I was recently in a situation that you’re probably familiar with. I’d just introduced someone to the concept of multipotentiality for the first time and she was looking at me in disbelief.
The questions started coming: “So how do you…?”, “What happens when…?”, “Why do you..?” So I began trying to help her make sense of what I was saying.
And then she asked me a question I hadn’t been asked before: “How do you know when it’s time to start a new interest?”
I tried to formulate a response, but nothing came out. Maybe you can help me work out how it is we know when it’s time to start something new?
A battle between the usual suspects
Knowing it’s time to quit one interest and start another seems to be to do with a push/pull balance. You get to a point when you start to push away from something that’s become painful or boring in some sense, and you feel a pull towards a fresh start.
1) Boredom versus excitement
All new interests generate a high level of excitement. They’re much like the start of a new year in that they make the future feel full of potential. Old interests feel as though they’ve been sucked dry of all of this excitement.
Multipotentialites crave the new, the novel, and the unexplored, so they often feel a pull towards interests that will take them somewhere they haven’t been before.
2) Resistance versus ease
We all go through periods of procrastination and putting things off. Sometimes this behavior is simply due to a lack of momentum or motivation, but at other times it is a clear indicator that all is not well.
Humans tend to strive for the path of least resistance, so when the going gets tough, we often feel like quitting. Thinking back, have you ever dropped an interest when it became too challenging or because it took you outside of your comfort zone? I know I have.
I often find it difficult to work out whether the resistance I’m feeling is the type that I need to push through (a challenging learning curve), or whether it’s actually a sign that the end of my interest is in sight. Either way, resistance often suggests a change might be coming.
3) Self-restraint versus cravings
As a multipotentialite, you’ve probably got a mental list of possible new interests. So it’s probably fair to assume that the temptation of new interests is never that far away.
So why is it that we don’t drop old interests and pick up new ones on a daily or weekly basis? Why do we not give into our cravings more easily?
There are so many different influences pushing and pulling us that it’s a wonder we’re ever able to make a decision at all!
I’m really interested to hear your take on what it is that signals that it’s time to start a new interest. Let’s get a discussion going below.
How do you know when the time is right to start a new interest? Is it because your existing interests run their course, the magnetic pull of a shiny new interest, or something else entirely?