LtCol Michael Moffett (USMCR, ret.) is a retired Marine Corps officer and professor, columnist, and author. He is currently a New Hampshire State Representative, a blogger, and a columnist who loves to put words together. He has written several books but is most proud of co-authoring FAHIM SPEAKS: A Warrior-Actor’s Odyssey from Afghanistan to Hollywood and Back with Fahim Fazli, an Afghan-American movie actor and interpreter he met when they were both deployed to Afghanistan with the Marines. The critically-acclaimed FAHIM SPEAKS won the Gold Medal for top biography from the Military Writers Society of America.

Where did you grow up and what was your childhood like? Did you have any particular experiences/stories that shaped your adult life?

I grew up in Groveton, a small, northern New Hampshire paper mill town. A bit isolated but a safe, beautiful locale in the northern White Mountains. Groveton had a strong sports tradition and sports became an integral part of my life journey. I played soccer and basketball in high school and college. I later coached and I still write a weekly sports column. Our local Catholic Church was then an important part of our community and the faith that the nuns inculcated in me has sustained me throughout my life.

What is something you wish you would’ve realized earlier in your life?

The importance of having the courage to try new things and to speak up for the right things.

What are bad recommendations you hear in your profession or area of expertise?

I’ve taught, coached, written, served as a Marine Corps officer, and am now a state representative. Close-minded bigotry can be found everywhere. Generous and thoughtful open-mindedness – tempered by experience and solid principles – points us to paths that lead to happiness, fulfillment, and accomplishment.

Tell me about one of the darker periods you’ve experienced in life. How you came out of it and what you learned from it?

We all have our “dark” periods. But mine have generally been short-lived. Never had to deal with long-term depression. Faith in God and hope for the future combine to work wonders!

What is one thing that you do that you feel has been the biggest contributor to your success so far?

Faith in God

What is your morning routine?

Haha. When the N.H. House of Representatives is in session I get up at 6 p.m. and meet fellow legislators for breakfast at 7 a.m. and head for the session at 8 a.m. When there are no hearings or sessions I sleep in and play with my cell phone. When I was in the Marines, of course, I had a different morning routine.

What habit or behavior that you have pursued for a few years has most improved your life?

Reading, exercising, and praying.

What are your strategies for being productive and using your time most efficiently?

Being very disciplined about timelines, reasonable objectives, and maximizing good communication.

What book(s) have influenced your life the most? Why?

Wow. That’s a tough one. I love to read and have read countless books over the many years. The books that have really left a mark on me are history books with true stories of amazing people who overcame huge challenges to share important life lessons while also changing the world. Books about the likes of Washington and Lincoln. Ron Chernow’s book on Alexander Hamilton, for instance.

Do you have any quotes you live by or think of often?

“Nothing great in the world has ever been accomplished without passion.” – Georg W. F. Hegel