Ep #246: Embracing Your Multi-Passionate Self

It is the perfect time of year for dreaming. There’s already something magical about the holidays, so why not park your biases, your reservations, and any pull you have to be practical or reasonable and instead let yourself imagine what might be possible in the coming year (or years!).

Maybe you used to dream a lot as a child but life got the best of you, convincing you that dreaming was not for serious, responsible people. Maybe you’ve long felt like dreaming was for people other than you. I went through this same thing, so today on the podcast I talk about how untrue that is and why you should be embracing your dreams.

Join me for a look at embracing your multi-passionate self and dreaming about what will come next for you. I talk about making sure you have the space and time to be a multi-passionate creative and how to figure out what that looks like for you so that you can truly chase your dreams.

What You'll Learn From This Episode

  • The definition of manifesting generators and why you might be one.
  • Why there shouldn’t be shame around creativity.
  • The importance of finding someone to help with your systems so you can be creative.
  • How I learned that creativity and perfectionism are enemies.
  • Why having multiple goals and tasks works for me—and how it can work for you.

Featured On The Show

Full Episode Transcript

You are listening to The Design You Podcast with Tobi Fairley, episode number 246.

Welcome to The Design You Podcast. A show where interior designers and creatives learn to say no to busy and say yes to more health, wealth and joy, here’s your host, Tobi Fairley.

Okay friends, here’s what I want to talk to you about today. No beating around the bush, no intro, no hey, how are you. I want to talk about embracing your multi-passionate dreams. What the heck does that mean? Well, first of all let me say, I think this is the perfect time of year to spend dreaming. There’s already something magical about the holidays so why not park all your biases, all your reservations, and park that pull you have to be practical, to be reasonable. And really let yourself imagine what is possible in the coming year or coming couple of years.

This is the time to really, really dream. And so many people don’t dream anymore. You used to when you were a child but something about life kind of got the best of you. It told you that dreaming is for not serious people, not responsible people. Dreaming is for children, or teenagers, or someone else besides you. And I spent years, and I mean years of my life trying to deny a lot of my ideas, and wishes, and desires, and dreams because the world tells you that you need to be responsible and serious.

And if you’re going to be successful you need to pick one thing at a time and you need to work on that. To focus on growing one business or having one goal. And to be perfectly clear, I’ve perpetuated this idea of one goal at a time on podcasts, on lives, talking about it on social because I tried it. But year after year when I was trying this one key goal at a time thing, I felt like my wishes, and my dreams, and my ideas, and really my lifeblood was being squashed, and squished, and limited and like I was putting this like governor on myself and really on my personal power and on my purpose.

Now, let me say that for some of you, having one goal at a time is the exact right approach for you. And that’s great. This is, you know, I don’t believe there’s one way to do things and I think we’re all different. And you absolutely know better than anyone else what works for you and what doesn’t work for you. And I want you to believe it, and to trust it, and to lean into it if your gut, or your heart, or your inner knowing says, “Yeah, I’m a one thing time gal, that’s how I roll, that’s how I thrive. That’s for me”, trust it.

But for those of you that are like me, because I spent years trying to fit into this mold, believing the mentors, and the teachers, and the books, and the experts that were telling me that this was the way to succeed. Seriously, isn’t it wild how when some research or idea sort of comes to light or becomes trendy that it gets completely beaten down our throats on social media, and in self-help. And how many times I have helped perpetuate these ideas because ‘someone I admire’, or someone that I see thriving or being successful says that, “This is how things should be for everyone.”

So I believed them but it’s not my experience that it was right for me. So it’s really interesting that over the last decade or so we have seen so much information about single tasking versus multitasking and that multitasking is really just task switching. And that when people switch back and forth between things they lose a lot of productivity. And I am sure there is plenty of data to support this concept, this theory, this truth. But here is what I want to tell you.

This truth, this idea is only true for some people but not for all of us. So here’s what I mean when I say I want you to consider embracing your multi-passionate self because there are some of us and if you know anything about human design you may know the idea of being a manifesting generator which is my type. And if it’s yours then you’re likely one of the people that I’m talking about and talking to. You’re designed for multitasking. But here’s the catch, you’re only designed for multitasking on the things that light you up.

