarian Diet

This diet has increased in popularity.

Many people who follow a vegetarian diet are less obese, but it is important that a person finds proper foods to get their protein since meat is forbidden.

Vegetarian Diet For Beginners: 50 Delicious Recipes And 8 Weeks Of Diet Plans (Vegetarian Cookbook) (Volume 1)

#32: The Fast Diet

This diet consists of eating as you like for 5 days of the week but for 2 days, men can eat only 600 calories and women 500.

So you are not completely fasting, but eating much less for 2 days.

This program works well, but you should check with your Doctor before taking on this diet.

The FastDiet – Revised & Updated: Lose Weight, Stay Healthy, and Live Longer with the Simple Secret of Intermittent Fasting

#31: The Jillian Michaels Weight Loss Program

Jillian Michaels is a well known coach and trainer that can make your weight loss goals a reality.

She will provide you with a daily weight loss and fitness plan that many people have been overjoyed with.

Ifit Jillian Michaels Weight Loss Program Level 1

#30: The Spark Solution Diet

This 2 week diet and fitness plan has made a huge difference in many people’s lives.

Many find that once they integrate this program, the system stays in place and they eat properly automatically.

The Spark Solution: A Complete Two-Week Diet Program to Fast-Track Weight Loss and Total Body Health

#29: The Kind Diet

Developed by actress Alicia Silverstone, the Kind Diet is a system to make your diet primarily vegan.

Alicia shows you how to slowly transition yourself into this and you WILL lose weight.

The Kind Diet: A Simple Guide to Feeling Great, Losing Weight, and Saving the Planet

#28: The Engine 2 Diet

This diet plan was developed by a Texas firefighter.

He helped members of his squad become healthy and will show you the foods that can make you strong and healthy too.

The Engine 2 Diet: The Texas Firefighter’s 28-Day Save-Your-Life Plan that Lowers Cholesterol and Burns Away the Pounds

#27: Body For Life

Bill Phillips was a competitive body builder and has developed this program that is a 12 week physical and mental challenge to good health and well-being.

There are many positive testimonials for this program.

Body for Life: 12 Weeks to Mental and Physical Strength

#26: Inside Out Weight Loss Program

Doctor Renée Stevens developed a series of podcasts to help you in your weight loss journey.

You can get these podcasts simply by subscribing via their iTunes channel.

Just go to this link to find out more.

Other posts you may enjoy:

  1. Weight Loss Tips for Army Soldiers and Military Personnel
  2. How to Get Healthy and Lose Weight
  3. Five Ways Army Leaders Can Help Their Overweight Soldiers Lose Weight
  4. Army Weight Control Program Overview
  5. Lesson # 1: Plan Out Your Meals and Exercise Regimen Each Week

#25: Provida Life Sciences

Provida has several solutions to develop a healthier you.

They were started in 2000 and have been helping people lose weight since.

Visit the Provida Life Sciences website here.

#24: Herbalife

This multilevel marketing company is well known for their weight loss supplements and programs.

Their are many independent distributors all around the nation, or you can visit the Herbalife website here.

#23: Beachbody

Beachbody is an all around program that will supply you with DVDs, shakes and nutritional supplements to give you the body you desire.

This multilevel marketing program has been greatly accepted.

You can visit their website here.

#22: LA Weight Loss

With a program designed to fit your needs, LA Weight Loss has shown dramatic results for many people.

You can see the programs available by visiting their website here.

#21: Right Size Smoothies

This company provides meal replacement shakes and smoothies.

They have ample protein along with other needed nutrients.

You can visit the Right Size website to see more.

#20: Fertility Diet

While this diet isn’t necessarily for losing weight, the diet plan is great for people trying to lose pounds…but beware, you may get pregnant easily.

This diet is meant to make the body at optimum performance to conceive a baby.

The Fertility Diet: Groundbreaking Research Reveals Natural Ways to Boost Ovulation and Improve Your Chances of Getting Pregnant

#19: Raw Food Diet

This is a diet that has really taken hold recently.

The idea is to eat only raw foods that have no additives and are completely organic.

Foods within this diet consist of:

  • fruits and vegetables
  • fish
  • eggs
  • nuts and seeds
  • and even some meats

But, there are dangers involved with this, so you need to research the complete diet before partaking in it.

The Fully Raw Diet: 21 Days to Better Health, with Meal and Exercise Plans, Tips, and 75 Recipes

#18: The Paleo Diet

This diet is based off what early humans ate… The Paleolithic, which were a stone-age people.

The diet consists of nuts, fruits, vegetables and certain meats, but leaves out many processed items that people of those times would not have ingested.

It is considered a fad diet, but many people have been happy they have joined this fad as they have lost many pounds.

The Paleo Diet: Lose Weight and Get Healthy by Eating the Foods You Were Designed to Eat

#17: Eco-Atkins Diet

Based off the Atkins Diet, the Eco-Atkins Diet goes a step further adding a vegan plan to the original diet.

For the people who want the benefits of the Atkins Diet without meat or dairy, this is the diet for them.

Here is the link.

#16: Medifast

The Medifast Program is designed to give you every possible avenue to lose weight.

They design a program for you and provide the meals.

The testimonials are numerous.

While it is somewhat costly, you will lose weight as long as you follow the plan.

Here is the Medifast website.

#15: Volumetrics Weight Loss Diet

The Volumetrics diet focuses on foods that have a low density and high water content.

The person who developed this plan, Dr. Barbara Rolls, believed that by using these foods, a person could eat as much as they want to satisfy hunger unlike many other diet plans that leave people feeling hunger.

The plan doesn’t promise huge immediate weight loss, but consistent loss.

The Ultimate Volumetrics Diet: Smart, Simple, Science-Based Strategies for Losing Weight and Keeping It Off

#14: Nutrisystem

The Nutrisystem program provides you with a meal plan and all the meals are delivered direct to your door.

It is approximately 1 month worth of meals that provide all the proper nutrition to help you lose weight and feel great.

Visit their website here.

#13: The Flexitarian Diet

I find that more and more people are following this type of diet plan and do not even know they are.

The Flexitarian Diet is essentially a flexible vegetarian diet.

