I enjoyed a wonderful class on Saturday, taught by Ashley of the Voodoo Comedy Playhouse in Denver. I’ve been teaching Improv Drama to middle school students for several years now, and it’s one of my passions for sure. Ashley helped me take it to the next level. We even did some games I have used with my kids before that I’ll bring around again because Ashley taught me better ways to play them.
I’m always looking for new ways to explore my passions. Isn’t that what being Multipassionate is all about? So when I saw the flyer at my local library adverting this class, I knew I had to be there.
If you’ve never done Improv, consider taking a class or workshop. Unless you’re a really serious introvert, it’s a great way to get out of your shell a bit and have some fun, while learning about yourself and others.
One thing that I struggled with was what Ashley called “long form” Improv. I’ve done a lot of the short form, along the lines of “Whose Line Is It Anyway” but the idea of doing a scene for twenty, thirty minutes or more was pretty intimidating. We didn’t do anything quite that long, but I did wind up doing a monologue on a random subject that was much longer than the usual one-liners I teach my students. It was a challenge, but one that I enjoyed and learned from.
What activity can you do this week to explore your passions? Love to hear from you in the comments below.
We had such a lovely time at Easter, joining with Grandma and Grandpa, aunts, uncles, cousins, nieces and nephews, and grandchildren. Whether you celebrate the resurrection of Christ or not, most American families like to gather for dinner and shared enjoyment of some sort. We were no exception. Even had a couple of family members hooked up remotely and passed around the table. It was a very enjoyable experience.
Of course, my grandsons were my favorite, followed closely by my parents, who are in their eighties, but still active and on my team. Who am I kidding? I loved and enjoyed each person there, and we missed the ones who weren’t there. Family is special, whether your family is the traditional style with multiple generations, or the random assemblage of people you live with. Value them as part of your rainbow life.
Sometimes families are encouraging and helpful. Use this to advance your passions as much as you can. But what if they’re not supportive? Use that as motivation to prove to them that your Multipassionate life is really valuable and worthwhile. Won’t it be satisfying when they say, “You were right, this is really who you are, and what you were meant to do.”?
I am getting more and more excited as my Rainbow life unfolds. How about you? Does each day bring a new adventure? If not, why not, and what can you do about it? Love seeing your comments.
A few days ago, I mentioned a conversation with my friends at work. Included was a discussion of the value of higher education. We work in a school setting, where advanced college degrees are a significant qualification that will help you advance in your career. That’s definitely true for the monopassionate teacher or administrator. The more diplomas you have, the more respect you garner in this setting.
But seriously, for most of us, ESPECIALLY Multipassionates, a college degree is a four-year commitment to a one year passion. Why should I spend years in classes, and pay huge sums for continuing education, if I’m going to move on in a few months or years? I love taking classes and learning, and so do most Multipassionates, but that doesn’t mean that long-term programs are necessarily a good thing for me.
The average annual cost for a 4-year degree at a public university is just under ten grand for tuition and fees and probably that much again for room and board. It’s $24,000 if you study out of state, and $33,400 for a private school. That’s a big investment. Should we just bite the bullet and do it, because our culture says it’s necessary?
In our field, the gospel is that all of our students should be encouraged to go to college. It’s seen as the goal of all we do. Low-income families are counseled about financial aid, low-performing students are pressed to improve their grades as part of a college strategy, all students are required to take advanced math, language arts, and history classes, and encouraged to try out for Honors or Advanced Placement classes that will help get them into a better college. The system pushes all students into the college pipeline, whether it’s suitable for them or not.
Years ago, students in high school were often separated into “college bound,” “trade school,” and other categories. This was called “tracking” because you put students on a track to maximize their success in whatever they did after graduation. These days, that’s a bad word, seen as discriminating against some students in favor of others. And yet, we see students every day who would be far better off learning a trade, such as plumbing or carpentry, rather than spending four years and $80,000+ on a college degree.
So many people I run into these days have immense student loan debt. If you pay it on time, it’s years of bondage, if you miss a few payments, it’s a credit report that prevents you from owning your own home or buying a car on credit. And the more advanced your degree, the more you owe by the time you get it.
