Introducing John…

RAAF Veteran


John has served in the Air Force for 14.5 years and has just medically discharged this year. Here is his story…

John: Finishing my senior year, I began a Butcher apprenticeship, five years on it was time for a career change. Watching a television ad for the Navy, I remember thinking being in the Air Force would be exciting, I knew I didn’t want to fly, rather how they worked and how to fix them was my desire.

Three months later I was on a bus to Adelaide to be an Avionics Technician.
During my time, I have been an Avionics Technician, Armament Technician, Instructor and a Training and Development Non Commissioned Officer.

I found teaching and mentoring is something I really enjoyed. Aircraft I have worked on include the Caribou, F-111, Super Hornet and the AP3-Orion.

As I reflect on the past 14 years, so much has happened, both positive and not so positive. That said it has shaped me into the person I have become, I wouldn’t change anything.

I was given this advice from my 1RTU instructor “The Air Force is what you make of it, good or bad” it is the same in life.

A positive of transitioning out now means I now have the ability to remain close to my children and enjoy them growing up, Huge plus!

Personal awareness, awareness of others and mindset are my new areas of learning and interest.

Since February 2016, I have invested significantly in my own education, training, mentors and coaching so I can give back and help others now that I have come through it all.

I feel my whole life has brought me to this place now, I’m committed to building my ability to provide value, insight and support for others to reach a happy fulfilled life of their own.

I have come up with a personal vision statement ‘To be stand for others so that they embrace their worth and live their passions’ It may sound a little ‘Airy Fairy’ but it will serve a compass for my future direction and vision.

The way I am going to do this is by focusing on education and training online – mindset, personal awareness, growth,collaborative marketing a support network online, all around the world!

How good would it be, giving people that are wounded physically or psychologically a pathway to providing value and have an income through the use of the internet.

That concept may sound ridiculous, but I assure you it is possible, the awareness and knowledge is just not common, yet. The positive power of the internet is incredible!

As of early February, I will have virtually no income, no pension, no payout. This doesn’t faze me as I know to my core that things will work out and I trust myself to grow business and bring my vision into reality.

One thing I have noticed in my transitions is despite the huge support on offer to us, most of us aren’t even aware of the support available. One of my goals is to build and/or promote a collaborative network linking the support for service people and their families.

Connect on Facebook: Powerful Pathways

My tips for exiting the Defence Force include:

1. Change can be hard and often we avoid it… By being open minded and embracing the change it becomes easier and exciting. Be flexible with your transition plans. Circumstances and situations will arise so modify your plan. We are adaptable, flexible and agile by nature it’s in our training!

2. Network! Talk to people have conversations about discharging, gain insights and awareness of the process and available support. What you learn today can help someone in the future! It’s a good feeling doing this, being of service to others…something we all can relate to.

3. The internet is an incredible resource these days for information and connecting with people! Get on social media more and join groups, start your own if needed, if your mates aren’t on get them on!

4. Don’t underestimate the many skills you learned while in Defence these are very attractive skills and qualities employers are desperate for.

5. Look at the Support Services initiatives and utilise them, even if you believe you wouldn’t benefit. You may be surprised by what you learn, having one conversation during that course with someone can open an entire new possibility for you!

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