The user of this diet plan follows a primary vegan diet but occasionally eats meat.

There are no absolute rules with this diet and as such, weight loss can be hard to measure in overall stats.

The Flexitarian Table: Inspired, Flexible Meals for Vegetarians, Meat Lovers, and Everyone in Between

#12: The TLC Diet

TLC stands for Therapeutic Life Changes, and this diet is pushed by the American Heart Association.

The main aim of the TLC Diet is to cutting back on fat and lowering your cholesterol intake, and adding more fiber.

This diet does mean you will have to really check ingredients in foods you purchase.

The Complete Idiot’s Guide to the TLC Diet (Complete Idiot’s Guides (Lifestyle Paperback))

#11: The Slim Fast Diet Plan

Slim Fast makes much more than those simple shakes we used to see.

They now have meal replacement shakes, snack bars and more.

The Slim Fast plan shows you how to eat 6 times per day and lose weight.

Slim-Fast 3-2-1 Plan Recipes

#10: The South Beach Diet

This program was developed by a cardiologist and many people have fallen in love with the plan.

You get the meals delivered to your door, and they will fill and satisfy you, but you WILL lose weight.

I suggest you visit the South Beach diet website here.

#9: The Mayo Clinic Diet

This diet has been well accepted since it was instituted by Doctors and staff at the infamous Mayo Clinic.

Not only does this diet give you tips on what to eat, but also strives to teach people on living healthy lifestyles.

The Mayo Clinic Diet: Eat well. Enjoy Life. Lose weight.

#8: The Mediterranean Diet

This is a favorite diet of many people and has shown that it not only keeps people slim and trim, but they seem to live longer lives.

The diet focuses on eating fruits, vegetables, seeds, nuts, legumes, and a huge focus on fish.

Olive oil is used and small amounts of red wine are favored.

Mediterranean Diet for Beginners: The Complete Guide – 40 Delicious Recipes, 7-Day Diet Meal Plan, and 10 Tips for Success

#7: HMR Weight Loss Program

This program has coaches that lead you along with healthy eating patterns, exercise and lifestyle changes.

There are various program locations around the country.

You should visit the HMR website to learn more.

#6: The Ornish Diet

This diet is developed to help you reverse bad results from past lifestyles and diets.

The idea is eating foods you enjoy and taste good, but within the parameters of proper nutrition.

Also, the diet deems that foods are natural and organic.

Dr. Dean Ornish’s Program for Reversing Heart Disease: The Only System Scientifically Proven to Reverse Heart Disease Without Drugs or Surgery

#5: The DASH Diet

This diet was originally designed to help lower blood pressure in people, but it has also shown great results in weight loss.

This diet was featured on the Today Show and is being used by many people.

The Dash Diet Weight Loss Solution: 2 Weeks to Drop Pounds, Boost Metabolism, and Get Healthy

#4: The MIND Diet

The MIND diet helps with weight loss, but the primary idea is helping our brains.

This diet is believed to fight diseases like Alzheimers.

The foods consist of fish, berries and leafy greens.

The MIND Diet: A Scientific Approach to Enhancing Brain Function and Helping Prevent Alzheimer’s and Dementia

#3: The Biggest Loser Diet

Instituted from the Biggest Loser reality television show, this diet is based on an eating pyramid of 4-3-2-1.

4 servings of fruits and vegetables, 3 servings of lean protein, 2 servings of whole grains and the 1 is 200 calories of anything else.

People have found dramatic weight loss by following this program.

The Biggest Loser 30-Day Jump Start: Lose Weight, Get in Shape, and Start Living the Biggest Loser Lifestyle Today!

#2: Jenny Craig

The Jenny Craig weight loss plan is guaranteed to work.

There are locations all around the country, and you will be given a dedicated counselor.

There is even a special right now to lose 20 pounds for $20 plus the cost of food.

Just visit their website here.

#1: Weight Watchers

Hands down, Weight Watchers is the top weight loss program there is.

The Weight Watchers program has shown true results and many people have been losing pounds and enjoying life.

Visit the Weight Watchers website here.

Final Thoughts

Obesity is a huge problem in America and in the U.S. military.

But with determination and help like above, we can overcome obesity; live longer and enjoy life to its fullest.

So what are your thoughts?

What is your favorite program or diet?

Is there any not listed here that you would recommend?

You can share your comments and questions below.

Thank you.

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Top 13 Military Friendly Insurance Companies

By Greg Boudonck


It is something we all really need to have, but truly hate paying the bill.

It seems there are so many things a person needs to have insurance on:

  • Vehicles
  • Health
  • Businesses
  • Life
  • and more

And when you watch that money flowing from your bank account to the insurance company, it is easy to question why.

Until a catastrophe happens.

I know this firsthand. I payed home insurance for years. I often thought about all the money I had given that company.

The day was hot and muggy as we went shopping at Walmart.

I looked at my wife as we were on the highway and told her there must be a big fire, as I saw smoke billowing into the air.

As we neared our home, I broke down as did my wife.

It was our home and all of our possessions.

It was difficult, but thanks to the fabulous Red Cross, our Pastor and our Church, and a wonderful insurance agent and great company, we were able to get back on our feet.

insurance companies

Find the best insurance to fit your needs

Thank God I had paid my insurance premiums.

Yes, insurance for any and everything that is called for is wise.

You just never know when something can happen.

In today’s blog post, I am going to share the top 13 military friendly insurance companies.

Some of these companies handle varieties of insurance types.

I will attempt to explain the various forms of insurance they handle.

So, starting at #13 and working up to #1, here are the most military friendly insurance companies.

Other posts you may enjoy:

  1. Top 20 Military Friendly States
  2. Top 5 Military-Friendly Employers
  3. Top 5 Military-Friendly Banks
  4. National Guard Health Insurance: 12 Facts You Need
  5. Top 10 Military Health Insurance Benefits

#13: Navy Mutual

Navy Mutual is headquartered in Arlington, Virginia.

They offer a great life insurance program for anyone who has served in the military or their spouses.

They even have a life insurance where you need no medical exam.

Navy Mutual also offers a variety of annuities.

Just one of the member testimonies I found told me this is a great company.

