True to a mentality of any generation, I think my Mom is wrong about everything.
You can take any area of expertise and it seems my Mom manages to be wrong about it. Let’s take nutrition — she thinks potatoes and bread are healthy. Or managing money — she doesn’t invest, she doesn’t even save up. She is wrong even about how she spends her vacation — she answers work calls when sitting on a beach or hiking. And it’s never a life or death situation — she runs a small company that manufactures clothes.
But there’s one thing she has always been right about, since 25 years ago, and it’s something I agree with wholeheartedly. And who knows how much impact it had on me, so I can forgive that she tries to feed me potatoes every time I visit.
When I was a kid, I had lots of ideas of who I was going to be when grown up. I wanted to be an artist, a scientist, a secret agent, a soldier, a pilot, and probably many more occupations that I don’t remember anymore. And when I said I wanted to be, let’s say, an astronaut, my Mom would say, “that’s fine, but you need a second thing”. It’s not like she said it every time, but she said it often enough that it stuck.
Having a second thing means that you need a second way to earn money, just in case. You should always be able to do at least two things well enough to be able to do them for a living.
This is something that a lot of people don’t think about. And when they lose their job, all of a sudden, they don’t have a way to support themselves.
Those two things for me are: making art and programming. I am not a good programmer, but just good enough to make small games or to get hired if I need to. And I am also not an amazing artist, but I can draw well enough to make designs and sell them on t-shirts.
What are your two things? Do you have a backup thing that you can pick up if your main source of income dries up?