NextGen MilSpouse is going beyond traditional career tips and tricks for military spouses! We are sharing the real stories of working military spouses (just like you!) and their professional success stories on Wednesdays.
Name: Amanda Huffman
Years as a military spouse:
Tell us your profession:
Blogger | Freelance Writer
Is this full-time, part-time, hourly, contract or freelance work?
How long have you been working in this career field?
Do you work in an office, telecommute from home (or Starbucks), or a little bit of both?
Tell us one thing you love about your job.
Connecting with others. Either through sharing life experiences through writing or collaborating with others on business ventures.
Meeting people and connecting with them through various forms of social media is truly the most rewarding thing about blogging.
How did you get this position? Was it a resume, referral, job fair? Spill your magic.
I started my blog to keep my sanity as a new mom who had just left the military. I started the blog for me, but now I have recently shifted it to focus on the main points for military spouses and veterans. I think opening up to share my experience is a unique voice not often found.
What is your No. 1 tip for a military spouse on the hunt for a job?
Find something you love to do. A small business might be a good option because you can move it with you and you will find a supportive military community already established. Or maybe you love an organization, so see if there are ways to volunteer with that organization. It may lead to an open door.
How do you feel about failure?
Becoming a mom taught me so much because essentially it was the first time I failed, regularly. Now, I realize failure is just a way to learn and grow. I have been struggling with growing my audience and often don’t meet the goals I set for myself, but I am moving forward.
Failure isn’t bad if you learn something from it and keep moving forward.
What’s the biggest challenge you’ve faced while trying to maintain a career while living the military lifestyle?
Having young kids has made it hard to find the time and the energy to pursue a passion. Especially because in the beginning it has been hard to grow and find my voice.
I have learned the importance of not doing it alone. When you find a community to support you even if they are not physically with you it can help you push through the hard times and grow.
The other hard part is preparing for changes. Unexpected deployments, TDYs or job changes can have an impact on how much time you have to work on different projects and that makes it hard to run your own business.
What is the best piece of career advice you’ve ever received?
Find your focus or your niche. When I first started sharing my experience I was all over the map. Any inspiration was used to fuel my blog. That was ineffective and instead of reaching someone I was reaching no one. Now I know that I need to constantly work on what my readers want/need to hear.
Who is in your support squad?
I am in a mastermind group with a handful of other military spouse bloggers. They encourage and inspire me to keep pushing. Through the group I have learned tools to help me in this entrepreneurship journey.
I also have the support of my husband who allows me the time to work on my blog in the evening and will watch the kids when I need him to. His support on my crazy dream means a lot.
Do you and your spouse or partner split household tasks? How do you do it?
Since I stay at home with my kids I do most of the household chores, but I do have a rule that since I cook he does the dishes. He does a pretty good job of helping me out with the dishes. It is the one thing that I really don’t like doing. It works well for us.
On Black Friday we invested in a Roomba and it is my new favorite thing. My sister recently came to visit and commented about how clean our house was. Did you get a maid? Nope just a Roomba!
Share your best life-hack for saving time or sanity during the work week.
Work batching. I try to work on each part of blogging in pieces instead of going all over the place. Writing, images, social media, ect. Each one done and then I move on to the next.
I also turn off social media and close my email inbox while working so I don’t have distractions.
What’s your favorite app for making the most of your day?
Instagram. I love seeing photos and being inspired
What’s your must-have song on your productivity playlist?
Anything Taylor Swift. Probably “Shake It Off,” is my favorite.
If you had an extra hour in your day, what would you do?
Listen to a podcast episode or two or watch YouTube
If you were a superhero, what would be your super power?
To be able to fly. I love traveling and being able to fly where ever I want to go would be amazing.