We’ve all been there–you’re tired of drinking the same coffee out of the same mug at the same desk, day in and day out. You’re struggling to feel motivated, come up with fresh concepts and bring the energy you usually do to meetings. You’re not quite burnt out, but your bright light has dulled. You’re in a rut.
Cali and Alex, here—a traditional PR senior consultant and a digital director at Media Profile. You could say that we’re two sides of the same coin, working as one to create integrated campaigns for clients that feature both traditional and social strategies. We work together frequently and need to collaborate creatively to deliver on campaigns that stand apart from the crowd (yes, we did once design an entire social strategy around Short King Summer).
As we emerged from a dark and chilly Canadian winter into a dark and gloomy spring, we both felt stuck. How do you get unstuck? The obvious answer is to simply move, and thanks to Media Profile’s Work Away Benefit, that’s exactly what we did.
For almost a month, we travelled through Portugal and Greece together, making the most of our mornings and buckling down in the afternoon. And you know what? We did some of our best work. The freedom of travel and the experiences it offers were like a bolt of lightning to our brains, and suddenly, we fell back to our old selves.
These are the three things we found most important to make our Work Away trip successful while sparking fresh ideas and passion for our clients.
If your ideal travel buddy scrupulously keeps track of their steps, Cali is your gal. Every day, we clocked tens of thousands of steps as we explored every inch of every city we found ourselves in. Not only does the distance your sneakers log directly correlate to the number of new things you see, but it also floods your brain with loads of feel-good endorphins. As we were operating within the limits of the time change, we were up early and moving right away.
By the time we sat down at our laptops, we’d charged up our brains and bodies with exciting new sights and all the happy (naturally occurring) chemicals we needed for a day of creative thinking.
One of the easiest ways to be adventurous is with your palette. Alex is somewhat of a seafood specialist with an underappreciated talent for finding the best restaurants within a five-mile radius. Fresh-caught octopus, shrimp, mussels and clams cooked any and every way were our sustenance in Portugal. In Greece, we often ordered so much food in a single sitting that waiters expressed genuine concern for us. And we have no regrets.
Trying new things is phenomenal for our emotional health. In fact, our brains reward us with a yummy dose of dopamine when we do. This helps stimulate our minds, increases our motivation and our energy, and ultimately helps us get more done and enjoy doing it—thank you, Work Away!
Many of us are past the point of cracking open a textbook when we want to learn something new. Sure, we’ll tune in and out of a podcast or fall asleep to a documentary, but how often do we take the time to really dive deep into a new subject?
We hit up many museums, archeological sites and more during our stay.. Learning and absorbing history and culture was a big priority for us and it was exciting to be in cities filled with such rich history. Walking among ancient ruins or skipping down the cavernous halls of stunning monasteries was humbling and put things into perspective.
Learning is invigorating, and it helps carve new neural pathways in our brains to broaden how our minds work–a great practice when you’re stuck in a rut!
Our trip was the experience of a lifetime, and getting to do it alongside a colleague and friend was even better. Collaborating in person while travelling was a refreshing change of pace that re-ignited our creativity and passion for work.
Director of Digital Strategy