Sandra Ocasio is an Air Force spouse of 8 years, mother of 4, and an online business owner. She was most recently recognized as one of the Armed Forces Insurance Military Spouses of the Year, Air Force Top 3 and represents for recruiter spouses who are not affiliated with a duty station.
I met Sandra in 2020 when I invested in a personal and professional development program. Unknown to me, my brilliant tech coach who was breaking down systems, sales psychology, and funnels happened to be a fellow military spouse. I knew we would be fast friends as I shared a love for the technical side of business. I appreciated how she never allowed those she supported to sit in self doubt. Sandra genuinely cared about seeing the women in the program succeed and would go above and beyond to help them make their vision a reality.
After graduating the program, we continued to connect with virtual meetups. Cheering one another on, I had a front row seat to watch her coach within 6 and 7 figure coaching programs as well as make the transition from behind the computer to center stage. These are the shiny parts of her story, but to appreciate them, you need to know the path that it took to get there.
Sandra always believed that she would thrive. She had education and experience in the corporate realm prior to becoming a military spouse. When her family was assigned to a small town in Florida, she was surprised to find that her stellar resume would only get her positions offering a fraction of her income. After countless interviews that lead nowhere, Sandra stayed at home, gained extra pounds, and walked past a closet full of suits and heels that reminded her of the woman she used to be.
It became too much to bear; Sandra had a mental breakdown. It started with a questionable diagnosis of being bipolar and ended with her checking herself into an institution for five days. She’d been pouring from an empty cup and had finally exhausted herself. She was welcomed home by a supportive spouse and family and now had the tools to handle her anxiety.
She started her own business as a virtual assistant and later niching down to specializing in tech solutions and online business funnels. Within two years she’d learned how to operate 40 different support platforms and within five years was known for being the lady behind successful six figure launches. As she continued to build her business she also continued to seek out help through therapy, personal development and coaching.
Today, Sandra is teaching online entrepreneurs how to launch digital products & programs to increase their impact & income through systems automation & sales funnels. She is a sought after coach and subject matter expert. When she is not perfecting sales systems, she is speaking to audiences about her battle and breakthrough. She has overcome identity loss and is encouraging others to have the tough, yet necessary conversations around its impact.
If you are struggling with identity loss, Sandra has three reminders to help you get grounded for your own breakthrough.
“Your identity should be rooted in who you are and not what you do”
In this military spouse community it is easy to allow a title to give you value. The flip side to that is once the title is gone, the perceived value is gone too. We each need to remember that we are special, unique and valued regardless of the roles, occupations or titles that we hold.
“When you experience life altering changes give yourself space and permission to grieve a version of you that no longer exists”
Throughout life I’ve found that purpose evolves. The person I am grows with each lesson and experience that I gain along the way. With these growth spurts we may require new clothes, new responsibilities, new perspectives, etc. Still, there is nothing wrong with missing that favorite sweater, that group of friends or that previous season. We all need to give ourselves grace as we grow and realize that grieving goes beyond physical death, but also seasons and versions of ourselves.
“Just because we are a supporting role in our service member’s career does not mean we need to forget about SELF”
This military life often puts a lot of focus on the service member. Military spouses must intentionally make time to focus on their individual mental, physical and spiritual wellbeing. Beyond self care, we need to find fulfillment and get back to appreciating who we are at our core.