Too Many Ideas Or Passions? How To Choose
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Episode 2: Too Many Ideas Or Passions? (How To Choose)
Listen To Discover:
- What To Do When You Have Too Many Ideas Or Passions
- How To Decide Which Idea(s) To Pick For Your Career Or Business
- The Proven Decision-Making Tool For Multi-Passionates
- Why There Is Nothing Wrong With You & Why You Have A Gift
- Why Not All Ideas Are Created Equal And Don’t Match Reality
- How To Combine Several Ideas/Passions Into Unique Concepts
- Why Portfolio Careers and Entrepreneurship Are Perfect For You!
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FULL TRANSCRIPT OF EPISODE 2:
Too Many Ideas Or Passions? (How To Choose)
Intro: Welcome to The Career Change Podcast where you’ll discover the frank and practical advice and resources that are already proven to work in the real world when it comes to changing careers, or figuring out what business is right for you when you are a smart, but likely also stuck, overwhelmed or overthinking person in your mid 30s, your 40s to your mid50s.
I’m your host Rikke Hansen, a Career Change Advisor, entrepreneur, and former corporate HR professional with over 15 years experience of helping thousands of people just like you identify or create careers or businesses that are both meaningful and future proof. Welcome home!
Hey, it’s Rikke Hansen here and welcome to Episode 2 of The Career Change Podcast.
This episode is going to be all about what to do when you have too many ideas or too many passions.
How do you figure out which one or which ones are best for you / most suited to you when it comes to changing careers are starting the right business?
I really want to dedicate this particular episode to what I call the Overwhelmer type or the Multi-Passionate type.
Because over the last 15 years, in my career change consultancy, I’ve really noticed a distinct increase in the amount of people coming my way, who feel totally overwhelmed by too many passions or too many ideas and they don’t know what to focus on.
And what therefore often ends up happening, if they don’t get help, is that they end up staying stuck in jobs or careers or businesses that they’ve totally outgrown or that they might even hate for way too long.
And in the process, they might also kill off their creative or entrepreneurial spirit.
Because they don’t seem to be able to pick or choose or commit to, or get traction with any of their many ideas.
If that description sounds familiar to you, welcome home. Keep listening!
Not only will I share one of my best decision making tools with you.
(And by the way, don’t worry if the word “decision” makes you really freak out. This is about getting clarity and focus!).
Not only will I share one of my best decision making tools with you, but I will also really help you appreciate just what a gift ideation actually is.
And how to make it work FOR you.
Rather than letting idea overwhelm be the biggest self sabotage pattern.
A pattern that’s holding you back from creating a career or business that you are absolutely going to love.
Note – Even if you don’t feel like the overwhelmer type or even if you wouldn’t describe yourself as multi-passionate, keep listening!
Because in this episode, you will learn how to decide what to focus on, and which of your ideas to start test driving.
So you can also get out of overwhelm and into action. And who doesn’t need more of that right?!
If you’ve already listened to Episode 1 of The Career Change Podcast, which is all about how this podcast can help you change careers start the right business, then you will remember that we talked about “The Things That Get In The Way!”
By the way – If you haven’t listened to episode 1, it’s required listening. So make sure you listen to it. You can do it after you listening to this episode.
The Things That Get In The Way
– For Overwhelmers & Multi-Passionates!
But we talked about that one of the most important things to be aware of, if you want to change career or figure out what the right business is for you, is to identify those things you might be doing right now that really get in the way of you doing what you really want to do.
And that’s especially true for the overwhelmer of types, because you can have the best frameworks and the best strategies, but if you don’t stop getting in your own way, by learning how to refocus and stop some of your overwhelm or self sabotage patterns, then you won’t get unstuck.
So this is a really important podcast episode that literally has the power to change everything for you.
And I’m not saying that lightly.
But I do have over 15 years experience of advising a lot of overwhelmers and lot of multi- passionates when it comes to figuring out how to change careers or figuring out what the right business is for them.
But I also have a lot of understanding and a real deep compassion for overwhelmers, because it can be so exhausting, and it can be so hard and you can feel so misunderstood.
I want you to know I can help you, you are in good hands.
Right up front – Let me tell you:
There is nothing wrong with you.
And you don’t have to change who you are!
The issue is the NUMBER of ideas.
And the overwhelm that you allow them to create in your head and in your life.
The issue is how you literally allow them to dictate you and distract you.
You think that they are all created equal. That’s important to change.
Because not all ideas are created equal.
They are not all important.
So don’t let that trip you up.
There’s such a big difference between you liking the “idea of something” (of being attracted to that idea of something) VERSUS figuring out what the reality, the concrete reality of what that particular idea would result in, IF you were to turn it into a job or a business.
