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124. Falling Behind Before Getting Ahead with Adam Hommey
Episode 12419th January 2024 • FINE is a 4-Letter Word • Lori Saitz
00:00:00 00:53:03

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What if it’s never been “fine”?

What if it feels like every good thing comes with downfalls and you’re racing to keep up?

Adam Hommey was raised with the values of pursuing academic excellence and being selfless to the point where it became a detriment. At the same time he was expected to achieve, he felt denied the opportunity to enjoy his success.

It all started in his early childhood. He was almost three years old and had barely spoken a word. It turned out he was deaf. Fortunately, his hearing was restored through surgery and treatments, but he was still behind.

His mother bought textbooks to get him caught up – a form of homeschooling. So he entered kindergarten able to read and write way beyond his grade level. In first grade, his teacher noticed his boredom and ordered a proficiency test – which revealed he functioned at the third-grade level.

He was promoted in the middle of the year, from the first to second grade, with a big ceremony and everything.

But the grade promotion put him WAY behind.

Now, he was younger than his classmates, which meant he was the last in his cohort to experience milestones such as getting a driver’s license and becoming a legal adult. He didn’t get to enjoy a legal drink in a Penn State bar until the middle of his senior year!

Plus, imagine how being branded the “smart kid” affected his social life.

The pattern of falling behind by being ahead has affected Adam to this day, including his development and progress as an entrepreneur.

Fine is a 4-Letter Word, and Adam has never been “fine”.

In a moment, when you meet Adam, you’ll discover how every giant leap forward has set him back and put him in an endless race to catch up. He’s always felt like an outsider who doesn’t fit in.

But Adam has discovered that being an outsider who doesn’t fit in allows him perspective others don’t see, simply because he has never had the benefit (or curse) of things being normal, or “fine” for him.

Being differently attuned allowed him to receive important life lessons from the spirit of a dead dictator and, as an adult, to become good friends with one of his childhood heroes – two things not many people get to experience.

Adam's hype song is "I’m Not Gonna Cry Anymore" by Benny Mardones.

Resources:

Invitation from Lori:

Like Adam, it’s possible you’re not “fine” because it feels like every surge up the mountain seems to lead directly to the edge of a cliff.

If you can relate, the 5 Easy Ways to Start Living The Sabbatical Life guide is for you.

Once you read it, you’ll

✅ Discover a counter-intuitive approach to making intentional changes in mindset and lifestyle.

✅ Learn how to overcome the fear of being left out.

✅ Find out how to face fears, step out of your comfort zone, and rewire your beliefs.

It’s only 7 pages, so it won’t take you long to get through. The five tactics are simple, but once you follow even ONE of them, you’ll find yourself feeling more like you and finding your own unique place.

When you’re ready to say F*ck Being Fine, then this guide is the place to start. It’s time to blaze a new trail and chart a new course!

Go to https://zenrabbit.com right now to download it for free.

Transcripts

Lori Saitz: Hello, and welcome to Fine is a 4-Letter Word. My guest today is Adam Hommey. Welcome to the show, Adam.

Adam Hommey: Lori, this is an honor and a pleasure. I've been following your show since you began it. We didn't really discuss it at the time, but I actually have been a fan since the very beginning when you first launched the project. And I've visioned being on the show at some point so that people can find out what a loon I really am.

Lori Saitz: I love it. I love it. And in full disclosure, Adam is on my production team. So this is awesome that you're getting to actually be in the show instead of just working on the show. It's been years that we've known each other. We met through Jim Palmer—

Adam Hommey: Yep.

Lori Saitz: —who was, at that point, known as the Newsletter Guru.

Adam Hommey: Yep. He still is. He's also the Dream Business Coach.

Lori Saitz: Yeah. I feel like that was a million years ago. I ascribe everything to being a million years ago if it was more than 10. If it was more than 10, it's a million.

Adam Hommey: Pretty much, yeah. I use that phrase often myself.

Lori Saitz: Yeah. All right. So let's just jump in. I love that you're willing to play this game. So what were the values and beliefs that you were raised with that contributed to you becoming who you've become?

Adam Hommey: Okay, so a lot of times, your guests—and I'm immersed in every episode, obviously—will tell you some very specific value that they were taught. The best way that I can convey this is by telling you a little bit about my early childhood. When I was about two or three years old, I hadn't said anything yet. And they did some tests, and they figured out that I was deaf. Fortunately, it was a correctable sort of thing, so I did get my hearing back after some surgery and some treatment and things like that. But it did set back my development in terms of being able to speak. However, the brain was functioning.

So at this point, by the time we got all the senses up and running, it was about a year before I was due to start kindergarten, so my mother went and bought some textbooks and started teaching me some of the basic curriculum. So I entered kindergarten already literate, meaning knowing how to write, read, and comprehend fluently in the English language. This caused me to be labeled as smart.