Manifesting generators or sometimes they’re called man gens, have been called multi-passionate geniuses. Now, I’m not here to say I’m a genius although I do think I’m really smart. But this concept is so important. Manifesting generators are fast paced and don’t like to follow a step-by-step process but we have an ability to have a lot of energy and I mean a lot of energy to focus on those things that we’re really excited about, that we’re really passionate about.

And according to human design expert, Eden Carpenter, she says, “Manifesting generators have the sustainable energy to get things done and to speak things into existence very quickly. They have energy that wants to get things started and energy that wants to get things done so they can move on to the next thing.” Heck yes. “Manifesting generators are here to multitask, to be multi-passionate, to move very, very quickly. They will bounce around following what lights them up and get really good at many things in their lifetimes.

The things that light them up will change.” I can attest to that. “And they are designed to follow that joy and follow that pleasure.” Hallelujah. And that’s what I was not following when I was trying to force myself into this one thing at a time concept. She also says, “They are here to redefine what is realistic.” Yes. “They move quickly and skip steps. They are here to build and create with a much more loose structure that allows for more freedom and variety than other types, including generators.”

Okay, so if you don’t know what a manifesting generator is, or human design is, or any of the stuff I’ve just talked about, but that resonates with you, start to take a look at the concept of human design and maybe figure out what type you are. This has been really liberating for me. But what I want you to also notice is that Eden says, “Manifesting generators will bounce around a lot and get good at many things in their lifetimes.” That is me but guess what? Here’s the problem.

The world and especially American culture would have us believe that people who bounce around a lot are flakes and that we don’t get good at anything but rather just dabble in a lot of things. And I’m calling bullshit on that. But here’s what I do know to be true for me. The world is not designed for creatives. So in 2014, Fast Company said that the world, the future will be run by creatives because the linear rote approach to problem solving is becoming less and less relevant.

What we find we need more of is a playful, creative, forward thinking approach to business and technology. More than any other time in human history the most effective work is being done by right brainers and out of the box thinkers. Hallelujah. But that was 2014. From a 2020 article on Medium by someone named Jamie Jackson and I really like what she says here. This is what she says.

She says, “As a creative person you’ll always feel at odds with society because society is set up for people to be cogs in machines, not to drift around being creative. Solicitors, accountants, people commuting to work in stuffy suits are seen as successful. The artist living on a shoestring is seen as a dreamer at best and a liability at worst.” She goes on to say this, “When I said earlier”, meaning her, when she said earlier in this particular article, “That creativity is celebrated, what I should have said was the final proven to be successful product of creativity is celebrate.”

And you all, Jamie is so right. I could not agree more when it comes to society. Society doesn’t care about anything before you become a success as Jackson says, “Society doesn’t respect the artist’s creative journey.” So no one cares if you ‘re tolling away, writing a book. No one cares if you’re J.K. Rowling and you’re a struggling author. When she was first published nobody cared. They didn’t care when she got turned down 13, or 15, or 17, or how many times the famous story says she got turned down. They only cared once she was a multimillionaire Harry Potter sensation.

And this is the way the world works for creatives but it’s also why there’s shame around creativity. Society doesn’t value your interest, or your process, or your progress. It values your results when they look like success. That’s why so many of us have parents who were like, “Be a doctor, or a lawyer, or an accountant. Don’t be an artist. Don’t even be an interior designer.” Now, when you have great success, they’re like, “Yeah, she’s amazing.”

But in the meantime it’s, “They’re not going to be able to pay the bills.” And for a lot of people in a lot of creative fields that’s true. And that’s probably in a lot of ways because of the way we’re not supported by society. So guess what else society doesn’t value or even understand? The way creatives thrive because it’s not linear. We don’t follow systems. We don’t follow rules, at least not naturally, only when we’ve been socialized to. Innovation and out of the box thinking is the polar opposite of rule following. And yes, I’m a big believer in systems.

