Some people know right off the bat what they want to be for the rest of their life. And those who can't choose only one career, they're likely multipotentialites.
Many people know from a very young age what they’d like to be when they grow up. Others, however, can’t make up their mind.
As a society, we’re socialised to believe that each person only has one true calling. Each person has a passion for something and builds a life around that passion. It happens time and time again: as a kid, you know you want to be a doctor, a writer, or an accountant (or any of the typical knee-jerk responses) so you take the correct subjects in school in order to apply and qualify for the corresponding university course. But then there are those who can’t seem to make up their mind.
Does any of these describe you?
• You have several interests that you've pursued.
• There are multiple things you’re passionate about and wish to pursue.
• You pursue each interest, only to get bored and drop it.
• In fact, you’ve loved and stopped loving interests lots of times in your life.
• So much so that you’re scared to pick up something new (that you’re really passionate about now) again.
• Family and friends describe you as flaky, immature, and indecisive.
And you’re still undecided and are panic-stricken because of it. Is there really something wrong with you?
The Good News:
No, you don’t have to worry. And you are not alone. There’s even a word to describe it. You are a multipotentialite.
A multipotentialite is someone who explores many areas of interests throughout their life. Through boredom, distraction or something similar they don’t dedicate themselves to mastering it, somehow only gaining enough knowledge that satisfies their hunger for understanding this particular area. So while they’re never an ‘expert’ on a single subject, they’ve delved in deep enough to use this new knowledge to help in every other life experience if needed.
The Great News:
The world needs you. Besides what we’re raised to believe, you really don’t have one thing you’re destined to pursue. You have many paths and you can pursue them all, either simultaneously, sporadically, or one after the other.
And as a multipotentialite, you have quite a few positives to contribute to any job, career or team effort you find yourself in:
Every different thing you’ve tried out means you’re a seasoned learner, unlike specialists (people a single interest) who have gone through the learning process a less often than you.
So trying to figure something out is fun for you (to the benefit of your team).
All those things you’ve pursued are still in your brain even after you’ve lost interest in them. This makes you an excellent innovator and problem solver as you have the ability to draw on many different schools of thought at any given time.
You don’t have to pick one
You can be many things. You can do many things. You can be an entrepreneur, designer, developer, blogger, motivational speaker, guitar player all before you die.
So instead of asking “what am I going to be when I grow up?” start asking “what are the many things I would like to experience before I die?”
Think of it like this: It generally takes about 7 years to master something, that’s about 10 or so opportunities to be great at something different before you die of old age. It’s possible for you to spend each lifetime doing something else. Or, unless you’re a specialist, you’ll be unhappy in a single career for 10 lifetimes.