I believe it was November of:

So can you imagine what that did to my social life?

Lori Saitz: Yeah, right.

Adam Hommey: Yeah. So one of the things we gathered was that I was ahead partially because I had the benefit of a different type of education than most of my classmates had. On the other hand, it put me in the situation where it seemed like no matter what I did, where I went, and how I attempted to present, I was not a perfect fit. In some cases, I was a misfit to whatever situation I was in.

So as far as values, one of which was to excel academically, which more or less came easily to me except when it came to mathematics. I can do the basic tables in my head. But as far as algebra, trigonometry, geometry, when I was in high school, I got deficiency reports on those sent to my parents the same days they got the paperwork for my AP classes. That's advanced placement for English literature, history, and a couple of other subjects.

Lori Saitz: Yeah. Because you and I are similar in that we're more like word people, not math and science people.

Adam Hommey: Yeah. And so another of the values I would say that I received was to make an effort to be the best person I could. And, unfortunately, sometimes that was to the extent of being selfless to the point where it disadvantaged me. So I think that's a very common thing, and I don't fault anybody or that.

dy who was born from the late:

Thus the rise of the term "cycle-breaker." I've done studies in resonance repatterning, past life regression, and other types of things that some might call woo-woo, and I've come to understand exactly why it is when they say that you're having an argument with your significant other or your sibling, your parents, a friend, or what have you, you were having the exact same argument your great-grandparents did.

Lori Saitz: Really?

Adam Hommey: Yeah. So a piece of my journey—and we'll probably touch on this a bit more through the conversation—is that becoming a cycle-breaker, I found out, that is both liberating and can also be very frustrating because you're the one that ends up pointing out and saying, "Oh, no, no, no. It wasn't quite like you said, and I see right through this."

And a tendency with most families is to sweep things under the rug, to brush things over. And I understand that that's important because you want to maintain family cohesion, and you want to attempt to have harmony, have unity, and have good relationships. And I'm all for that. What happens sometimes when you brush things under the rug and you say, "Well, that's just part of how it is," is that it remains under the rug. And every so often, it kind of creeps out.

Lori Saitz: Right. And it minimizes the—it could be trauma. Whatever it is, it's just minimized. Like, it's ignoring how you feel, or what you're seeing, or your contribution to it. Like, "No, it's not what you think," or, "it's not important."

Adam Hommey: Yeah.

Lori Saitz: Yeah. And so it. And so it—minimize, but there's another word. Diminish your importance or your viewpoint.

Adam Hommey: Right. And that's the thing is, it's not intended that way, but that's just how it ends up being received, whether you understand that consciously or not.

Lori Saitz: Right, especially as a child.

Adam Hommey: Oh, yeah, yeah, yeah. And I was also raised Roman Catholic. I was very much into it. I was an altar boy. I remember when I was about 10 years old, I stole a missalette from the church and brought it home and practiced the hymns on my keyboard. And I memorized the mass. I was dead set on becoming a priest because, at the time, I thought girls had cooties.

Lori Saitz: Okay. Well, there's as good a reason as any.

Adam Hommey: Yeah.

Lori Saitz: All right. So you graduated early. Well, early for your age.

Adam Hommey: Early for my age. Right.

Lori Saitz: You were always the youngest in your class. Right?

Adam Hommey: Yeah.

Lori Saitz: Yeah. And so that, as you said, made it kind of hard to make friends because you were even smarter than them anyway.

Adam Hommey: Well, in some cases, yeah. And I think part of it is I was told that I was gifted, and I was smarter and everything else. My IQ is in the 130 range, so I've always been considered gifted. That's what every test has always told me. And a few years ago, I took it again, and I found out that I'm still there, because IQ can go up and down over the course of your life. And I really became socially whole as a result of my college experiences. One of the best things I think I could have done was actually go away to college, which I did.

But you raise a point that, at the same time, I felt like I was always behind, always a little bit less than. So think about it. I didn't have the ability to drive a car until almost the end of my junior year of high school. I wasn't able to drive a car legally after midnight until the middle of my freshman year of college. I wasn't able to have a legal drink in a Penn State bar until the middle of my senior year.

Lori Saitz: Oh, man. Yeah.

Adam Hommey: You want to know how that one felt?

Lori Saitz: Right.

Adam Hommey: This is one of the reasons the advice I give to folks is even if you are strongly considering college, take a year off. And I'm very happy that we now have programs and normalization of the idea of the gap year because I think it's very helpful to you. Like a friend of mine, one of my best friends growing up, he took two years after he graduated high school before he went to college. He actually did very well in college. He surprised himself in terms of his abilities academically, socially, his ability to excel at the material. And he attributed part of that just to the fact that he spent a couple of years goofing off.

Lori Saitz: Right. Well, if you think about it, you're sending an 18-year-old who, typically, regardless of gender, is not super mature.

