My Name is Matthew, and I am a soldier. I have an interesting view that I share from time to time with the folks I encounter as I walk the road. Some of those people have encouraged me to seek out ways to help others or simply share my views or ideas with more people. I will blog on many subjects, from things that piss me off on a daily basis to more important issues such as dealing with chronic depression and the struggles that ensue as a result. I will be taking bits and pieces from emails and rants that I have verbalized as well, so if you see something we have talked about please, smile and nod...Thanks for reading.

Thursday, April 3, 2014


I'm a "normal" person. I have good days and bad, some worse than others. I have deadlines and stress at work like anyone else. I recently had to confront something I had done wrong. I was ashamed and embarrassed. I felt as though I should know better. I felt like I let my people down. As a leader I can tell you nothing hurts worse than feeling like you let people who depend on you down.
Everyone makes mistakes, sometimes there is no going back. Some times there is no second chance. Some times, you have to stand there, and confront what you did wrong, and do your best to learn from it. Yes, I made mistakes, and no, I wasn't thinking clearly. My people were in a tough spot because of something I could have prevented. I have a saying, "if you can hold yourself responsible for the good things your people do, then you should be able to take responsibility for the bad things they do as well." How can I, as a leader take compliments based on the labor of my people, if I can't stand up and take responsibility for when they do wrong? Worse, when what I have done has put them in jeopardy.
What I failed to do, for myself is something I take extra care in preventing when I deal with my subordinates. When someone who works with me does something wrong, before imposing a punishment, I take into account their good deeds as well as the thing that got them into trouble. I won't list my good deeds here for your amusement or reading pleasure. Suffice to say that I have helped out my people in many ways and I have gone out of my way time and time again. No one has ever called me for help and not gotten it. That much I can tell you, proudly.
Facing my misdeeds is not such an easy thing to do, but I stood there, and took my punishment. I didn't run from it, or hide. I didn't say that it was someone else's fault. I didn't blame my people, for something I should have prevented. I have learned allot about leadership sense the incident, but today's lesson was the culmination of that class. I had to learn to accept that I did something wrong, and that it didn't define me. My failure, and my transgression doesn't define me. I am not, without blame. I am not without shame, or sorrow, I am not without pride either. I have done good things, and I have been recognized for my good deeds, some of them anyways. Some I would prefer no one ever know about but the person they affected. I'd like to keep it that way, in the interest of modesty and humility. Irony, is that I feel the same way about my transgressions.
As I was listening to my punishment today, I was upset. I felt as if I was a failure, and a horrible leader. Let this entry into my blog serve as a mode of support for anyone who has done something they wish they could take back, or change. You cannot change the past, but you can learn from it. I certainly have. Don't allow your failures to define you, chop them up into little bits and pieces and chew slowly that you may digest them and glean from them whatever good they may provide you. Never forget your failures, but don't allow them to overshadow the goodness within you, for we all have goodness within us. We all have moments of extreme pride, and fulfillment. There deserves to be a balance within us of good and bad. If we find ourselves without flaw, we might need to look a little closer, or take the next steps with great care. Whenever you feel as though you are high on life, you are careless and complacent. When the world is falling down around your ears, lift your head and strain to hear the sounds. There may be a rescue party heading your way. You won't hear it with your head in the sand.
I sincerely hope that this entry gives you hope and pause. Take stock and inventory. My best wishes and, as always, thank you for reading.  


  1. I needed this more than you will ever know today. Thank you Wayne. And I am proud of you, even though I don't know you. Many people, me included, have a hard time admitting when we have done something wrong. Now I need to go right my wrong.....

    1. I always appreciate your comments Paula. I wish you luck in your endeavors.