Despite all of our intricacies and inherent idiosyncrasies, mankind is in fact quite similar in many respects. While the thoughts, feelings and desires that motivate us vary quite dramatically from one individual to the next; the fundamental desires that create these compulsions are a common thread that binds us. We are motivated primarily by survival. We require food and shelter to live. So we seek out jobs and career paths that allow us to earn an income and satisfy these basic needs. Once we have done this, we look for like-minded individuals to create a community with. We make friends and have families in the interest of self-preservation and safety.
Yet while our subconscious mind skews our motives towards basic needs like survival, our consciousness urges us to take risks, create dreams, and envision beautiful futures. Oftentimes this sees us trying to extend beyond our reach in an attempt to rise above our own circumstance and perceived limitations. After all; there is no reward without risk, and there is no hope of success without the motivation of potential failure.
It’s these conscious desires to be more than we are that make us differently the same. It is our pride and our ambition that spurs us towards greatness and encourages us to keep pushing towards our dreams.
On a personal level it is pride and ambition that keeps me striving towards my goal of creating a career out of writing. Because being a writer isn’t as easy as many people would like to believe. People seem to have this misconstrued idea that as a writer you spend your days sipping coffee in cafes while creating whimsical prose and intellectually rich web content. But the truth is that we writers are often isolated; hidden away from the world in dank rooms as we rummage through endless pages of research or journey through the catacombs of our minds in search of that elusive muse called creativity.
It’s a tough gig. Especially when you take into account the bouts of writers block or the fact that you are effectively juggling two full time jobs until you can find a way to earn a decent living from your works. So why do it? Why continuously aspire to create when it quite literally means you are isolating yourself from the world you aim to inspire?
Because every man and woman needs a purpose. Everyone one of us needs something to be proud of, and an ambition to work towards.
For me, that purpose is obviously going to be my writing. I couldn’t imagine ever wanting to devote my life to anything but creating beautiful literature. I have spent the last decade pouring out my heart and soul for my readers, and through doing so have managed to liberate myself from the fear and anxiety that threatened to consume me. On a whole my journey with writing has been a resounding success. But it has certainly come with it’s trials and tribulations. At times it has seemed that the dream I chase and the pleasure it brings has also caused me great pain.
See, I’m a very lonely person. I have a beautiful partner, wonderful friends and a loving family, meaning that in many ways I am more fortunate than most. But my intellectual endeavors and my endless desire to change the world through literature often leave me in a place of ideological and moral solitude. I strive to write with purpose and refuse to cheapen my own product in search for fame and fortune. Unfortunately in the modern age of entertainment that means that I am competing with a world of overexposure and subpar content thrown together haphazardly through shitty formulas designed to capture public interest. And while I will confidently say that I am better than the bullshit I’m forced to compete against, at times it leaves me feeling as though I am failing.
I once read a quote by graphic novel writer Alan Moore where he supposed that there were two types of writers. There are those who craft a formula for success and continuously reproduce their own works over and over, bastardising their product as a means of making money. Or there are those who continuously push themselves to become better through exploring with different genres and ideas. Some of those experimental concepts and pieces of work would find an audience; most would fail. But the writer would becomes increasingly versatile is driven by passion and purpose and is therefore ultimately more fulfilled than the one chasing money.
The idea has stuck with me ever since I first stumbled upon it, allowing me to keep believing that I am going to leave a mark on the world when I am feeling defeated and alone. When I feel the ache of longing for more pressing down on my chest as I try valiantly to succeed through talent and hard work, I find comfort in knowing that when I do eventually become the writer I am destined to be I can say that my purpose and my ambition allowed me to succeed.
But I’m not as lonely as I often believe. After all, I did open this post with a celebration of the ideal that we are differently the same. My purpose and desire to create content that outlasts the near instantaneous expiry date society places upon formula driven work is something that is shared throughout the minds of individuals just like me. And the anxiety that I have felt over the past decade while trying to carve out my niche is shared upon all men and women alike. Whether an individual has a dream of being a writer, a parent, a basket baller, doctor, or whatever else, the persistence and determination we feel is a universal gift to be celebrated. The anxiety that comes as a result of that is merely a byproduct of our future happiness.
