Barbara Sher, author of I Could Do Anything… writes, “Scanners want to taste everything. They love to learn about the structure of a flower, and they love to learn about the theory of music. And the adventures of travel. And the tangle of politics. To scanners, the universe is a treasure house full of a million works of art, and life is hardly long enough to see them all.” I think I might have a little scanner in me and maybe you do, too.
When it comes to jobs and something I am going to spend 40+ hours a week doing, I can’t imagine being tied down. I know some jobs have variety: “I do something different every day,” some people tell me. I want to say, “Um, no you don’t. You are a [insert job here], you generally [job verb] every day.” But maybe it’s all in how you look at it.
I used to enjoy journalism because I’d often have to write about something different every day. Most times I had to research something before going on an interview to make sure I knew what I was talking about. I enjoyed learning about many different things from many different people.
Ever since graduating college, I’ve come to realize that I love learning (ironic, I know). I got this love from my mother, I think, who has four college degrees. Regardless of where it came from, I love dabbling in many different things. I spent a month or so around election time reading up on politics, I learned CPR and became instructor certified, I coached basketball, I began teaching myself to play the piano, I called a publishing company about a book idea, and I learned how to use Quickbooks (a book-keeping service). And this was all in the past 10 months.
It’s nothing new, really. I’ve always been a dabbler. I tried gymnastics (laugh, go ahead), girl scouts, Awana, show chorus, band, and every sport in the book. I always wished there was more time in the year to do everything I wanted to do. I wish sleeping wasn’t necessary. In the current book I’m reading, I Could Do Anything…, the author challenges the reader to “have it all.” After saying that you can have it all she makes a pretty convincing argument.
The activity in this chapter titled, “I Want Too Many Things; I’m All Over the Map,” asks the reader to list what you’d be if you could be ten (or more) people. In just one minute I came up with twelve and have since added three more. After looking over your list, you should start thinking greedily, she says, not just in an “either-or” mind set. Make a life plan and realize that you probably have 50+ years to do all of these things. This life plan can include things you can do on the weekend, once in a while, and maybe something you can just do in the summer.
Here was my list:
- A basketball player
- A high school English teacher
- A book keeper
- A college English professor
- A kindergarten teacher
- A magazine writer
- A waitress
- A college basketball coach
- A high school basketball coach
- A travel blogger
- An ESPN anchor
- A librarian
- A stay at home mom
- A stand-up comedian
- A singer
It comes back to just doing it. And for me, it always comes back to basketball. Basketball is the one thing I feel like a “master” in. I’m not saying I’m the best basketball player to ever live but I get it. Basketball completely makes sense to me, that’s why I made a (short) career of it. What’s hard to remember is that this feeling of “getting it” came from years and years of practice; daily drills and skill work until I was good enough to get my school paid for—and even make a little money doing it. In the beginning, when I entered my first PAL league, I had no idea what would become of it (and trust me, anyone else watching me play had no idea either).
That’s how I feel now, I guess; unsure of where something will take me. I think growing up makes you think too much, it makes you worry. Back when I was seven and just starting out in basketball I was fearless.
We should probably all channel that little, bold, daring kid that we have inside. Go ahead, make a list of everything you want to do…. Then maybe we can begin to find some courage to make it happen.