The Best Career Advice I Ever Received
A few months ago, I was invited to attend a business seminar hosted by a life coach. I walked away with the best career advice I have ever received.
I had the good fortune to sit next to a woman who had recently started her own coaching practice. There were several partner activities. She and I worked together on these exercises. She started off by asking me what I did. I told her that I was a photographer, but recently I had delved into the world of crafts, quilting, sewing, and I was also interested in watercolors and writing. She had a very kind face and that was all it took for me to continue to unload. I told her I was interested in all these art mediums, but this interest worried me because I felt I should choose one or two to practice.
I want to do a lot of things and that desire scares me. I told her that I had been journaling a ton about this quandary. She asked me specifically what I wrote in my journal. "My struggles," I responded. "How upsetting it feels to not know what to do. That I should choose one thing and go after that."
She then gave me the gold nugget. She replied, "It seems like your journal writing focuses on the negative aspects of your career. Why don't you instead start writing down a few positives? Perhaps that could even be the theme of your artwork. You don't need to choose one medium. You could try all of them and unite them under the theme of positivity. And your audience may respond favorably to that message as well." Her words lit me up. She gave me the reassurance I needed and her suggestion to unite my work via a theme was brilliant.
There is this idea that it is best to stick to one career path and follow it through as far as possible. This approach works well for most, but there is a faction of people that need to explore multiple career paths. I fall into that group. Photography has been my career for seven years, but my creativity is calling me to explore other avenues. These other interests may not bloom into separate career paths. After all, it is important to note that not every hobby needs to be monetized. But at the very least, these curiosities need to be explored. Who knows where they will lead me?
Do you have multiple interests? If so, I'd love to hear what they are and how you manage them in the comments below!
photo: Heidi Sandstrom