Why you do NOT need to know your purpose

Alex Mathers
4 min readDec 2, 2023

Many times I have worried that I’m not doing work that answers a ‘purpose.’

To do work that is ‘my calling.’

To create things that will change the world for the better.

To do work that is ‘meaningful,’ and ‘valiant,’ and ‘noble.’

That only this kind of work can fulfill us.

The ‘gurus’ tell us this often.

They are both right…and wrong.

I think a lot of us can be stalled by overthinking this stuff. We aren’t able to commit to a new project, or we have doubts about the work we spend time on.

If it’s not changing the world for the better, or morally significant, we doubt ourselves, and we may never proceed with a project at all.

I have often asked myself:

‘Is what I’m doing my true calling?’

‘Do I know my purpose and am I following it?’

‘Am I wrong for wanting to do this for the money?’

No, I’m really not. I’ve never known what my purpose is. And I’ve wound myself up in thinking that I’m supposed to know what it is.