I was lucky to discover my talents and gifts at a young age.
I was unlucky to have been severely bullied at school, and raised by an extremally critical mother, making it difficult to believe in myself.
I spent ages 14-28 trying out different jobs. I had 5 careers before the age of 30: performance artist, model, fitness/yoga teacher, tasker, and content creator. All of these paths used at least one of my talents. None paid very well, because I didn't know how to market myself, manage my energy, budget or network very well.
My self doubt and lack of business skills lead me to continually feel like an imposture. I was so self critical despite lots of positive feedback about my work/performances. Looking back I have so much pride that I did a lot already and I genuinely had a lot of fun and adventure despite living in my car for part of it.
Had I learned to accept positive feedback and lean into my talents I think it would not have taken me so long to figure out that YES, one can do science and art in the same career. In my first Masters attempt in Buddhist Psychotherapy, I realized that I was close but not quite in the right field, that I need to pursue a degree and career that would could combine all my skills and talent into one profession, Art/expressive arts therapist.
I am lucky to know the awesome Michelle Chapple. Once Psychology Professor now musician and super hero coach. She lives what she teaches. Her acronym below is helpful if you are unsure what your natural gifts/talents are. She calls them super powers.
E asy — What comes naturally to you that you may take for granted?
M oment — What puts you in the moment, time disappears when you do it?
P assion — What are you curious about, enlivened by?
O pinion — What do people ask you for advice about?
W eird — What makes you unique / stand out from others?
E arly — What were you drawn to as a child or young adult?
R ewarding — What would you do for free because it’s so intrinsically rewarding?
Once you know what your talents are, then what's next?
Develop them! Sharpen those talents into skills. You can take on projects at work that seem exciting, start a hobby or do what I did, look at what you have done so far and see where is the best place to go next.
You might have to take out a loan or temporarily work to save up if you are planning to do a full career shift. If doing something as just hobby that is great too. In fact spending time on doing what you love even if it's only part time will improve your wellbeing, overall productivity, and can often lead into something more full time if you want it to.
If you are wanting to work with someone to help you live a holistic life fueled by your gifts, send me a dm. Or head over to Michelle's website (no she is not asking me to write about her, I just think she is that awesome.)