Backslash occupationWe are in the midst of a new era of self-identification. Lately our introductions and resumes are lengthening in the effort to include multiple trades and ambitions. This practice is a deliberate diversion from the traditional singular occupation format, aiming to satisfy a comprehensive narrative of what we do as it more intimately relates to who we are rather than simply how much we make.

Our primary stream of income no longer suffices as a meaningful description of who we are. We are gravitating towards a more well-rounded, all encompassing sense of identity, achieving an all-inclusive synopsis of variable levels of any measurable degree of our work, interests, hobbies, goals and expertise.

Where did this gravitation towards the multi-nomer identity come from?

This generation seems to have a discomfort with the pigeonholed concept of occupational identity from days past. Previously, regardless of your creative hobbies or passionate pastimes, your income-producing profession was most often the unitary clarification of choice when referring to common life questions.

This new introduction composition is an intriguing diversion from this traditional format, as a robust identification adds a more thorough narrative of who we are. It is perhaps a rebellion against the normative and narrow method of tethering self-identity to income. 

Our identity was exclusively linked to measurable income. Now we simply we have identified a need for our self description to mirror, not only our jobs, but also our more intimate and idiosyncratic goals and pastimes, thus incorporating a sense of or desire for fulfillment. 

This is an enterprising generation, with a trending inclination towards entrepreneurship and autonomous ambitions that we deem worthy of acknowledgment. We are  are magnetized towards the following of our dreams and this is where we find an inadequacy of 9-5’s as the beginning and end of how we identify who we are. 

We are no longer simply artists or designers or accountants. We group our passionate endeavors and talents and hobbies and occupations into one large title. A graphic designer is now a graphic designer/foodie/manatee activist/tennis enthusiast. 


Curating an occupational wardrobe

The new backslash occupation harmonizes our many trades, composed of a series of accommodating and adaptable thin lines between our now intermingled fields of expertise, subtly separating each point of us that we deem worth mentioning.

Much like a well-equipped wardrobe, carefully curated and collected over time, perfectly sized and styled according to personal taste, the backslash occupation offers the same flexibility and versatility. Rather searching for one fit or one niche, we can simply add them to an ever-evolving occupational wardrobe. the backslash occupation keeps our options open and fresh, like an outfit ready for any occasion. Like our clothing, our occupational wardrobe reflects our style, our experiences, who we are, who we have been and who we hope to be.

There is a new sense of flexibility that our backslashes offer, an occupation, income based or interest based, that fits different stages of the human experience. 

Like our clothing, our goals and ambitions and occupations often complement each other, applying a cohesive balance between these cooperative entities of ourselves.


How to avoid multi-occupational fatigue

In most cases this is a healthy and productive description of ourselves that outlines a more comprehensive analysis of our self-portrayal. However this gravitation towards becoming jacks and jills-of-all-trades comes with a juggling act, making it hard to focus on or accomplish one thing, which in turn keeps us from focusing on or accomplishing anything at all.

In the same way that we can walk into our closets full of clothes and feel as if there is nothing to wear, the overwhelm of too many choices can afflict our occupational wardrobe as well.

It becomes difficult to manage all of these divisions of who we are. We have overwhelming occupational  wardrobes full of jobs and extra-curriculars that in turn  leave us with so much to choose from and even more to do that we end up with the familiar blank stare that there is “nothing to wear.”

Here are few helpful tips to help overcome multi-occupational fatigue:

  • Prioritize: The first priority when occupational juggling is to prioritize your affairs. Prioritizing helps streamline your activities in an efficient and effective hierarchy, in which you can determine when and how much attention and action each occupation gets.
  • Practice: Once you have prioritized your occupational intentions, it is imperative that we do not end up cutting corners in our journey to expertise within our fields. It is, by all means, difficult to master multiple trades, which is why it is important to hone these interests so that they are measurable inclusions on our resumes.
  • Patiently Persist: Technology has spoiled us with immediacy. With a simple google search, we all feel like qualified Wikipedia experts, which can make the perfection of a craft tiresome when it doesn’t come as quickly as we have come to expect of results. In the inevitable moments of exasperated impatience, always remember why you began and then use that foundation as the motivation to keep going.
  • Plan: Organizing your backslash occupations into a cohesive and reasonable schedule will help keep you from becoming overwhelmed by the burden of all of your efforts. 
  • Produce: Action is the necessary culmination of any goal or field. Doing is what turns an enthusiast into an expert.

 

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