iPerms and your ERB

June 07, 2020 — Jt Spratley

First published on March 21, 2015

If you’re a Soldier, follow these steps when you have some free time:

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Promotion Point Worksheet (PPW)

June 07, 2020 — Jt Spratley

First published on April 5, 2015

Just as every Soldier should check her/his ERB regularly, Enlisted Soldiers up to the ranks of SGT should check the PPW (Promotion Point Worksheet) for accuracy.

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“Happy Birthday” Call From WWP

June 07, 2020 — Jt Spratley

First published on April 13, 2015

A representative from Wounded Warrior Project called me today just to say “Happy Birthday” and check up on my post-military life. After telling him about my current situation, he was more than helpful by providing additional assistance within WWP and resources outside of the organization. That’s awesome. It further motivates me to participate in WWP activities.

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X-Mini Speakers

June 07, 2020 — Jt Spratley

First published on May 10, 2015

In 2011, I competed in a Soldier of the Year competition hosted by 20th Support Command (CBRNE). I didn’t win, but I won’t rant about why I think I lost. . . okay, I lied:

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Microsoft Discounts for Service Members and Veterans

June 07, 2020 — Jt Spratley

First published on May 21, 2017

Though there are free alternatives for a lot of priced software the average person uses daily, many simply prefer to pay for such a product because of the brand. A house-hold brand offers security in valuable performance and customer support. Fortunately, Active Duty Soldiers can purchase the latest Microsoft Office from Slick Deals on AKO and the Microsoft Military Store offers discounts for Active Duty Service Members and Veterans. Free Open Office or $10 for product you know and use so much?

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Replace Your Insoles

June 07, 2020 — Jt Spratley

First published on June 4, 2015

Custom insoles add more hit points to comfort and performance in shoes used for physical activity. Many have one or two main goals including reduce weight, add cushion, support arch type, and wick sweat. I always replace the insoles of my work boots and exercise shoes with Sof Sole products available from Finish Line. My gel insoles felt amazing in my low-quarters during pay-day activities.

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Electronic Warfare

June 07, 2020 — Jt Spratley

First published on August 20, 2015

Anyone in the electronics field in any way that’s looking for a fun and interesting challenge should look into the Electronic Warfare field. For Soldiers, the 29E MOS is still relatively new, but the opportunities in the civilian field aren’t. During my deployment to Afghanistan, I was trusted with the role of “CREW (Counter-RCIED Electronic Warfare) Specialist” and the job of maintaining such equipment on a unit level, and I enjoyed it. Raytheon, Lockheed Martin, NAVSEA, and of course RallyPoint are great resources to start your research.

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Military Related Reading-Stackpole Books

June 07, 2020 — Jt Spratley

First published on July 6, 2015

Stackpole Books is the publisher of many of those books you see in Military Clothing and Sales stores. Many of them are worth the money, in my opinion, for any “Leader.” For just over ten bucks, you can physically hold a book filled with tons of knowledge and resources with you anywhere, hand it off to your Staff Duty/ Charge of Quarters runner when they’re “bored,” and have on hand in your home or office for quick reference.

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There are Questions You Deserve Answers to When You Move

June 05, 2020 — Jt Spratley

First published on October 23, 2015

Relocation Essentials – read stats about an area such as cost of living, crime activity, schools, and employment.

O Net – Get help with translating skills to positions and search for jobs.

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5 Websites For IT Training

June 03, 2020 — Jt Spratley

First published on August 21, 2017

Here are 5 websites with great free IT training.

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What School is Right for You?

June 01, 2020 — Jt Spratley

First published on March 17, 2015

Soldiers, the ACAP, SFL, TAP, check-the-block-before-you-separate, stupid-mandatory-five-day workshop, or whatever else you want to call it is a very informative course. Even a Reservist with his civilian life in order can benefit from the time blocks covering the resume, GI Bill, healthcare, and other things involving the transition. The entire class is also a major opportunity to network with the dozens of professionals that’ll brief you on particular topics during your enrollment in the week long course.

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What Does it Mean to You?

June 01, 2020 — Jt Spratley

First published on March 27, 2017

After reading about why milk is racist I felt the need to get a few thoughts out of my mind about what something means to me – the American Flag. So I’m sharing my thoughts with WWW – because 2017. The “milk isn’t that healthy” argument has caught more attention since this white girl drank milk at the end of the movie “Get Out“. Now more people are talking about the effects of milk on people of different races and how much it truly helps strong bones.

