HH4Heroes“A hero is someone who has given his or her life to something bigger than oneself. “Joseph Campbell

You might not think that war could offer relevant lessons on life, but it surely does for both soldiers and civilians. With the upcoming Veteran’s Day, there are various lessons that Veterans have learned from war, including the ability to exude confidence when faced with calamity or death. After all, engaging in war takes tremendous courage.

War and sacrifice for freedom War also teaches lessons such as the essence of sacrifice in life. Servicemen and women usually risk their own lives with the aim of allowing civilians to live their lives in peace. These lessons tend to be universal.

War teaches us to appreciate the simple things we take for granted, such as the ability to see and have meaningful conversations with our loved ones every day. Or perhaps walk outside in the fresh air knowing that we are free to walk the streets without fear of being targeted by bombs or guns. Individuals who go to war usually don’t come back the same. The fortunate ones return home and successfully reintegrate back into society. However, many don’t. The visible, invisible and moral injuries can plague and paralyze even the strongest. War teaches about the value of the mission.

While most of us can agree that war is vile, its flip side is that beyond the battle lies the belief for something better. We want to believe that the fight was fought for a noble purpose or reason and that people, hearts and minds were not sacrificed in vain. Veterans of war are courageous, mindful, mission-driven and loyal to the core. We can all learn to appreciate life no matter how challenging the situation we may be going through.

War can teach us that we are stronger than believe ourselves to be and that we may possess strength, wisdom and insight beyond expectation. A warrior has the inner resources to do what needs to be done to get out of most any quagmire. All that has to be done for us to remove the mental blocks that impede us from breaking through is to identify the mission and take the organized and necessary steps toward achieving it.

Exercising free will and embracing hope War teaches us about the importance of exercising our free will. It teaches us to make every second of our lives count and relish the feeling of contentment that comes with the knowledge that you can stand against your enemies (people or obstacles) even when the odds seemed stacked up against you. It is with such a mentality that you can begin to realize your dreams and begin experiencing miracles. War also teaches us to keep our hopes alive. Hope is abstract, but the repercussions of losing hope can be detrimental to any life. Being hopeful is one of the most important lessons that can be learned from war. Hope is the jab we usually require to get things done when nothing seems feasible and it gives us the shove we need when it is least expected. During war, hope is the fabric that is mentally woven in the trenches of war as a result of the pain, tears, laughter and suffering that servicemen experience. Consequently, it is this fabric that holds together the different aspects of Veterans’ lives after they return from war.

Finally, war teaches us the value of the human spirit, to always believe in ourselves and in our intrinsic ability to heal from any psychological wounds we may suffer. Because of this, we should disregard the voice that discourages us from doing anything meaningful and embrace our positive side. Veterans have to use this positivity to do much more with their lives than just live. As we celebrate Veteran’s Day this year, let’s remember and salute our Veterans while remembering the valuable lessons that war can teach all of us about life.



Lisa Cypers Kamen Headshot 2014Internationally recognized Positive Psychology Coach Lisa Cypers Kamen is the Founder ofHarvestingHappiness.com, Director of 501 (C)(3) nonprofit Harvesting Happiness for Heroes (HH4Heroes.org), and Host of weekly Harvesting Happiness Talk Radio. Currently living in Los Angeles, California, Lisa Cypers Kamen is the mother of two active children. She is philanthropically dedicated to the success of various charities related to children and military issues.

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