“When I went into the Navy Mutual office a week after my husband passed away, it was a complete surprise to me…they already knew the reason I was there. I walked into nothing but love. It was a like a family.”

Tangie Phair, USMC, Ret.

Navy Mutual website

#12: Esurance

Esurance was developed so people could handle all their insurance needs online.

They offer many special discounts for military personnel.

You can get insurance for:

  • vehicles
  • property
  • health
  • life
  • pet
  • and more

Esurance may be well worth examining for your insurance needs.

Visit their website here.


This company was developed many years ago with our military members in mind.

As a member of AAFMAA, you can get great life insurance, mortgage services, wealth management services and a wide variety of other benefits.

This organization was formed in 1879, so they have a rich history of helping military members.

The headquarters of AAFMAA are in Fort Meyer, Virginia.

You can see their website here.

#10: Navy Federal

Best known for their Credit Union banking services, Navy Federal also offers life, auto and property insurance.

Started by military for military, Navy Federal can help you cover many of your insurance needs.

The Navy Federal headquarters are in Vienna, Virginia.

You can view their website here.

#9: USBA

The life insurance plans by this company that caters to military personnel are underwritten by New York Life.

They also offer supplemental plans for those on TriCare.

USBA is based in Overland Park, Kansas and has a good reputation.

See their website here.

#8: Progressive

This is one of the largest vehicle insurance agencies in the U.S.

But, they also insure homes and more.

And, they have discounts for military.

This insurance company has grown to its size because of the way they treat people.

So you may want to check your rates with them.

Here is the Progressive website.

#7: AFBA

By becoming a member, you can get great deals on life insurance along with a slew of other benefits.

They also offer banking and loan services.

They were started in 1947 to serve military members.

Visit the AFBA website here.

#6: American Family

I can vouch for this insurance company.

They treat their clients well.

They have property, life, health and more.

Headquartered in Madison, Wisconsin, you can see the American Family website here.

Be sure and tell them you are military to watch your rates get reduced.

#5: Servicemembers Group Life Insurance (SGLI)

All service members are eligible for the SGLI program offered through the Government.

It is highly recommended that you take this benefit while you are serving.

The rates do rise substantially when you leave the military though.

This website will tell you more.

#4: AllState

This is one of the largest insurance carriers in the U.S.

They offer some wonderful discounts to members of the Armed Forces.

AllState offers nearly any kind of insurance you could possibly need, so I highly suggest you compare their rates.

You can do that at this website.

#3: Armed Forces Insurance (AFI)

This insurance company was started by military to help military.

Offering a variety of insurance types, all I hear are great reviews of AFI.

The AFI mission statement says it all:

Provide premium quality, competitively priced property and casualty insurance products and deliver fast, fair, and efficient claims and policy service to our members. Create a rewarding customer service experience for our members while strictly adhering to our core competency, underwriting. Protect our members from fortuitous loss and provide peace of mind.

Visit the AFI website here.

#2: Geico

We have all seen that little gecko telling us we need Geico.

When it comes to auto insurance, Geico steps up to the plate for members of our military.

You really should get a quote from the gecko’s boss at Geico.

Visit their website here.

#1: USAA

They are the best.

Since 1922, USAA has been insuring United States military members and overall, they hold the best ranking.

They offer auto, home, life and various banking services.

It is wise that you check the USAA rates in comparison to others.

You may be pleasantly surprised.

Visit the USAA website here.

Final Thoughts

So which insurance company do you use?

Do you have any testimonials for or against any of the listed insurance companies?

We would love to hear your experiences and opinions.

Do keep in mind that you should regularly check rates and compare others.

To gain your business, many insurance companies will offer some extra special rates.

Thank you for your service.

You can leave all comments and questions below.


  1. Best Car Insurance for Veterans and Military Personnel
  2. Best Military Friendly Auto Insurance Companies in America
  3. Best Auto Insurance for Military Personnel
  4. http://www.military.com/money/insurance/supplemental-life-insurance/choosing-right-life-insurance-for-servicemembers.html

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Top 20 Military Friendly States

By Greg Boudonck

No matter how we look at it, the United States is the best place to live in the world.

Maybe I am slightly prejudice, since I have always lived in the United States.

Some may try to say that I do not live in the U.S. now because I reside in beautiful Puerto Rico, but I have news for you, Puerto Rico is a part of the United States.

It is a Commonwealth, and I foresee a day it will add another star to the Red, White and Blue.

Now that we have determined that the United States is the best place to live, many ask, where in the United States is the best place to live?

Using a slew of factors, I have put together the top 20 military friendly States to live in. military

I will be using:

  • Tax benefits
  • Education benefits
  • Overall prices and discounts
  • Military discounts on vehicle registration, hunting and fishing licenses, eating out, etc…
  • And much more

Using various resources, I developed a scoring chart.

So without further ado, starting with #20 and working up to #1, let’s look at the most friendly States or military.

#20: Pennsylvania

Home of the 2nd oldest military base in the United States, Carlisle Barracks, Pennsylvania also has several other Army bases.

Pennsylvania is quite Veteran friendly.

The State has a wide array of Veteran homes, and a range of other benefits or military vets.

You can find more at this link.

The average temperature in Pennsylvania is nearly 56 degrees.

#19: Indiana

Indiana is known to be a very friendly military State.

Employers are known to actively hire current or former military personnel.

If you look throughout this Midwestern State, you see dedications to soldiers everywhere.

The State ranks very high on overall discounts for military.

The average temperature in Indiana is 52 degrees.

#18: Maine

Maine offers a variety of benefits for military who reside in the State. These include tax exemptions, hunting and fishing benefits along with a lot more.

You can see more about them here.

It is a beautiful State that supports our military members.

The average temperature in Maine is 46 degrees.

#17: Hawaii

Not only is Hawaii a beautiful State, it treats military members with care.

Yes, it is an expensive State, but if you are a service member or veteran, those costs are cut drastically via special incentives.

So its time to do the hula and move to Hawaii.

The average temperature on the islands stays around 80 degrees.

#16: Virginia

The State of Virginia comes in at #16 not so much because of special benefits for military members, but primarily because so many military members live there now.

Virginia has a high concentration of both current and previous military members.