And that’s just for monopassionate students. What about Multipassionate people, who don’t want to be doctors, lawyers, or teachers their whole lives long? A big investment in higher education is highly recommended for those fields because it pays off in the long run. But for we who run from one dream to the next, it’s an investment in a future that may never come.
None of this is intended to discount the value of education. As I said, I love classes and learning. I spent twenty-four years completing my bachelor’s degree in a field in which I am not currently employed. But I don’t consider a minute of any of those classes to be wasted. I use all that information in so many ways my college professors could never have imagined. But I also cannot imagine a scenario in which I would pursue an advanced degree again. I did post-graduate work but never completed the Master’s degree as I intended. Today, I don’t regret that one bit.
Is an advanced degree something important to you? If so, go out and get it. But if you’re Multipassionate; seriously consider whether that huge investment of time and effort will produce something you’ll enjoy for a lifetime, or just until the next passion comes along. Will you be paying for it long after you’ve moved on to something else?
Love to hear your stories and experiences. Please comment below and enhance the experience for all of us in the Multipassionate tribe.
I was chatting with some co-workers yesterday, and we discovered a common bond. They’re Multipassionate too! How many people do you meet on a daily basis that may share your enthusiasm for the Rainbow Life?
During our conversation, we also discovered a common history. In a monopassionate world, we Rainbow people are often seen as misfits; people who have failed to discover our one true passion. But the fascinating friends with whom I was discussing this reminded me that being Multipassionate is not a weakness, it’s my super power!
My daughter continually reminds me that for us, a full life is a satisfying life. The monopassionates complain about being overwhelmed by life, by having too many options, by being pulled in too many directions. But for the Multipassionate, a full schedule is a happy thing. We cannot be bored because there’s always something to look forward to, something excellent to anticipate. In that, we have such a great advantage over those who have only one passion to pursue.
There’s absolutely nothing wrong with having ONE TRUE PASSION and spending your life pursuing it. But it’s not for everybody. It’s certainly not for me, and it may not be for you, if you’re Multipassionate. I have been so frustrated by quizzes and advice articles that assume the only way to live my life is to find my one true passion and then follow my dream. I try to answer questions such as “When was the time when you felt most fulfilled?” and the like. But seriously, I can’t name one, but I can easily name twenty. I find my fulfillment in moving from passion to passion. Some are repeated, some are new. But moving on is my lifestyle, not my weakness.
One thing my friends pointed out is that those who love us most are often the worst at understanding our Multipassionate nature. Have you had the “talk” from your parents about settling down to a “real job” or finding your path? Do your spouse or other special people in your life question why you don’t have a “mission” to fulfill or why you drop a certain passion when it has fulfilled your needs? How do we deal with those who love us, but don’t understand? It’s something we need to deal with.
Did you grow up thinking you were somehow defective because you didn’t have one true passion? Rejoice! You are one of us. Multipassionates are those of us who have discovered we don’t fit the mold of “expectation.” But this is not a weakness. Not in any fashion. It’s is our strength, our SUPERPOWER! We not only CAN, but MUST pursue a multitude of passions.
Please, give me comments below on how you have done this, or questions about how it can be done. Our community, our TRIBE, can support each other in making our world better by exploring our multiple passions.
This is an amazing place, full of wonder and passion. Are trains on my list of passions? I’ll have to check. The list changes all the time. Does this happen to you as well?
Some of our passions are constant; others change. Some drop off, some are added. But all of them are part of the Rainbow Life.
My grandsons are definitely high on the list of my passions. I’ve always valued family; love my parents, my wife, my kids. But there’s something about having grandchildren that amps that up a notch. I can say without fear of contradiction that I have the world’s most adorable grandsons. Oh, you may contradict me, but I don’t fear it. I know the truth. 🙂
Sharing one of the my long-term passions with my oldest grandson is one of the biggest joys of my life. His mother, my daughter-in-law, told me that when I got a membership to the Railroad Museum so I could take him as often as I wanted, it was one of the greatest gifts I could have given him. I replied that it was just as big a gift to me as well, as I enjoy it every bit as much as he does.
What’s a passion you can share with somebody? Might be a friend or relative, might be a group of like-minded people. But somehow, sharing a passion, especially with someone you love, multiplies the joy. There can be inconvenience, obstacles, even good reasons not to do it, but isn’t that true of most of the really important things in our lives? Make the leap today. Take your sweetheart on a date, even if you’re busy. Play with your kids. Write your parents an actual, handwritten letter (I was surprised how much my eighty-something parents enjoyed this.). Think of one of your passions and how it might involve other people, and just step out. You’ll be glad you did.
