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.
Paul Tracy is quite the guy! He’s SUPER smart, (like REALLY smart, you guys). And despite having LOTS of reasons to be serious about life, he simply refuses to take himself too seriously. This is an awesome combination! It is obvious that Adultitis has a really hard time beating him. Some might say his partner-in-crime, Cara, is his secret weapon against Adultitis. All would agree that they are the best kind of partners-in-crime, supporting each other in their parallel and joint efforts to find joy and have fun each and every day. When Paul started working from home over 200 days ago, he began posting a lunchtime pic and anecdote about his day. Oh MY!! Now on day #216, his sense of humor is off the hook. These posts are EPIC. Paul is an expert shenanigator and the light he shares is a gift to all who receive it!
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 Paul 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?
I’ve always used humor as a tactic for battling stress or difficult situations. As the heat turns up, I get sillier. (Boy, did this come in handy for 2020!) I love to play and I always have toys and silly gadgets at hand. I’m not beyond being punny; my staff call them my “Dad jokes.” A bit more on the serious side though, I think exercise, a decent diet and mindfulness practices also help me stay energized and playful.
Who or what has been the greatest influence in your own fight against Adultitis?
Well, credit for anything that makes me better is always going to my wife Cara! She’s pure light and brightness. She helps me see things from different perspectives and reminds me that I’m creating my own reality….so what do I want that to be? Plus, she puts up with my goofiness :)
What is something you loved doing as a child that you still do in some form today?
It’s definitely reading. I remember checking out books from the library and librarians would stare at me asking “You’re going to read this?!” I had to have my parents’ permission to read Tom Sawyer when I was in third grade. To this day, I love really challenging books. War and Peace was a bear, but really good once I got past the long Russian names.
What is your strategy for dealing with people who are obviously infected with Adultitis?
Open my heart. I remind myself that everyone has their set of issues they’re trying to work through. I listen to them, empathize, offer help when appropriate and give them the opportunity to engage. With this though comes the need to protect my own sense of self; I’m there for them, but don’t allow them to pull me into their Adultitis.
What advice do you have for someone who is feeling overwhelmed by Adultitis?
Wow, there are so many options! First, you need to realize you’re in that state then simply stop a second and breathe. Take note of what you’re thinking and how it’s impacting you. See what you might do to change your perception or at least the physical mood and feeling for the time. Feeling down? Do something creative. Feeling dull or grumpy? Do something childlike and playful. Feeling stressed or anxious? Do something that can bring to light all for which you can be grateful.
Anything else you’d like to share?
I think a lot of Adultitis is wrapped up in our ideals of what a “hard-working, successful adult” is supposed to be…we are focused on being productive, getting promotions and raises and meeting quotas. Life is really about being the best version of ourselves that we can be this time around. Exploring, playing, caring, learning and growing are far more important than some dashboard metric.
Congrats to Paul Tracy, January 2021 Adultitis Fighter of the Month. Thank you for making the world more awesome!