Narrowing down is the hardest thing

two yellow lines on asphalt
Photo: Andrew Martin Pixabay

When you’re a person who likes to do more than one thing in their life, narrowing them down is the hardest thing. Sometimes I wish I could narrow my interests, but I’m not that kind of person. I could have achieved so much more if I had only concentrated on a few things. It feels like time is running out, and I don’t have time to do anything. I need to have time to be lazy too. I thought I wanted to be one thing, but my interests got somewhere else. That’s how my life has been. So many choices but so little time. Maybe one of the reasons why I have had so many problems with decisions is that I think the grass is greener on the other side. Perhaps I’ve been too unrealistic with what I’ve wanted to do in my life. It isn’t a lack of support from other people. I subconsciously don’t dare to do things because I’m too scared of failing. Or maybe I’m just too lazy. It can also be like that because I failed many times, so I don’t want to go through it again. I know when you fall, you get up again, but still, I don’t get anything done.

I could have narrowed things down, but I like to be versatile. I never wanted to have an ordinary job, so it was difficult to know what to study. When I finally do, that’s not enough either. The reality is that some people are narrow-minded, even if they might think that they aren’t. Their opinion is that you need to have specific education and a certain amount of job experience to be good enough to be in their little group known as ‘their business’. You need to be a student or have an amount of experience to even get an internship. Neither way, you can’t gain experience if you’re not allowed to practice your skills in a job. I’ve started to believe I’m not meant to be a graphic designer. At Helsinki Design School, where I studied some years ago, I didn’t get the encouragement I expected. I got the assumption that I’m only average compared to the others. One time I got feedback on a poster I made about my city from one of the teachers. I should have done some research, and she wouldn’t have put it on her wall. I know my town, so there is no need for it. I just think she didn’t understand my style. One opinion doesn’t make me believe I’m bad at graphic design. Drawing isn’t my strong point anyway. It makes you think twice, though. It’s the same with photography. I doubt my skills in that too. Seeing other people’s work doesn’t help me either. It’s a little depressing. It makes me think I’m not good enough at anything. It feels like I’m an outcast and don’t belong to this creative business club. Maybe I have wasted my time and life thinking I have what it takes to be a graphic designer. Or any other job where design is concerned.

It’s a positive thing to have knowledge of many things instead of only having one narrow one. Both have a good and a bad side. If you know about many things, it’s also more challenging to choose between them. If you have a narrowed skill, it’s easier to improve that. Either way, both are needed. If there is something you can’t do, there is always someone who can. I only wish someone could have some use for my skills in the workplace, but I guess there isn’t. Too bad for them.