I am not a big fan of New Year’s resolutions. Every year, we tell ourselves we’re going to be slimmer or kinder or save more money…but those resolutions only last a few weeks, and then we find ourselves unchanged. Making and breaking resolutions can be disappointing, or even downright discouraging.
Thankfully, a military spouse doesn’t have to wait for January 1st to make a new resolution! Military spouses are lucky. We have chances all throughout the year to recreate ourselves, redefine ourselves, and improve ourselves. Consider these other times when you can make new resolutions.Military spouses get more than one chance for New Year's resolutions! Click To Tweet
Military spouse resolutions for PCS moves
A PCS move is a new beginning: you can start fresh with people who don’t know anything about you. Sure, it’s exhausting to make new friends and get settled in a new place. But it’s also a chance to break bad habits and start again on a new road. In the past nine years, I have lived at six different military bases, one which was overseas. I have worked a different job and made different types of friends at each duty station. Each move is an opportunity to ask:
- How will I prioritize my time as a spouse, a parent, and a professional?
- What hobbies or activities do I want to pursue at this new location?
- What kind of friends am I looking for during the next two-three years?
At our first married assignment, all our friends were young couples without children. I worked full-time, so we got together at restaurants on the weekends. At the next base, I had babies, so all my friends were from a local Mom’s playgroup. At our overseas station, I only found part-time work, so I focused on travel and exploring the local culture, then writing about it. Now I am back in the States with four out of five kids in school, so I can spend time exercising and working as a professional writer. ALL of those duty stations are now pieces of who I am.
“Each PCS move is an opportunity to re-create yourself and make new resolutions.” ~The Seasoned Spouse
I didn’t become a new person at each duty station. I just discovered new parts of myself, and made friends to fit my place in life. During your next PCS move, what will you resolve to start new? Will you try a new hobby? I encourage you to go out of your comfort zone– maybe way out–because that is where you discover the most worthwhile truths about yourself.
Military spouse resolutions for deployment
Deployments are a sad fact in military life. Sooner or later, most military spouses will experience them. My husband has already been on seven deployments overseas. At times, of course I am sad and lonely without him. But I stay positive because I see deployment as a chance to become a better person. That is what motivates me and gets me through.
Deployment is a great big pause in the middle of a busy life. It is a challenging season but always comes to an end eventually. You can do almost anything for a few months! So every time, I set new goals for myself. Sometimes, I try a new hobby. That’s actually how this blog got started! Other times, I challenge myself to lose weight or get in better shape. This was most effective when I had a baby during the deployment, then trained for a 5K race!
And sometimes, just surviving during deployment seems challenging enough, so I pass the time with little projects around the house. My sister once made the mistake of visiting me during a painting project, and I had her painting hallways for a week! The point is, you can treat a deployment like New Year’s Day. You’re saying goodbye to something, but turning over a new page and starting with fresh. You can write the story of your own deployment.Milspouses, make your own new resolutions for each PCS or deployment. You get to re-create yourself all the time, not just on January 1! #Milspouse #NewYearsResolution Click To Tweet
Military spouse resolutions for reintegration
Reintegration is the period after Homecoming, when your service member is home, and life can get back to ‘normal.’ But in military life, there is no such thing as normal. Your relationship will never be exactly the way it was before deployment, just as you will never be exactly the same person after a PCS move. People change during deployment. Not necessarily in bad ways! During months of deployment, you finally mastered your day-to-day routines. Now they are about to be shaken up with the service member’s work schedule. Don’t worry, this is another great opportunity for some resolutions! Towards the end of deployment, talk to your spouse about some of the things you want to change in the coming year:
- What is one activity that is important to you now that might surprise your spouse? (If there is a workout routine, prayer group, or social club that you started during deployment, do you plan to continue?)
- What is one thing you and your spouse want to do differently in your marriage? Maybe it’s time to start monthly date nights, or try something new together.
- Have you made any changes to your diet? This is a great time to practice cooking together and eating healthier.
- What is your mutual goal for the coming year? Are you facing a PCS move? Looking for a new job? Talk about ways to support each other through coming changes.
So there you have it! If your New Year’s resolution is already failing, then you can look forward to these special opportunities for military spouses to make fresh changes and resolutions.