Now, don’t quote me to say, “Tobi says creatives don’t have to have systems.” I think we have to have systems for running companies. I use a lot of systems for running my company. The world needs systems in many situations. But hear me when I say this, I am not the person in my company that is thriving by adhering to those systems. I have people in my company that love the linear approach and the structure to get the things done. They are the systems glue in my company, but not me.

I stay in my own zone of genius, passionately multitasking, generating ideas, following my gut, allowing myself to indulge in starting new things over, and over, and over again. And that is why in this episode it’s so important that we as creatives, we as multi-passionate idea generations.
It’s why I want you to hear me that it’s so important that we have to be willing to completely ignore what society is telling us about systems, and rule following, and linear thinking. And other things like being responsible, being disciplined, being consistent, practicing single tasking, finishing one thing before you start the next and having one goal at a time. Because not a single one of these things is aligned for me and maybe not for you. And trust me, I’ve tried them all multiple times. I’ve beaten myself over the head with this idea of be disciplined and be consistent.

And mostly I hated every minute of that thinking and trying to put myself on that schedule, on those systems in that box. Now, you heard me say, I have people that run the systems in our company, they’re really important. They’re not me. So nothing about this list of being disciplined, being consistent, single tasking, having one goal at a time helped me thrive. And when I look at some of the moments I felt most frustrated and most reined in, like someone put this governor or constraint on me and heck it was me doing it because the experts said that’s how you thrive.

Those are moments that yeah, I probably got a lot done but I didn’t feel most alive. I didn’t feel like I was thriving. I would even say those were the moments I felt most burned out. I would often describe those periods as I’m in a funk, or I’m unmotivated, or I’m uninspired, or I just don’t know what’s wrong with me. But I absolutely love my work when I’m doing a lot of things, and building a lot of things, and trying a lot of things, and making a lot of offers. And I get really bored and I feel really bored when I try to fit the single tasking one goal at a time mold.

So for those of you who I told about one goal at a time in the past, if it worked for you, if it made you more successful, hooray, keep doing it. For those of you that it made you feel like something was wrong with you then I’m truly sorry. I led you wrong, I got it wrong for you and to be honest, I got it wrong for me too. But that’s what’s okay about being willing to be creative because it’s an iterative process. So I tried that, I tested it, I got the feedback from myself and I’m like, “Yeah, this is not for me.”

And so I’m willing to come here and tell you that wasn’t right for me. So if it’s not right for you either I want you to be willing to test what is right for you. Now, a lot of you know I hit 50 in this calendar year, so soon to be 51 and something shifted for me in a major way. But as we speak, I’m currently not single tasking at all. I’m currently designing four different big ideas, four, one, two, three, four. I’m not single tasking. Two of them are totally new companies literally. I’m making new LLCs for them. One is a new offering within my existing company, consulting company.

And one is a new offer really for my existing design company I would say. And when I say offer, it’s a lot more than an offer. They both feel like businesses within businesses. .They’re big ideas. But all four of these big ideas, that have a lot of work for each of them and many details to flesh out that I’m currently fleshing out. And all four will require a lot of support by team members but they’re all four happening at once in tandem. And they really support each other. I like to connect dots, they make sense with each other.

But I really thrive when I’m creating more than one thing at a time. And of course there’s a handful of other things that I’m not even including in these four that I’m working on too. Things that my company, my team and I are working on to expand and grow existing parts of our business including existing interior design offers and product design with Woodbridge. And coaching services, and new courses, and all the things. So yes, I’m working on new stuff for all four of these big ideas while also building other things.

So again, two new companies, completely new LLCs, names, concepts, all the stuff and all the other things I already have going on. But designing these four big things while also running my existing company with other existing services is freaking lighting me up right now. It’s not wearing me down. It’s lighting me up. I feel like I’m plugged into the motherboard of creativity. I feel like I’m enjoying my work and I am more excited than I’ve been in a long time and truly I’m more creative than I’ve been in a long time.

Some of these ideas could be multimillion dollar companies. And I feel so alive. And part of that joy is because I’ve decided, maybe it’s the 50 year old thing, I don’t know. But I’ve decided to completely remove any constraints on me that I’ve heard from other people about single tasking or any of this stuff. And I’ve decided to lean into my full creative manifesting generator multitasking, multi-passionate self maybe for the first time ever, giving myself full permission to be all of these things.

