Is too many passions and interests, a problem?

Growing up, were you the kind of person who felt of out of place? Someone who couldn’t fit in? A misfit of sorts?

Here’s my deal. I enjoy being on stage and entertaining audiences as an emcee in the live events and entertainment industry. I also enjoy being in a recording studio in front of a microphone doing voice-overs; writing in a cozy corner with a cup of coffee, teaching children one day, learning dance forms of HipHop & Garba on another, studying Olympic level athletes, watch the 100m dash, reading about psychology and physics and philosophy, discussing beautiful places to travel, studying communications and advertising, watching classic movies and get into intellectually engaging conversations with people about absolutely anything under the sun. I’m a people collector. I just have too many interests.

So, what’s the big deal with all this, you ask? Truth be told, I lived a large part of my childhood and adolescent life thinking whether having such divergent areas of interests was abnormal. I felt disoriented. The most popular question asked in our childhood was what did we want to be when we grew up. I wanted to be many things; as I could never strongly associate with anything in particular. I was constantly shunting between activities and being hyperactive. It was difficult to sustain my interests for long periods of time. I wanted to do everything and stay busy all the time. It must’ve been incredibly difficult for my parents, to raise a child like me.

I just never wanted to be boxed in. Also, I hated and continue to hate boredom.

So, somewhere along this journey, I started reading a lot about people and their stories. I started watching inspiring movies and consume any material that helped me feel more accepted. But, when I came across Suhel Seth’s book ‘Get To The Top’, the words in it really struck a chord with me. It made me come to terms with myself. It became my antidote. I felt slightly less out of place.

The following lines hit me the deepest:

“Enrich your mind. Understand the difference between being intelligent and being interesting – and why the latter will ultimately get you further. Appreciate the importance of being multidimensional…Be interested in everything, or in as many things as you can manage…You are not successful if you are bright. You are successful if you are interesting. Usually, your interests make you interesting. For self-preservation alone, if nothing else, develop a bunch of interests. This is what will last. Read as if there is no tomorrow and read everything from the banal to the sublime. There are gems in both.”

When I started to consciously or unconsciously run into more individuals like myself, I realized I may not have all the answers right now, but that’s alright. Embrace who you are. You’re not weird. You’re not at fault. You’re you, and there’s simply no one like you. It may take longer to find the path worth walking on, but that is perfectly okay too. Because life is one big canvas, splash it with your true colours. You’ll eventually find yourself.

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