Ie What would the job description or the day to day life actually end of being like and what kind of life would it result in?
Can you see that not all ideas are created equal and will actually result in very different results and (working) lives?
We need to get you out of that blind idea attraction phase and into the real life feedback and interaction phase as soon as possible.
So it’s not just the ” idea of” but instead the figuring out what the “reality of” turning that idea or passion into a career or business would be like!
Not all ideas are created equal or will give you the same daily work experience – ie some of them wouldn’t be right for you – Probably most of them aren’t, but some of them are the gold nuggets that you just need to identify.
But let’s make sure we are on the same page. So let me define a little bit deeper what an overwhelmer is – The behaviours, the mindset, the risks, the rewards of being one, so you can further self identify.
But am I right?! You’re probably already feeling like I a hypochondiac listening to this introduction.
So hey, you’re in the right place. But most importantly, you’re in good hands, I can help you!
The classic overwhelmer, or multi passionate question that I often get coming into my inbox is this:
“Hey Rikke, I have so many passions and so many ideas!”
“How do I know which one to pick?”
“And whether I’ll even enjoy building a business or career around it?!”
Note – The Career Change Podcast is based on the questions I get from my subscribers.
So if you’re not a subscriber to my newsletter yet, then what are you waiting for?
Go to www.TheCareerChangePodcast.com and sign up for the Newsletter
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I’ll pick the ones the most requested ones and answer them on this podcast.
Now here’s how you know you’re an Overwhelmer or a multi-passionate – It’s literally because your brain often feels like a popcorn machine of ideas, right?
The Popcorn Brain:
A Week In The Life Of An Overwhelmer:
What Your Week Looks Like If You Are An Overwhelmer:
It’s Monday, and you are super fired up about this idea for a wine business – It’s going to involve loads of travel around the world and collaborations and maybe even some augmented reality and you research that and you get really excited – This is the answer to all of your problems…😉
…Then you wake up on Wednesday and you’re like “Ooh, but I also like yoga and CrossFit. And maybe a business combining those two for people who don’t just want the one or the other, just like me, would be a much better idea!”…
…And then by Friday, you’re like, “Ooh, but I also like healthy eating. Maybe I should start with an online course around that!”…
… By Friday night. you’ve pretty much given up, you’re probably down the pub, or watching Netflix or shopping online. And you’ve pretty much given up, you’re so exhausted.
So you might spend the weekend kind of recovering by trawling social media looking at influencer YouTube videos and in the back of your mind you’re thinking, “Who am I anyway to think I can do this?! Especially at my age – I should just be lucky to have a job. It’s crazy to think I can do these things”…
And then on Monday after day at work, or on your commute or in the shower, suddenly the wheels start spinning again, you’re like:
“Ooh, how about consulting for nonprofits?!” and you’re back on the horse again, and it sort of goes from there..The “idea of”.
There’s that loop of starting and stopping and starting and stopping.
Isn’t it just exhausting just listening to that description?!
If you’re exhausted right now, that is why my friend!
By the way – Am I (Rikke) inside your head right now?!
Don’t worry – I can help!
And I know how hard it is when you are an Overwhelmer. But I also know how to get you out of there.
Before we go in to the Decision-Making Tool…
Let’s just briefly talk about some of The Things That Get In The Way.”
Because it’s really important that we identify those because they really keep de-railing overwhelmers.
But most importantly, let me show you what to replace those unhelpful behaviours or tendencies with, so we can get you out of your head and start getting results.
#1 – Stop Beating Yourself Up Or Wish You Were Different.
I promise that you don’t have to (continue to) try to fit into a career or a job or a business that’s not you.
It’s absolutely possible for you to create a career or a business that’s gonna allow you to just be unapologetically yourself.
I see so many multi-passionates who beat themselves up:
“Why am I like this?!”
“Why can I never get my act together?”
Why don’t I trust myself?”
Overwhelmers, creatives and multi-passionates, they often feel misunderstood, alone, or like the odd ones out, like a Jack of all trades.
Or other people don’t really see them as committed types.
They feel like they have nothing to show for it.
And often, they also keep working on someone else’s dreams because they just cannot get their own together.
But this is not about changing yourself or who you are.
I really want to give you permission to just allow yourself to be you.
Stop beating yourself up, stop the self sabotage.
Again, this is not about changing who you are.
This is about changing the value or importance you give to your MANY ideas and how you interact with them.
It’s so important to remember, not all ideas are created equal.
#2 – You Have A Gift – The Gift Of Ideation.
But How You Use That Gift Can Result In It Becoming Either A Gift Or A Liability.
