Friday, November 11, 2016

Review of How to Grow a Beard by R. Graves

Read for: Because Military Members and Veterans are some of the most important people there are
Synopsis: "“How to Grow a Beard: A Military Transition Guide Back Into Civilian Life” is primarily based on 10-year Marine Corps veteran R.Graves' story on how he weaved back into the civilian life, but it is also the voice of every single veteran who has been thrown out to the wolves, to fend for themselves. Thrown out to learn the protocols of the civilian world and endure an—at times—intense mental battle. Thrown out to learn how to reintegrate with the real world again all over again.

This book covers topics such as reframing what sacrifice means to an individual, learning what we're worth in the civilian workplace, converting military service into civilian language for resumes and interviews, lessons on humility, integrating with friends and family again, and even lessons on swallowing your pride and allowing others to help out with our transition. Because transition will come—faster than you may realize. But, as ready as you are to start your new life, you will at some point find yourself in the situations introduced in this book.

With veteran suicide, and veteran homelessness at an all-time high, it is no secret that transition can be hard and overwhelming. Graves' intent with this book is to make the military transition as smooth as possible for his fellow veterans, by providing tools and lessons learned. Whether you are about to leave the service or have been out in the civilian trenches for a while, this book is the tool created for you to transition—successfully."

My Review: I originally picked up this book as a way to hopefully understand some of my own family members' transition back into civilian life and what they are facing and the struggles they may have. I found that this book is definitely written for the military member themselves to read, and they should really read it before they rejoin the civilian life. There are several tips that can help line up a service member throughout their military career to ease the transition in the end. It is set up very well and I like the way that there is a brief paragraph at the end of each chapter summarizing the main point that should be taken away from that chapter. It did have really great advice of what steps to take for the best advantage on moving forward and starting anew.
My Rating: While this wasn't quite the right book for what I was looking for it was a great book for the target audience. There is a lot of excellent information within this book and some of it may be common sense to every day civilians like me but to military members some of the day to day interactions and tasks are near foreign compared to how they have been living.  I give this one a rating of Three Paws and a Stump Wag!
Take time this Veteran's Day to thank a service member, remember those that have passed and thank and support those military members who are still serving.

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