And, we all know that military helps military.

It isn’t difficult to find employment and there is just the sense that you are where you belong.

The average temperature in Virginia is 59 degrees.

#15: North Dakota

This Northern State comes in because of the high rate of employment opportunities for both ex military and current military members.

Jobs are rampant in North Dakota.

There are also many education advantages in North Dakota for military members.

If you can handle cold winters, this may be the State for you.

The average temperature in North Dakota is 43 degrees.

Other posts you may enjoy:

  1. The Military Alphabet: What it is and How it Works
  2. How to Balance Your Military Career, Civilian Job and Family Life
  3. The 64th Forward Support Battalion (FSB) at Fort Carson: My Experience
  4. 37 Career Tips for Army National Guard and Army Reserve NCOs and Officers
  5. The Letter Home From Vietnam: A Lesson For Those Serving In War

#14: South Carolina

South Carolina makes the list thanks to legislation passed in 2015 that makes the State much more military friendly.

It included property tax exemptions and education benefits for military members.

The average temperature in this Southern State is 64 degrees.

#13: South Dakota

South Dakota was not going to be outdone by its Northern counterpart.

This great State offers military members many amenities.

Nearly any store or restaurant you enter has discounts or military.

South Dakota loves the U.S. military and it shows.

It does stay chilly though, with an average temperature of 43 degrees.

#12: Iowa

I can surely vouch for Iowa since I lived in the State for many years, and many of my family members still do.

If you wear, or have wore a military uniform, you will probably get discounts you just won’t believe.

Plus, Iowa has some great tax incentives for military members and veterans.

So you may want to move where the corn grows tall.

The average temperature is 51 degrees.

#11: Connecticut

Connecticut ranks high for both tax and education benefits for military members.

A beautiful Eastern State, it may be a great choice to settle down with your family.

The average Connecticut temperature is 52 degrees.

#10: New York

Some rate this as the top State for military members.

While I do agree that they offer many benefits to military members, I could not put it at the top just because of the cost of living.

It is expensive to live in New York.

But, the State takes care of military members.

The average temperature is 55 degrees.

#9: Wisconsin

Wisconsin supports the military wholeheartedly.

They are tops in finding discounts in stores or military members.

They also offer some excellent education opportunities.

Here is another case where if you can take the cold, it may be a great place or you.

The average Wisconsin temperature is 48 degrees.

#8: Montana

It is a wide open range.

Montana is a beautiful State and is wanting residents.

They cater to military; both current and previous.

You just may want to go buy a ranch and become a Montana resident.

The average temperature is 46 degrees.

#7: Maryland

Maryland is another State that already has a large military population.

The State offers extensive tax breaks for military along with some magnificent education amenities.

The average temperature in Maryland is 58 degrees.

#6: Tennessee

Such a beautiful State that loves soldiers.

The tax incentives alone are amazing and add to it the discounts you can get from merchants.

You have Nashville and Memphis and many mountains and valleys.

An average temperature of 63 degrees makes Tennessee nearly the perfect place.

#5: Alaska

Alaska is another State that loves military members.

With your military experience, there are a plethora of employment opportunities.

There are many other benefits waiting military members in the State of Alaska too.

But, the average temperature is 37 degrees.

Do you like the cold?

#4: Florida

Can you say no State income tax?

Many military members find Florida the perfect State to move to.

The owner and operator of Part Time Commander lives there, and you just may find it a perfect location too.

The average temperature is 68 degrees.

#3: New Hampshire

This has been a well kept secret for many military members, but New Hampshire offers some of the highest tax breaks for members of the military.

There are also a wide range of service for military veterans in this Eastern State.

The average temperature is 46 degrees.

#2: Texas

It was a tight race between #1 and #2.

Texas has a great cost of living index, tax incentives for military personnel and many other wonderful amenities.

Texas is a great State and should be highly considered as a settling spot if you are military.

The average temperature is 69 degrees.

#1: Wyoming

Wyoming just loves military members.

They cater to them knowing that if not for the members in uniform, we could be run by communists.

There are benefits plus in Wyoming, so if you are military, this just may be the best location for you.

The average temperature in Wyoming is 46 degrees.

Final thoughts

So do you agree or disagree?

What is your favorite State and why?

If you disagree, please tell us what you think is the best military friendly State and please explain why.

Now I probably would have put my location in this list, but Puerto Rico isn’t a State yet anyway.

But, it is very military friendly too.

Please leave your comments and questions below.

Thank you.


  1. Most Military Friendly States including Discounts, Education, and Taxes
  2. 2016’s Best & Worst States for Military Retirees
  3. 2016’s Best and Worst States for Military Retirees
  4. http://www.military.com/benefits/military-pay/state-retirement-income-tax.html


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Great Inspirational Quotes: The 29 Top Ones

By Greg Boudonck

Whether you are a soldier in Afghanistan, a staff officer sitting at a desk in Arlington, Virginia, a housewife, a student, a laborer, a business person or a homeless person, we all need inspiration from time to time.

I have discovered that some of my best inspiration comes when I read great inspirational quotes.

So, I thought that some inspirational quotes may help you too.

They can help motivate and put a smile on our faces.

So I am going to share the top 29 greatest inspirational quotes.

They are in no certain order.

I will give the quote, who said it and I will give my 2 cents about it.


1: “Success is going from failure to failure without losing your enthusiasm.” Winston Churchill

The fact is: we will have failures.

It is how we tackle those failures that truly defines us.

2: “Optimism is the one quality more associated with success and happiness than any other.” Brian Tracy

An optimistic outlook can bring us through anything.

3: “All our dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them.” Walt Disney

You just have to love Walt Disney.

He did show us this is so true didn’t he?

4: “Start by doing what’s necessary; then do what’s possible; and suddenly you are doing the impossible.” Francis of Assisi

He was given sainthood because he followed his quote.

Really, nothing is impossible.

5: “Before you diagnose yourself with depression or low self-esteem, first make sure that you are not, in fact, just surrounded by assholes” Sigmund Freudinspirational quotes

So that was my problem!

While it is somewhat humorous, it has huge truth in it.