Here’s what I mean by that. I really love working with multi-passionate people because they have an incredible asset potential:
“Ideas are the currency of the new economy.” (James Altucher)
And this is so true. Going forward, if you know how to come up with really amazing ideas and choose the right one, AND turn it into a reality that works for both you and the market – Whether that’s a portfolio career or a business – You are so incredibly placed because that’s the way the world of work is going.
The skill of ideation is going to be just increasing in value. And it also means that being a career changer or being someone with a portfolio career or an entrepreneur, this is the world for you.
You just need to get cracking.
But it needs to become an asset for you, not a liability. So here’s what I mean by that:
This ideation gift, this ability to come up with a lot of ideas, it is a liability if you just keep dabbling and you keep jumping from one idea to the other…
…Because you think all ideas are equally important.
That is a liability because that kind of dabbling all over the place behaviour tends to result in a lot of exhaustion – I often see a lot of overwhelmers with health issues, or anxiety or depression.
And often they end up not knowing how to deal with this overwhelm or all of these passions, all of this creativity, so they end up overeating or overworking or with all kinds of addictions of all kinds.
I bet you know what I mean!
The way to go from Liability to Asset is to be a verb, not a noun.
To actually start behaving like an entrepreneur or a career changer, ie To take solid, consistent action.
Start getting out of your head and interact with the real world and create something you can be proud of, something that’s yours.
Get real life feedback = Go from liability to execution.
Go from that idea state and overwhelm to actually picking something, exploring it and getting real life feedback.
Because if you don’t , you might just end up looking back a life of “could have beens”
…Having spent your life in the “corridor of possibilities.”
Never really opening a door and going inside and creating something of your own.
Note – In case you are new to my work – My style is very frank and honest, but it comes from a big heart.
I am not about vague or fluffy discussions – Your life is too short and you need to get cracking.
I really want this podcast to be a wake up call for you to start creating, to start taking action, to get out of that stuck-ness and away from wallowing in all of those ideas and start making your mark on the world.
The worst thing you can do as a Multi-passionate / Overwhelmer is to stay in indecision.
To stay in idea wallow mode.
And to think that ALL of your ideas and passions are equally right for you.
Give yourself the gift of making a decision!
Here’s why – You can always change your mind down the line
– ONCE you have actual, real life feedback – But NOT before that!
Remember – You can do so many different things before you keel over – But not if you don’t get going NOW!
So let’s talk about the biggest issue of all. And this is something I’ve consistently noticed over the last 15 years where I’ve worked one on one with over 700 private clients and thousands more via my online courses, talks and videos.
Here’s what I noticed again and again with you multi-passionates / overwhelmers:
The biggest sidetracking /self sabotaging tendency is that you are very seduced by THE IDEA OF what turning that passion or that idea into a business career could be like…
…Instead of first finding out and actually NAILING DOWN WHAT THE TRUE DAY TO DAY REALITY of that idea would look like, feel like and be like IF you were to turn it into a job or career or business or service offering.
And that is a problem. Like I said, not all ideas are created equal, or will give you the same day to day experience or lifestyle or money.
So we’ve got to move you from that infatuation, that idea blindness, to actually finding out what the REALITY would really be like.
Ideas vs Reality – How To Go From Vague Idea To Concrete Reality…
…So you can make up your mind!
I think the reason why so many people are afraid of deciding is because they’re missing this vital step of going from vague idea to concrete reality, so they can actually know what the decision they’re making is actually about.
If you are really fed up with your current career or profession or with the business you’re in right now.
Then it can be so easy to latch onto and to glorify the ideas that you have, the passions that you have.
Instead of actually figuring out what the reality of turning them into a job or career business would be like.
The tool that I’ll share with you will take care of this problem.
So often I see people being so in love with the idea of what their passion could be like that they don’t do any groundwork whatsoever to look into whether their idea of something actually matches the reality.
Introducing The Tool:
The Job Description Test / Idea Clarity Test!
I like the world “Job Description Test” – Because whether you’re an entrepreneur or you have a job, we all have job description, we all have a list of things that we need to do every day.
The Job Description Test will show you how to go from vague idea to concrete reality.
This is a tool I’ve developed over the last 15 years and that I keep refining. So let me take you through it.
The Job Description Test is really about finding out what you’ll actually end up doing every day in your business or in your job IF you were to turn that idea/passion into a reality!
Hence why I call it The Job Description Test (or the Idea Clarity Test).
I want you to write out in detail what your day to day, everyday life would be like if you were to turn that passion, or that idea, into a business or a job or a career (ie go from vague idea to concrete reality).