Our fundamental desires are similar, yet uniquely ours. Our ambitions and dreams vary, but our yearning to grow and succeed unites us. We all have the ability to achieve anything that our heart desires. We all have the ability to be more. We just have to define what we value most and remember that success and monetary wealth are not mutually exclusive. For some of us, success comes from knowing that we have created a body of work to be proud of. It comes from knowing that our thoughts and feelings were powerful enough to change the life of a single person.
Success lies within the eye of the beholder. It’s governed by our purpose and our pride. Your passions are uniquely yours. Celebrate them. Learn to love the anxiety that they bring, and relish the happiness that they bestow upon you.
57 thoughts on “Purpose”
Beautiful piece of writing yet again. Lonely or not, and we all feel the loneliness at times, you will indeed leave a positive mark on the world with your mastery of words.
Nailed the ending Nicholas.
Thank you for this post, I really enjoyed reading this. I dabble in writing as a hobby as my sense of purpose lies elsewhere. Trying to achieve it though, always comes at a price – a painful bliss 🙂
wishing you the best!
I am up late after an anxiety filled day dealing with the set up of my blog. Plus writers block on one of the writing challenges I do to improve my actual writing skills. I hear a buzz my email I get on my cell came and I read your well written and inspirational post. Thank you for this moment in time you helped me through your words. Thanks
“Your passions are uniquely yours. Celebrate them.” Wonderful. This is exactly what I’ve been reflecting on and trying to make my peace with in recent days. Thank you for sharing some insight into your passions and your process.
Very good post! Well thought out!
A day with no writing is a day that didn’t work.
Wow, I have often dreamt of being a writer, even while being an Engineer by day, then I read posts like yours and I re-think again. Folks like you have a gift, and it shines through in posts like this. Keep up the good work!
Very well said! And very timely for me to read, as I struggle with anxiety over my own future success, not with writing, but your message is universal and relate able to where anybody can connect with it and feel the inspiration you conveyed with your words.
What an interesting presentation, all of which I agree with! Success (to me) is simple. It equals happiness. If I am happy, I am successful. Should I strive for more success? Of course … if I want to be happier! Sadly, the perception of happiness is soften shackled to material wealth. All I suggest there is to remember that feeling of ecstasy as you drive your first new car, and then remember how you felt about it a year (or less) later! Money only brings short term gratification, so I do not understand why so many people continually strive for more … and usually compromise some aspect of themselves to do it!
Inspiring and affirming.
Love this post- so inspiring!
Yes. Just yes.
loved this post in so many different ways – thanks
A very interesting a though provoking article. It’s good to see you have stuck to your principles but remember some writers who are a bit formulaic like Terry Pratchett also produce good books.
Very well Written….I often feel lost, confused and wondering what is my purpose.
I understand. I feel the same way. I feel like writing is my purpose in life too.
“At times it has seemed the dream I chase and the pleasure it brings has also caused me great pain.” So beautifully written 💕
The quote by Alan Moore strikes a chord. I went through a period of disillusionment with the writing world but have continued to write because I am passionate about it. It seems that you are following your heart as well and your insatiable need to write, not to be famous. You should remember this post and come back to it when you need a reminder of why you write.
Well said. Remember that many celebrated authors lived and died without making a penny. It was only after their deaths that their genius was realized. But they wouldn’t have spent their lives any other way. And by the way, there’s nothing wrong with wanting to make money off your writing. Writers should be compensated for their work. As long as you don’t compromise what you believe in, as long as you love what you do, it’s all good. Great post.
“Because every man and woman needs a purpose. Everyone one of us needs something to be proud of, and an ambition to work towards.”
I completely and wholeheartedly agree. Life without purpose, without passion, is no life. Even if your passion is as simple and straightforward as just being here for the ride that life is. No matter whether you’re living a mundane life or not, if you meet it with passion, everything will light up and become magical.
“…journey through the catacombs of our minds in search of that elusive muse called creativity.” Awesome image this evokes.
Don’t stop writing. Sometimes it’s more about the journey than the destination…
“..Success lies within the eye of the beholder. It’s governed by our purpose and our pride. Your passions are uniquely yours. Celebrate them. Learn to love the anxiety that they bring, and relish the happiness that they bestow upon you.”
