Commentary

June 7, 2013

Redemption + renewal = stronger you

According to dictionary.com, redemption is the act of redeeming or atoning for a fault, mistake or the state of being redeemed. After bouncing back from any situation, the road to redemption begins. This is an opportunity to learn from a mistake or mistakes and to make you a stronger person. However, that it is easier said than done.

In life there are times when we can do this on our own; however, we do not usually change the behavior or attitude. This leads to repeating the cycle.

So how do you break this cycle? Renew yourself. First, understand nothing happens overnight. The acts which led to many of our decisions did not happen overnight.

Secondly, realize change begins with you. When something happens to us, our instincts are to blame others, but we must look in the mirror and own it.

How do you own your actions? Take a step back and examine the situation for what it is, not what you want it to be. Sometimes this takes someone telling you how it is without holding back. Understand there are people who are trying to help you recognize your faults. Receive the information with an open mind and open heart. Doing this will enable you to change your behavior and attitude.

After breaking the cycle it is time to renew you; rebuild your mind, body, and soul or spirituality. Strengthening your mind will improve your will power and self-discipline.

You may ask how I do that. Meditating, reading, playing crossword puzzles and even video games can help. Bottom line is to find something educational but enjoyable.

Next, work on your body. It is more than just going to the gym for hours or minutes of the day.

Start with nutrition. I heard someone say exercise is not a substitute for bad nutrition, so get a nutritional plan.

Next is to work on fitness. There are many avenues for fitness. The key is to find something that works for you. Whatever changes you make, ensure it is for the long haul. Temporary fixes will set you back.

Spirituality is a touchy subject. This deals with believing in something bigger than you. Some people fill this meter by going to church or reading spiritual books such as the Bible, poetry, “Chicken Soup for the Soul” or any uplifting material.

No matter who you are, we all deal with obstacles in life. To overcome these obstacles you must start with yourself. Each of us has put in the work to make this the best Air Force in the world, so do not throw it away.

You must have a positive attitude and open mind during the redemption and renewal process. Look at redemption as forgiving yourself and learning from the situation. Look at renewing as living with the change or changes made. Lastly do not forget about your support system: family, friends and fellow Airmen. They will help keep you accountable and positive.




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