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Have fun and enjoy successes

PATRICK AIR FORCE BASE, Fla. -- When I joined the military many years ago, I planned to do a good job but also knew it was going to be hard work.

How many times have you worked extra hours, been deployed over holidays, missed out on family events, etc.? We are busy and are working hard. We constantly set high expectations for ourselves and our teams. But are YOU having fun while serving?

We have standards and expect dedication. But can't you have fun while working?

I think so. I can give an example. Imagine being faced with managing the Personnel Reliability Program at a nuclear base. It's inspection after inspection with everybody watching. I worked long hours stationed at Barksdale to ensure the medical group was inĀ  compliance. We never came close to failing a Nuclear Surety Inspection. A great accomplishment...but we also had fun.

We got to know each person in the flight and ensured that we did things together off duty. I can say I never worked harder, but never had more fun. I encourage you to get to know your teammates.

Share experiences with one another that build bonds and encourage togetherness. Don't take yourself too seriously but always take the mission seriously. Ensure you get out from behind the computer or scope and talk to those around you - you might actually have fun while at work.

I have enjoyed all my assignments. However, in one's military service, whether one assignment or 20 years, how many times do we get to celebrate accomplishments? How many promotions will we have in a military career, four or five?

Having fun is important to promote balanced lives. Celebrating successes shows gratitude to those who helped us. Celebrations also provide motivation for those junior than us.

When I was promoted to captain, I had no ceremony, took leave and thanked no one. I have regretted that decision. Celebrate promotions, favorable inspection results, positive SAV's and times the team you work with performs well. The heritage created today should emphasize the Air Force is fun. We have had many reasons to celebrate since my arrival here, are you ready for more?