Love to hear your stories. Post your experience below so we can all be inspired.
In the Rainbow Life, green has always been my favorite color. Everybody is Irish on St. Patrick’s Day, but my dad taught us that we’re Irish all year long. I guess it shows more around the holiday associated with the Emerald Isle.
I have an Irish band called Mulligan Stew. We call it that because it’s different every time. It’s kind of a Multipassionate Irish band. We hardly ever do set lists, we love requests, and we’re constantly interacting with the audience. It’s very interesting to take music that’s often hundreds of years old and share it with new audiences in a new way.
I find that being Multipassionate helps keep things new; not only my life and music, but for the audiences we share with. So we can take a song that everybody’s heard many times (such as “What Do You Do With A Drunken Sailor?”) and do it in a way that modern people can relate to (Make Him Donald Trump’s Media Spokesman). Of course, we’re equal opportunity offenders; that’s just part of being Irish.
At the same time, I was able to use my storytelling skills to share the life of St. Patrick with a group of people at the local recreation center. There are many myths about St. Patrick, but few people know much of the true story. For instance, did you know he came from Wales? And no, he never chased the snakes out of Ireland. (HINT: There were never any snakes in Ireland.)
What passion will you choose to celebrate this week as part of your Rainbow Life? Love to hear about it in the comments below.
Got to chatting with some Multipassionate friends, and I think I’m figuring something out. Emilie Wapnick, in Renaissance Business, talks about finding your “overarching theme,” or the commonality in your disparate interests. I listed my interests (kept adding more as I thought of them) and I became somewhat desperate to find the common thread. Then I realized that Multipassionate is actually my common thread.
I love and enjoy so many things, from music, to motorcycles, to fishing, that I despaired of finding some way to connect them. But the more I read Emilie’s writings, the more I realized that my mission in life is far more about BEING Multipassionate than about my various passions.
I’ve learned that what I really want to do is help you explore YOUR passions, not just talk about mine. I want to build a community of fellow Multipassionates, who help each other explore their own interests, whatever they may be, and however disconnected they may seem. Emilie has a TRIBE of multipotentialites; now I want a tribe of Multipassionates.
There really is a difference. Emilie’s tribe is about exploring and exploiting the potential that is in each of us. Multipassionate is more about pushing the limits of what excites us, what turns us on, what makes our lives fulfilling and challenging.
What challenges you? What inspires you to PASSION? What gives your life meaning? That’s what I want to hear about. Comment below, and let’s explore that Rainbow Life together!
Have you ever had this experience? You get up in the morning to go to work, and you just find yourself feeling like you don’t want to go? Then you feel guilty for not wanting to go. It’s a great job, or at least tolerable, and you were very enthusiastic when you started. You are good at it, and enjoy the people which whom you work. But more and more, you find yourself thinking, “I wish I was doing something different.”
Maybe there’s nothing actually wrong with you, or the job. Maybe you’ve just moved on. Maybe you got what you came for and now you’re ready for the next big thing. Remember, Multipassionates aren’t like other people. We have a variety of interests, for a variety of reasons and motivations.
Barbara Sher compares us to a honeybee in this way. A bee loves flowers. Lots of different flowers. Some types more than others because the nectar is better for honey, but never any one flower for any length of time.
The bee samples the nectar from one flower until it gets what it came for. They it moves. Same with Multipassionates. Figure out why you started this particular job, or project, or activity. If you’ve met that need, you’re finished, whether monopassionate thought says or or not. Barbara points out that sometimes you only realize what your motivation was when it has gone. So that feeling of “I don’t want to go.” may actually be your sign that it’s time for something else.
It could also be that it just wasn’t really the job for you. Multipassionates tend to be intelligent, capable, adaptable, and motivated. We fall into various jobs because we CAN, not always because we should. That feeling of despair may just be your sign that this is not your thing. Time to find something else.
So maybe this WAS your passion and now it’s not, or maybe it never was. You’re multipassionate! You can adapt and change better than most. Perhaps it’s time to do so.