Adam Hommey: Right.

Lori Saitz: And sending them off to live on their own and to trust that they're going to have the discipline to study, to get good grades, to make this very expensive venture worth the money. When we were growing up, it wasn't as accepted to take that gap year.

Adam Hommey: Right.

Lori Saitz: It is much more now. And even now, it's much more accepted to not even go to college. It's not seen as imperative anymore. It's not like—

Adam Hommey: Not the same way.

Lori Saitz: Yeah.

Adam Hommey: And I think part of that you can attribute to all the other innovative ways you can get educated.

Lori Saitz: Right.

Adam Hommey: Like I said, part of the reason, I believe, that I'm not very good when it comes to advanced mathematics is I saw no relevance for it. The environment of that particular classroom was not very friendly to me, so it was already a place I couldn't learn. And I don't think my brain works that way.

Lori Saitz: Right.

Adam Hommey: And I also know that if I were to enter a discipline, take on a hobby, start another stream of income or something that required those types of things—to understand algebra, geometry, trigonometry, what have you—I would then be motivated. Now, I know that there are resources online that I can take. There are courses I can take. There are things that I can access where I would likely become proficient in that stuff because then I would have a reason to.

Lori Saitz: I could see how that could happen. And from my perspective, that's like strengthening your weaknesses, whereas I'd rather focus on strengthening my strengths—

Adam Hommey: Yeah.

Lori Saitz: —and getting somebody else to manage the part that doesn't come naturally to me.

Adam Hommey: Oh, this reminds me of something, my maternal grandfather. I used to help him with little projects around his house and stuff like that. And, man, he would constantly complain. He would say I was the laziest person he ever met, and that I was no good at anything. And one time, he said, "You know what? You'd better focus on those books. You'd better study. You'd better go get a good job because you're no good at this stuff. You're going to have to hire somebody." And I looked him dead in the eye, and I said, "I plan to."

Now, there were other adults around there saying, "Oh, how dare you say that," but he was just giving me this look of, like, just nodding and grinning like, "You got it, grasshopper."

Lori Saitz: Right. I remember a similar story, too, with my stepfather. I think it was, like, a typing class or something when we still had typing classes. I mean, that was very long ago. And I wasn't terrible at it, but in my head, I remember coming home and talking about, like, "Well, I'm just going to hire an assistant."

Adam Hommey: Yeah.

Lori Saitz: Oh, yeah. We had it down.

Adam Hommey: Yeah.

Lori Saitz: All right, so you went to Penn State.

Adam Hommey: Yes, I did.

Lori Saitz: Yeah. So keep the trajectory going here. Did you find your tribe there? Did you feel like you fit in?

Adam Hommey: Yes, I found my people. And what's great about going to a large university is you can have several different sets of people. One of the things about Penn State—and so many people have said this, and it's the same with a lot of larger universities—is you can be a different person to different people at different times of the day. This is why I say if you choose the university path, pick a large one so you have the opportunity to explore, so you can do different things, and you can find where your tribe is, where your vibe really is.

So at any rate, I had gone to Penn State with the intention of getting a degree in political science because I thought I was going to go to law school and become an attorney. During the last semester of my super-senior year, because I extended it another semester to take advantage of a TA opportunity. And, plus, I just thought, "I just need to get more out of this."

Lori Saitz: Yeah.

Adam Hommey: I attended a two-hour seminar by somebody, an adjunct professor at the Dickinson University of Law, which is the law school associated with Penn State. This guy was mesmerizing. He was captivating. He was a complete asshole in a way that you love.

Lori Saitz: Okay.

Adam Hommey: I was hanging on his every word about the realities of being an attorney and how to be successful, and my mouth was gaping thinking, "Wow, that is quite a life. I don't want it."

Lori Saitz: Wow, okay.

Adam Hommey: I graduated with no direction whatsoever. Ended up going through a couple of really crappy jobs. And then I went to Duquesne University to pursue my MBA, which I managed to complete on a full-time basis while working a full-time job and excelling at both of them. And I think that just has to do with what I always like to say in my own marketing as finding your intersection of your brilliance and your passion.

Lori Saitz: Right, yeah. When did you go out on your own?

Adam Hommey: Oh, my business?

Lori Saitz: Yes.

Adam Hommey: Here's what happened there. After I finished the MBA from Duquesne, my concentration was human resource management, and my dream was to become a training and development director of a Fortune 100. So I did the usual interviews, networking things. I got a couple of offers, in both cases by companies that weren't actually officially hiring but wanted to create a role for me based on what I presented to them.