Now I know you’re probably like:
“Rikke, I’ve got 500 freaking ideas 10 passions, what do I pick?”
Here’s my advice: Just pick one for now because you’ll quickly see some front runners.
And then you can always run other ones through this test. Just pick one to get started.
And here’s a tip for picking one. Just pick the one you would most regret not doing or the one that won’t go away.
You can always run others through this test once you’ve learned the technique. Don’t fret!
Here’s what I’ve seen again and again – Most people – When it really comes down to it – And once you know how to identify the red threads and the themes.
Then most people really only have two or three key ideas/passions when it comes down to it – The ones that really matter.
Action: Write out in detail what your everyday would look like, if you were to turn that passion or idea into a business or job or portfolio career.
Who would you be exposed to on a daily basis?
Who are the people that will make up your life on a daily basis?
What kind of clients will you be working with?
How would they treat you?
What would you like or don’t like about them?
What about colleagues? (if you have colleagues)
What experiences would you have?
What products would you ship?
What projects would you work on?
What kind of company cultures would you be exposed to?
What skills would you use?
Would it be sales skills, advisory skills, consulting skills, writing skills, empathy skills, programming skills?
What are the skills you would be using the MOST?
And most importantly, what would your day to day activities actually look like?
What are the most concrete things that you will be doing AGAIN AND AGAIN over time on an average day or throughout the week?
So for example, in my business, I spend my days preparing for my one to one calls, advising people and helping them figure out how much of a change they need, and then helping them identify or design that ideal career or business.
Or I design my online courses to help people do the same.
I record and I spend a lot of time preparing these podcasts, recording them. I design frameworks, I do interviews, media, stuff like that.
What would the things be that if you were to turn this passion idea into business or job that YOU would be doing?
Write that out in detail.
Struggling with input or vocabulary?
The reality is SO important here. This is not about how you imagine it might be.
This is about looking at job ads, looking at interviews with entrepreneurs (“day in the life of”) etc.
If you are struggling with concrete input – LinkedIn is a great place to start.
Identify people who do those kinds of jobs or identify companies and look at what those people are saying they are doing inside of those companies.
There are also so many entrepreneurial magazines and podcasts – You can easily find out interviews with some of your role models, some of the people who are doing these things.
What do they say they are doing on an EVERYDAY basis?
Do everything you can to get vocabulary and insights into the real world.
Now once you’ve done that really good groundwork, then take a step back and take a really good honest look at what you’ve written.
And then ask yourself, is that the day to day life, ie the job description, that I would like or not?
Additionally – Who you are and what you do throughout your work day is also going to impact who you are in the rest of you life.
What kind of life outside of work will this result in?
Would I have any time left?
Would I be able to spend time with my family?
How much money would I make and what would that enable me to do or not do?
Does it match my values?
And the skills that I want to use all day?
Does your “idea of” really match the reality?
If you do The Job Description Test properly
– You will very quickly get to a Yes (clear) or a NO (vague/meeeh)
Which is what you would always want to aim for.
And that’s how you can quickly see whether you’ve got some really good raw material to work with.
Whether that passion/idea is actually worth spending more time on.
And then you can potentially put a few more ideas or passions through The Job Description Test filter, and very, very quickly will you end up with some very exciting frontrunners.
You will also free up so much space in your head and in your energy levels!
You might find that you have one or two frontrunners and there’s a struggle between which one to pick.
Something I’ve noticed – Having done this Test again and again with so many clients is that those frontrunners often have a lot of things in common – They might just be called different things.
But there’s always a theme or a red thread.
So you can combine those one or two or three passions or ideas into really unique business concept, an umbrella career or a portfolio career!
My recommendation for Overwhelmers/Multi-passionates:
If you are the overwhelmer type it’s often a really bad idea to just rely on one job or one employer.
You’re much better off having a portfolio career where you might be offering several things, but there is a theme that combines all of those things (to avoid confusion).
Or start a business that will allow you to expand over time (umbrella-style).
Hence why if you try to fit into just one job, it’s probably a lot of trouble for you.
Whereas you are probably a lot better off being an entrepreneur or someone with a portfolio career.
This is why this exercise is so important because it can help you figure that out!
You can use The Job Description test both for knowing what to do and what not to do.
Once you realize what the reality would be of a lot of your ideas/passions, or at least get a better idea of it, you will see how so many of those ideas really don’t match the reality. That is why it’s so powerful.
If your idea or your passion doesn’t pass that Test, then don’t give it the space and the energy, free it up my friend.
That’s also how you’re going to be a lot more focused and clear about the only few ideas or passions that truly matter.