As a Multipassionate, I am rarely satisfied with life as it is, at least not for long. I was speaking with a friend about the day job I am working at right now. I have worked at the same middle school for nearly six years now, and he remembered that my job had ended at one point. It had, but I was able to find another job at the same school. I’ve had five different jobs in those six years.
Emilie Wapnick talks about “transferable skills” being one of the advantages of multipotentialty. I guess that has given me an advantage in this situation. It gives all of us advantages in our every day lives. We can take risks because our unique abilities enable us to succeed in a variety of situations.
Scott explains that most of us think of risk in an entirely wrong way. We fear change, because it’s uncertain. We fear failure, because we have only so much control over what is going to happen. And so we’re frozen by our fears, not taking risks because of the negative possibilities that confront us.
But seriously, even if we never take the risk, change will come anyway, possibilities are always uncertain, we have little control over what will happen if we stay in our comfort zones. And for the Multipassionate, those comfort zones may be like the amber that traps the mosquito. Safe, but unfulfilled, not alive.
One of the biggest regrets people express in their later years is that they took the safe path, didn’t risk doing what they love. Remember Marlon Brando in On the Waterfront? “I coulda been a contender. I coulda been somebody, instead of a bum, which is what I am, let’s face it.” How many of us look back on our “safe” choices and think, “I wonder what could have been?”
Scott makes the excellent point that taking the safe path is often the worst possible decision. He says the worst risk is doing nothing. Not acting, not choosing, not making change. What’s the worst that could happen? Things don’t work out the way you’d planned. Since when does everything work out the way you had planned? You make the choice, you take the risk, maybe it works out, maybe it doesn’t. If it does, great, you’ve moved ahead with your life. If it doesn’t, you’ve learned something. You put the lesson to work an move on.
Don’t let external factors determine your path. Not taking risk is the biggest risk of all. Pursue your dreams. Still better to be a happy failure than a miserable success. And who knows, it may easily work out better than that.
I’m rewatching a video by Scott Dinsmore, called How to Find and Do Work You Love. This man is totally one of my heroes. He’s gone now, but died following his passions. His web site, Live Your Legend, always gives me inspiration and motivation. His e-mails totally motivated me to do my best, as do those of his wife since he passed.
But as I was watching the video, I scrolled down to some of the comments. Many were negative, saying he was unrealistic. And in many ways, he is. But being realistic never helped anybody find their passion.
The one that really got me though, was this.
“I don’t know what my passion is what I want to push my energy on. I love being creative but I love all of it and I can’t desire what I really should put my energy on. Drawing,singing,filming, dancing,photographing I just don’t know what to go for. I feel like if I could decide at this age I would be able to really go for it. I would do everything to achieve that but I don’t know which direction I should go.I’m scared of being stuck in the same place without being able to do what I love before I’m all grown up and my dreams and creativity disappears because of the boringness that life is. I don’t care if people say I can’t I just want to have a passion to fight for.”
Can you totally identify with that? Is this person the penultimate expression of Multipassionate? “I don’t know which direction I should go.” I know that feeling. I live with that feeling every single day of my life. It’s part of the core, the essence of being Multipassionate.
Scott is inspiring to me in many ways. But he’s monopassionate. Does that negate his impact on my life? Not by a long shot. I’m still exploring how to implement his advice in my rainbow life, but I have definitely learned some things along the way. I can pursue a variety of passions in his “Live Your Legend” way. I’m working that out now. He mentions knitting as a passion. I’m working on an online knitting course, and it’s very exciting.
I have so many passions in my life, but I can share all of them in one way or another. I can use Scott’s advice to advance myself in knitting, bowmaking, painting, performing, acting, and so many more ways. And in the process, I’m learning things that I can use to teach people about being Multipassionate.
I learn something from just about everybody I meet. I’ve mentioned Emilie Wapnick, Barbara Sher, and others. Scott is one of the bright spots in my universe, even if he is not Multipassionate. I’m working on more ways to share what I’ve learned about how to apply his advice to this rainbow lifestyle. I hope it will help you along the way, like it can help the person who wrote the comments above. This person is obviously Multipassionate, but like many of us, had no idea how to explore that, to make it a strength instead of a weakness. Let’s work on that together. Please, share your wisdom and experiences in the comments below. I’d love to hear from you.