At the same time, I connected—or reconnected, rather—with one of my previous mentors, a gentleman named Steven Rowell. And he had, at this point in his life, started a small training and development firm and needed some help. So I did some freelance work with him, and then I caught the entrepreneurial bug. I formed a limited liability company, and then I picked up a couple other clients. I spent a couple years going between the ox and the horse cart figuring out which way I was going to go. And part of that is because I didn't know that it was easier to jump off on your own than you really thought.

th:

Number one, nobody really does that. And, number two, what's his ulterior motive? What's the catch? When is he going to come back to me asking for $6,000? So I kind of flailed there for another nine months until I got to the point where I could make the jump.

But here's what I recognized that Steven was actually trying to offer. And if I can find somebody who's in that position, I'd like to make sure they're aware of this and to check in on it. He needed more help in his business because it was growing really fast. And he wanted to have more of me in his life. He couldn't bring me on as a full-time employee, but he wanted to create enough sustainability for me that he could pay me enough to get by and give me the space to actually build a business. In a way, he was giving me a gift. And that $3,000, that was not a loan. That was actually a gift. He was actually investing in himself so that he could get more help.

Lori Saitz: Right.

Adam Hommey: I just couldn't see that.

Lori Saitz: Right.

Adam Hommey: Yeah.

Lori Saitz: Were you the first person in your family to go off and to be entrepreneurial?

Adam Hommey: Oh, my God. Yes, as far as I know. I mean, I've found that, many times, I think I'm the first one, and I actually wasn't. Which goes along with that whole thing of, "This is how it's supposed to be. These are what we're handing down to you," and things like that. So there's been more than one case where I thought that I was really the first one, and it's like, "Oh, no, no, no. You didn't know this about your Uncle Jim, for example." Yeah.

Lori Saitz: Right, okay. All right. So since the show is called Fine is a 4-Letter Word, I need to bring up—when was the point where you got to, "Everything's fine, but it's not fine"? Like, you were telling everybody, "It's fine."

Adam Hommey: Oh, it's never been fine.

Lori Saitz: It's never been fine?

Adam Hommey: I've never felt that things have been fine. I know that's one of your questions, and in many cases, your guests give that cataclysmic moment where they have a major health episode, or they find out something about their sexuality, or they discover that they're 70 years old and maybe they don't want to be married to that person. I mean, there's a lot of things that come up. Or they're in a career, or they turned their hobby into a career and then decided they didn't want it. I mean, I've sent so many of the different things you cover. But there was no one particular moment like that. It's never quite been that way.

In fact, if I want to give something resembling an answer to that, as I mentioned before, although you and I haven't really gotten closer until within the past three or four months, as of the time of this recording, I have been aware of Fine is a 4-Letter Word since the very beginning. And it's one of those things that I had been checking in on from time to time. And just seeing your show, I began to have that question of, "What's not fine?" and, "Where is the change, and where is the pivot?"

Lori Saitz: So now, my question is when you say it's never been fine, has it never been fine like everything's always been great? Or it's never been even fine. Like, it's been terrible a lot. Like, it's been survivable, but not even fine? Or it's been better than fine the whole time? Like, how is my interpretation of this?

Adam Hommey: The survivable has probably come closest, and then there's still that pattern of me being the "also ran" or the person who's a little bit behind. That pattern, to a degree, is still there. And sometimes it's shown up. And in some ways, it's held me back from being all the entrepreneur that I could possibly be. I've had my business for 20 years now. I should be a multimillionaire, but I'm not there yet. And just over the past couple of years, I've come to really understand some of the reasons why. Not only in terms of how I've approached business, but how I've approached life.

Lori Saitz: Yeah. And you, a while ago—maybe it was, like, a year because even when we weren't really in touch consistently, we were still friends on social, and I was watching—

Adam Hommey: Yeah.

Lori Saitz: So you went through kind of a metamorphosis of your image.

Adam Hommey: Yes.

Lori Saitz: What prompted that? And how's that going?

Adam Hommey: I wanted to date stylish women.

Lori Saitz: Okay.

Adam Hommey: I mean, I could give you some really in-depth, heartfelt thing, but I just wanted to position myself to outkick my coverage.

Lori Saitz: Okay. And did it work?

Adam Hommey: Yes.

Lori Saitz: Awesome.

Adam Hommey: There's more to it than that, though. But we'll discover more as we go along here.

Lori Saitz: Are you going to tell me?

Adam Hommey: I can tell you a little bit. All right. So, actually, there's something else that I wanted to share first—

Lori Saitz: Okay, go ahead.

Adam Hommey: —that goes in a different direction. This has to do with approaching situations. And this is where people are going to find out I’m a loon. But I'm going to tell you that I've discussed this on my own podcast before, the Business Creators' Radio Show. And for those of you who have heard that show, you may have seen my episodes with Daniel Jackson and Tracy St. Croi where I've covered this in detail. But I'm going to give you the abridged version.

Starting when I was—I think I was about 13 or 14 years old, there was this little cubby hole off my bedroom where I had my encyclopedias and my books and everything. And I would spend hours a day in there reading. I was always fascinated by history.

