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I thought I was broken.
When I read traditional success and career books in my 20s, I was bombarded with the same advice: Choose one thing. Focus. Do one thing so well you become known as the best.
But I couldn’t choose just one thing. I had multiple, deep passions — personal development, business, hip hop, fitness, spirituality, marketing, you name it.
I spent years tearfully journaling, angry with God. Why couldn’t I pick one thing to do with my life?
And then I got a gift. The phrase “multipassionate entrepreneur” appeared in my brain.
For some people, the advice to “choose one thing” makes perfect sense. My partner Josh knew he wanted to be an actor since he was a little boy. Some people just pop out knowing exactly what they want to do in this world.
I’m not one of those humans, and since you’re here, I’m guessing you’re not either.
We’re not weirdos, weak, or unable to focus — we’re multipassionate.
What Does It Mean to Be Multipassionate?
If you’re wondering if you might be a multipassionate entrepreneur, here are some telltale signs:
- You don’t fit neatly into a conventional career box.
- While some people struggle to find one idea, you have a zillion things you want to try!
- You have a whole list of passions, interests, and hobbies that light you up.
- Pursuing a single avenue career-wise sounds suffocating.
We’re the scanners, slashers, multipotentialites, and renaissance humans of the world.
In this clip from my Australian book tour, I explain this idea in more detail with an entire audience of other folks who can’t seem to draw inside the lines.
If you have many passions, interests, and talents, and pursuing a single thing as a career just doesn’t feel right in your soul, keep reading!
We’re not given many tools in our traditional education systems to parse through our strengths and apply them to create a meaningful and fulfilling career.
That can leave us with a lot of shame about not doing what society expects.
We need a reframe.
Over the last twenty years of my career, I’ve learned some critical tips that’ll help you thrive in an outside-the-box life and business. But first, you must embrace the fact that you’ll never quite fit the mold — and that’s a good thing.
When I was starting my business, I was bartending and waiting tables seven days a week, figuring out how to build my life coaching practice during the day, and eventually teaching fitness classes and working as a professional dancer.
When people would ask, “What do you do for a living?” my answer was something like, “Well, today, I’m…” I didn’t have one good society-approved answer for how I made money or what I did with my life.
Until I started saying, “I’m a multipassionate entrepreneur.”
That one glorious word, multipassionate, lit up my world and gave me confidence to create exactly the kind of life I wanted to live, not the one society expected of me.
How to Thrive as a Multipassionate Entrepreneur
A major struggle we often face as multipassionate beings is finding a clear path forward, especially in business.
When you’re passionate about so many things, how do you decide which to pursue in your career or business, what to put on hold, and what’ll define you?
There’s no clear cut answer to any of these questions. As you might have figured out by now, we don’t do well with one-size-fits-all formulas.
Thriving as a multipassionate entrepreneur is about embracing your many passions, understanding your goals, and taking consistent action to find clarity.
To get you moving, here are five tips to thrive as a multipassionate soul on an unconventional path.
1. Bring Passion to Everything You Do
A lot of us waste years of our lives trying to “find” one passion in life.
That ain’t gonna happen.
Passion isn’t something you can go find because it doesn’t exist outside of yourself. Passion isn’t a singular, external object for you to discover. It’s the fire that lives inside.
To live a life you’re passionate about, you have to train yourself to bring passion to everything you do.
I mean everything.
When you get up in the morning, be passionate about making your bed. When you make lunch, be passionate about making lunch. When you do the dishes — yep, be passionate about those, too.
Why? Because passion is contagious.
When you’re passionate about everything you do, people will take notice. You’ll exude passion, and they’ll want in. Opportunities will fall into your lap. Take action on those opportunities, and you’ll walk into what you’re meant to do in this world.
2. Stop Thinking, Start Doing
So many people tell me they’ve struggled to find their passion for years. Years feeling torn, stuck, undecided, and unsure.
Why? Because smart, intentional people tend to make the same big mistake — overthinking.
As you try to discover what you’re meant to do in this world, remember: You can’t find your passion by thinking about it in your head.
I wasted so much time in my early 20s doing exactly this.
I was trying to decide whether to go for it and become a professional dancer, but I kept it all inside my head. I worried I was too old, that dance wouldn’t be a stable long-term career move, and I wouldn’t make that much money.
Finally, I got smart and enrolled in a freakin’ dance class, and I learned a vital lesson.
Clarity comes from engagement, not thought.
As I warmed up in the studio for my first class, I actually wept tears of joy, because it felt so right. In that moment, I knew there was no way I wasn’t going to try and make this a career.
If you’re trying to find your passion about — stop thinking, and start doing. Volunteer, get a job, take a class. Whatever you have to do, get your buns out there, and do it.
Pick a step, even a teeny tiny one, and take it. Notice how you feel. Are you energized or deflated?
You don’t need to know every next step. Just keep moving in the direction that makes you feel energized.
