Scanners, Renaissance People, Polymaths, Multipotentialites! There Is Hope: Polymath Is The New Normal

Hello there, Scanners and Renaissance People, Jacks of all Trades, you may still be struggling with your many fields of interests. But there is hope: Polymath is the new normal, writes author Michael Simmons. I think this is good news.


Permission to be a Scanner

Maybe you’ve already learned about your right to Refuse to Choose?

In her groundbreaking book, Barbara Sher suggests that we „use all of our interests, passions, and hobbies to create life and career of our dreams„. Not one or two of them, but all of them.

If you haven’t read it already, check out her book Refuse to Choose. It’s full of useful information on organizing your particular multifacetedness.

(And maybe you want to visit Barbara Sher’s facebook group Scanners and Renaissance Souls, where people like us are hanging around.)

Now, let’s assume you’re aware of your „Scanner identity“ and you’ve learned a little about a life with many interests already. Does that solve all your Scanner problems?


Still struggling with your many interests?

Yes, you do know there are other people like you out there and that being multi-faceted is not a mistake. You’ve found ways to promote your own talents, and you’ve made progress.

But if you’re like me, sometimes you are still struggling with how to put everything into practice. It’s just so much you can’t see how it can be done!

And maybe sometimes, you still feel like a fraud.

Wouldn’t things be so much easier if only you were a specialist?! Aren’t there just too many different colors in your bouquet of flowers?


Atypical combinations of skills may build your future sucess

If you feel like this, this article by Michael Simmons may be for you: People Who Have “Too Many Interests” Are More Likely To Be Successful According To Research.

The author states that having too many interests means having the ability of „building atypical combinations of skills and knowledge across fields and then integrating them to create breakthrough ideas“.


Doesn’t that sound so much better? But does polymath mean, exactly? How many skills do you combine then?

„I define a modern polymath is someone who becomes competent in at least three diverse domains and integrates them into a top 1-percent skill set.“


Well, why not grow up to be a Modern Polymath?

Just take a second to think about your own skills set. Drop thinking „weird“ and think „atypical combination“ instead. Which ones come to mind?

These may be your way to future success.

Nice way to put it, right?


Polymath advantages

Even better, Michael Simmons states 7 Polymath Advantages. To learn more, read Michael Simmons‘ article.

These advantages – when put into practice – may prove themselves in the future, as the author says: „Being a polymath will be the new normal, and polymaths who synthesize diverse skills to create breakthrough innovations and solve complex problems will have a huge impact.“


High potential?

One thing I’m asking myself: Can I consider myself a „polymath“? It sounds very much like „high potential“. Like those very few people with very high skills who are going to survive in a tough business world.

But am I able to be high potential in a tough business world? Do I even want that?

Most Scanners I personally know don’t have that tough-business-success-tendency at all!

On the contrary, they tend to be value-driven. They love to follow their inclinations whatever it may cost them. Even if they disapprove of themselves for it.

So, maybe we should – as we always do – grab the part that suits us best.



Let yourself be encouraged to be everything you can be, to build your personal odd skill set and give yourself permission to draw your own unusual conclusions.

Be the best You you can be, with your exact specifications.

With all of your colors in your unique bouquet of flowers.


What do you think about it? Do you see yourself as a polymath? Scanner? Multipotentialite?

What does it mean to you personally?

Let me know in the comments below!


Here is the next English article: There is no final draft – Keep revising your life, says Felicia Ricci


New to this blog?

Maybe you want to read my Start Here article.


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2 Replies to “Scanners, Renaissance People, Polymaths, Multipotentialites! There Is Hope: Polymath Is The New Normal”

    1. Thank you for your encouraging comment, Karin!

      I also think that the world is going to need the ability of out-of-the-box-thinkers for solving its complex problems… We have to do our personal bit because you never know which steps will contribute to a solution. And I think we can do this by following our interests and drives.

      Thanks for being around!

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