And I'm sitting behind this kidney-shaped desk that belonged to my grandfather, which was my desk. And I was reading something in some book, and all of a sudden, I heard heavy breathing. And I'm thinking, "Is this one of my parents again trying to tell me to go to bed?" And then I looked up, and it's like I did this triple-take. And I'm asking myself, "What is Benito Mussolini doing standing in front of my desk?"

Lori Saitz: Really?

Adam Hommey: Yeah. And in this heavily-accented English, he said, "Tell them I tried to stop it. Make sure they know the truth." It's like, "What?" And then he disappeared.

Lori Saitz: Were you reading about him when he showed up?

Adam Hommey: No.

Lori Saitz: Okay. Wow.

Adam Hommey: And for the next 20 or 30 years, sporadically, he would show up with that same message. He would say something like, "Tell them I tried to stop it. Make sure they know the truth. Make sure they know the whole story about me." And then before I could ask him, he would go away again. At first I thought I was mentally ill, having these. This has got to be a figment of my imagination. But then the Internet comes in, and we get to see things that were not available to us. I mean, you and I are of similar age, so you know that what was available to us as children is different than the information that's available to us as adults.

Lori Saitz: Right.

Adam Hommey: So this thing called YouTube came into existence.

Lori Saitz: Yes.

So, fast forward to the year:

hutting that business down in:

Adam Hommey: Oh, okay.

Lori Saitz: Yeah.

dam Hommey: So, yeah, it was:

Lori Saitz: Wow.

Adam Hommey: And so then, “Il Duce” comes back to me and tells me the same damn thing. It's like, "What do you want?"

Lori Saitz: Right. And, "Why are you talking to me?"

Adam Hommey: Yeah. So one of the things that I love is hypnotherapy because I found the ability to go through visioning exercises and peel back those layers.

Lori Saitz: Yeah.

Adam Hommey: I'll cut to the chase of what it was all about. Those spectral appearances happened every time that I was in a situation where I was damned if I did and damned if I didn't, and I was going to have to do something that might cause people around me to criticize me or to question me.

Lori Saitz: Wow, okay.

this on your own. In July of:

Now, he didn't have to invade. But that instance right there was a case where, had he been stronger, he could have gone forward because there's evidence that has shown up that he might have gone all the way into Germany and nipped that whole Hitler thing in the bud before it really got off the ground. He could have saved 50 million lives, but he didn't have the courage to stand against public opinion because, if you think about it, this was not too long after World War I. They really weren't ready for another one. And this was a guy who's talking about reconstituting the Roman Empire.

So, I mean, it wasn't going to come across as being the most benevolent thing. But had he gone through it, we could have saved tens of millions of lives. So the message was that when you're in situations where no matter what you do, people may not understand at first, but those who truly support you who are part of your tribe will support you in the long run.

Lori Saitz: And that you need to do what you truly believe is the right thing.

Adam Hommey: Yeah.

Lori Saitz: Wow. So now that you know that, do those visions still come?

Adam Hommey: No. I haven't seen them since. Thank God.

Lori Saitz: Wow, okay.

Adam Hommey: My friend who's a spirit medium explained to me what could have been happening is that—and the events of his life are fairly well-known, and how tragically it ended up, and some of the very bad things that he did. And she explained to me that it's possible that this is a piece of his repayment of his karmic debt. That his spirit is now assigned to find people who need to be encouraged to take actions that might not be popular, but they have the fortitude to do it. And maybe once I recognized that I got that message, he was no longer needed. And, believe me, I wasn't looking to make friends with the guy, so I'm pretty happy.

Lori Saitz: Right, right, right. Did you ever discover in your Internet searches that other people were having similar visions?

Adam Hommey: I've researched that, and I haven't seen it, but it's possible.

Lori Saitz: Okay. I'm just curious. That sounds fascinating. It would be interesting.

Adam Hommey: Yeah. So the reason I interjected that story beforehand is that was a really important lesson that I needed to gain. When you are your authentic self, people around you may not understand. They may criticize you. They may distance themselves because of societal pressures because it conflicts with what they believe to be their own beliefs.

Lori Saitz: Right.

Adam Hommey: However, when you find it within yourself to be able to persevere and do everything you can to do no harm and to do what's necessary for yourself ... In one of your recent episodes, in your takeaways, you made the bifurcation between being selfless and selfish and how they're not mutually exclusive.

Lori Saitz: Right. And that selfish is different than self-care.

Adam Hommey: Yes. So that showed me because part of what really held back my business growth is, oh, well, if I don't do this absolutely perfect, or I occasionally miss a deadline or disappoint somebody, or I don't hit it out of the park every single time, that my life is over.

Lori Saitz: Right.

Adam Hommey: And that's just a pattern that kept showing up in my life over and over and over again and, recognizing that, you know what, that's not really the case.