Great words, great post!
An excellent post Chris. How many times do we finish a book disappointed because the ending was weak and obviously rushed by a writer trying to make a deadline or meet a quota? Your writing is thought provoking.
I am so glad you mentioned how writing is an escape from the aniexty of life.”…to liberate myself from the fear and anxiety that threatened to consume me. ” This has always been key with me and my own writing, and as a young girl just starting out on her writing journey I feel a lot of these same struggles. I have been writing since I was in the sixth grade and ever since then I knew it was writing that saved me and writing that opens my eyes each morning. like you , I dream of the day when my work will be able to substain me in my life but until then I write with the hopes of the future in mind. I do agree it is hard in this media populated,day and age to et true good literature shine through when many would rather read one another social posts. I admire your beautiful and rich layout of words and know that someday you will become quite successful. Your words have already been a blessing to me and someday they will bless so many others. Thank you for this beautiful post.
Reblogged this on Ancien Hippie.
A purpose or a cause?
You never fail to inspire people, more power to you Nicholas. May all your dreams come true, your passion to write will always fuel you. 😉
“We are differently the same.” Yes, indeed!
I really enjoyed your beautifully expressed post.
Great content as always! There is something in each of your entries that speaks to me on quite a personal level and it’s comforting to know that I’m not alone in my thoughts, worries, or ambitions.
Here’s to celebrating our unique differences and the differences we all share!
You write with inspiration and passion! Lovely. Thanks for stopping by my Book Buddy blog.
Was just thinking about some of these ideas yesterday & today I read your blog. Synchronicity’s of life !
Plus you write beautifully 💕
Thank you for this reminder on defining/redefining my purpose/s in Life.
Thanks for stopping by mine.
Excellent points made! I have been thinking a lot lately about our need to survive and all it encompasses. Cool post! Thanks!
I have made my purpose to be a positive influence on the world in hopes of leading a few to lead a few more to do good and show love to all in a chain with the potential of growing to include the majority of the worlds people and peoples. What say you?
Fate brought me to this beautifully written post today. Thank you for sharing.
I really enjoyed reading this post. Perfectly written. I feel honored that you liked my post as well, especially after realizing what a fantastic writer you are.
I just exhaled the truest sigh of recognition I ever have in my life. You’ve said what 100s of people out there feel.
Thanks for liking my post [http://wp.me/p268u8-H3].
Every social network is pretty much ruined unfortunately, but we have the WordPress 🙂
I envy you and your writing Nicholas! 🙂
“For me, that purpose is obviously going to be my writing. I couldn’t imagine ever wanting to devote my life to anything but creating beautiful literature. I have spent the last decade pouring out my heart and soul for my readers, and through doing so have managed to liberate myself from the fear and anxiety that threatened to consume me. On a whole my journey with writing has been a resounding success. But it has certainly come with it’s trials and tribulations. At times it has seemed that the dream I chase and the pleasure it brings has also caused me great pain.”
This stuck with me so much. Writing is the one thing in life I’ve felt good at, or has left me with a sense of purpose. However, it is also one of the most hardest things to sit down and commit to, especially when this world has many other expectations that can get in the way of that. Thank you for writing this, and thank you for liking my own post!
I’ve always wanted to be a writer.
I love the fact that I have all of the information in the world to draw on.
“I once read a quote by graphic novel writer Alan Moore where he supposed that there were two types of writers. There are those who craft a formula for success and continuously reproduce their own works over and over, bastardising their product as a means of making money. Or there are those who continuously push themselves to become better through exploring with different genres and ideas. Some of those experimental concepts and pieces of work would find an audience; most would fail. But the writer would becomes increasingly versatile is driven by passion and purpose and is therefore ultimately more fulfilled than the one chasing money.”
This is stuck in my head and has given me very clear of what I should actually do. Thank you.
Reblogged this on Art and Culture and commented:
Perfect piece of writing for so many reasons
Woah what a lovely post. Boy! Nick you nailed it and it drives home for me.
“…isolating yourself from the world you aim to inspire”
This is so true and hits home.