Can Pride Play A Role In Purpose?


I am new to scholars and feel like this month’s work is daunting. I keep going back and forth on purpose, different purposes, trying to just pick one, but then I don’t see how I can apply that to other parts of my life.

For instance, “I want to be a rock star in my field” – how do I apply that to my relationships with my family? How do I set boundaries around that purpose and still have “fun” with my life outside of work? Or “I want to influence change in my field” – that stuff really gets me excited, and I feel like I have some tools and wherewithal to affect policy around my work… so how does that allow me to account for the other stuff in my life?

My latest purpose example is “I want to be an example of what makes me proud”
I tried out a model for this and it got ugly.

C Purpose: I want to be an example of what makes me proud
T I will deliver fantastic results
F Confident, excited
A laser focused on work/project/“to-do” at hand
R deliver results

I feel like this is a blessing and a curse. I already only do things that are going to make me feel proud – or I strive to, but in a sense, the more I think about it, the more I am starting to realize I have used that mindset to stay busy, feel successful, appear successful, but have protected myself from ever being in a position where I am likely to fail. It has kept me from dreaming big. I gravitate to things that I know are difficult so I know it will give me a sense of pride when I accomplish/master it, but deep down the task or idea is always something I know I am capable of accomplishing. I do not have any idea how to think outside of this mindset. It has served me my whole life, but has also left me isolated at times. It has left me buffering every evening when I have checked off my to-do’s with too much wine and a sleeping pill.

I do not have any idea how to think outside of that. In that last few days I can recognize that I have a lot of problems setting long-term goals for myself – I have been an overachiever my entire life and am a machine when it comes to checking boxes. But I am almost out of “BIG LIFE BOXES” to check…

School – check
Grad school – check
Job with good money – check
Husband – check
Baby – check
Planning for next baby – check
Nice House – check
Nice Car – check
Exercise regimen – check

But at the end of the day … I am still buffering, still waiting for the other shoe to drop, waiting for life to happen to me so that I can continue being given tasks to “check off” as opposed to creating them.

C Purpose
T I want it to be something I can feel proud of, feel recognized and respected
F self-absorbed, guilty, embarrassed
A continue to try to identify something that makes me feel good without making me feel ashamed of seeming/being self-centered
R just keep working through my current workload with laser focus and let life happen to me.