Where do the most successful leaders seek inspiration? Feat. Oprah, Bill Gates, Barack Obama & More

The most successful people are often seen as a source of inspiration. Millions of people hang off the words they say, using their quotes for motivation, and they often look up to them hoping to aspire to their levels of success. You’ll often see articles filled with phrases from popular leaders, and words aplenty discussing how you can follow in their footsteps, but what about the people of influence themselves? Have you ever wondered what inspires them and where do they go when they’re in desperate need of clearing their head and spurring their creative juices?

Berkeley Build have put together some illustrations detailing the headspaces of the leading minds after they researched their sources of inspiration. While the world’s renowned leaders can afford to take off on extravagant vacations, it might surprise you to know that some of their happy places are a little more humble. Whether you’re a small business, budding entrepreneur or career minded individual, take a look at the go to locations that your idols frequent and discover why in particular these places help them so much.

Steve Jobs

Steve Jobs used to frequent Kona Village in Hawaii, so much so he had one of the hales on a standing retainer so he could turn up whenever he chose. Kona Village contains a series of thatched roof bungalows and with no access to telephones, the internet or televisions, it was the perfect escapist retreat for Steve to go, unwind and reset. It might seem odd that a technology guru chose to frequent a location switched off from the modern world but perhaps that’s why it worked for him.

Steve Jobs's Favourite Place

With no distractions Steve could relax and clear his head and take inspiration from the simplicity evoked in the surrounding paradise.

Princess Diana

Favourite Place of Princess Diana

Being the People’s Princess certainly made finding privacy quite the challenge for Princess Diana. The Sunken Garden in Kensington Palace however was a serene space she would often stop by on her jogs to find peace. She revelled in the beauty of surrounding nature and would often stop and talk to the gardeners about how stunning the garden was. With no pressures and expectations, she could be herself and talk freely. Her love of this garden meant it has now become a memorial garden containing her favourite flowers where the public can go to visit.

Also Read: Home Office Design Inspiration From Google, Facebook, Apple & More

Oprah Winfrey

Where do the most successful leaders seek inspiration? Featuring Oprah

Sticking with the nature theme, Oprah’s favourite place is her very own garden at her California home. She’s created a haven with oak trees, lavender plants and a fruit and veg patch. If she’s in need of inspiration she’ll sit under one of the trees with her favourite book or wander around with her dogs. The element of privacy is a resounding theme we notice when looking at these places of inspiration. Fame and success are carefully interlinked and escaping the public eye can be a challenge. Perhaps that’s why we’re seeing leaders retreat to lesser known places out of sight from the masses. While celebrity hotspots might provide great holiday memories, when it comes to business and re-energising, the locations need to be more stimulating.

Barack Obama

Where do the most successful leaders seek inspiration? Featuring Obama

Barack Obama holds Kailua Bay in Hawaii very close to his heart. He was born on the island, grew up nearby and still frequently holidays there with his family. Why does he love the space so much – he is inspired by the ‘aloha spirit’ and he tried to encapsulate that in America during his presidency. The familiarity of the island and its special culture meant Obama would report there whenever he needed to regain perspective. The place had so much influence on him from a very young age and he tried to incorporate that feeling into his leadership.

Bill Gates

Where do the most successful leaders seek inspiration? Featuring Bill Gates

When you’re a billionaire you can choose to go anywhere in the globe, the small population of the Dalmatian Coast in Croatia however is where Bill chooses to spend time with his family and clear his mind. There is a small town in particular called Skradin that provides a much needed escapism for Bill and he visits with his family often.

David Bowie

Where do the most successful leaders seek inspiration? Featuring David Bowie

David Bowie loved New York, so much so he set up home there. The eclectic mix of people and the spirit where people from all walks of life could come together and be themselves was his source of inspiration. Washington Square Park in particular was the place he believed allowed for this the most and nearby the park, he wrote his first US number one, Fame.

Carrie Fisher

Where do the most successful leaders seek inspiration? Featuring Carrie Fisher

For Carrie Fisher, London was one of those places she felt immediately at home. The Central School of Speech and Drama in Swiss Cottage was where she went to school and ever since then, she fell in love with the history, architecture and antique markets. It was there she would visit when she needed inspiring. Having all her loved ones based in London also helped make that a special place for Carrie.

People find inspiration in all avenues of life - a song, a book, a place, etc. For the most successful people in the world however it can be most difficult to find, especially as your presence becomes increasingly known. These places all hold special meaning to the leaders and it’s perhaps interesting to see that all the locations share the common ground that none of them are the extravagant celebrity hotspots you might expect from someone in that position. Sure, they can afford lavish and expensive holidays but a place to go, reset and find creativity needs to hold much more meaning. A lot of our leaders chose to leave their careers at home and find small resorts without distractions, enabling them to escape the daily pressures. Others would lament in the small pleasures of nature, beauty and architecture. Inspiration is subjective but it’s taking the time to appreciate the little things that can help drive your energy.
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