The Lesson: Living in a society that frequently asks, “what do you want to be when you grow up?” can have a detrimental effect on growing up. It can often feel like we’re expected to commit to one thing forever, and embracing too many passions can be isolating. However, Emilie Wapnick’s encouragement of multipotentialites – people who have many different interests and creative pursuits in life – argues that not everyone has “one true calling.” For those feeling lost or stuck, she suggests an alternate way of living: exploring those curiosities so you can lead a happier, more authentic life.

Notable Excerpt: “The notion of a narrowly focused life is romanticized in our culture. [There’s] this idea of destiny or one true calling … but what if you’re someone who isn’t wired this way? What if there are a lot of different subjects that you’re curious about, and many different things you want to do? … You might feel alone. You might feel like you don’t have a purpose. And you might feel like there’s something wrong with you. There’s nothing wrong with you. What you are is a multipotentialite.”

The Speaker: In addition to being an award-winning author, career coach, blogger, and community leader, Emilie Wapnick is the founder and creative director at Puttylike, a place for people with many interests and creative pursuits.

Books: Wapnick’s book, “How to Be Everything” offers feel-good, encouraging advice on how to find your place in the world.

(LISTEN to the inspiring talk below or read the transcript) – Photo by Shabai Liu, CC

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