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Volunteering to Teach English to Young Korean Children

June 01, 2020 — Jt Spratley

First published on August 12, 2015

During my military TIS, I had the chance to serve a year in South Korea. I was assigned to 6th Battalion, 52nd ADA (Air Defense Artillery) Regiment under 35th ADA Brigade. Within that one year, I did many things during my downtime that I felt a Leader should do. I furthered my education via online college courses. I explored the country. I learned some of the Korean language through military computer-based training. During this time, the Army had already replaced Rosetta Stone with HeadStart, which I preferred over Joint Language University. Duolingo didn’t include the language. I also did many other things that I’ll explain another day.

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Study Your Enlisted Record Brief (ERB) for Professional Development

June 01, 2020 — Jt Spratley

First published on November 4, 2019

My Enlisted Record Brief (ERB) blog was one of my first personal blogs. It explained how an accurate ERB looks. It’s my most popular military blog as of 2019. I’d hoped my “how to ruck” blog would be at least a contender. Anyway, I figured I’d listen to my analytics and write about the all-knowing military resume again. This time I’ll focus on how to use it for planning career goals. Simply put, I’ll cover getting more on your ERB.

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The Grey Lines of RallyPoint

June 01, 2020 — Jt Spratley

First published on May 16, 2016

Read this featured at Rallypoint.com
Many people don’t like to read the FAQs. Many people prefer to know the cons before the pros. I’ve covered why Rallypoint is a beneficial resource. However, there are some grey lines I think you should be aware of from my point of view – 25.

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Service Members (Past, Present, and Future) Should Use RallyPoint

May 31, 2020 — Jt Spratley

First published on February 1, 2016

Featured on Rallypoint.com

Rallypoint Logo RallyPoint.com is a great online resource for Active Service Members and Veterans. Even if you’re just thinking about joining the U.S. Armed Forces, Rallypoint has a massive amount of information and experience to learn from between the hundreds of thousands of members from all ranks, specialties, and branches to the active forums covering all types of topics which affect the small percentage of the U.S. population who have served, from lessons learned from the worst Airborne jumps to transition help and politics to the infamous “Should a 2LT salute a 1LT?” forum. Here are five key points to consider:

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My 5 Most Popular Blog Posts(2015-2017)

May 31, 2020 — Jt Spratley

First published on May 29, 2017

Its good to look back at your performance over the years and analyze how you can improve in the future. The Go Live Lively blog is just over two years old. Below are my six most popular blog posts as of today.

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Memorial Bracelets

May 31, 2020 — Jt Spratley

First published on November 11, 2015

Quick facts:
KIA = Killed in Action
MIA = Missing in Action
POW = Prisoner of War

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Lead From the Front!

May 31, 2020 — Jt Spratley

First published on March 16, 2015

All actively serving military Leaders (if you ETS/retire, they want you out) who hold a social media presence should highly consider becoming a member of the Lead from the Front Facebook page. Here, Leaders share recent news, situations, advice, mentorship, and resources.

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In The Army Now(1994)

May 31, 2020 — Jt Spratley

First published on August 15, 2016

I asked Rallypoint about the movie before watching it. The opinions on the movie seemed very balanced between yes and no. I’m giving it a nope. While Pauly Shore did have a few really funny moments, I didn’t consider the movie consistent with humor. Many times, the things he does are simply annoying.

Anyways. . .

SPOILER ALERT ! !

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From the Military to College

May 30, 2020 — Jt Spratley

First published on April 11, 2016

Working on your transition from the military to college education? Lets cover some essential resources:

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Five Extremes with the Post 9/11 GI Bill

May 30, 2020 — Jt Spratley

First published on January 25, 2017

There are some extreme highs and lows that come along with using the Post 9/11 GI Bill. I’ve written about transitioning from the military to college and finding a school before, but this is specific to the GI Bill and finances.

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Fitness-My Outlet

May 30, 2020 — Jt Spratley

First published on August 28, 2017

Music is my therapy. It’s how I deal with life emotionally. resistance training is my outlet. It’s my favorite way to escape life mentally for 1 hour, grounds me daily, and boosts my mood.

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Army Enlisted Record Brief (ERB)

May 30, 2020 — Jt Spratley

First published on March 16, 2015

This blog is informational. See my newer blog to learn how to use your ERB (SRB) for professional development.

Leaders, fix your records. Afterwards, sit your Soldiers down, check and educate them about theirs, and get them fixed. That way, they know what “right” looks like, and when they become Leaders they can continue the trend to improve the NCO Corps. Service Members of other branches, just take note whenever applicable.

