The great internet source known as Wikipedia describes it as “an unconscious psychological defense mechanism used to avoid cognitive dissonance.” In military speak; you can’t treat your home like a battlefield, especially if you’re planning on starting a business on the side. Here are a few nuggets of wisdom I found when starting my business Pillar Games as a PreVeteran.
Unique Work Environment –
The definition refers to an unconscious pattern, but I could find nothing else close to what had to be done once I started my business, let alone a family. As you well know, military life is demanding. All parties involved feel some measure of extra stress due to the nature of a warfighting organization, but we as PreVeteran’s know that stress can distract from our entrepreneurial goals. So we mitigate!
As a junior Sailor stationed in Okinawa Japan, I commuted 30-40 minutes to and from work every day. I took that time for granted. It wasn’t until I PCS’d to a 7-minute commute did I realize the value of that time to prepare my mind, from navy work to entrepreneurial work. It may have started out as an unconscious pattern, but now that I have a 7-minute commute, it must be conscious or it doesn’t happen.
The value gained from my long drive can be gained in many different ways. Some are inclined to workout; others may tuck themselves in their home offices to avoid passing stress on to their families. Whatever works for you should be done regularly and with intent, but compartmentalization is not just about stress. It also relates to the ability to separate what makes you a good soldier (all-encompassing term) from what makes you successful in business. (more…)