I have a slate of talks coming up to college students. The main reason I'll be speaking to them is to talk about starting and running a business. But whenever I'm speaking to anyone under the age of 20, I also want to tell them one thing:
You can be anything you want to be. Twice.
A lot of career talk and advice is centered on finding one thing you're passionate about and trying to turn it into a job. Such advice is small-minded at best and fatalistic at worst. One thing? You want me to make a decision at some point in my life to narrow my focus down to one thing?
Some people do find that one thing, of course. That's why Warren Buffet keeps buying stock. His pal Bill Gates, on the other hand, no longer makes software. Instead, he tries to cure disease.
Brett Favre can't let go of his one thing. But turn on ESPN and you'll find countless people talking about Brett Favre who are on to their second or third things.
It's important to remember that the thing we're doing right now doesn't have to be the thing we're doing forever. We all know that working for the same company for 40 years is a relic of an idea, but even working for ourselves for 40 years might be a bad idea, too.
I'm glad I didn't have to decide while in 6th grade who my best friends would be for the rest of my life. If I did, I'd be a totally different person right now.
Our passions and careers are the same way. Do something you love now. Maybe you find out you keep loving it forever. Or maybe you'll know when it's no longer a passion and you can discover what then dominates your heart.
The key isn't to find your one thing. It's to find how to find your one thing.
Photo by: .tess