untitled Turn on the TV, radio or latest feed on social media and the state of our military and the economic impact downsizing is having on our service members is the topic of conversation. Many in our community are affected by the reduction in forces and people are worried about many things particularly their careers. Service members and families are frustrated and looking for alternative ways to make a living or bring in additional income.

While I can’t claim to know all you may be going through I do understand and encourage you to try to see these cuts as a unique opportunity rather than a horrible thing being done to you. Circumstances like these as challenging as they feel in the moment are actually the perfect time to look at our lives and make choices that will move us forward in ways we may have never thought of before. I know years ago when we were civilians my husband’s job moved us across country. The morning he was to start there was a hiring freeze and we found ourselves with 2 babies, in a new city with no income at hand.

But in the midst of this seemingly devastating situation an amazing thing happened. We took a chance and with a “first one to get a job wins” attitude we set out resumes in hand and went knocking on doors. Within days we both had jobs that changed our lives and the change turned out to be perfect in the long run. Horrible circumstances have the ability to open up our thoughts about what is possible if we open our minds.

No matter the situation it’s easy to feel uncertain, but a change in circumstances doesn’t have to stop you dead in your tracks. In fact change brings with it the most incredible thing: Choice. I know that when I am able to see that I have choices open to me I feel so much better because there is nothing worse in my world than feeling trapped in a situation and being unsure of what my next step is.

The power of choice allows me to stop stressing for just a moment so I can find ways to utilize my talents as I never have before! Trust me, you will be surprised at all the new things that come your way when you begin to look at things from the mindset of what could I do rather than what can’t I do.

How would things be different if instead of seeing all the challenges before you if you could focus on possibilities.  When dealing with stressful situations, seek out new ideas, make choices and take chances that you may not have had the opportunity or motivation to pursue before all the chaos began to take place in your life. Use this time of transition as an opportunity to move your life forward, try something new and live your passion.

Not sure where to start…Here are some ideas to get your thinking process  cooking with all the possibilities that are now open to you!

1. Can you turn your passion into an income stream?

Find ways to create additional income that is different from anything you have done before. Maybe it’s starting a home based business, taking a passion or hobby and developing a way to make some extra cash, or using the internet; the possibilities are endless and the benefits continue to grow. By not relying on one industry or type of income stream, you will be able to handle the ebb and flow of job uncertainty in a pro-active way.

2. What about enhancing your Education?

It is vital that we all continue to learn and expand our skills. It is not only good for our “marketability”, but it keeps our mind sharp. With technology changing at the speed of light, there is no better time to develop new skills that you can apply in a variety of ways.

3. Take a moment and Develop a Life Plan

Do you have a plan, or are you just going with the flow? Do you take control of your life, or just react to what life throws into your path? To ensure that you continue to move forward no matter what it is you are facing, create a plan that directs you toward the life that you desire. The plan will change and alter, but the time it takes you to outline your ideal life, and steps to take to get you there will be well worth it in the long run!

4. Understand Money and Create a Cash Only Plan

Too often people see finances as a big mystery. But did you know that it’s no different than anything else? If you understand how money comes into your home, and have a plan for how it is spent, you will be a winner in the money game! Take the time to learn about finances, understand your options, and create a plan that has you living within your means (Using cash a.k.a NO Credit) and in doing so you will be able to put your “money issues” aside.

5. Don’t Settle

To live your dreams you have to think big. Never be satisfied with “good enough”, because it never is. You can be and achieve anything you want as long as you choose to never settle for mediocrity.

6. Remember – You Can Have It All

Remember that time is your friend. We all have a tendency to want instant gratification, and the reality is that things take time. So as you are moving towards your ideal life, know that it is yours for the taking; just be patient and continue to take actions that move you forward. Soon enough you will have all that you desire.

7. Be Realistic

Your thoughts directly affect what goes on in your life, and it is important to be conscious of what it is you are thinking about. If you have unrealistic expectations then it makes it difficult to live in the moment and enjoy the journey called life.

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Known by military spouses around the world as The Direction Diva, Judy Davis is a motivational speaker, lifestyle blogger, advocate and author of Right Side Up: Finding Your Way When Military Life Turns You Upside Down. A military spouse herself, Judy blogs, writes and speaks with a passion for changing the hearts of the military community and shares T.I.P.s (Tools, Information, and Perspective) to help military families become stronger. To connect with Judy, read her blog or obtain information about speaking topics, seminars & programs visit: http://thedirectiondiva.com (Inspiring Military Spouses)  or  http://livingthrucrisis.com (Helping Military Families Find Hope)

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Social Media 225x300 Social Media. What started out as a fun way to keep in touch with family and friends has transformed into so much more hasn’t it? For many of us social media has become our go to strategy to get news, information and tips to live our lives. From business icons and top brands to the individual starting their first home business; not to forget the military family trying to keep in touch during an overseas deployment.

People are using social media in so many ways and because of that fact it’s where marketers are focusing many of their efforts. Everywhere you look you will find strategies that incorporate video, memes, pictures, and more to increase market reach. Companies are building relationships and brands in creative and fun ways. It’s safe to say that social media is here to stay and finding ways to use it effectively is VERY important.