3. Know Which Passions Are the Main Act & Which Are the Backup Dancers
When you’re a multipassionate entrepreneur, building a brand around those passions can get complicated.
The key to branding yourself is to get specific. You’ve heard it: Niche, niche, niche. Find one thing your audience needs, and do it better than anyone else.
That sounds a lot like traditional success and career advice, doesn’t it?
Here’s why that’s great for multipassionate entrepreneurs. No one in your niche can bring what you bring to the table.
For example, in my company, I chose to make business and marketing the main act. People come to the show because they love my greatest hits about starting a business, online marketing, and copywriting.
But let’s be real: A lot of people put on a business and marketing show. What those people don’t do? Throw in the occasional hip hop dance class to keep the audience (literally) on their toes.
Being multipassionate isn’t your Achilles heel, it’s your superpower.
No, I’m not doing everything all at once — selling online business programs and teaching weekly fitness classes and doing life coaching. But conquering a niche doesn’t mean I have to ignore all the passions that make me who I am.
As you build your business or career, make room to pursue all of your passions, and follow the paths that most light you up. At different times, different passions may take the spotlight — let the rest play backup to form your one-of-a-kind brand.
4. Get Crystal Clear on Your Goals
You have so many ideas! So many talents! So many people to serve! So many paths in front of you!
The thought of starting a business as a multipassionate entrepreneur can leave some people immobilized by choice and others overextended and frazzled trying to do it all.
Does being multipassionate mean you pursue all your passions at once? It can, but it doesn’t have to.
You can choose to walk one path at a time, knowing you’re never stuck, or pursue a few at the same time. Here’s the difference.
Following a single passion and building your platform for one business now probably means you’ll grow faster and have a greater chance of higher revenue more quickly. But it would mean setting aside other ideas that might be burning a hole through your heart. And maybe getting bored.
Following multiple passions to simultaneously build two or more businesses at once means you’ll be able to strengthen different skills and learn more about what you like and don’t like. On the downside, you’ll probably grow each business more slowly, make less money for a while, and life will be a little more messy and chaotic.
To decide which direction makes sense for you, get crystal clear on your goals — both short and long term.
Is fast growth and revenue important to you right now? Or can you afford to build more slowly? Has one idea captured your heart? Or is there a passion that you can circle back to down the road?
Remember: Even if you decide to give your all to one business right now, you can always start a second business later or pivot along the way.
5. Master the Mid-Life (or Anytime) Career Change
One panic-inducing worry for multipassionate souls is the thought that you might wake up one day and realize it’s too late to try something new.
Let me be clear: You’re never too old to make a career change.
You’re never too old, it’s never too late, and it’s never the wrong time to do something you love.
All sorts of people are crushing it in new careers and starting businesses at all ages and with all kinds of experience behind them. If I’d believed the “I’m too old” narrative, I never would have started a dance career at 24, and I never would have become a Nike Elite athlete.
Here are a few things you need to know to master the mid-life career change:
- Nobody cares how old you are but you. Yes, ageism is a real thing. But forget what’s happening outside of you, and get a grip on what’s going on inside. What’s right for you in this moment?
- You’re not starting from scratch. Your multipassionate superpower lets you carry over all the experience, wisdom, and strengths from your previous career into your new one. You’ll be able to see creative angles and opportunities for innovation that those who’ve been in the same industry for a lifetime are blind to.
- It’s going to feel daunting. Any big change will yank you out your comfort zone, and that’ll be scary. But you can’t let that stop you. You don’t need to know all your next steps in advance. Just focus on the next right action step, and take small steps every day in your new direction.
Enjoy the Smorgasbord!
The bottom line, my multipassionate friend, is that you have a menu of delectable choices in front of you. All of them can be satisfying and fulfilling in their own way.
The secret to making the best choice is to step back, get ultra-clear on what you most want in your heart, take action to move toward it, and have total faith that you’re on the perfect path.
If you’re stuck trying to decide among different careers, business ideas, or passions to pursue, try on different futures. Imagine yourself 5, 10, or 20 years from now, after pursuing one path or another. How do you feel? What do you regret not doing?
Communicate with your future self to get clear on how you define success. Which goals and values make the difference between a fulfilling future and a disappointing one?
Embracing your multiple passions and understanding how to incorporate them into your life can help you create a custom-designed business or career that’s perfect for your strengths and the life you want to have.
Now let’s turn this insight into action.
Trying to decide whether to pursue a particular passion or not? Take the 10-Year Test.
Grab a notebook, and write your answers; don’t just think them.
Imagine yourself 10 years down the road. When you look back on your last decade, do you regret not having done the thing?
Don’t shy away from your multiple passions, and never feel ashamed for choosing more than one. If there’s anything I wish I could say to my younger self, it’s this:
Trust those impulses, follow your intuition, and fall in love with your appetite to do so many things. Being multipassionate is your gift.