6: “Success usually comes to those who are too busy to be looking for it.” Henry David Thoreau

If we stay hard at work and not just merely looking busy, success will come knocking on our door without us even expecting his visitation.

7: “The best way out is always through.” Robert Frost

It is actually more difficult to circumvent an issue or try to hide it; just deal with it and move forward.

8: “I destroy my enemies when I make them my friends.” Abraham Lincoln

It may take some compromise, but there is always a way to turn an enemy into a friend.

Forgiveness is usually the key.

9: “If you cannot do great things, do small things in a great way.” Napoleon Hill

Napoleon said some very wise things, and I rate this one at the top.

Just because we are not making a huge change in the world, the littlest things we do are changing the world.

If we do them with pride.

Other posts you may enjoy:

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  3. Top 8 General Norman “Stormin Norman” Schwarzkopf Quotes
  4. Army Functional Area 47: Academy Professor, United States Military Academy
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10: “I can’t change the direction of the wind, but I can adjust my sails to always reach my destination.” Jimmy Dean

No matter what is in our path…obstacles or detours, we can adapt to allow them to be no issue in reaching our goals and dreams.

11: “He who fears he will suffer, already suffers because he fears.” Michel De Montaigne

In many cases, fear is unfounded.

Fear can be our greatest enemy; it keeps us at a standstill when we should be moving.

12: “Try not to become a person of success, but rather try to become a person of value.” Albert Einstein

If we are a person of value, we are a success.

13: “Believe and act as if it were impossible to fail.” Charles Kettering

With the mindset Charles gives us here, we can and will do anything our heart desires.

14: “A comfort zone is a beautiful place, but nothing ever grows there.” Unknown

The only way to grow and find success is to step away from your comfort zone.

Many people need to realize this.

15: “The man who removes a mountain begins by carrying away small stones.” Chinese Proverb

We have to start somewhere.

Rome was not built in a day.

Start doing and watch the puzzle come together little by little.

16: “Perfection is not attainable, but if we chase perfection we can catch excellence.” Vince Lombardi

There is nothing wrong with trying to do perfect but we all need to know that it will never be, so we do our very best.

That IS excellence!

17: “Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery, today is a gift of God, which is why we call it the present.” Bil Keane

We can’t change yesterday and we can’t foresee tomorrow, so we must do all we can, and be all we can be today.

18: “The mediocre teacher tells. The good teacher explains. The superior teacher demonstrates. The great teacher inspires.” William Arthur Ward

I really cannot add anything to this magnificent quote.

It speaks tons!

19: “If there is no struggle, there is no progress.” Frederick Douglass

I have always believed that we are on the right course if it is full of struggles, obstacles and hardships.

That is how we learn and grow.

20: “Sometimes you win, sometimes you learn.” John Maxwell

We can’t win them all, but we can learn something from everyone of them.

21: “Success is not the key to happiness. Happiness is the key to success. If you love what you are doing, you’ll be a success.” Albert Schweitzer

This is so true, I we dislike the work we do, success will be fleeting.

If we love what we do, success is right there in front of you.

22: “The greatest leader is not necessarily the one who does the greatest things. He is the one that gets people to do the greatest things.” Ronald Reagan

As leaders, we have the power to inspire others to be great.

Are we using that power?

23: “If you aren’t going all the way, why go at all?” Joe Namath

Why do something half-assed?

Either do it right and complete or don’t do it at all.

24: “If you want to test your memory, try to recall what you were worrying about one year ago today.” E. Joseph Cossman

What does worry bring us?

Worry doesn’t bring us anything good.

So why do we worry?

25: “The art of leadership is saying no, not yes. It is very easy to say yes.” Tony Blair

This world is full of yes men.

If you don’t agree or feel that it will go in the wrong direction, be willing to say no.

You may piss a few people off, but in the end, it will come out right.

26: “Try not. Do, or do not. There is no try.” Yoda

I learned this many years ago when I would tell my stepfather I would try.

He would sit me down in a chair and tell me to try and get up.

When I stood up, he said, “you didn’t try.”

I would sit back down and act like it was hard to, but I still got up.

This is when he told me, “you see Greg, there is no such thing as try. You either do it or you don’t.”

Try should not even be in our vocabulary.

27: “Whether you think you can or think you can’t, you’re right.” Henry Ford

We can either be happy being right or we can be sad.

It doesn’t pay to be right, it pays to do right.

28: “The best revenge is massive success.” Frank Sinatra

There will be many people that will try to tell you you can’t do something.

Instead of arguing with them, just show them that you can do it.

29: “The question isn’t who is going to let me; it’s who is going to stop me.” Ayn Rand

This goes right along with #28.

Are we going to allow people to control our destiny?

I dare someone to try and stop me from gaining success.

Final Thoughts

I hope you got as much out of those quotes as I did.

They are inspiring, but I suggest you do not look for quotes, music, movies or other people for motivation.

The only place you can find true motivation is right inside yourself.

That person you look at in the mirror.

So be inspired, and get yourself motivated.

Then, go out and attack each and every situation you face with that goal of being first.

Because second is still losing.

But if you do come in second, start the race again, because with enough times at it, with training, and with practice, you will come in first.

So what was your favorite quote?

Please leave all comments and questions below.

Thank you.


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  3. 100 Inspirational Quotes To Lift You Up
  4. Top 10 Inspirational Quotes
  5. 29 Of The Most Powerful Quotes Of All Time
  6. 100 Best Motivational Quotes to Inspire Anyone
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Communicating During Deployment: 18 Important Tips

By Greg Boudonck

The key for any relationship to be healthy is communication.

It doesn’t matter if it is a client – business, boss – employee, parent – child or husband – wife, communicating is what keeps the relationship strong, and non-communication can destroy it.

There are also multiple forms of communication; it doesn’t always have to be the spoken word, even though that is the most prevalent form.

Simple gestures and facial moves are a method of communication too.

But, I really did not start today’s post with the idea of explaining the psychology of communication.

No, the goal behind this post is to help loved ones understand some important tips on communicating during a military deployment.

Over my years, I have watched military couples destroy their relationships because of communication issues during deployments.

I have also watched relationships grow stronger during deployments thanks to proper communication.communicating

I am hoping you or someone you know who is getting deployed can use the following tips to help keep their family relationships on a solid foundation.