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CBRN Defense and HAZMAT

May 29, 2020 — Jt Spratley

First published on March 21, 2015

If you know nothing about CBRN, formerly called NBC, your unit is doing something wrong. Remember, CBRN, NBC, and HAZMAT can be used interchangeably. CBRNE is 20th Support Command, and the “E” refers to “Explosives.” They also have Chemical subordinate units. Every Soldier should at least know the levels of MOPP, how to wear a JSLIST, and proper PMCS of the M40 & M40A1 (they’re different), and M50 masks. If your unit doesn’t have a 74D and you could use a challenge, promotion points, and/or NCOER bullet, look into attending the 2 week long CBRN Defense Course and assume the role of Chemical SME.

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Links for Your Career Progression-IT, LG, HR

May 29, 2020 — Jt Spratley

First published on March 16, 2015

If you’re a motivated IT guru, you yearn for sites like LandWarNet, and Global Knowledge. If you’re really serious about the craft, you’ll dig into Lynda, Professor Messer, AAC, FreeComputerBooks.com, and Alison. Lynda and Alison sound so feminine, but these sites offer a lot of info for free. Soldiers, you should already know how beneficial Skillport can be when preparing for a Microsoft or CompTIA certification, especially since each course is promotion points.

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ATTN: Specialist (E-4)

May 28, 2020 — Jt Spratley

First published on June 21, 2017

If only I could go back in time and whisper a few notes in ears of my younger self . . .

Congratulations on your promotion to Specialist E-4. Don’t put that new rank on your uniform until your unit has a promotion ceremony! If they suck or dislike you, disregard last transmission.

Your Specialist rank is a X factor at any given time. There are many like it, but this one is yours. Everyone you encounter will wonder what type of Spec-4 you are:

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ATTN: Private

May 28, 2020 — Jt Spratley

First published on March 6, 2017

If only I could go back in time and whisper a few notes in ears of my younger self . . .

Ask Drill Sergeants about their military occupational specialty. Ask what they know about your MOS. Why? Knowledge. There’s a lot more you need to know now about the military than Initial Entry Training will teach you, directly or indirectly. Take notes.

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2015 (Big Change Coming) & My GI Bill Story

May 27, 2020 — Jt Spratley

First published on February 24, 2020

My 2015 was full of surprises. I had to adapt to a lot within a short amount of time. I was at a crossroads in life. I covered most of it in my RallyPoint post 5 Years at RallyPoint, 2015 “Make It Happen” interlude, and GI Bill Story video. Therefore, I don’t have much more to say here.

Hear My GI Bill Story, 2015, then Make It Happen in 1 video.

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10 Resources Every Veteran Should Check Out

May 27, 2020 — Jt Spratley

First published on May 22, 2017

Here’s a not so quick list of 10 resources for all Veterans.

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6 Upgrades for your Military Dress Uniform

May 25, 2020 — Jt Spratley

First published on July 23, 2018

Below are 6 ways I improved my time in Army dress uniforms.

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6 Military Items Useful Post-Military

May 25, 2020 — Jt Spratley

First published on September 3, 2018

I came across plenty tools during my military service that were essential for the military profession but still useful afterwards. Tools that don’t make my list but deserve an honorable mention (in my WatchMojo voice) – e-tool, 550 rope, wet wipes (yes, really – especially after spicy food), and anything Garmin (assuming they’re not already banned everywhere).

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5 Unique Ways to Show Military Pride

May 25, 2020 — Jt Spratley

First published on October 1, 2018

There are more creative ways to celebrate your military pride than camo attire and combat boots, though those cargo pants are awesome. In some cases you can also support Veteran owned businesses at the same time. Below are five ways to do both.

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5 Pet Peeves for Army Leaders

May 24, 2020 — Jt Spratley

First published on August 7, 2017

Here’s a short list of popular pet peeves for Army Leaders and how they became common.

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5 Major Components for Better Rucking

May 24, 2020 — Jt Spratley

Published March 20, 2017

Rucking, or hiking, isn’t one of those things you just do and get better at, though many may act that way. I’ve broken it down to five major components.

This is mainly for Service Members but much of it applies to trail hiking as well.

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1 Vet 2 Another: Informational Interview

May 24, 2020 — Jt Spratley

Last updated on September 10, 2019

Below is an interview originally intended for Matt Medhat at 1Vet2Another.com – now a Facebook community.

Job Title: Writer
Career Field: IT
Industry: Technology
Military Branch: Army
Military Occupation Specialty (MOS): 25U – Signal Support Systems Specialist

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