5 Tips: What to do When You Want to do it All

We asked Collaboration Consultant and Career Experiment founder Baily Hancock for her essential steps to embracing your life as a Multi-Passionate without feeling totally overwhelmed. Have questions for Baily? Want to know how she handles the day-to-day? Sign up for her upcoming workshops!


Being a Multi-Passionate is (mostly) a wonderful thing. We never get bored, we’re always coming up with new ideas, and we can wear a ton of hats at work without breaking a sweat. However, it can also feel really overwhelming to be a Multi-Passionate because with all of those ideas and miscellaneous interests, it can sometimes feel like we’re flaky and unfocused.
— Baily Hancock

1. Get clear

Multi-Passionates tend to have a ton of ideas, interests, and passions, so step one in figuring out what to put on the main burner first is to lay them all out on the table. Once you know all of your desired options, you can start sifting through them all and honing in on the ones you’re most excited about. The trick here is to think about how you’d feel if you never pursued an idea. If you’re okay with that, mark it off your list. If the thought of that bums you out, keep it on.

Once you’ve narrowed your list down a bit, think about what excites you the most about each idea. Sometimes we think we want to pursue a particular career path or business idea, when in reality we could scratch the same itch in a different way. Maybe you think you want to be a TV show host, but actually you’d be just as happy giving more presentations or teaching workshops in your current career. Cross off any ideas that can be pursued without having to start something brand new. Aim to have no more than 3 ideas on your final list, and put them in order of most to least exciting.

 

2. Run the T + M + K test

Now that you know what all you’d like to eventually pursue, it’s time to decide which one makes the most sense to pursue first. In order to do that, put each idea through the TIME + MONEY + KNOWLEDGE ringer.

  • TIME: How many years of experience is required for you to be qualified to have that job, or how much experience would you need to start that business?
  • MONEY: Would you have to take a pay cut to switch from your current career to the new one? Do you have to invest a certain amount of money into launching this business? Are you willing and able to do that?
  • KNOWLEDGE: Would you have to go back to school or learn a ton about a new subject matter before being able to pursue it?

The goal here is to get honest about what it will take to pull these ideas off. It’s up to you whether you’re willing to go the distance between where you are today, and where you need to be in order to make it happen. It’s okay if at this point you come to the conclusion that one or more of your ideas just isn’t logical to pursue, cross that sucker off your list and move forward.

 

3. Pick your poison

At this point you should have a good sense of which idea makes the most sense to pursue first based on your excitement for it as well as the amount of time, money, and knowledge required to pull it off. Compare your remaining ideas side-by-side, and pick the one that has the lowest barrier to entry while still being an exciting option for you to go for.

Remember, just because you’re choosing one thing now doesn’t mean you’ll forget about the others. It just means this particular idea will get the majority of your attention and brainpower to see it through. Once you’re ready to try something new, those other ideas will be waiting for you with open arms.


What I finally came to realize was that choosing something to focus on doesn’t mean shutting out your other ideas forever, it just means you put the primary one on the front burner, and the others on the side or back burners. You’ve still got all of those pots on the stove, but you’re focusing the majority of your efforts on the meal you’re planning to eat first.
— Baily Hancock

 

4. Make it happen

Based on the answers to the TIME + MONEY + KNOWLEDGE test, you should have a good idea about what your next steps should be. If you need to gain more experience in a field before being qualified, there’s no time like the present to get going. If you’re moving into a whole new field, start finding ways to gain that experience while keeping your day job. Volunteering is a great way to build experience, as is taking on freelance gigs. If you’ll need to take a paycut or put up a personal investment to move forward, start taking a look at your budget and find ways to start saving money. If lack of knowledge or a degree stands between you and your idea, start looking into courses or certification programs that will teach you what you need to know in order to make your move.

Set short and long-term goals for yourself so you don’t lose sight of your new path. It’s one thing to daydream about switching careers or starting a business, it’s quite another to actually do it.

 

5. Rinse + repeat

Once you’ve seen this idea through and have decided that you’re either ready to add one of your other ideas to your plate or switch gears entirely, you get to repeat this whole process over again! Always remember, you’re never stuck, and nothing’s forever, good or bad. You always have the ability to choose something new for yourself, just don’t make big changes for the sake of change. Sometimes tweaking a current situation can be exactly what you need to feel fulfilled. Otherwise, know that only you stand between your multiple passions and making them happen, so get out of your own way and start being the successful Multi-Passionate that you are!

What to do When You Want to do it All
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Monique Boileau