We used to live in a society where a craftsman's hat signified what he did for a living - baker, welder, banker, butcher. So when someone was described as wearing "a lot of hats", they meant it literally. Nowadays, wearing a lot of hats is what we do for a living.

I recently interviewed Brian Malouf, who is a songwriter, drummer, musician, producer, engineer, mixer and executive. Oh, and father, husband, friend, mentor, advocate and leader. That’s a lot of hats. 

I have many parents who come to me with the question of how to guide their child who wants to wear one of the hats I just mentioned.  I advise them to keep their children in school as long as possible. That way, they learn as many skills as possible related to their field.  

If a child doesn’t want to go to an already established institution, he or she can put a program together themselves. Voice lessons, dance lessons, acting classes, literature classes, debate classes etc. offered “a la carte" are great alternatives to a formal program that can help students hone in their skills.  Whether a student chooses a formal or self-made program, it is extremely important to allow room for self discovery.

Learning is one of the best preventative medicines you can take to have a healthy career.

After you graduate, you are expected to get a job, support yourself, and live your life. Usually this happens with no further education. This is one reason why many people get stuck in the same old routine for a long time.

Learning something new gives you psychological real estate to expand your own consciousness.  You become more aware and see new opportunities. You also become more valuable when you wear many hats, and I guarantee you will be less bored when you can offer more than one skill.

When Brian Malouf is working with an artist, he may be hired for one job but always brings the others along for the ride, just in case! This makes him more valuable, and gives him new, fresh challenges in any job.

Can you wear more than one hat?