Sponsored: Realize your Potential thru passion

Lainey Posted by Lainey at December 6, 2010 07:19:00 December 6, 2010 07:19:00

Over the last few weeks we’ve been discussing the American Express Canada “Potentialist” – a type of person who is rethinking what life is all about and who is finding ways to enrich her/his life through meaningful experiences. For some it’s about the challenge of exploring new places, and for others like Natalie Portman it's about connecting with the world around them by getting behind a cause. Click here to catch up on all our previous “Potentialist” features.

This week’s celebrity potentialist feature is about pursuing a passion or hobby.

You know Joseph Gordon-Levitt, the actor. He has been an actor for most of his life. But instead of falling into that child actor rut, being typecast, finding no adult route, Joe very methodically crafted an adult career. Obviously he’s a strategic dude. But he’s also interesting, because he’s interested in other things, in other forms of entertainment and creativity that haven’t forced him into a box.

Did you know he stopped acting for two years to study at Columbia? He was into literature and French Poetry. French Poetry??!!! I attended a French school for many, many years. I wish I paid more attention.
And did you know Joe speaks French fluently? Hot.

Joe is a Potentialist. Because despite seeming to have it all, he recognised there was more to know, more to do, and more to explore.

He is also involved in the theatre. He produced a Broadway show last year called Slava’s Snowshoe and was nominated for a Tony Award.

And then there’s his work with hitRECord.org, a collaborative production company, encouraging artists and partnership in creative development, leveraging his own connections to promote projects that otherwise might not have a chance. He has travelled extensively in support of hitRECord.org, speaking to students and entrepreneurs about the business model, and runs the business out of his home studio. And, best of all, doesn’t seem to be precious or pretentious about it.

In case you haven’t noticed, he also has a thriving film career now – great in Inception, just wrapped on Premium Rush, several other projects on the go.

So what about you – are you a ‘Potentialist’ who, like Joseph Gordon-Levitt has taken your love for a hobby to the next level? Tell us your story. Email me at [email protected] with AMEX Potentialist as the title. We read them all and we’ll let you know if we select it for next week’s final post!

Once again many of you took the time to write about your experiences based on our post from last week about Natalie Portman’s philanthropy. This week we chose Jewelle. Here are snippets of her story.


…My mom a (cough cough) 60 year old something - works full time in social services. Not just any type of social services; rather, the city's largest homeless shelter for men. Heart strings tug for children in need, animals, but the man sleeping on the subway grate is always hurried past with an averted gaze. My mother has been there for almost 16 years now and it must tell you something when you're downtown together and she stops and says hi to a 6'5 panhandler who affectionately calls her 'mom'..

…. When I was finishing up my last two years of high school, my mother looked around the small town we were living in and realized there wasn't anything there for a single woman of her age once I went away to school. A voracious reader, she had to leave high school in grade ten and with some nudging, she earned her high school diploma. Good for her, right? It gets even better...

Click here to catch Jewelle’s entire piece.

Visit the American Express Realize the Potential page to see how the company is encouraging Canadians to realize their full potential. Or to learn more about Amex Canada, check out their Facebook page.

Here’s Joseph Gordon-Levitt on the set of Premium Rush in August.

Photos from Wenn.com

*celebrity names/images are used for editorial purposes only and have no association with the products featured in this advertorial

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