And I’m saying yes to all of the ideas and I’m letting myself explore them all, and hone them all, and take steps to launch all of them. And I’m so curious to see what results I’ll get. It’s really opening up some stuff in the money mindset area for me too and money blocks. Because when I do one thing at a time it feels kind of scary of I get – I don’t know, kind of blocked, I guess, about money. And maybe it’s because I’m thinking will this one thing pay the bills? Will this one thing support all of the people that work with me and the things I’ve built and my family?

And when I’m letting myself be multi-passionate, and multi-purpose, and doing multiple things it seems so easy for me to tap into the ways that each one of these things play into this flow of money through me and through the world. So it’s exciting how that lights stuff up. And each one of these things will take a lot of money to build and launch. And it doesn’t make me nervous at all to think about where that money’s coming from. Go figure.

So I’m letting myself explore everything and I’m so curious to see what results I will get. Because in the past when I was doing a lot of things there were moments I hit burnout, twice actually. But let me tell you the difference because I’ve really been exploring this with one of my coaches, my tapping coach specifically.

And what I’ve come to realize is that it was not the creativity that was creating the burnout. It’s when I was also trying to do all the things that required the linear thinking, the systems, the constraint, the beliefs around being responsible that had me forcing myself to do a lot of things that I didn’t like, that felt like a chore, that didn’t light me up. Instead of staying in my creative mode more often than not or even all the time. So this time I’m doing things differently and as always I’m willing to be the guinea pig for us and see what I learn.

And when I completely embrace my creativity and simultaneously say no to all the things that I hate or that feel too linear or structured, so in other words have other people that are more suited for those do those things. Will it still create burnout if I’m multi-passionate, multitasking? I suspect that it won’t because I’ve been embracing this now for a few months and I still feel so alive and so creative. But I’m going to keep you posted because I could be wrong. I’ve been wrong before. I’ve talked about it in this episode.

But what my coach and I, my tapping coach and I keep uncovering and coming back to is that the things that are under the list of ‘Tobi being responsible’ as opposed to the list of things that are under ‘Tobi being creative’, create completely different responses in me both physically and emotionally. And the more time I spend in the Tobi being being creatively list, the more money we make as a company. So imagine that. The world tells me be responsible Tobi, and you will make money and be successful. So be responsible and get an accounting degree, Tobi.

Be responsible and do one thing at a time, Tobi. But my experiment and experience, and my awareness is telling me the opposite. Be creative, Tobi, and that will make you more money and bring you more success. I am not wired to be both creative and what I’m calling ‘responsible’. Now, let me clarify a bit. I’m not being irresponsible. I’m a very responsible human being and citizen. I’m still caring for myself, I’m still caring for my family, everyone’s alive, they’re being fed. I’m paying my bills.

But it looks and feels really different when I’m caring for us from my creative, multi-passionate version of me than when I’m caring for us from the more rigid, consistent, rule following, ‘responsible’ version of me. So I’m not using responsible as literally as I’m using it in air quotes or in quotes on paper to say when I fall into what my brain considers that responsible version of Tobi. Those are the things that feel out of alignment and it doesn’t mean I’m not going to brush my teeth, you all. It just means that I’m going to let myself show up in the way that is naturally me.

And a lot of the linear structured perfectionist gurus would say I’m doing it wrong. So here’s something else to note. Creativity and perfectionism are enemies. So caring for myself and my people in a perfectionist linear ‘responsible’ way is not the only way to care for us and it’s also not aligned for me with my nature. So that’s the thing that burns me out. That goes back to all these episodes that I’ve talked to you about where I say, I learned don’t be lazy and I’ve got get up and clean the house before I can relax. And everything has to be tidy and perfect.

And sometimes that feels good to me. And in the moments that it does then I follow that lead. And sometimes it doesn’t feel good to me. So I did a lot of organizing and straightening this weekend and it felt great but guess what? That’s because for the last two months I let my house be a train wreck which is, well, you all wouldn’t think a train wreck necessarily but compared to the normal me, what I’ve learned to be over the years pretty much a train wreck. Stuff piled on cabinets and countertops, things not put away, beds not made, all the things.

