My Dilemma – Jack of All Trades, Master of None

Professionally it suites me well, and may not be true. I am a specialist in internet marketing. And I’m happy that I have a diverse background in it (retention, acquisition, B2B, B2C, e-mail, merchandising, testing, social media, PPC, SEO, SEM)—ok let me stop bragging.

My dilemma is personally when it comes to hobbies, interests, and the like. It can get frustrating. It has nothing to with my ability to become a master at anything (cough, cough), but rather my interest wanes before committing to anything fully. It’s not ADD, I don’t think as I am able to concentrate on a given task at a time and complete it.

But it goes like this:

  • I am interested in cars, but not enough to really get under the hood.
  • I am interested in carpentry, but not enough to get good at it or make anything nice.
  • I am interested in computers, but not enough to build my own computer.
  • I am interested in a million other things, but not enough to [fill in the blank].

It’s not isolated on doing things either.

  • I like the Simpsons, but not enough to recite lines from episodes.
  • I like Blink182 (and other a million other bands), but I can’t name you one song. And I’ll never go to a concert. And I don’t know the lyrics. All I know is when I hear them, I think to myself, “this sounds good.”
  • I like baseball, but I can’t rattle off stats like an almanac.
  • I like video games, but I think I finished one or two, probably with help from cheat codes. Actually I do think I was awesome at the original EA NHL Hockey on Sega Genesis. But that was a long time ago. I miss the days of 3 buttons.

I can go on and on and on. It’s kind of like I have such diverse interests that there isn’t enough time in the world to devote to them all. And if I do devote a lot of time to one, that means I take away from others. It’s like my brainpower is wrapped around a million little things instead of a few big ones.

This all sounds fine probably, but I kind of feel like I’m missing an identity. Whenever I bring up an interest in a conversation, there is always someone who’s uber-indulged in it—whom which I can’t carry on a meaningful conversation about that subject.

Person:  “Oh you like the Simpsons. Hey remember that Simpon’s episode, when…”

Me: “No.”
Person (to self): “This Matt guy isn’t a real Simpson’s fan.”

Maybe I shouldn’t use the word dilemma. This doesn’t really case any emotional strife. But I do think about it from time to time.

Also, sometimes I’m not without the focus to devote to something, rather I’m put off by the fanatics. Take for example biking. I love to ride my bike. But I’m NOT going to deck myself out in a spandex uniform or get pedal cleats and the whole nine yards. Can’t a guy just hop on his bike and casually ride? I sure can, yes, but all bike events (like Bike NY which I did a few times) are ridden with weekend warrior types who turn me off. Speaking of Bike NY, I have a funny story about being in the front of the pack along with the Saturn race team (on my 15 year old hybrid bike, wearing a pair of shorts and a t-shirt and sneakers). I’ll write up another post about that soon.