Lori Saitz: Yeah. I think it takes us a while. Like, we need to get some maturity and some life experience before we are able to really accept that. Like, we hear it consciously. "I don't have to be perfect. Good enough is good enough." But for people, high achievers like you and I are, it doesn't sink in. We're like, "Yeah, okay. That's relevant for other people, but not for me."

Adam Hommey: Yeah. "I'm a superstar. I'm a champion." You know, a lot of times we are, but not always. What I remind myself—and I understand it intellectually, but sometimes in practice, it's difficult to embrace—is that Babe Ruth missed two-thirds of his hits.

Lori Saitz: Yeah, and he's still considered a superstar.

Adam Hommey: Yes.

Lori Saitz: You don't have to get it perfect all the time to still be a superstar.

Adam Hommey: Yes.

Lori Saitz: Yeah. So now that you know this, now that you're allowing yourself to not be perfect all the time, what do you see happening?

Adam Hommey: Well, part of it is a work in progress in the sense that I know that there are still a lot of things I'm going to discover. One of the things I've learned about hypnotherapy is that you do an exercise, you do a session, you do a visioning, and it pulls back a layer that reveals what was bubbling under the surface so that whether you solve it or at least are able to recognize and compartmentalize it, you've now achieved another level of mastery. And once you pull back that layer, now there's something that—you get it—

Lori Saitz: Yeah.

Adam Hommey: —that's going to jump up next. So I know that there's going to be a lot more that happens for me.

Lori Saitz: Yeah. I mean, that's part of being human. We're like an onion. You're peeling back all the layers, and it never ... It's like the never-ending onion kind of thing.

Adam Hommey: Yes.

Lori Saitz: Because as long as you're alive, there are going to be more layers to be revealed.

Adam Hommey: Yes, there are.

Lori Saitz: Yeah. Kind of like those birthday candles that you can't blow out. They just keep popping up.

Adam Hommey: Exactly, yeah.

Lori Saitz: Yeah. So now I'm going to jump to a totally different topic because you—

Adam Hommey: Oh, boy.

Lori Saitz: You are a great fan—well, I'll just leave it at a ... I don't know. You probably know the word, because you're smart. What is the word for someone who's, like, as big a fan of cats as you are?

Adam Hommey: Ailurophile.

Lori Saitz: Ailurophile.

Adam Hommey: Yeah. We're ailurophiles.

Lori Saitz: See, I knew you would know that word.

Adam Hommey: Yes.

Lori Saitz: All right. Did you grow up with cats?

Adam Hommey: Yeah, a whole bunch of them.

Lori Saitz: Okay. So your love of cats started young.

Adam Hommey: At one point, my parents had eight of them in the house.

Lori Saitz: Okay.

Adam Hommey: Yeah.

Lori Saitz: All right.

Adam Hommey: It was a furry situation.

Lori Saitz: All right. I guess in the South, they would say you've come by that naturally.

Adam Hommey: Yeah, yeah.

Lori Saitz: That's their phrase. Right?

Adam Hommey: Yes.

Lori Saitz: All right. And now you've limited yourself to two beautiful black cats.

Adam Hommey: I have not limited myself. It's just the fact that I rent rather than own, and it's very difficult to find a place that allows more than two. I would have five or six up here if I could.

Lori Saitz: Right.

Adam Hommey: Do you hear that, Alessandra? And since you're the oldest, you would be the mentor.

Lori Saitz: How would they know?

Adam Hommey: How would they know? Well, see, Alessandra is indeed the oldest by about three weeks.

Lori Saitz: No. I mean how would they know you had five or six cats?

Adam Hommey: You know, maintenance might come in. Or somebody might look up one day and say, "Why do four of the windows have cats sitting on the sills?"

Lori Saitz: All right. So here's your incentive to bust through those limiting factors in your business so that, I don't know, I'm just guessing—

Adam Hommey: I don't want a house.

Lori Saitz: You don't want a house?

Adam Hommey: No. What I really—

Lori Saitz: Where you could have unlimited cats.

Adam Hommey: No, no, no. What I really would enjoy is the ability to have residences in three or four different cities and travel between them without luggage and just my cats.

Lori Saitz: Okay, yeah. I like it. All right. Where are you going first? Where's your next city?

Adam Hommey: Well, even though it's not all that far away, San Diego would probably be next.

Lori Saitz: Oh, yes. San Diego's awesome.

Adam Hommey: Because I know people there, and there's a lot of action in terms of what I do.

Lori Saitz: Yes. And it's such a beautiful place.

Adam Hommey: Yeah. And another place that keeps coming up is Georgia. It's because I know a lot of people in Georgia.

Lori Saitz: Yeah. I know a lot of people in Georgia, too. I'm actually thinking that on my nomadic tours, that I need to get to the Atlanta area.

Adam Hommey: Yeah.

