In case you didn’t know this, my husband Chris is a retired Air Force veteran. He retired after having served for 20 years in October of 2013. It was suggested to Chris, by one of his brothers, that he write down his experience going from Air Force life into the “real” world. And here is what he had to say:
The transition from military life to civilian life after 20 years in the military can be a strange and weird experience for most military personnel. Here are a few things that I learned throughout my own personal process.
I joined the military right after high school and was in for 20 years as a Firefighter in the United States Air force. Along the way I received my bachelor’s degree in Accounting and knew that I wanted to work in the business world when I got out of the military. When I went from active duty to being a reservist, I went to work for a private software company as an Accountant.
With the military, you have be very sharply dressed at all times because your supervisors and coworkers will look you over every morning and you know when there will be a uniform inspection. If we were caught being poorly dressed, we were punished by having to do push-ups. That was not so in my civilian job. No one really cared what I wore and in fact, when I showed up wearing a shirt and tie on my first day of work there, I was told to lose the tie and wear a t-shirt the following day. The culture of the software company where I worked was very laid back and their way of thinking was basically to let us wear what ever made us feel comfortable. Of course, that was an easy adjustment to make. Plus, it cut about 10 minutes from my morning ritual when I went from polishing my boots to just wearing sneakers every day.