The Age of Enthusiasm

With age comes wisdom. At least, that’s the old adage. But is it also true that as our experiences grow, our capacity for enthusiasm wanes?

It’s been fun to watch our interns as they experience our business for the first time. They are excited to be able to attend a meeting or help on a photo shoot or interact with clients and vendors. They’re enjoying a fair amount of “firsts” in their careers this summer. And their enthusiasm rubs off on those around them.

Enthusiasm is an important characteristic. It’s contagious. If you’re enthused about where you are and what you’re doing, it shows. People want to be around you. You bring out the best in others. Unfortunately, the reverse is also true.

If you’ve lost your enthusiasm for your job, you should probably consider doing something else. You aren’t doing anyone any favors by hanging around. You can’t do great work. You can’t inspire your teammates. And you’re probably just bringing others down.

In advertising, it’s our job to be enthusiastic. We are charged with inspiring enthusiasm for our clients’ projects and/or services. There’s no time for discouragement. No room for negativity. You need to be “up” at all times. When one idea is squashed, you have to come up with three more. That’s the nature of the business. You have to keep a positive attitude.

I recently saw “The Internship,” the latest Vince Vaughn/Owen Wilson movie. The movie is not awesome. The attitude of their characters, however, is. They remain positive no matter how many times they get knocked down. Age does not diminish their enthusiasm.

Has it diminished yours?

It’s a question worth asking. After all, the older we are, the harder we are to impress.

Are you still excited about what you do? Do you enjoy talking about your work? Do you inspire those around you? You should. If you don’t, think back and try to remember when you first got into this business. What inspired you about it then? Look at it through some fresh eyes. You might just find that you like what you see.