In life, there are:
a) people that do cool things, and
b) people that don’t do much.
The people in Group B usually want to do more, but don’t. One reason might be because we are encouraged to ‘specialising’ in one area. It helps us categorise eachother: science or the arts; left or right brained etc. But how can thousands of people could live such different lives, be fully defined by such stiff lines?
Where does that leave people who have a broad range of interests? From practicing fine art to studying law and working in finance, I get my fair share of raised eyebrows from people who ask me:
“If you did [X] why do you now do [Y]? What happened?”
Nothing happened. I’m simply interested in different areas so try things out. Some of which end up being passions for a period, and others are lifetime loves - like writing, creating beautiful things and getting things done.
“Many of us have different strengths and passions but we never give ourselves permission to explore and cultivate them” - Marie Forleo, MarieTV (watch the full video)
We tell ourselves that we can’t try certain things because it’s ‘not what people like us do’. For example, someone who was advising me once said, ‘well, you work in finance so you’re not creative’.
The comment was easy to ignore because at that point in my life I was sure of certain qualities, but this is where many of us go wrong.
Our perception, or the perception of others, influences us. It boxes us in.
“My main problem was reconciling what I did on the side with what I did for real.” - Co-founder of a successful food blog
So today, let’s rethink this and consider some benefits of breaking out of that box:
New experiences start to come out of nowhere. Starting this website has helped me understand what I want from life, given me more opportunities to write and host events like this
You’re in good company. Other modern multipotentialites and renaissance wo(men) include Steve Jobs, the Olsen twins and Kanye West (controversial, but true). Don’t get thrown off by the household names, they’re humans too. They were also curious and passionate enough to try (and play to their strengths)
You’re more likely to thrive no matter how good (or bad) the economy is. Fisher says it best in his must-read book, ‘Early Retirement Extreme’ (images below)
If it doesn’t work out, or you change your mind, who cares?
There’s no such thing as useless experience, as long as you’re learning. Now you’ve got proof, not just theory. It’s tried and tested. If you want some help, Marie Forleo gives some practical advice on how to manage your many interests in a smart way.
The best of life is uncovered through experience and experimentation. So for every hesitation, ask yourself, ‘why not’?