Brigadier General Matt Barker, Texas Air National Guard

I’d like to begin this new feature by thanking the Veterans’ Chamber for the opportunity to share some thoughts and reflections from my time in uniform, and also to thank our readers for your service or support to those who have served and their families.  Lifting up those who have sacrificed for our nation and way of life is noble work, and also very rewarding.  It brings to mind some of my earliest experiences as a young Air Force lieutenant and Base Honor Guard officer 31 years ago.

I arrived in Grand Forks North Dakota in the winter of 1992-93 and reported to the 447th Missile Squadron to begin 4 years’ duty as a Minuteman III missile launch officer.  I went out to the missile complex around six days a month for a 24 hour alert with my crew partner, and spent the rest of the month on training or administrative duties.  Additionally, I volunteered for our base Honor Guard, performing in ceremonies or funeral details all over eastern North Dakota, and as far away as Minneapolis, Minnesota (every Air Force base is responsible to support a larger geographic area to provide final honors when a veteran passes away).

Our Honor Guard was unique in that we had a saber drill team, performing fairly elaborate routines for the public and at base functions.  We trained new members with weighted wooden dowels before “graduating” them to actual swords which were flipped, thrown and spun within inches of our colleagues’ ears and noses.  I still have a small scar where I skewered myself in the side one afternoon at practice, hopefully serving as an example to the formation on the need for precision and attention to detail!

We took pride in our performances for visiting dignitaries, and put a lot of work into our routines, but we took far more pride in the solemn work of funeral duty.  As our readers know, there is a special connection between veterans that manifests itself most profoundly in the ceremony where we lay a warrior to rest.  A mistake during a base ceremony was unfortunate, but a mistake during a funeral detail was unforgivable.  The family of the departed deserved perfection on that day, and that’s exactly the standard we aimed for.  From the arrival graveside to the last notes of Taps and the presentation of our flag to the bereaved (containing in its folds three shell casings from the rifle salute), we understood that we were representing our entire service as the final impression that our brother or sister-in-arms’ loved ones might have of the military, in our case the United States Air Force.

We learned what we could about the patriot we were helping honor, but usually there wasn’t much information.  A young NCO gone too soon or a “Greatest Generation” veteran who passed after a long, prosperous life, it didn’t matter to us.  They were each heroes.  We were almost always overwhelmed by grateful family members afterwards, often inviting the team for a meal, which we politely declined.  We’d be surrounded in short order by the other veterans in these small towns, shaking our hands and relishing for those short moments the opportunity to reconnect with their own experiences and younger days in uniform.  Then it was back in the van for a couple hours’ drive back home.  Packed in tight with our rifles and other gear there was the usual good-natured ribbing and joking after the inevitable fast food stop, which would wane as the miles went by.  Those miles afforded ample time for reflection on the life we’d just honored and the connection to something larger that we’d just witnessed and reinforced.  It’s been said that the folded flag presented on behalf of a grateful nation is the heaviest weight a service member will carry in their military career.  Taking a knee and looking into a widow’s eyes in a remote graveyard on the Dakota prairie, I don’t think I’d dispute it.  I’m glad for the opportunity to share a bit, and hope you’re still finding connections to fellow vets and reflecting on the experiences that shaped you.

Until next time, Stay Frosty and Hold the Line.

Success and Procrastination

1. Procrastination

 2. The Book of Wealth

 3. Definition of Success

Procrastination hamstrings a great majority of the population. It is a habit which is either inherited and more often created through habit. Where does this habit come from? You can search through several books on psychiatry, psychology, and neuro research and not find the real answer.

Procrastination is the result of fear and fear has killed more dreams of success than failure. When you are fearful of anything generally you will not take any action. Running is the first reaction when confronted with a fearful experience. This is a natural reaction as it is a survival response.

Procrastination has killed more dreams than failure ever will. When you take the time to examine the concept of failure, you may discover the only time it exists is when you choose not to start or when you quit in pursuit of your goals. Just because you don’t succeed on the first attempt, it doesn’t mean anything. It is just one path which is a dead end, and you should try again.

“If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again.” 

Belief in Limitation
People refuse to believe that which they do not understand. They foolishly believe that their own limitations are the proper measure if limitations. Most people think of success as luck, being in the right place at the right time. They miss the meaning of sowing and reaping. You reap what you sow. If you sow thoughts of lack and limitation, you receive lack and limitation.

