Commentary

September 20, 2013

There’s value in the struggle

Lt. Col. MATT LILJENSTOLPE
56th Training Squadron

I was watching a video of a motivational speech a few weeks ago and the speaker kept saying the same phrase over and over, “There’s value in the struggle.” In the weeks that have followed, I have found myself echoing those words many times.

As an Air Force and a Luke Air Force Base community, we find ourselves in challenging times. The Air Force is in the midst of a cultural change, and Luke will soon bed down a new F-35 mission while at the same time we will transfer half of the wing’s F-16 mission to Holloman. The combined unit inspection is fast approaching, and all of that on top of our everyday mission, at its best, is challenging.

I have no doubt that both Luke AFB and the Air Force will get through all of these challenges with flying colors, stronger than before and better equipped and trained to answer our nation’s call.

However, I also have no doubt that along the way we will stumble, we will at times fail and most assuredly we will make mistakes. In short, we will struggle. If it is truly our collective goal to achieve excellence in all that we do, the worst thing we can do is to shy away from the struggle. For it is only through our struggles that we eventually discover the pathways to our success. That is to say, there’s value in the struggle.

As we move forward into the next few months and next few years, let’s focus on how we will discover our problems instead of worrying about whether we’ll make a mistake along the way. When problems are discovered, let’s strive for cooperation and agreement on the solution, instead of focusing on where to assign blame. There’s value in the struggle.

Leaders, be receptive to subordinates who ask the hard questions. Keep an open mind about what they think and see. You may find that your own insight isn’t always as keen as you think. There’s value in the struggle.

Airmen, have the courage to walk into the boss’s office with your mistakes as well as your solutions. It takes guts to do both. You are the expert. You are the best trained and equipped Air Force in the world. Therefore, you are the only one that can fix the problems you uncover. There’s value in the struggle.

Discovering problems in your squadron or inefficiency in your processes is a good thing. It shows that you are paying attention and that you care. It’s truly the first step to becoming a better team. There’s value in the struggle.

In conclusion, while prepping to write this article I came across this quote from American patriot and famed Revolutionary War author Thomas Paine, “The harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph. What we obtain too cheap, we esteem too lightly … I love the man that can smile in trouble, that can gather strength from distress and grow.” To paraphrase, I think all he was trying to say is there’s value in the struggle.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
Airman 1st Class James Hensley

Luke cuts ribbon on F-35 Academic Training Center

Airman 1st Class James Hensley Gen. Robin Rand, Air Education and Training Command commander, cuts the ceremonial ribbon Oct. 9 marking the completion of the academic training center building at Luke Air Force Base. The buildin...
 
 
Forino_J

U.S., Singapore partnership standout

Lt. Col. John Forino Aug. 9 marked the 49th anniversary of Singapore’s independence. The 425th Fighter Squadron is an operational squadron comprised of elite U.S. Air Force and Republic of Singapore air force personnel design...
 
 
shirts-graphicbw

‘Guts’ required to enforce standards

A few years ago, a fellow senior NCO requested I talk to her subordinate about her appearance, specifically pertaining to her hair. Naturally, I asked about what the issue was and why she couldn’t have a discussion with her o...
 

 
141008-F-HT977-008

Airmen get new ‘Community Commons’

Renovations on Bldg. 700, which houses the Health and Wellness Center, will take place April 2015 through spring 2016 at Luke Air Force Base. Subway and the barbershop will remain open during construction. Other amenities, such...
 
 

News Briefs October 17, 2014

Keep good mental health Calling all Airmen! Sleep disturbances such as insomnia and nightmares can affect people personally and professionally. Reaching out to a medical provider is a step in the right direction to good health. Courtesy of the 56th Medical Group Haunted house The 56th Mission Support Group is featuring Operation: Haunted Block House...
 
 

THUNDERBOLT OF THE WEEK

Jessica Behrens 56th Medical Support Squadron Pharmacist Hometown: Seneca, Missouri Years in service: Three Family: Husband, Chris; daughter, Katelyn, 2; son, Levi, 5 months Education: Bachelor’s degree from University of Arkansas and doctor of pharmacy from Creighton University, Omaha, Nebraska Previous assignments: Pensacola Naval Air Station, Florida; Vance Air Force Base, Oklahoma; Spring...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>


Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin