An Adultitis Fighter is someone who rallies against rules that don’t exist and engages in ruthless, senseless acts of silliness that undermine Adultitis and its unadventurous version of adulthood. Once a month, we shine a light upon the most remarkable among us, holding them up as a dazzling example of what we should strive for in this epic battle against a formidable enemy.
Rob Thiry is an amazing Adultitis Fighter disguised as a mild-mannered husband, dad, and salesman in the healthcare field. That’s what we love about him: his mild-manneredness. He is a great example of how everyday people can take up the fight against Adultitis, keep their inner child alive and well, and maintain a sense of professionalism — all while not riding a unicycle to work.
Rob’s approach to his career in sales is one of great sincerity and service. He doesn’t take himself too seriously, which allows him to make REAL connections with his clients. Meanwhile, he is a savorer of sunsets (especially in his home of Arizona) and maintains a playful home office, complete with toys and artwork that reflect his playfulness. Oh, and he ONLY enters swimming pools via cannonball.
Sounds like a first-class Adultitis Fighter to us.
In recognition of their efforts, Adultitis Fighters of the Month receive a special mini-canvas hand-painted by Jason, along with a certificate of honor, a sweet patch, and other Adultitis-Fighting tools. We asked Rob some questions about how he fights the Big A and what advice he has for others…
What are some of your favorite ways to fight Adultitis?
One of my favorite ways to fight Adultitis is hiding silly/fun in plain sight. I have to wear suits/business casual for work, but rest assured if you see me in a suit you can bet I’m wearing completely silly socks or a lapel pin. My current favorites are: fox socks, alien abduction socks, Jack Skeleton socks, and my Rebel Alliance lapel pin.
Who or what has been the greatest influence in your own fight against Adultitis?
My son Ryan has been the biggest influence in my fight against Adultitis. I want him to grow in an environment that is Adultitis-free so he never has to unlearn bad habits or feel limited in his imagination.
What is something you loved doing as a child that you still do in some form today?
BEING A NERD!!!!! I LOVE comics. I LOVE sci-fi. I LOVE silly collectibles that have no value other than to make me smile. I was a nerd as a child and I am a nerd as an adult and I LOVE IT (thankfully my wife does, too).
What is your strategy for dealing with people who are obviously infected with Adultitis?
Kindness and a big smile. I’ve learned that you cannot and should not force someone out of their Adultitis. Smile. Be kind. If they ask “why are you so happy” then tell them because if they asked, they are open to hearing a solution.
What advice do you have for someone who is feeling overwhelmed by Adultitis?
Start with a simple and quick happy…happy thought (last family game night), happy object (I carry Marty in my work bag so I always know a little happy is with me), happy picture (personal favorite is my Jason Kotecki “Cannonball” painting). Ten seconds of happy might be all it takes to break the downward spiral of full blown Adultitis.
Anything else you’d like to share?
Too often the world looks at Adultitis fighters as wanting to be “immature.” Fighting against unproductive lifestyles and negative emotions isn’t immature, but in fact could be one of the most mature acts you do. Not only have you identified an issue (having Adultitis), analyzed the problem (Adultitis sucks and is holding me back), pursued an alternate course of action to yield better results (I WILL FIGHT YOU ADULTITIS and have FUN doing it), but you’ve also implemented actions to accomplish your new productive and positive lifestyle (may I suggest taking the biggest cannonball in the pool regardless of your age…..works wonders for me plus I make a pretty wicked splash).
Congrats to Rob Thiry, March 2017 Adultitis Fighter of the Month. Thank you for making the world more awesome!