Innovation happens at the intersections. That’s where new ideas come from.”
The term ‘multipotentialite’ may sound like a scientific doodad, but in fact you might be one and not even know it. When I first heard the term, I immediately identified as one, and suddenly my entire life made sense (I can be quite dramatic at times). To explain further, a multipotentialite is someone with many interests and creative pursuits, not necessarily with “one true calling” like a specialist might have. If you identify with any of the following, you may be a multipotentialite:
- The thought of deciding what you wanted to be when you grew up gave you anxiety as a child
- You found it difficult to decide on which subjects to choose in school
- You found it even more difficult to decide on what to study at university
- You have always had many hobbies and interests
- You have changed careers several times in your life already
Being a multipotentialite isn’t a bad thing, in fact it can be pretty exciting. Here are some things to know if you think you might be a multipotentialite:
You’re probably more confident than most at going after what you want
If you’ve had lots of hobbies and tried lots of new things over the years, then you probably find it much easier to dive into new situations and grab new opportunities that come your way. Those who stay focused on one career path may find it more difficult to take hold of new opportunities when they arise, choosing instead to stick with what they know.
Some of the best things happen when you merge two ideas
Are you a business consultant who’s also a photographer? A hairdresser who also paints watercolours? Look at ways you can merge your passions to create something great, as that’s where the magic happens.
Some of the best teams are a mixture of the two
If you’re a multipotentialite, sometimes it pays off to join forces with someone who is the complete opposite. Someone who is more focused on one field and able to provide further insight into something they have perhaps pursued for longer, can complement your enthusiasm and drive to succeed.
You’ll be fine
Growing up as a multipotentialite is, in a word, terrifying. Having to constantly make decisions about your future instead of fulfilling your full potential can feel like it’s you against the world, but remember there are always opportunities to merge your passions. Don’t feel like you need to change who you are; be yourself, do your own thing, and everything will fall into place eventually.
Want to learn more about multipotentiality? Check out the TED Talk by Emilie Wapnick.
Photo by Joseph Chan via Unsplash Joseph Chan