23 sources of inspiration from my recent vacation.

Sunday night I returned home from my summer vacation. And my head is filled with inspiration I picked up along the way. I consider vacations to be critical to my creativity.

To feed your creativity you have to do, see, hear, feel and taste interesting things. Then you put all of those experiences and knowledge into your processor. Which enables you to create valuable new connections that lead to new ideas and inspirations.

Here are 23 sources of inspiration I collected over the last 9 days:

  1. The power and wonder of Niagara Falls. (And the natural ability for trinket shops to capitalize on natural wonders.)

2. How simply setting a time and place for a reunion can draw people together from all over the country. (It’s easier to create these events than you think.)

3. The thrill of learning how to wake surf, and seeing your children learn too.

4. The beauty and artistry of handblown glass at Simon Pearce. (But thinking it should really be called mouthblown glass. Or maybe lungblown.)

5. Visiting my childhood home in Norwich, Vermont, and seeing both the change and the unchanged.

6. The magnetism and fun of the Ben & Jerry’s factory.

7. The way smoke from wildfires in Oregon can eventually alter the sunlight in New England.

8. The energy of Church Street in Burlington, Vermont. (Yet there is no Church’s Chicken.)

9. A fun hike on Mt. Philo and the panoramic view of the Green Mountains, Lake Champlain and the Adirondacks. (You can tell the Green Mountains from the Adirondacks by looking at the chairs.)

10. How amazing cleaned wedding bands look when you take them back to their birthplace to be polished up. (Not like Polish Sausage.)

11. Seeing Global Rescue’s new office space. GR was The Weaponry’s first client. Dan Richards and his team are thriving!

12. Partaking in the summer tradition of rock jumping at waterfalls into deep pools of icy cold water. And how natural swimming spots are better than man-or-woman-made spots.

13. The joy of coordinating an impromptu meetup on the side of the road with my baby sister who I hadn’t seen in 2 years because of Covid. We realized the Venn Diagram of our travels overlapped for a brief moment in Concord, New Hampshire.

14. Walking the Freedom Trail in Boston and remembering the power of rebellion.

15. Witnessing the power of the Witch Hunt by visiting Salem, Massachusetts. (Then signing up for a witch-hunting safety course.)

16. The polish and panache of the shops and establishments on Newberry Street in Boston.

17. The serendipity of running into friends and family on the street when I saw my cousin Brooks Albrecht randomly on the sidewalk in Boston.

18. The draw of a winner at Gillette Stadium and Patriot Place in Foxborough, MASS. (Go Pats!)

19. The natural beauty of Newport, Rhode Island, and the wow of the Mansions on the Cliff Walk. (People do the walking, not the mansions.)

20. The vibrancy of Dublin, Ohio, where our family called home for 7 years. Dublin continues to innovate and transform itself. (I think they are trying to woo us back.)

21. My friend Troy Allen’s establishments (Pins Mechanical, 16-Bit Arcade and No Soliciting.) I followed these concepts from idea to execution. To see them packed with people is a testament to great ideas executed well.)

22. Showing my family The Weaponry’s Columbus office for the first time.

23. An appreciation for home after an extended time away.

Key Takeaway

Take your vacation time. It is critical to your creativity, mental health, energy and inspiration. See and do new things. Revisit old favorites. Stimulate your brain. spend time with friends and family. Make new friends. And profit from it all in your professional and personal life.

*If you know someone who could benefit from this message, please share it with them.

Are you in the career you are supposed to be in?

Monday night I had dinner with my friend Greg Rozycki at his home in Emeryville, California. Zyck and I grew up together in Norwich, Vermont. We went to high school together at Hanover High School in Hanover, New Hampshire. Which is just across the Connecticut River from Norwich.

Fun Fact: Our school district was the first interstate school district in the United States. It took a bill signed by JFK to be approved. And it was the last thing JFK signed before he was assassinated (so maybe he shouldn’t have signed it… hmm…).

Hak Lim
Zyck and I holding a board during our high school talent show. (that was our talent).

Zyck and I have known each other since we were 12-years old. We played football together. Zyck was a star athlete. Not only did he make the All-State football team, he was an All-American lacrosse player in high school. He went on to have an outstanding college lacrosse career at Brown University. Then he went to medical school at Dartmouth. Today he is Dr. Rozycki, a Pediatrician in the San Francisco Bay Area. He’s a pretty amazing dude.

Zyck at Rett's
Zyck and I and our Buddy Rett Emerson.

The Introduction

Before Monday night Zyck and I hadn’t seen each other in person in 8 years. When I arrived at his home he re-introduced me to his two children, Sanam (13) and Sachin (11). Then he said something really interesting to his kids:

‘Of all of my friends Adam is the one who has the most perfect career for him.’ – Dr. Greg Rozycki

IMG_7689
Me, Zyck and Sanam on Monday night in California.

Advertising!

Since I first started my career as an advertising creative I have heard this same sentiment many, many times. My great childhood friend Marcus Chioffi says this every time I see him. My Uncle Rod says he is glad that I am finally able to put my unique thinking to good use.

Rett's with kids.
Spending time back home in Vermont. That’s little Sanam in the green shirt.

Finding Your Perfect Fit

I always laugh at these comments. But they are true. I have found a career that is perfectly suited to my strongest and most natural skills and abilities. I love the work I do and I think it shows. When I launched my own advertising and idea agency, The Weaponry, I found the hard work of starting a new business as enjoyable as anything I have ever done. Because I love what I do.

The Big Questions

Would your closest friends and family say you are doing exactly what you should be doing with your career?

  • If not, what should you be doing?
  • What are you really great at?
  • What do you love to do that you are not doing right now?
  • How can you make money doing that?
  • Why aren’t you doing it?

Key Takeaway

Finding work that you love to do is one of greatest discoveries in life. It makes it exciting to get out of bed on a Monday morning. It makes it easy to put in the extra effort that will make you extra successful. It gives you special energy that makes long hours not seem so long. Best of all, you don’t spend any time thinking about the career you wish you had. Thanks for the reminder Zyck.

*If you know someone who could benefit from this message, please share it with them.