Often after I’ve done The Job Description Test with my private clients, they tell me “I feel like I came to you with this massive, heavy suitcase full of ideas and passions – After we did The Job Description Test I got such clarity. It was like walking out with a clutch bag (tiny bag) instead – Such a relief knowing the few things to focus on!”
Give yourself the gift of making that decision. Of getting that clarity.
I got the idea for The Job Description Test very early on when I started my business back in 2005, because I saw these people coming my way.
And I have a variety of clients, but definitely the overwhelmer / multi-passionates are probably about 45%. of them.
I remember going to a networking event many years ago when I first started my company and that’s where the idea for this Test started.
This lady came over to me – She was a really smart computer programmer who worked for quite a famous company.
And when she found out that I was a career change advisor and entrepreneur she was like “Don’t tell anyone, but I would really love to transition out of my computer programming career and start my own business as a massage therapist, you know alternative health stuff!”
Her job as a computer programmer entailed working with really exciting programs and clients, but she really wanted to transition into becoming massage therapist.
That was what she was passionate about because her job was so busy and so stressful.
And she found that whenever she went to see this massage therapist, she just felt so much better in her body and her mind and everything – She therefore wanted to share that feelings with others.
She thought the solution to all of her job worries was to become a massage therapist…
(Note – Can you relate to this kind of story?!)
I was like – Okay, let’s just break this down. I can see why you might be attracted and latching onto this thing, but let’s see if it will be right for you.
So I gave her sort of a quick lowdown on what The Job Description Test is about.
She really wanted lots of intellectual stimuli, a lot of intellectually challenging problems in a career. She also liked a lot of variety and being out and about.
I was like, “But if you were to become a full time massage therapist, what would your day to day look like?”
I can literally still hear her: “Hmmm…Dim room…And yeah, probably not much of an intellectual challenge.
I’ll be stuck in a room all day. My clients will be too zonked out from actually having a conversation and yeah, I’m not sure….
The intellectual stimuli absence is really a big issue and I want to be out and about doing a variety of things, it probably would be quite repetitive…”
Now, this is an extreme example, but do you see what I’m getting at here?
Be careful not to latch onto something being the saving grace for your problems IF it’s not the reality that you actually wanted the other side of it, okay?!
Your biggest enemy right now is likely the fact that you are so attracted to the idea of what that passion would be like if you turn it into a business or career – That you forgot to do the reality check.
Make sure you do The Job Description Test – Get some frontrunners you can go on and test drive.
Finding or combining the right ideas/passions is what I do for a lot of my one to one clients.
They bring all of these many passions and many ideas. We do the reality check and The Job Description Test.
What I always look for then, with the ideas you have left is this:
What’s the red thread?
What are the commonalities?
What’s the theme?
Could they be called something else (concept)?
It’s key to see the wood for the trees.
It so often is down to those few frontrunners.
And then combining them into really unique careers or a business offering…
….For which there is also need in the world, so you’ll make money with it.
Like literally last week, I was on a webinar. And this woman, she’s said:
“Yeah, it’s all very well with all of this, but I have way too many ideas:
I want to do photography, I want to do design, I want to do e-commerce, I want to do digital marketing, I wanna have my own business. I also love learning!?”
I responded – “You know what? You actually have a theme.”
“Your theme is VISUAL or visual communications. And it would be your own business.” (she was in a job)
Pick one thing to start with and then you can always add on – Umbrella-style.
But let’s start with something, get it out there in the real world, get the feedback, start making money, then you can add a second, then a third idea/passion.
She was like “Wow – I never actually saw that before!”
It’s all about the umbrella concept or career path, entrepreneurship, and the whole idea of portfolio careers is ideal for this – But only if you focus on execution as much as you do on ideation!
Or you hire the right people to collaborate with to help you with the finishing line.
Finding these themes and developing umbrella concepts for your career or business is a lot of what I do for my private 1:1 clients.
You can learn more about working with me HERE.
Did you enjoy this episode?
I hope you’re already feeling a lot more understood.
But now you also have a really concrete exercise that you can go away and do to get out of that overwhelm and that frustration.
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This way it will get in front of a lot more multi-passionates – We are all in this together in this new world of work!
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This podcast is based on the questions I get from my subscribers.
The questions they’re struggling with, their fears, their issues.
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Remember: You have a gift, the gift of ideation.
But make sure it’s an asset, not a liability, so get out of your head and start interacting with your ideas in the real life.
Decide and then start creating that career or business that’s going to be uniquely suited to you and allow you to be yourself and to actually energize you.
Focus actively on the things that you DO have the power to do to make the rest of your life the best years of your work life.
Let’s do this together.
I’ll see you over at www.TheCareerChangePodcast.com