And you just heard me say I have created four gigantic ideas. And I haven’t felt this creative or alive in a long time. So that shows me that that rule following that the house must be clean and things must be perfect is not necessarily and maybe not at all aligned with my nature. But there are times that I get a bunch of creative stuff done and I’m like, “Okay, now it’s bothering me. Let’s get this thing cleaned up. Let’s get this house straightened up. Let’s get this stuff put away, Let’s hit the reset button and let’s start fresh.”

And that’s what I’m following, and not only in this season of my life but in this season of the year, the magical holiday season, I want you to think about what you could do to lean in to this dreaming, and this looseness, and this not perfectionism. During this magical holiday season will you honor yourself by no longer making you fit the mold of what others say is the path to success? Can you just be thankful to yourself for allowing you to indulge in multiple ideas, and concepts, and offers if that is what lights you up?

I love clearing my schedule the week after Christmas which is the holiday I celebrate and the week between Christmas and New Year’s. And just dreaming, and indulging, and sleeping late, and journaling, and creating, and painting, and designing, and all the things. And you all, that used to only happen during Christmas or Christmas break for me. Now it’s how I live pretty much all the time. But can you let yourself indulge in these things, and dream, and tap into your desires? Are you willing to put the structure and the systems that you have in place on autopilot because they’re for you?

And then let you step away from them and let your ideas, and concepts, and projects that need to be on structure or on autopilot be completed by the people who love systems, and structures, and the linear path while you stay in that genius zone, if it is your genius zone, of doing all the creative things and doing them in your own way? Will you let that happen? Notice what’s going to come up. Notice the little voice in your head. Notice your mom’s voice or someone else’s voice in your head, your dad’s, somebody’s that said, “You’ve got to have this stuff a certain way.”

And be willing to park, to suspend those biases and see what happens. I think this is a novel new way to think about the New Year for me as a manifesting generator, as a creative, as someone who’s multi-passionate. Instead of a more rigid, structured, goal setting approach for 23, what if you just let you gigantic dreams come forward and you commit to making them happen by staying in your creative zone almost all the time next year? What would it look like if 80% of your time in 2023 was spent in the creative mode, what would that look like?

What kind of results would that create for you? For me, apparently big ones. So we’ll see because this is my goal. My goal is to not do goal setting. My goal is to stay in creative mode 80% of the time in 2023 and beyond. And I’m going to keep you posted but join me if you want to.

And speaking of joining me, if you want to join a group of high achieving creatives that are doing this very stuff then you want to think about joining me in my Millionaire Mentorship program. So we cap this at 25. As I’m recording this I can’t remember but maybe six or seven spots left for 2023. We have some people that start at the beginning of the year and then some that started midyear. So we roll people in a couple times a year. And we have about, like I said, I think six or seven spots left to get us full for 2023 to start the year.

And you all, this group, it’s a bunch of rock stars. And here’s what I mean by that. We’ve always had amazing people in our programs, all of our programs but there are moments when I look back, even when I used to do masterminds in person which by the way we’re going back to an in person experience twice a year with this mastermind, we’re going to meet together. The rest of the time it’s all virtual, which is amazing. We meet weekly.

But this particular group right now, there is something special in their chemistry, in their drive, in their motivation, in their creativity. We’ve got people building entirely new brands. We’ve got two people I think who have hit recently hit $2 million. We’ve got people at 1.6. We’ve got two people talking to TV shows, doing casting agent stuff. We’ve got people developing apps and scalable products that you’ve never heard of that are so cool, that could be global products. We’ve got, I mean you have no idea.

We’ve got people really leaning into TikTok, which there’s so much opportunity there. It is so fun to watch. So I’m building these four things that I’m talking about to you on this episode while leading this mastermind group of around 20 ish people that are doing incredible things, creating courses and programs, opening retail stores.

And you all have even heard me say I’m not a big fan of retail stores. But if that’s what your dream is, we’ve got somebody in the group. She’s coming back for year number two that just opened a retail store and we were having so much fun helping her really design a brand and a business that supports her in person shop. And a little hint to you, one of the things I’m working on, one of those four things is an online shop. So if you want to be creative and surround yourself with these people here’s what you need to know.

