The second line of the Soldier's Creed begins the process of defining the American Soldier: "I am a Warrior..."
Being an American soldier requires one to be aggressive. Too many times have I seen young men and woman not going for what they want. They don't show any initiative. Why is this? I happen to be of a mind that they don't really know what they want, in order to go out and get it.
The first part of being aggressive is setting goals, defining what you want. Your purpose. Then do whatever you can to achieve it. Asking for mentorship and help achieving them is key. Being mindful of your surroundings, how they can help or hinder you, is an important part. A warrior not only uses his wits and cunning on the battlefield. If he wants to know how to get promoted faster, he finds out!
He is adaptable, able to shift from offense to defense, war to home life, from being a follower to being a leader. He is flexible, changing himself, even challenging himself, to meet the demands set upon him. In fact, American soldiers crave challenges. They push them to become stronger, more resilient. Decisiveness, being able to make up one's mind, is his hallmark. The warrior makes his decisions, and sticks with them. The soldier owns up to his mistakes in spite of his folly.
The warrior is skilled. Not only in the art of war, but in speech, enthusiasm, rallying those who follow him. He hones his skills to a razor's edge. He is enthusiastic in learning new skills, listening to those who came before with an open ear. He is loyal to his friends, country, superiors, and subordinates. He stands beside them and stands proud. The soldier never puts down his comrades, but encourages and lends a hand. He is disciplined, in control of his thoughts and actions. He does what he's told, when he's told, and does it expertly. The American soldier is always ready, always obedient, always willing.
The warrior's creativity drives him. He invents ways of teaching, learning, application and refinement. He's constantly trying to make "better." The soldier uses his creativity to get the mission done quicker, efficiently, with the fewest number of casualties. He keeps himself emotionally detached in the thick of things, gaging his surroundings, the situation, with fresh perspective and keen insightfulness. The soldier thinks things through, never rushing to brash actions. He feels emotions, yes, but knows how to control them and when to confront them.