Mind at Work: Senior Developer Corey Roach

Whenever possible, we like to sit down with one of our creative minds at VSA to find out what inspires them. In a world where there’s constantly pressure to “produce, produce, produce,” it’s important to stop and reflect on the special people, places and things that actually drive our creativity.

Today, VSA Senior Developer Corey Roach sheds light on the four things that inspire him and help him do what he does.

1. Shawn Achor
Shawn Achor, the CEO of Good Think Inc., Harvard researcher and author (of “The Happiness Advantage,” among other books), speaks about positive psychology. His theory proposes that becoming positive in the present trains our brains to work more successfully. Positivity facilitates potential, creativity and productivity. I embrace his view that hard work does not exclusively lead to happiness. Rather, it is scanning the world for the positive that inspires us to grow and adapt. I consciously apply this by approaching problems as opportunities.

2. Rubik’s Cube
For me, a quick way to renewed energy, motivation and inspiration is to solve a puzzle. Besides symbolically unlocking the solutions hidden away in my brain, this is an opportunity to rest and process my thoughts. I keep a Rubik’s Cube on my desk for these instances. I do not consider myself a “speedcuber” (my record time is around 60 seconds). However, a few minutes is usually the perfect amount of time to refocus and come back with a fresh mind. On many occasions, I have returned either with a solution or a new approach.

3. Stack Overflow
As a technologist, having a shared knowledge base has been valuable when problem solving. I have often found that someone has encountered the same challenge and, in many cases, resolved it. Additionally, I have contributed to the community and fostered my professional development by researching and providing creative solutions. I frequently sift through questions on Stack Overflow to offer support to other members. It has been my experience that, at times, a productive way of learning something new is by explaining it to someone else. The process of simplifying the subject and breaking down its components assists in my comprehension.

4. Lynda.com
The more that I learn, I realize there is a LOT more that I want to learn. Tutorials have been a great way to continually educate myself and grow from the expertise of others. I frequently check out the new developer courses offered at Lynda.com for topics that peak my interest. Even if the subjects do not seem relevant at the moment, they have inspired me in new projects. And you might be surprised when seemingly random information can suddenly become relevant.