These tips are in no certain order, and some are for the person Stateside and others for the deployed person, while others are for both persons.

I hope they help, and do please share them with any families with a deployed soldier.

Before we move further, if you are being deployed, are already deployed or are the spouse of a deployed soldier, we highly recommend that you get involved with the Army Family Readiness Group that your unit should have in place.

This allows others who have been, or are currently in the same deployed situation to help you manage and understand the issues that can come with having a deployed member.

If there isn’t a Family Readiness Group in place, make moves to get one started.

So without further ado, here are 18 important tips about communicating during deployment.

1: What not to disclose in communications

While it is not a comforting thought, the fact is: anyone could be reading or listening to your communication.

For both people, there are certain things that should not be said or written.

They are:

  • A unit’s mission and the number of personnel
  • The tentative return date of the service member
  • Deployment times and locations
  • Family location
  • Unit morale or other problems
  • Troop movements

These are just a few.

The easiest way to realize is to pretend you are the enemy; what communication could help you?

If there is any thought that something could help the enemy, do not speak it or write it.

2: Don’t expect a quick response

You may have sent a letter 2 weeks ago to your husband in Korea, but he still has not responded.

You need to try not to worry.

First, the mail can be a fickle creature overseas.

He might just receive that letter today.

Maybe he has been ultra busy with missions.

There are many factors, so don’t worry… He will contact you.

3: Solving problems constructively

Murphy’s Law is always at work.

We see it all the time; a family is having no issues and when one family member is deployed, things happen.

  • The roof leaks
  • A child gets in serious trouble
  • A thief enters the house
  • etc…

So these are issues that will come up in communicating, and we must remember that both parties are feeling stress.

So there is a constructive system to solve problems.

They come in 4 parts:

  1. Start the conversation gently. “I feel” or “I’m concerned” is a good way to start with a gentle voice. Describe the issue in the most positive way possible.
  2. See it from your mate’s perspective. It is easy to view a situation from your own perspective, but using empathy and seeing it from your partner’s perspective can be more difficult. But you must!
  3. Find a compromise. Both parties need to work from a compromising position. If we consider what is best for the other person, it will work out great.
  4. Recover. This is the time to fix your feelings for each other. Talk about wonderful things you have done together and other conflicts you have overcome.

4: Answer all questions

If you get a letter and there are any questions, make sure and answer them all.

If they would violate security procedures, just explain that you cannot answer that for security reasons.

Remember, your mate is asking questions out of concern, so you must give them an answer to relieve those concerns.

5: Try to keep emotions in check

When you are on the phone or Skype, emotions can sometimes be overwhelming.

Humans are emotional creatures and there is nothing wrong with feeling emotions, but for good communications, it helps to try and keep those emotions in check.

6: Be honest

No matter if you are Stateside or overseas, when your mate asks you a question, you need to be completely honest.

Don’t try to hide anything as it can only cause problems further on.

7: Have all possible phone numbers

Before deployment, make sure that both parties have all possible phone numbers to get in touch with the other.

We all know that “stuff happens.”

If a cell phone gets lost or broken, at least the mate can contact you in another way.

8: Remember… Security!

I know I already touched on it, but I just cannot stress it enough; remember security not only for your loved one, but for all other members of the armed forces.

9: Do parenting together

Just because your loved one is many miles away does not mean you have to be the lone parent.

Use Skype or any of the other programs online to do parenting together.

Other Posts You Might Enjoy:

  1. The Unit Movement Officer Deployment Planning Course: An Overview
  2. 10 Important Pre-Deployment Considerations
  3. Top 7 Mistakes Soldiers Make During Deployments
  4. Career Advice for Army Soldiers Coming Back from Deployments
  5. The Letter Home From Vietnam: A Lesson For Those Serving In War

10: Be creative

Use your creative instincts to send and show your deployed loved one how much you love them.

You can sew, knit, draw, paint or any number of other things to impress and surprise them.

11: Take a laptop with you

The military does have computers personnel can use, but there can be wait times.

It can be much easier if you just invest in a laptop and take it with you on your deployment.

12: Number your letters

As I stated earlier, the mail can be an unusual creature when you are sending across the ocean.

Your loved one may receive a letter sent after another letter he/she has not received yet.

If you number your letters, it can make it much easier for your deployed loved one to understand the order.

This goes both ways too.

The deployed individual should number their letters too.

13: Keep a journal of everyday activities and share it

Some of the little things that go on in a day’s time can easily be forgotten.

That little statement by a child or something the pet did can make a huge difference in the morale of a soldier and vice versa; that joke or something that happened to the 1st Sergeant may make your Stateside loved one have a good giggle.

14: Send photos and videos

Just seeing some pictures or videos can take that loneliness away.

Send some of these to help them not be homesick.

15: Read to the kids

There is a great program that allows deployed parents read and interact with their children.

Use United Through Reading and watch the kids smile.

16: Send food items and more

Trust me, the food when you are deployed is not nearly the same as what we get at home.

Make your deployed soldier happy along with his/her fellow soldiers by sending some brownies, cookies, or anything else that is legal to send overseas.

Care packages make soldiers very happy.

17: Use the view and talk method

I hinted at this earlier, but make sure you have a Skype, Google Hangouts or Facebook Messenger account so you can view each other and talk.

This is a great way to actually stay in touch and face-to-face.

18: Let anger subside

Maybe you read something in a letter or your mate said something that made you angry.

The best advice I can give you is let your anger subside for 24 hours before confronting the situation.

After you have done that, go back and look at the #3 tip here.

Use that tip to work through the anger issue in a constructive manner.

Final thoughts

Communication is the key to keeping your family on a solid foundation.

Being deployed can bring some issues to the surface, but by communicating a couple can keep their relationship working in a healthy way.

So use these tips and be happy.

Also, thank you for your service no matter if you are the person deployed or the one who is alone while your mate is serving our country.


  1. 24 Tips for Staying In Touch During a Deployment
  2. 9 Ways Families Can Stay Connected During Deployment
  3. How to Stay in Touch During a Military Deployment
  4. Communication During Deployment
  5. Communicating With Your Partner On Deployment
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Alexander The Great: 17 Reasons He Was The Greatest Military Leader Ever

In my opinion, Alexander The Great was the greatest military leader of all time.

