MSEJ April 2016 - Page 20

20

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Finding My Sense of Purpose:

A Military Spouse Entrepreneur’s Journey

By Ashley Matejka, Program Director for The Milspo Project

Recent media attention has given rise to military spouse entrepreneurs; however, not all military spouses find entrepreneurship to be alluring or quite frankly, realistic. I have been a military spouse for nearly all of my adult life. I love the adventures of military life, but as a career-driven professional I was confronted with a transitory lifestyle. Young people, including myself, often find difficulty in determining their purpose in life. Couple that with living a life that revolves around an active duty spouse’s military obligations, and it’s easy to become susceptible to loss of motivation and complacency.

At the start of my professional career and marriage, I held a variety of different business related positions—some due to relocations while others were merely part of the traditional business career track I was desperately chasing. Watching my husband’s thriving military career left me feeling like a passenger, rather than the driver of my life. The ambition was there, but a sense of purpose, fulfillment, and balance were absent.

Determined to find the right professional path for myself, I chose to enter the fitness and wellness industry. While all of my clients were drastically different, they all had one thing in common: their lives were completely unbalanced. With this discovery, the idea of developing my own business put me into action though I was not sure that entrepreneurship was completely realistic as a military spouse. At the time,

there were no resources, at least that I knew of, for military spouse entrepreneurs. With ambition and passion as my driving force, I took a leap of faith and founded Wellevance.