Multipotentialite Renaissance Soul?

Or in other words, do you have many interests and creative pursuits and do not want to be pinned down to one job?

Maybe you are not having ADHD in your career choices; rather, you just would not have “one true calling” the way specialists do. There is nothing wrong with you! In her book “The Renaissance Soul“, Margaret Lobenstine illustrates the 5 signs that you might be a member of the multi-passionate tribe:

  1. The ability to become excited by many things at once, often accompanied by difficulty choosing
  2. A love of new challenges; once challenges are mastered, easily bored
  3. A fear of being trapped in the same career or activity for life
  4. A pattern of quick, sometimes unsatisfying flings with many hobbies
  5. A successful career that has left you bored or restless

It is liberating to finally embrace your multipotentiality, as Emilie Wapnick share in her inspiring TED talk, and respect ourselves for who we truly are. Very often we anchor our self-identity with what we do and our work; and yet, we are human beings, not human-doings!

From Hotel Sales Coordinator to Wedding Planner to Pastry Shop Owner to Child Art Therapist

My friend Tammy is a classic renaissance soul. She started her career in sales coordination with an international hotel group, excelled in her role and got multiple promotions in 3 years. She then made a move internally to become a wedding planning advisor at one of the hotels, and customers loved her for her passion to help, and her uncanny ability in being an excellent organiser and project manager.

Simultaneously she founded a pastry training centre with her chef husband and is now working her way to becoming an art therapist for children in her early 30s. Every pivot in her career is seemingly unrelated, yet Tammy knew her strengths early on, have a strong love and commitment to learning, and unapologetically follow her curiosity in every career move. Every person who has ever worked with her would be impressed by her infectious energy and her high-quality standards to everything she does.

So instead of following the traditional linear approach to climbing a single career ladder, how can you pursue a multi-interest way of life?

Embrace Your Superpowers.

Emilie Wapnick summarises 3 superpowers that are commonly found in multipotentialites:

  1. The ability to combine ideas across disciplines.
  2. Your strong interest in and rapid speed of learning.
  3. Your adaptability

In the future of work, all the above strengths are the cornerstones of the top skills that are difficult to be replaced by AI. Your ability to pivot, to start afresh, to innovate and your growth mindset set you apart in this rapidly changing environment.

Start Side-Hustling.

Many freelancers started their journey because of their preference in working in a project-oriented way, instead of being fixed to the job descriptions as an employee. The flexibility to pursue projects you are passionate about and the variety of projects and interests in your work keeps your engagement level high for each one of your passions.

Be Good At One Thing Before Your Move On To The Next.

You’ve been told that being a jack-of-all-trades, aka a master of none will get you nowhere in your career development. So set your target to become a Master of all trades! Stay in the game to get good enough in one thing before switching to another shiny object too soon. Sometimes, people confuse multipotentialites with “quitters” because the latter use quitting as an avoidance mechanism of possible failures. You are more powerful than they are.

Sometimes it is all about prioritising. when deciding which passion to follow first, ask yourself, “Would I regret not having done that 10 years from now?”. There are some passions that are more time sensitive, like competitive sports. For others, you can wait and pursue your passions sequentially.

Team Up with a Specialist.

In teamwork, it is best to have team members who can complement each other’s strengths and weaknesses. With the breadth of knowledge of a renaissance soul, and the depth of understanding of a specialist, the team can works wonder in both innovation and execution.

Otherwise, it would be difficult for you trying to thrive on many interests without feeling scattered or overwhelmed. There is a HUGE difference being another Michelangelo VS being a jack-of-all-trade but nothing stands out.

Whether you are multi-passionate or not, we are born to thrive in a career that brings out our strengths, to make an impact around us and one that allows us to follow our curiosity. Stop settling for soul-sucking jobs in toxic environments. You can find better options if you persist.

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