How To Be Everything: a Guide for Those Who (Still) Don’t Know What They Want To Be When They Grow Up

Some people have one passion.  They know what they want to be at an early age and pursue it with efficiency and enthusiasm.  Others may take a little longer to find their passion but when they do they are locked in.  And it provides them with a good living.  Others of us have a hard time limiting ourselves to one or even two interests. We are accused, by ourselves as well as others, of being lazy, unfocused, unproductive, and not-good-enough.  But according to Wapnick we are multipotentialites – and that is a good thing. We have figured out that all knowledge is useful, all experience is valuable and they can combine with kaleidoscopic beauty and fulfillment.

Wapnick addresses how to make the multipotentialite thing work. There are a lot of ways of moving from one job, or career, or interest to another.  There are also a lot of pitfalls to manage.  Some jobs come with opportunities for variety and growth.  Some skills are of universal value if you know how to adapt them to new situations.  We can supplement our need for expansion with hobbies and community involvement.  “This book is not about career planning. It’s about life design.”

This book was written for me. I started college as an art major and switched to biology.  I worked in medical research for ten years while maintaining a hobby in dress design.  I switched to bookkeeping and ran a nonprofit publishing company while I did a graduate degree in classical Greek.  What on earth do you do with a background like that?  You become a librarian.

Review by Janet T., Reference Librarian

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