Dress the part
It is important to project an image of confidence. Keep up appearances.
My father-in-law, a retired (1952), Colonel had served for several years in the 1930’s/early 40’s on the Army staff in what was then the War Department. Both Colonel Compton and Mrs. Compton gave me the sound advice to stay extremely well groomed – and the money to purchase a new tailored uniform. I found enough of my own money to get a total of three uniforms and excellent uniform shoes. I made it a point every morning to shine my uniform brass insignia; shoes daily; wear clean, carefully pressed uniforms; good haircuts.
There IS a solution to every problem; some are more difficult than others. There’s ALWAYS a way. I learned this lesson early and it helped me out throughout my whole career. Remember, a lesson learned early in one’s life never leaves a person and is applied naturally, as a matter of course, for the rest of one’s life.
It took me two years to find an appointment to West Point. Two years of walking the halls while working the Senate Book Warehouse and attending college at the same time. I KNEW I would succeed. When I finally was given an appointment to attend the Naval Academy, I instantly asked if I could find another Congressman to swap it for a West Point slot. More legwork… but, I succeeded.