Prov 23:7 As a man thinketh in his heart, so is he.

The Question
In 2020, I asked the question, “What is the difference between those who succeed and those who don’t?”
A wealth of information has continued to flow to me since then. This was the same year when I was so frustrated by my own lack of success. Believing I would be further along in life than my current results indicated. Feeling as if I had hit rock bottom, I openly admitted, “I needed a coach, a mentor.”

Not long afterwards, my mentor found me and introduced me to the teachings of Bob Proctor.

The Book of Wealth
“Think and Grow Rich” written by Napoleon Hill is one of several books on success and prosperity which Bob studied, applied, and taught to thousands of people around the world. He had a dream of building an organization which operated in every country around the world. Prior to his passing, he had achieved this goal.

“If you can hold it in your mind, you can hold it in your hand.” Bob Proctor
Your imagination is a very powerful tool, and it is an amazing gift to those who learn how to use it to their advantage.
The chair you are sitting in, the computer you use, the house you live in were at one time a thought in someone’s imagination. They put that thought to paper, drew out the plans, and then stepped into action to build it.
This is essentially a goal. Those who amass great success and wealth constantly and consistently strive towards a series of goals.

Failure to Succeed
Those who are mediocre or poor seldom if ever pursue a worthwhile goal. Read the parable of the talents in the Bible and you will see how the creator of the universe Blesses those who pursue their goals and take from those who succumb to laziness.

Definition of Success
“Success is the progressive realization of a worthy ideal.” Earl Nightingale
The following link takes you to the audio recording of “The Strangest Secret” narrated by Earl Nightingale

Success is something which is easily accomplished through inspired, committed action every day. There are those who believe monetary wealth determines a person’s success. Through years of study, I have found that success does not follow money instead money follows success.
Successful people have just as many problems and difficulties as everyone else. They just keep moving forward and find ways to address their problems without getting wrapped up in their feelings and the drama.

Studying success can help the average person get a better understanding of what it takes to be successful. There is no secret to success as it is something you see each day. The person who endeavors to reach a predetermined goal and is moving towards it is a success. The celebrities you see are success stories. They are the ones who come from humble beginnings.

Their hard work, dedication, and committed action took them to the top. While others say they’re lucky to be there. Luck has little to do with anything. A good, positive mental attitude has more to do with success than anything else. The successful people are those who do more to help others to succeed. In my experience, I have never seen an intelligent, competent leader dilute or diminish other people. They are constructive, supportive, and offer empowering words of encouragement.

Words of encouragement is how to leave others with the impression of increase. In the book “PDF “The Science of Getting Rich” written by Wallace D. Wattles dedicated an entire chapter on the impression of increase. This is both a guiding principle and trait of the successful people.

Humility is another trait of the successful person. It has been my observation and experience that successful people are quite humble. They often admit to not being so intelligent. This amazed me when I first observed this. When taking time to analyze this one of the most prominent Greek Philosophers Plato (if I remember correctly) stated that he was an ignorant man. Which is why he asked the questions. He wanted to understand more.

This is an extremely high bar to achieve. Humility in pursuit of a worthy ideal.

Author: Michael Chavez

Habits and Muscle

Muscle is developed through repetition and committed effort.
The more you exercise the stronger your muscles become.
Imagine your habits as your muscles. The more you practice the habits the stronger they become good or bad.
They become so strong that you don’t even have to think about what you do or when you do it.

What habits do you have which you want to overcome and replace?
* Procrastination
* Reacting out of anger
* Hitting the snooze button
* Lack of exercise
* Binge watching television programs
* Mismanaging your finances

We all live according to our habits good or bad. The only way to change them is
by making a committed decision to do so. Indecision and excuses are habits as well.

The habit of worrying. 92% of the things people worry about are unimportant and unnecessary.
There are two types of problems we face day to day.

  1. Problems we can solve
  2. Problems that are beyond our ability to control.

To breakdown the percentage of worries;
Petty miscellaneous worries 10%
Needless worries about our health 12%
Things that never happen 40%
Things over and past that can never be changed by all the worrying in the world 30%
8% of our worries are legitimate and within our ability to control.

I heard of a couple of stories where people have worried themselves to an untimely death.