When we review military leaders, there are many who may grace the top list.

  • Hannibal
  • Napoleon
  • Sun Tzu
  • Zhukov
  • Rommel
  • and Patton

But when I look at every detail, I still have to put Alexander The Great in the top slot.

I have decided to provide you with 17 reasons I believe Alexander The Great was the greatest military leader in history.

1: He had a visionalexander the great

It is my opinion that no leader can find success unless they have a vision.

Alexander The Great had a grand vision and he was able to “paint a picture” of that vision to his followers.

By having a vision, Alexander was able to set goals and objectives to meet those goals.

He then went forth and completed all of his vision.

Do you have a vision?

2: He was ruthless

For ancient military leaders, being ruthless was an important attribute.

I don’t know if that would be a great attribute in today’s military (it could lead to a war crimes judgment).

By showing ruthlessness the moment his Father, King Phillip II of Macedon was assassinated, Alexander showed his ruthlessness by having all rivals murdered.

He also showed ruthlessness when he would give kingdoms a chance to surrender and if they hesitated, he would destroy everything.

By being this way, Alexander The Great created a fear of his power and abilities.

Many enemies just gave up immediately knowing how ruthless he was.

3: He was lucky

While Alexander was a great tactician and strategist, we all must also admit that “Lady Luck” was also on his side.

There were several occasions when Alexander’s forces were greatly outnumbered but because of simple luck along with wise movements by Alexander, they gained the victory.

No matter how you look at it, luck had a place in his life.

4: He was arrogant

This is another attribute that aided ancient military leaders, but I really do not recommend it for today’s military leaders for the most part.

How was Alexander The Great arrogant?

All the cities named after him when he defeated them.

Statues of his image were erected in his presence.

I don’t believe that Alexander was a humble man, and it helped him in his exploits, but it may have killed him too.

General Patton studied Alexander greatly, but we never saw a town named Pattonville… Or is there one?

Arrogance does not go with today’s military leadership

5: He adapted

Alexander knew he would have to adapt to various circumstance, and he did so.

If he had to walk instead of ride, he would.

If he had to use a weapon he normally wouldn’t in a situation, he would.

No matter the circumstance, Alexander The Great would adapt to it.

6: He used philosophy

And why wouldn’t he?

Alexander was educated by one of the greatest philosophers that lived on Earth, Aristotle.

We saw many times when Alexander used philosophy to gain the trust and admiration of the people he conquered.

He even dressed like the Persians after defeating them.

Other Posts You Might Enjoy:

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  3. How to Develop Your Military Leadership Skills: 13 Ways to Do It
  4. Military Leadership Mistakes: 7 Reasons Your Subordinates Don’t Respect You
  5. Daily Productivity Tips for Military Leaders: 14 Lessons from John Maxwell

7: He was stubborn

Is this an attribute that made him a great military leader?

I believe it is, because if he would not have been stubborn he would have listened to naysayers and probably would have never conquered as many kingdoms as he did.

If someone said he couldn’t do it, Alexander was stubborn enough to prove that he could do it.

8: Alexander The Great led from the front

One thing was sure, Alexander would not ask his soldiers to do something he wouldn’t do.

When a charge was on, Alexander was there leading the charge, not sitting in a headquarters far in the background.

9: His Father was a great military leader

King Phillip II was also a great military mind.

The son inherited this ability from his father and I am sure Phillip taught him much while he was alive.

Who we learn from can make a huge factor in our success.

10: He inherited a trained and great army

Falling right in with #9, Alexander did not have to build and train an army.

He was given a greatly trained army.

All Alexander had to do was add his touches and gain their trust and respect.

The army listened to and followed Alexander.

11: He was always learning

Alexander discovered at an early age to never stop learning.

Being taught by Aristotle, he understood that he could learn something new at any time and anywhere.

This is one attribute all military leaders need.

We can learn from reading, watching and from other people.

12: He was quick and deliberate

This is one attribute that I am sure General Patton took from Alexander The Great.

I believe this because of General Patton’s quote: “A good plan violently executed now is better than a perfect plan executed next week.”

When Alexander chose a path, he followed it and committed to it.

There was no turning back.

13: He used all available tools and devices

This goes right along with being adaptable.

Alexander would use anything he believed could help his men gain the victory.

Even at one point, the enemy wagons rolling down the hills had Alexander have his men lay on the ground with their shields up, and the wagons rolled over the top of them.

14: Scouts before troops

Alexander The Great always wanted to know what they were going into.

He was wise enough to always send scouts so he could develop a plan of action before he would take his troops.

Scouts would go out and document the land, the enemy and any other information they could find.

They would return with the information and Alexander would develop a plan of action.

15: Alexander inspired his followers

Just his demeanor would inspire, but when he spoke, his followers listened.

Alexander The Great was a master at building morale.

After all, how else could he get his soldiers to battle armies 3, 4 or even 5 times their size?

I believe one of his greatest means of inspiring was the fact that he would do what he asked.

If only all military leaders were that way.

16: He understood and adapted cultures he conquered

When Alexander conquered a kingdom, he would get right in with the peasants and learn the customs.

While he would allow the people to keep their customs, notice that I said he adapted the cultures.

The biggest way he did this was to make it mandatory that the Greek language was used.

It reminds me of how the English language has become the primary language on Earth.

17: He was charismatic

Just seeing the man made people desire to follow him.

It is said that even his body odor was delightful.

Charisma is not something anyone can learn; I believe it is something people are born and blessed with.

But like luck, I believe charisma played a huge part in making Alexander The Great the greatest military leader ever.

Final thoughts

Well now you have my opinion why Alexander The Great was the best military leader of all time.

Do you agree or disagree?


Will there ever be a day when we will see such a great military leader?

I often wonder what Alexander would do if he lived in our era.

It can be fun to consider these type of things.

So give us your thoughts.

You can post your comments, questions and suggestions below.

Thank you.