Lori Saitz: Whether I have a cat sit there or not, get to Atlanta just to spend time with a bunch of the people that I know there.

Adam Hommey: Oh, yeah. That's a pretty good area. Alessandra was sitting on my lap, for those who are listening on the audio.

Lori Saitz: Yes. Yeah, she's beautiful.

Adam Hommey: Yeah.

Lori Saitz: Okay. So what's up next? Is there a question I didn't ask you that you want to share?

Adam Hommey: Let's see. A question that you didn't ask that I want to share.

Lori Saitz: You know what? As you're thinking about that, that is a great question. This is totally random, but whenever I'm in a situation where the questions are open, like an interview or some kind of, yeah, you're talking to a potential client or somebody who's a potential—yeah, somebody who's going to hire you for speaking or whatever it is. Is there a question I didn't ask because I don't know enough that I should be asking? That right there is a key takeaway. Always ask that.

Adam Hommey: Well, yeah, yeah, yeah. Well, you did ask a question earlier that I sort of deflected on purpose because I wanted to introduce the lesson about being able to engage in self-care and persevere against the opinions of even those in your circle sometimes because I thought that was very foundational.

One of the things that's fairly well-known about me is that I've not yet at this point been married, and I view marriage as a bullet that I've dodged twice.

Lori Saitz: Okay.

Adam Hommey: Yeah. I view it more as a bullet that I've dodged than something that I've actually really craved or went after.

Lori Saitz: Was that because of what you learned in childhood about marriage, in the marriages in the people who were around you—your relatives, your parents?

Adam Hommey: Yeah. A lot of people I know around me have been divorced, and I've seen so much of that—sweeping things under the rug, creating realities to bury the actual reality in the name of getting by, and things like that.

You watch these Hallmark movies, and the big city slicker goes back to the small town where he grew up and a cheerleader he lusted after is now working in the local flower shop. He goes in there, and all of a sudden, she looks at him, and she says, "That's the man I've really wanted." So she breaks off her engagement with the son of the owner of the local construction company, and they live happily ever after. And he quits his lucrative career and becomes a farmer. That doesn't really happen.

Lori Saitz: Now we all know what you do when you're not working.

Adam Hommey: What?

Lori Saitz: You're watching Hallmark Channel movies.

Adam Hommey: Oh, no, no, no. If you've seen three, you've seen them all.

Lori Saitz: That's true.

Adam Hommey: That's part of the reason the genre is so successful, because it found a formula that works and appeals to a lot of people.

Lori Saitz: Right.

Adam Hommey: That is something that whether it's what people genuinely want or what they've been trained to believe they want, it's something that creates a level of resonance. I'm not sure there is one perfect person for everybody.

Lori Saitz: No, I don't think there is one perfect person. I think there's an opportunity for—many people could be the right person.

Adam Hommey: Yeah.

Lori Saitz: And the right person could be different at different points in your life.

Adam Hommey: Right. I think there's a lot to that as well.

Lori Saitz: Yeah. But we have been conditioned to believe that one person for your entire life. I have a friend who has for a long time said that she believes we should have seven-year contracts, like seven-year marriage contracts.

Adam Hommey: Okay.

Lori Saitz: Every seven years, you re-evaluate. Do I want to stay with this person or not? And if you don't, it's not a big deal. It's not like a big divorce thing. It's, just, you don't renew the contract.

Adam Hommey: Oh, yeah, yeah. And that makes a lot of sense. And one of the things that really surprised me is, you remember I told you that girlfriend that I had where things ended really badly?

Lori Saitz: Yeah.

Adam Hommey: I remember, when I was in that relationship, my mother saying, "If you're going to marry her, you're getting a prenup. Right?" And my mother was one of those people that watches the Hallmark movies, envisions me being in one of those and finding my dream sweetheart and settling down and giving them a bunch of grandkids. And for her to say that was a little bit shocking, which tells me that it's really common sense.

Now, the fact is, if I had gone through with that, I would have wanted a prenup. And part of it is to protect my assets. And also, from a practical perspective, that if I had married this woman and one of us got into a financial situation, that we wouldn't both have to go bankrupt. That there would be certain legal shields and barriers that would allow one of us to continue to not be bankrupt while the other fought through bankruptcy in the event that ever happened. Just think about it. Just getting really sick one time can ruin you.

Lori Saitz: Yeah. It's interesting, though, that your mom said that, given what you just said about her viewpoint of romance and relationships. That would be, like, a major flag. Like, hey, maybe this is not the relationship for me.

Adam Hommey: Retrospectively, although I didn't realize it consciously at the time, the fact that that was so shocking to me made me think, "Wow, maybe there's something I'm not quite seeing here in the moment."

Lori Saitz: Right. And the other point there is that moms tend to see things in their children or for their children that we don't always see when we are the kid.

Adam Hommey: Right.

