We’ve been told all our lives to study well, attend a nice college, and work our way up the corporate ladder in that secure 9 to 5 job.
But for many of us this hasn’t been a stress-free journey. In fact, choosing a major in college often gave us a headache because we didn’t know what exactly to pick. We felt choosing one subject meant sacrificing our opportunities to learn another. To top it off we’ve most likely experienced advice fatigue, because too many people were giving us advice about which direction we should go and it only heightened our confusion.
This isn’t because we are naturally unsure of ourselves, but because we were or are trying too hard to fit into a “one size fits all” mold. We need to instead honor our identities as Renaissance Souls — multifaceted beings meant to juggle multiple hobbies and interests at the same time.
I’m 26 today and I ended up graduating college four years ago with a double major in Finance and Supply Chain Management with a minor in African, Middle Eastern South Asian Languages and Literatures. Fast forward to today, I now work a 9 to 5 job, as a financial journalist, am building my life coaching business and have written an anthology of poems.
Who am I? I’m a Renaissance Soul. I
It took me a while but I’m going to absolve myself of the confusion and just accept that our journey is always evolving.
The same way we accept our gender and sexuality is the way we need to accept this personality. Only then we might accept that our self-exploration journey won’t ever be over, and find a sense of inner peace.
So how do we know if we’re Renaissance Souls?
If we need to make sure we fit into this mold of a Renaissance Soul here are three key check points we need to pass.
Number one: We have heard the following annoying questions from our non-Renaissance soul peers:
- “Why are you so unsure of yourself?”
- “You already changed your major, don’t do it again.”
- “You’re not going to make money, what are you doing?”
- “Why can’t you just get your life together and pick one thing?”
Trust me people have no shame asking these pointed questions. The truth is instead of looking inward to see what’s wrong with us, we should frame these as external limitations. Those who ask the questions simply aren’t aware of a Renaissance Soul identity and probably won’t ever understand us. It’s not us, it’s them.
This is why it’s important we understand ourselves and let go of a need for external validation. As Renaissance Souls, we’re always evolving and we’re meant to experience life at an exhilarating pace compared to our peers. So let’s own it and embrace what we have going on.
Number Two: To-do lists don’t work for us
I’ve seen a plethora of self-help gurus and coaches say create a to-do list and your life will magically fall into place.
The reality is that isn’t true for all of us.
As Renaissance Souls we will get tasks done, but will rarely follow a to-do list. Following a strict checklist may feel like our freedom is dwindling.
We always instead focus our attention on where our energy flows. For instance, some days as a self-published author I may want to promote by book, but then other days I want to go full force and expand my life coaching business.
There’s no right answer or path I should take. We’re most likely to succeed where we have the most enthusiasm.
So if you aren’t eating breakfast, completing a yoga session, journaling, walking your dog and finish reading a book all by 6 a.m. don’t sweat it. Neither am I, but it doesn’t mean we’re failures.
It is important to remain consistent with a couple items. But don’t get me wrong, if we don’t feel aligned with what all the self help trends everyone else is a part of.
Be free and do what makes you happy.
Number three: You adapt to challenges quickly
Our resume of odd experiences as Renaissance Souls make us one of the most adaptable candidates on the job market. Is your resume too a compilation of random, odd-job experiences?
When I was in college, my first internship was a business development one where I was cold calling doctors to expand someone’s dental amalgam filtration business. During the few years following college I would contribute articles to a South Asian American magazine called Brown Girl Magazine.
Today, I’m a journalist who interviews sources in a minute’s notice. But in all honesty, who would’ve thought these people skills from that dental internship would have transferred over to the fast-paced environment of a newsroom? Also who would have thought those Brown Girl Magazine articles would help me get into one of the best journalism schools in the country.
The point is we’ll never know the value of our diverse experiences in the moment, since we’ll be trying hard to fit ourselves in a box.
Instead, we should look at our resume as not a collection of useless experiences, but a collection of jewels we can repurpose for future opportunities.
Our creativity after all is another gem that makes us a Renaissance Soul, which I’ll get into at a later time.
So in all, before we compare ourselves to our friends and family who have a resume of linear experiences, it’s important to reframe our diversity as a strength.
The next time someone asks us why we’re so “scatter-brained”, we need to tell them, “hey, I’m a Renaissance Soul, you wouldn’t get it.”