There is a story an individual told me a few years ago about how they experienced stress blindness. It was a term I never heard before. As they explained it there are several things which made sense. You hear about muscle tension, peptic ulcers, and boils. These are just a few ailments which are brought on through stress and excessive worry.

Managing your stress levels by prioritizing your activities improves your overall health and strengthens your immune system.

Article by Michael Chavez

Two Sides of The Coin

Two Sides of the Coin

We all agree there is a heads and tails for coins. When you look at the different coins, they are not identical. They each have their nuances even though you may have two nickels, two quarters, and so on, they can have different imprints on them.

Our thoughts are on the opposite side as well. You have either negative thoughts or positive. No two people are identical in their thinking. They may agree but only to a certain degree.

When you spend your time with negative thoughts you miss out on so many opportunities in achieving peace of mind and success.

Thoughts of anger, resentment, bitterness, and sorrow consume an enormous amount of energy. They keep you stuck in a cycle which distract you on what is most important. Your family, relations, and the desire for more opportunities in business.

The positive thoughts allow you to create new ideas, strengthen your relationships, and allow you more energy to do more. You feel more energized and alive when you are working towards a positive outcome.

Nowhere has it been written that circumstance has dominion over man. This is a limiting belief people have been sold on which is not true.

The ability to succeed far outweighs the concept of failure. If you doubt this, you can always research it and you will discover this is true.

Three Factors to Consider When Choosing a Career

On average, we spend around a third of our waking ours at work. As a result, it’s crucial to consider the type of career path, work, and industry in which we’d like to invest so much of our time. It’s important that you select a career you think you will enjoy years down the line. It should pique your curiosity, match your skillset, and give you a sense of purpose.

If you’re not sure which career you want, continue reading to learn about some of the most important factors to consider while making your decision.


Two of the most crucial aspects to consider are your personality and the level of enjoyment you want to get out of your job. Extroverted people generally enjoy interacting with others often and find fulfillment in careers that require social interaction, while introverts are the opposite.

To find your dream job, you’ll need to sit down and understand yourself. You’ll be surprised to find out things you didn’t even know about yourself before! Ultimately, this will help you determine the type of career you would like to pursue. Consider joining an online bootcamp and explore what skills you have to make a career out of. 


When deciding on a career, another key element to consider is your ideal lifestyle. Many individuals aspire to be wealthy, live in a beautiful home, and drive a luxurious car. If this resonates with you, consider your lifestyle when making a decision. There is nothing wrong with wanting to work in a high-paying job. You should think about what you’re willing to give up in exchange for that money. 

Do you want to be a part of a vibrant social scene? Do you enjoy working long hours? Are you willing to put your happiness on hold to achieve success? There’s no denying that salary impacts productivity, but consider how it compares to your lifestyle choices. If you’re a laid-back or introverted person, a sales profession with hundreds of client interactions every week might not be for you.

Here’s the thing about jobs and pay: if you’re good at what you do, you’ll soon be earning as much as those in higher-paying fields. You will rise through the ranks faster if you have a job you enjoy. As you advance in your career, your compensation will increase. Advancing your career is easy when you obtain higher education and job training, such as a relevant online degree

Job Market 

While it is now the least essential criteria on our list, the job market used to be the most important factor for a long time. It was even thought to be the only consideration by some. After all, what’s the sense of pursuing a job in a crowded field?

In this view, it is reasonable to select a career path among the options offered. The only issue is that job demand fluctuates quite frequently. Every year, countries publish a list of the greatest jobs or most sought-after professions, like the BLS Fastest Growing Occupations list. A few examples of tech jobs in demand in the coming years include web developers, software engineers, and digital marketers. 

Going over the other factors first, making a list of career alternatives, and seeing what the job market offers in this area is a great approach to use. For example, let’s say you’ve reduced your employment options to finance and accountancy. You’ve determined that you’re likely to excel at either of them based on your personality, experiences, and values, among other factors. Next, look into which jobs in these industries are in high demand and are better paying.


There are numerous other factors to consider while deciding on a career, but they will almost always fall under one of these major categories. Remember, there is no one-size-fits-all approach to finding the ideal job.

If you start a job and realize you don’t like it, take what you’ve learned and use it to improve and refine your plan. Don’t worry; plenty of people change jobs frequently and still advance in their professions.

