It pays to be different.
Embrace your varied interests.
Embrace your varied skills.
Embrace your varied experiences.
Embrace your uniqueness.
Wrap all of these things up together and you’ve got someone who can make a unique impact on their community, economy and world at large.
EXAMPLE 1: A PHOTOGRAPHER INTERESTED IN FASHION & TECHNOLOGY
Let’s take the example of a lifestyle photographer.
She earns most of her living taking photos at events and portraits of people. However, her personal interests involve fashion and technology.
On the side, she starts reviewing products on YouTube and Instagram about her favourite tech gadgets - from cell phones that have the best picture quality (from the perspective of a photographer) to her favourite headphones that she uses when she works. From there, she starts reviewing her favourite outfits that she wears when she’s on set at various locations. Using her skills as a photographer and videographer, she films beautiful reviews. Soon, she gets the attention of various PR companies who ask her if she’s interested in reviewing some of their products. Soon, she generates a comfortable side hustle being a trusted influencer that originally stemmed from her main profession as a photographer.
EXAMPLE 2: A LAWYER INTERESTED IN BLOCKCHAIN AND CRYPTOCURRENCY
Let’s use another example that hits close to home: a lawyer interested in blockchain.
During the day she practices corporate real estate, which involves overseeing the purchases of property by small businesses in her community. However, on the side, she’s developing skills in her interest - coding and blockchain. She realizes that smart contracts can eventually eliminate most of her business in a matter of 5 - 10 years. She starts working with blockchain engineers to start creating smart contracts that will facilitate simple real estate transactions, which would effectively cut out the middle-men. In other words, she starts working on replacing herself.
LET 2018 BE A YEAR OF PROACTIVITY, NOT REACTIVITY
The worst thing you can do is just wait for things to happen to you. Now, more than ever, is the time to capitalize on your unique skillsets. Show how you are the glue that connects seemingly different industries together.
Instead of just being any ol’ lifestyle photographer, become an influencer. Utilize your experience as a storyteller to tell your own story, not just someone else’s.
Instead of just being any ol’ real estate lawyer, become an entrepreneur. Work with other like-minded entrepreneurs and data engineers who will inevitably make your job obsolete in a decade.
Stop thinking that you’re varied interests are just ‘quirky’ things about yourself that don’t relate to your work or career. Make them your career! All it takes is a little ingenuity to string them all together to make something profitable. Don’t follow the trajectories of everyone else’s boring path; blaze your own trail.
In 2018, make a promise to yourself and to the world, that you will showcase your individuality and use it to your advantage to not only build a career that you’re proud of, but one that will make a unique impact on the world.