It is definitely tough to come back to the Academy after three weeks of relaxing at home and enjoying the company of friends and family, especially second semester. Starting to prepare for another long four months can be stressful, and I know sometimes it’s hard to look past the immediate future. Luckily, the Academy provides fantastic opportunities to listen to guest speakers as well as officers who can help students keep their future in mind, and give them direction.
On Friday, the Women’s Leadership Council was fortunate enough to host a luncheon with Karen Jacobsen, also known as the “GPS Girl.” She is a singer/songwriter/pianist from Australia who came to New York to expand her career. Along the way, she auditioned to be the voice of the Australian GPS. After 50 hours in the studio, she had completed audio for Siri (on iPhones) as well as the Australian voice for over 100 million GPSs throughout the world. Ms. Jacobsen used this accomplishment as a platform for becoming an inspiration to others. She gave us her “directions” on how to figure out our futures. She explained how you have to first be willing to “get in the drivers seat” and take control of your life. You have to have a strong will to make yourself better. This is definitely useful as a cadet because you have to want to be here to truly be successful. If you cannot set goals for yourself, you won’t excel.
Karen also talked a lot about using your “inner GPS,” which basically means if you are doing something and you are comfortable with it but know you were meant to be doing something else, you should be doing that something else. Using her inner GPS led her to New York, despite her success in Australia. New York was her “destination” and she laid out directions to get there. One thing that I admired about Karen was her ability to “recalculate.” She wanted us to learn that sometimes people make the wrong choice, but a recalculation to get back on track is not a negative thing. The fact that you recognized you took a wrong turn and are trying to correct your course is a GOOD thing, and in fact you will develop more as a person if you do this. You can control your own road map, and being persistent and working hard will get you to the right destination.
This semester I will be Guidon for Golf Company, and my main goals are to help my 4/c pass boards, prepare them for this coming summer in the fleet, and to make sure they do not lose sight of their futures. I want to teach them that it’s okay if they fail the first or second time, or if they make mistakes. Those things actually help you learn better, and can sometimes push you closer to the right path toward your destination.
More about Lindsay.