Lori Saitz: Adam, I am so glad that we got the chance to have this conversation. I mean, it's been a long time in coming. Before we go ... Got it? You know the last question I always ask. That is, what is your hype song? What's the song that you listen to when you need extra boost of energy? And I imagine you dancing around the room with those beautiful—

Adam Hommey: I don't know how to dance.

Lori Saitz: Yeah, but with the beautiful kitties. Like, you're just all doing some kind of movement.

Adam Hommey: Well, it's more like I'm standing there with the wand toy, and they're chasing it.

Lori Saitz: Oh, yeah. There you go.

Adam Hommey: Yeah. And I have to be careful Alessandra doesn't devour the wand toy because she likes to chew right through them.

All right. So this is another brief story that was just part of my own development. Now, you may remember being a child yourself and being told that there are certain things that you're just not going to get to experience because you're not one of those special people, which is meeting famous people, meeting your heroes, hanging out with celebrities, and things like that.

So I remember back in:

So I went to my Google and I typed, "Where is Benny Mardones now?" And I found out that he was still active as an indie artist. All those top 40 days have passed. And every year in Syracuse, New York, he did a fan weekend, and you could buy tickets to it where you'd get to attend a dinner with him. There's the concert and everything else.

So I didn't do it in:

Lori Saitz: What?

Adam Hommey: And he and I ended up becoming really good friends. I visited him so many times in Los Angeles. He is actually the original guest on the Business Creators' Radio Show.

Lori Saitz: Really?

Adam Hommey: And what I gathered from him was if you've ever heard that metaphor about how you want to end your life as a wasted out carcass having lived every single bit of your life, this is a guy who literally in his will donated his body to science.

Lori Saitz: Hmm.

Adam Hommey: Yeah. And what I gained from him were a few things. First of all, a generosity of spirit, an understanding of the human condition, and the importance of being authentically who you are even when it costs you opportunities because you only get to live this life once. He had several opportunities to reignite his career that he passed up on because it would have meant compromises that he personally could not live with.

Lori Saitz: Yeah.

Adam Hommey: And people, when they heard I was friends with him, were like, "So, what, when you go to LAX, does he send his limo to pick you up and take you to his mansion?" It's like, "No, I get an Uber to his apartment in Playa Del Rey, but thanks for asking."

Lori Saitz: Right.

Adam Hommey: But the song that is my hype song is actually one of his, and it's called "I'm Not Gonna Cry Anymore."

Lori Saitz: Okay.

Adam Hommey: It's a power ballad, and it's about being at that point where you recognize that you can't let things stop you anymore. You can't let people hold you back anymore. You can't play into other people's narratives. And regardless of what comes next, it's very important that you embrace the opportunity that's in front of you.

Lori Saitz: That's so perfect for this show.

Adam Hommey: Yeah.

Lori Saitz: And for you, for what you've been talking about.

Adam Hommey: Yeah.

Lori Saitz: I love it. All right. The final-final question. If someone wants to continue a conversation with you, where's the best place for them to reach you?

Adam Hommey: Okay, so www.schedulewithadam.com. If you want to have a conversation, just mentioned in the little note on there that you heard my appearance on Fine is a 4-Letter Word and want to find out what kind of loon I really am. In fact, to be effective, if you say that, I'll find it hilarious, and I'll listen to whatever you have to say.

As far as social media, it's going to be in your notes. The only places to really find me are Facebook, LinkedIn, and I dabble a little bit in Instagram.

Lori Saitz: Yeah, I saw you're just getting into that.

Adam Hommey: Yeah. I'm just getting into it. For stylish women, of course.

Lori Saitz: Exactly. That's where they all are as far as I know.

Adam Hommey: Yeah.

Lori Saitz: Okay, cool. Well, as always, you'll put that in the show notes. And thank you so much.

Adam Hommey: Actually, our program manager, Tammie, takes care of all that. And believe me, she is a nut.

Lori Saitz: She is so amazing, though. I don't know that I would call her a nut. Your whole team is amazing.

Adam Hommey: No, you don't know the half of her. She is sometimes Nutsy Fagen. I'm saying this because she's going to hear it, and she's going to swat me with a newspaper.

Lori Saitz: Yeah. Well, you know what? Maybe sometime we need to have her on the show.

Adam Hommey: She doesn't speak English, so it's not going to happen.

Lori Saitz: Oh, all her—I did not know that.

Adam Hommey: She can read it and write it, but she can't speak it.

Lori Saitz: Oh, I'm learning all kinds of things.

Adam Hommey: Yeah.

Lori Saitz: Well, maybe we get a translator. That would be a first for the show.

Adam Hommey: Yeah, it would.

Lori Saitz: All right. Very cool. Thank you so much for joining me today, Adam, on Fine is a 4-Letter Word.

Adam Hommey: Thank you very much.

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