If you or someone you know has said, “Ugh… This base sucks!” You are my people…
I have, more times than I’d like to admit. If you dislike your base, post, duty station, installation (whatever your flavor!) so much, why don’t you do something about it? Of course, you can’t change the weather at Fort Drum, or the cost of living in California. But there are things you can change. You have opportunity to make your FRG, spouses club, and installation, a great place for everyone. So why don’t you? Yes, you! You have the absolute power to make change.
If you feel like things are not okay, speak up.
If you feel there are not enough activities for families, speak up.
You shouldn’t cause a ruckus on your post, but if it’s so bad, be the change needed to better your installation. There are thousands of servicemembers and family members living on a military installation. In order to create a good living environment and activities enjoyable for everyone, you must speak up.
Complaint Speed… 340 WPM
Did you hear that Janie’s dog was barking all day? I know, because I read it online. I am sure I am not the only one on the installation’s social media pages that sees the complaints every time I open Facebook. There’s nothing to do here, I can’t ever make friends, my husbands unit sucks. The list goes on. Have you ever thought about channeling that frustration into real change? You can use your complaints and turn them into valid concerns through ICE Comments and the Army Family Action Plan. If you’re not an Army family, check your installation’s website to find what similar programs your branch offers.
There’s Nothing to Do Here
If you have ever moved to a remote location, in the middle of nowhere, you know that finding activities for your family can be a scavenger hunt. Visit your local county’s website for programs, events, and state parks near you. If you decide to take to social media for advice on fun activities, be prepared for a slew of answers, maybe an argument or two, a few memes, and that one spouse that knows everything. Take it with a grain of salt.
Don’t be a Mean Girl… Or Guy
There are enough miserable people on the planet. Don’t be one of them. If you see someone bullying someone else online, the best thing you can do is take a stand by using kindness. Sometimes, publicly confronting online bullies can make matters worse. Send them a private message and ask them to stop. If matters progress negatively, or physical threats are made you may want to alert the authorities. Saying mean things back never solves an issue, it only creates a new one. If you’re being bullied, do your best to ignore it. You may record the messages but don’t forward them to your friends or family. This may escalate the problem.
Be a friend. Be a mentor. Be teachable. There are so many ways you can help change your community. Here’s a secret. If you are in a group; you are either an influence or you are being influenced. This can be a good thing! Influence your friends and other spouses in your community to help make your post better. You can do this by hosting community clean ups, play dates, and other activities that encourage friendship and positivity. You can make a difference. Whether your impact is felt throughout the installation or only in your neighborhood, positivity is contagious, and with a little courage, anyone can enact change.