By Kristi Brownlee, Toppel Peer Advisor 

See, the trouble with being multi-passionate is that rather than having a blank canvas, and an open and clear mind your canvas is completely filled with every color in the rainbow, numerous colliding illustrations, creating this beautiful mess. But, it’s still a mess! How can one channel all of their creativities and talents into one profession? The honest answer, if you have fourteen specific passions that you want to pursue as a career, you may have to narrow just a tad, but it is possible!
In trying to figure out what you want to be doing within the next 10 years, you need to grab a new canvas and start fresh. I’m pretty sure you have been thinking a lot about all of the different professions you could see yourself fulfilling. I’m also sure, in the midst of all those thoughts have come some confusion and indecisiveness. Now’s the time to stop thinking, and do! “Clarity comes through engagement, not thought.” So, in order to make good decisions you have to tap into each of those passions, and determine whether it’s something that truly suites you. So, take that dance class. Participate in that marketing internship. Join that health care advocacy club.
By engaging in those activities, you will begin to get a glimpse of just how much effort is required to fulfill that passion for a lifetime. And, you’ll see how those passions begin to narrow themselves, naturally.
Once you’ve limited your list of passions from fourteen to about seven, it’s time to prioritize. Rank your passions by asking yourself this question:  “Are my passions going to allow the life I want to live?” Be realistic with yourself, and make that decision based on what outcomes you want to see in the future. If you want to interact with children, but don’t want to be in a high stress environment, then maybe being a pediatrician is not the best avenue. Through research and networking, you will see what professions exist and what avenues will allow you to explore as many of your passions as possible.
Through this process, another important thing to remember is that failure is imminent, but suffering is optional. Embracing your failures is the quickest way to recuperate from a mistake. Knowing that life is fluid and has twist and turns will open your eyes and mind to what life lies ahead. If one thing doesn’t work out, you have so many other options. As long as happiness and comfort is sought after, and you are not pursuing professions for the wrong reasons, you can never truly make a mistake.
The last thing to recognize is that your life doesn’t have to consist of one career, day in and day out. Purpose can change. Passions can grow. New doors can open. And, different stages of life bring different goals. So, maybe after being a public health professional, you want to branch out and start your own bakery. As crazy as it may sound, people go through changes everyday, but the important thing is to adapt and prepare for what comes next.  Essentially, you can do whatever you want.