“ I have a question; should I join the Army and be a Ranger to get myself ready for BUDS or go to the Marines and go to the Recon community because they work in the water too?”
Answer: Neither!!! The other service branches are not f&%*ing stepping stones for BUDS. These highly successful units are not some weekend getaway experience so you can find yourself. Tony Robbins (who I love just FYI) would tell you to go f#$% yourself for being so stupid (watch I’m Not Your Guru on Netflix). His advice is really no different than mine. Do some research; watch the documentaries, and speak to the recruiters at all the branches. Be careful, they do not care about you or your future; they have a monthly quota to hit. It’s like a sales goal at a used car lot, they will tell you whatever you want to hear and make you believe that the job you are signing up for was really your idea. Do not sign anything unless it is exactly what you want. You will be doing this job for 4 years at a minimum or at least 3 years if you fail selection.
If you want to be a Ranger, SEAL, MARSOC, Battalion Recon, Force Recon, PJ, CCT, Special Forces etc. Pick one and do it. That’s it. That is the magic answer. I personally did not go into the Marines because I wanted training. I had to because I was a criminal with a record and drug use. I never thought of being a Marine until the Navy said “you’re a shithead; we have plenty of those already, thanks but no thanks.” So I went next door and 5 days later was stepping on the yellow foot prints at building 622 aboard MCRD, San Diego. I had to get a waiver FROM a 2 star General who chewed my ass out over the phone while I begged him to give a chance to prove myself. This is what is called A REALITY CHECK. I was in artillery for 4 years and I am here to tell you it sucked. I paid my penance in the desert of 29 Palms for years. But it’s what I needed and I am extremely proud to have served as a Marine. I took to their discipline like a fish to water, pulled my head out of my ass and when my 4 years was up, left and joined the Navy.
You need to do some soul searching ask yourself these questions and answer honestly;
- Why do you want to serve?
- Do you like doing tedious mind numbing repetitive work with no explanation why?
- Do you want to risk your life for strangers?
- Are you willing to lose life, limb, site and skin for your team?
- Do you have attention to extreme detail?
- Are cold and pain your friend? If not, can you function in extreme adversity?
- Do you want the body of a 60 year old when you are 30 FROM stress, injury, and back breaking work?
- What happens when you DON’T PASS selection/BUDS?
- Can you work with and respect people FROM all walks of life, FROM Compton to Harvard and everything in between?
- Can you think fast, taking in an abundance of information in milliseconds of time and make a life or death decision?
- Do you enjoy being yelled at daily and told how F$#!ed up you are?
- Are you afraid of heights?
- Can you swim? and yes, I mean like a fish for hours on end
- Can to run until someone else says stop?
- Do you truly possess the inner fire to never quit regardless of the personal cost?
- Are you just doing this to prove you can? --- GREAT! You passed. Now you're in a 3rd world country being shot at
- Are you a physically/mentally hard animal that can compartmentalize fatigue, pain, stress, cold, fear and still perform?
There are no right answers to these questions. It’s up to you and you alone if this lifestyle is what you really, really want. Branch of service does not equate to bravery. The different branches offer a different job, that’s it. It’s a job nothing more, nothing less. If you cannot decide what service branch to join, trust me you’re not ready for any of them. Get focused, get ready; stay ready so you will always be ready.