  1. Alexander the Great – the greatest leader of all time?
  2. Why is Alexander the Great considered a great military commander?
  3. Top 10 reasons Alexander The Great was a great commander
  4. 11 Leadership Lessons from Alexander the Great

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The Military Retirement System: How It Works

It has been the object of a lot of confusion.

When I was in the Army, the military retirement system was cut and dried.

But that is not the way it is now.

There are decisions that must be made by military members that could drastically effect their retirement income.

While I do have my opinions about the political moves that brought about these military retirement changes, I am going to keep them to myself.

But, at the end of this post, you are more than welcome to give your opinions.

But please be somewhat civil about those comments.

In today’s post, I am going to attempt to de-confuse people about the military retirement system.

I will explain what choices you have depending on when you joined the military branch.

I will also lead you to a military retirement calculator where you can get an estimate of what you will get when you choose to retire.

I hope this post will help you but if you have any questions, you can ask them in the comment section below and we will do our best to provide you with an answer.military retirement

Before I move forward I just want to say that no matter the changes in the military retirement system, it is still one of the best retirement plans available.

You can use the multiple tools toward the end of this post to determine which plan will suit you and your family best.

Other Posts You Might Enjoy:

  1. The Retirement Process in the Army National Guard
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  3. How to Correct Your Retirement Points Statement NGB Form 23
  4. The 2016-2017 Military Budget: 10 Facts You Should Be Aware Of
  5. NGB Form 23 Retirement Points Summary Statement

4 Military Retirement Plans

At this point in time, there are 4 separate military retirement plans.

Knowing which plan you fall under or have a choice of is dependent on when you entered service.

The 4 plans are:

  1. The Final Pay plan
  2. and, The High 36 plan
  3. The CSB/REDUX plan
  4. The Blended Retirement plan

For some military members, you will have to choose which plan you desire.

So let’s take a look at the entry dates for each plan.

Who can only take the Final Pay Retirement plan?

If you entered service before September of 1980, you are only eligible for the Final Pay plan.

You can scroll further to see how it works.

Who is under the High 36 Retirement plan?

If you joined after September 8th, 1980 – August 1st, 1986, you are under the High 36 plan.

If you joined after August 1st, 1986, you can choose this plan or the next one.

I will explain how this system works further down.

Who is eligible for the CBS/REDUX Retirement plan?

Anyone who joined military service after August 1st, 1986 can choose between this or the High 36 plan.

If the member does not make a decision, they will be automatically put under the High 36 plan.

And the Blended Retirement plan…

This is where the majority of confusion will probably be evident.

Starting December 31st, 2017, any members who entered service after December 31st, 2005 will have the choice of the Blended Retirement plan, the CBS/REDUX plan or the High 36 plan.

For anyone who enters service after January 1st, 2018, the Blended Retirement plan will be their only option at this point in time.

Now I will attempt to explain how each system works.

The Final Pay Retirement Plan

The Final Pay system is actually quite simple.

You receive 2.5% for every year of service so if you were in for 20 years, you will get 50% of the pay you retired at… Your final pay.

Each year there should be a COLA cost of living adjustment, but for the past few years it seems these have not been added.

These are to be measured by the Consumer Price Index.

This has been a huge protest against political factions, but that is a whole different post at some point.

The High 36 Retirement Plan

The High 36 retirement plan works essentially like the Final Pay plan with the only difference being the system does not go by the service member’s final pay; it measures it by averaging the service member’s highest paying of 36 months during their complete service.

Many service members who were deployed for long periods find this plan to be more profitable.

The CBS/REDUX Retirement Plan

This is the plan that every member who is eligible for will really want to research if it will be their best option.

CBS stands for Career Status Bonus.

The first point of this plan is at 15 years you will receive $30,000 if you promise to serve 20 years.

While that lump sum seems great, you really want to add the other losses that will incur.

You will receive a multiplier of only 1.5% unless you put in 30+ years.

If you can handle 30 years, the multiplier will rise back to the 2.5%.

So, if you retire at 20 years, you will only get 40% of your highest 36 months instead of 50%.

Another negative point is the cost of living raise if one is given.

If the CPI means a cost of living raise of 2%, the member who is on the CBS/REDUX plan will only get a 1% raise because it is CPI minus 1%.

Will the $30,000 be worth those losses?

The Blended Retirement Plan

Should you accept this new plan or not?

Just recently the Pentagon accepted this new plan that will take affect in 2017.

It has similarities and differences to the CBS/REDUX plan.

You do get a bonus after 12 years of service with an obligation to serve 20 years.

That bonus is 2.5% of your annual base pay.

At retirement, just like the CBS/REDUX plan, you will receive 40% of the highest paying average of 36 months.

1 huge difference is the military will begin matching funds in the member’s Thrift Savings Plan account.

It does seem like this may be a good plan, but you will want to really research it closer before accepting it.

Calculate Your Retirement

Calculating your retirement pay under the various choices is a wise move.

The people over at Military.com have provided some calculators that can help you get a close estimate of your retirement pay.

They also developed another tool that can help you make the best decision on which retirement plan would be your best option.

Try out their retirement choice calculator here.

National Guard and Reserves Retirement

The National Guard and Reserves Retirement system has not changed.

You must have 20 years of service to be eligible for retirement pay, and pay is based on accumulation of points.

This link explains the system to compute your retirement pay for National Guard or Reserves.

Final thoughts

I really hope this post was able to give you a better understanding of the military retirement plans.

I want to add another factor that was made in 1980.

If you are a Commissioned Officer, you must be so for 10 years to be eligible to retire at your commission rank.

If not, you will be retired at enlisted rank.

Now, lets hear all thoughts.

You can give your opinions, suggestions and questions below.

Please keep it at a sane level.

Debate is good, but arguing is bad.

There is a HUGE difference.

Thank you and have a great day.


  1. The Military Retirement System

  2. Military Retirement: Too Sweet A Deal?

  3. http://militarypay.defense.gov/Pay/Retirement.aspx

  4. Retirement Changes Mean Tough Choices For Troops

  5. Understanding Military Retirement Pay

  6. The New Military Retirement System Has Major Flaw, Financial Experts Warn

  7. New Military Retirement Law Creates Big Decisions For Many Troops

  8. New Military Retirement System Gets Pentagon Ok

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