The other day I saw this TEDxBend talk by Emilie Wapnick of April 2015 and it hit home with me. In this inspiring talk Emilie addresses the fact that from childhood onwards we are geared towards choosing a career – that is: one career. This leaves us with feelings of failure when we are unable to find that particular career that we want to stick to. We switch, and switch, and switch. And our feelings of failure grow, fed by the opinions of well-intentioned parents, friends and family members who ask us when we will settle down and make a choice. Enters Emilie.
I love how she positively reframes the issue ‘not wanting to choose’ into an opportunity for exploration by introducing the term ‘multipotentialite’ by which she describes a person with many interests and creative pursuits. It is the same behaviour as described earlier, but thanks to the positive reframing a new narrative is created; a narrative that invites you to yet more explorations and creative pursuits. I feel empowered.
When people ask me what it is that I do, I always had a hard time answering this question, because I didn’t know how to narrow it down into one comprehensive term. I do so many different things as an Imagineer at Creative Scrum. Not because I get easily bored – okay maybe that is a small part of it – but mainly because there are so many things on this earth that I want to be part of. So, I do different things with different people on different days of the week. One day I am consulting, the next day I am working on two start-ups with others. The day after I am doing ethnographic research, and the next day I am workshopping, or working on social innovation projects. To me, this ‘entrepreneurial way of working’ is very gratifying since on a daily basis I work with a bunch of creative people, doing different things. And to top it off, it almost never feels as ‘work’, because I get inspired on a daily basis. I am a multipotentialite, and proud of it.