What Do You Want to be When You Grow Up?

Do you think you might be a multipotentialite?

By: Grace Hoffmann

We’re asked this question quite frequently as we grow up. From kindergarten to high school, our answers definitely change. Even in college and into our adult life, we still may not know what we “want to be when we grow up.”  With the passing of time most people tend to become more realistic in their answers. The question also starts to become a topic for anxiety or distraught and less of a fun question full of endless opportunities.

Why is this? One of the reasons may be that we are interested in many things! For some of us, none of the things we are interested in correlate at all. Having many interests is not a limitation! Yes, it may seem that way if you are having to choose just one passion to follow or one quality you need to make your priority, however, you don’t have to.

In a TedTalk by Emilie Wapnick, she discusses “Why some of us don’t have one true calling.

Wapnick discussed her struggle with loving many different things and not always knowing what her one calling was. Then, she decided that she didn’t need to have just one calling. She discussed the term “multipotentialite” in her TedTalk.

What is a multipotentialite? A multipotentialite she describes, is “someone with many interests and creative pursuits.” She adds in that there could be many different definitions of the word, which makes it even more unique and fitting to the name!

She discussed that multipotentialites have 3 super powers or advantages.

  1. Idea Synthesis – This is “combining two or more fields and creating something new at the intersection.” This is a great quality to have! This stimulates innovation and allows you to work on teams well and help combine ideas or formulate solutions.  
  2. Rapid Learning – A big part of rapid learning stems from interest. The desire to learn and to not be afraid to fail defines multipotentialites. Multipotentialites use everything they have learned in each and every job they do.
  3. Adaptability – Wapnick defines it as “the ability to morph into whatever you need to be in a given situation.” Adaptability is extremely sought after in the workplace.

In an article about the benefits of being adaptable, it discusses the findings of a survey that states, “91% of human resources recruiters predicted that by 2018 the ability of a candidate to deal with change will be a major recruitment goal” (Business.com).

What does all this mean? It means that you are unique and you should embrace your interests — no matter how different you may think they are!

Watch the TedTalk!


For more information of the importance of adaptability — read articles by the Fahrenheit Group and Information Age.







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