How to make a will online free

In all our lives comes a time when we feel we ought to make a will. Be it that we are at the end of the journey or that we’ve simply become aware of our mortality, making a will is an excellent way to ensure that things will be in order after we pass on. But, making a will can seem like a daunting task. You need to go through the trouble of outlying it and hire a lawyer to help you. Luckily, there is a more straightforward option. Here is how to make a will online free.

Make a will online free

We created our site solely to enable people to create free online wills. As we feel that making a will shouldn’t be a luxury but an essential commodity, we’ve made the process intuitive and straightforward. To clarify, we will use this article as an essential guide. If you go through it with due care, we are certain you will have no trouble creating your free online will. Please visit our FAQ page or contact us directly if you run into any trouble.

Basic details

When you set out to make a will online free you will first have to input your basic info. That includes your Full Name, your Prefered Name (optional), and your email address. Our system will recognize you according to these basic details for the rest of the process. So, make sure you get them right.

You must input your gender and birth date on the next screen. We use gender data to make demographic analytics and, hopefully, improve our services. Your birth date is an essential part of your legal data. In most states, you cannot make a free online will if you are not at least 21. That is also why providing an address of your permanent residence is essential, as different states have different laws regarding online wills. If you own property in the U.S. but don’t live here, we advise you to add the address where you have the most property. Providing your phone number is optional.

The next screen will require you to choose a marital status. That is a legal aspect and not a romantic one. So, even if you have lived with a significant other for years but don’t have official registration, you should consider yourself single for the will. You will also need to estimate the total value of your assets. That is solely to aid in outlining the necessary documents.


In the next section, you need to outline whether or not you have children. Adopted children do count.

After that, you need to specify whether you would like to include your pets in your will. Keep in mind that, from a legal standpoint, pets are seen as property. Therefore, you cannot bequeath any gifts to them. But, you can outline financial aid to a person who will care for your pet.


You can aid charity organizations, non-profit organizations, or social movements in the residuary section. If you feel that a particular organization is doing good for the world, and you wish to help them, this is where you can donate.

The next step is to choose who will be the primary beneficiaries of your residual estate. These individuals will be first in line to inherit your property once you are gone. For each individual (or organization), you will have to enter your full name. And the percentage of your residual estate that they stand to inherit. Remember that the residual estate remains after all the gifts, debts, taxes, and specific requests have been settled.

Once you finish, you will need to outline a second beneficiary. The beneficiary will inherit your residual estate if your first beneficiary does not survive you. Remember you should set a residuary beneficiary after you’ve listed the primary and secondary ones.

After you’ve entered the residuary distribution data, we will ask you to review it. As you can imagine, this data is essential, so you should read it thoroughly before proceeding.


The next section asks if you wish to leave gifts for specific individuals. If you don’t want to leave any gifts, you can skip the entire section by clicking on “Save & Continue.” If you do, you will have to outline what kind of property you wish to leave and to whom. We advise that you also consider transportation costs. While you can find expert help with any task and many top movers to choose from while moving in Washington, DC, you should consider transportation beforehand.


Seeing that you are outlining your will, it is only natural to outline your funeral requests. But, while your funeral executor will have access to these documents, know that they are not legally binding. You can choose where you will be buried and who will attend your funeral. You can even outline what the funeral service will be like in detail.


In this section, you will outline who will be the executor of your will. As the name suggests, your executor will ensure your will is executed. Therefore, we advise you to carefully consider who you will pick for yours. You can choose a lawyer as your executor, but this is unnecessary. People often choose an executor that is a trustworthy and responsible family member. If they stand to inherit a decent percentage of your property, they will likely take good care of it and ensure that your wishes are met. Nevertheless, you should talk with your executor candidates and ensure you pick the right one for the job.

We also give you the option of picking a digital executor. That person will take care of your digital assets if you have them. By default, the executor you choose is also your digital executor. But, if you wish, you can choose someone else.

Another option you can choose is the no-contest clause. That entails that if a person challenges your will, they inherit nothing.


What follows are straightforward answers to some basic questions and a final review. As such, we will assume that you’ve finished the process and managed to make a will online free. So, congrats! Again, contact us if you have any questions or concerns.

Meta: If you want to know how to make a will online free, here is our step-by-step guide to help you make the best will.

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