It’s our Millionaire Mentorship group. It’s really for people who have made at least 200,000 or 300,000 dollars in revenue before. As you just heard me say, we’ve got people in the two million, one and a half million group. Not everybody’s there but at least the people who aren’t there yet are on their way to a $1 million or more and they’re thinking in big ways. So they’ve made multiple hundred thousands in revenues before. They’ve mostly got team members and some have several team members or at least have had team members or worked with a team of virtual people.

So it’s not a beginner group by any means but it is not, you don’t have to be at a $1 million. We’ve got people in there that have made 200,000 and 300,000 but they’re doing big major things around their visibility and being seen. And you’ve heard me talk about the visibility path which is so phenomenal. So we’re helping these people get seen, become thought leaders. Some of them want to speak on stages. Others are writing articles for industry magazines.

One of our people is a doctor turned designer and she’s writing articles for medical magazines about the importance of creativity. Just really cool, cool stuff happening in there. And if you’re interested DM me on Instagram. Say, “Hey, Tobi, tell me more about Millionaire Mentorship. I might want one of those spots.” Now, it’s not inexpensive you all, it averages out to be about 1500 to 1600 a month depending on if you pay a payment plan, or if you pay in full. But we don’t offer monthly payments.

We do have a scholarship though for Black, Indigenous and people of color. This is our first year to have a scholarship and I think we’ve got two scholarship spots left. So if you identify as Black, Indigenous or a person of color, that includes the Asian Americans, Pacific Islanders, you absolutely can apply for one of those two scholarship spots.

Otherwise, if you are ready, you’re at that level that you would, it’s a no brainer for you to invest $1500 on average a month in this group to uplevel your business, to stay in creativity 80% of the time next year, to launch ideas, or apps, or TV shows. Or get published in a big way, or create an online store, or a physical store, or completely reimagine your brand. All of these big time things that these people are doing that I do all the time that I’ve recently done again with my brand, then this is your group.

High achieving, it is so inspiring, you all. Every single week I go in there and they blow my socks off. We blow each other’s socks off. We do hot seats. People come in and you can do a hot seat and present your idea to the group. So if you were going to do something, like we have people come and say, “Here’s my brand video and here’s what I’m trying to accomplish. I want feedback on it.” “Here’s my latest project in the Bahamas that I just did for a celebrity. Can you take a look at this.” Here’s what I want to do with it as far as transitioning my brand to vacation homes or luxury vacation homes.”

That’s the kind of stuff we’re doing in there, week in and week out. It’s not daily, it’s weekly. It is so good. There are some people in there who are like, “No, I’m still building my systems, Tobi, because I want to be creative all the time. I want to stay in 80% creativity. And I want to get to a $1 million. Can you help me build my systems without me being the one doing it? How do I think about that? Where am I getting in my own way?” This is the stuff we’re doing, you all.

And it has inspired in me this very conversation that we’re having today of what is possible when you spend all your time or almost all your time either in creative zone or getting your business ready for you to spend your time in creative zone. It is so fun. Okay, so that’s what I have for you today. DM me if you want to know more about Millionaire Mentorship but at the very, very least think about whether you have been trying to push yourself, a square peg into a round hole, that round hole that says, discipline, and consistency, and one goal at a time.

When you are a multi-passionate genius, and it’s time that you lean into your full creative multi-purpose, multi-passionate self, I’m here for you. If you just want to keep this conversation going, if you have a question I’m on Instagram always, DM me @tobifairley. Okay friends, see you next week. Bye for now.

Thank you so much for listening to The Design You Podcast, and if you are ready to dig deep and do the important work we talk about here on the podcast of transforming your mindset and creating a scalable online business model, there has never been a more important time than right now. So, join me and the incredible creative entrepreneurs in my Design You coaching program today. You can get all the details at TobiFairley.com.

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Hi! I'm Tobi

I help creative women (and a few really progressive dudes) design profit-generating, soul-fulfilling businesses that let them own their schedule, upgrade their life and feel more alive than ever!

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