As a “consumer” and “marketer”. I am connected. Whether it’s using my favorite devises (Nokia 2520 Tablet*, Lumia Icon* and trusted Droid Maxx*) you will find me interacting with my peeps, tweeps and friends often throughout my day. Not only do I capture and share parts of my life, but I use various social media platforms to promote and build my brand. I use it to build relationships and serve the military community who are active on social media. I also know that what I put out there establishes an image that is a direct reflection of who I am.

I’m not saying that I do it perfectly. In fact I have been guilty of some of the things many of the following “characters” are guilty of. But I am pretty transparent with who I am and what I’m about. My “character” is not far from the real me. Positive, goofy and real. I screw up and I grow and I share it with the world. But as I watch and interact in various social platforms many of the “personalities” that are prevalent on social media are missing the boat. So much so that I think we need to take a moment to chat about the horrible traits that some of these characters display on our social media platforms and why you need to make sure you aren’t falling into the same patterns.

5 Personality Types That Will Stunt Your Growth in Social Media

Vague Valerie: You know her she’s the one who posts things like “Ugg”, “Why Me” or “So Tired of This” in hopes that she gets people to ask her what’s wrong. It’s not about real engagement it’s more of a test to see who pays attention.  This person is needy and annoying all at the same time. I wish she understood that social media is not a place to be vague, nor will it fill the void that you are trying to fill. Stop engaging to this type of post and maybe she will stop with this nonsense.

Evasive Ellen: Ellen is the hit and run driver of social media. The person that posts a topic or response and the moment things get a little heated is no where to be found, yes that would be her. She tends to avoiding the true issue, isn’t straightforward  and expects you to know what she meant even if the written word says differently. Sarcasm is her friend and beware if you disagree with her there is a high probability that you will be unfriended.

Marketing Martha: No relationship, just post after post touting why their product, service and business is the thing you have been looking for all of your life. It’s as if she threw up all over your feed with the latest thing on the market. Who is Martha? It’s hard to tell because we can’t see past the countless pitches.

Clueless Connie signs her name to every post. She shares a quote or dinner menu but its the same status day after day. “Bless her heart” is all that comes to mind. Take a moment and help her out she’s just trying to understand all this tech stuff and rather than judge her offer a hand up. We were all newbies at some point.

Political Pam: Political Pam is sure to get her feed going with her constant support or critique of all that is going on in our great country. Facts and truth aside it’s all about the headline and sharing whatever is in alignment with her own beliefs. And Lord help us if its an election year. Don’t bother presenting the truth or commenting with an opposing view it will just stir the pot and give her a platform to preach from.

As you glance through our 5 personality types you may see glimpses of yourself and your behavior. Maybe you were a little political today, perhaps even a little vague. It’s human and don’t be to hard on yourself. Just remember that if you want to grow your following and increase your reach there is a huge difference between an occasional post that’s a little “Martha like” and an entire feel pushing your wares. Social media is about building relationships and providing value. Give people a reason to follow you and interact. When you meet their needs and make it an experience we all win!

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*As a member of the #VZWBuzz team I receive various devices and accessories. No additional compensation was given and all opinions stated are my own. As always whenever I talk about products you will get the real scoop not something someone asks me to write icon smile

Known by military spouses around the world as The Direction Diva, Judy Davis is a motivational speaker, lifestyle blogger, advocate and author of Right Side Up: Finding Your Way When Military Life Turns You Upside Down. A military spouse herself, Judy blogs, writes and speaks with a passion for changing the hearts of the military community and shares T.I.P.s (Tools, Information, and Perspective) to help military families become stronger. To connect with Judy, read her blog or obtain information about speaking & keynote topics, seminars & programs visit: http://thedirectiondiva.com (Inspiring Military Spouses)  or  http://livingthrucrisis.com (Helping Military Families Find Hope)

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Do you have a plan?

August 17, 2014

Do you have a plan, or do you just going with the flow? Yes, I will confess, I am a more “go with the flow” kind of person, and that works for me…well for the most part. I love the energy of shifting gears, multi-tasking and doing what comes next, right up to the part […]

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Story Moment: Inspiration for living!

August 15, 2014

I received this story this morning, and had to share it. It made me stop and take inventory of my life and ask myself if I believe in myself, and am I willing to believe in others even when I don’t know why…Enjoy “At the prodding of my friends, I am writing this story. My […]

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Expectations: Bigger isn’t always better by Judy Davis

August 11, 2014

I see it everyday. Disappointment from expectations that miss the mark. People build things up in their mind and are disappointed when what they had envisioned doesn’t actually occur. I  remember years ago hearing my mother say to my father “Jack, don’t build it up in your mind”. It was as if she knew that he be disappointed because his expectations didn’t turn […]

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Resource Review: Mesothelioma Cancer Alliance by Direction Diva Judy Davis

August 9, 2014

Company: Mesothelioma Cancer Alliance Contact: 1-800-336-0086 Website: http://www.mesothelioma.com/veterans/ Rating: 9/10 (Disclosure) Resource Review: Veterans put their lives on the line every day, both on the battlefront and at the many U.S. military bases located around the world. But until I was contacted by Emily from the Mesothelioma Cancer Alliance I had no idea that so many […]

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