In response to the WordPress Daily Post prompt for June 2, 2016.
Purpose is, I am told, that little thing that lights a fire under your arse. Trouble is, finding one’s purpose and then being able to actually, you know, follow it somewhere constructive is a bit harder than just lighting a match beneath your hairy, sweaty ringpiece and hoping for the best.
I don’t think I’ve found my purpose yet. This is probably self-evident to those of you who have either been following this blog for a while or who know me in real life. It’s not through lack of trying, mind you — I’ve tried all manner of different things, but none of them seem to have quite worked out in a way that is any way satisfactory. I’ve either found myself realising that no, I don’t really want to do that thing after all — or in the few cases where I’ve found myself actually enjoying something that I’m doing, I find the opportunity snatched away from me through circumstances entirely beyond my control.
The closest thing I feel I have to any sort of purpose is to write. About what? I don’t know. Games obviously spring to mind, as I do a lot of writing about those from various perspectives, and indeed one of the writing projects I’m finding most enjoyable at the moment is the production of in-depth studies of games over on the sister site to this blog, MoeGamer. I’m currently into my third month of producing work of this type, and I’ve even managed to attract a few people to my Patreon to support me financially in appreciation for my writing, which is nice. Not enough to live on, by any means, but a bit of pocket money each month, if nothing else.
What else do I feel qualified to write about? Music is another thing; music may not be as much of a focus in my life as it was when I was at school, but it will always be a big part of who I am, and I feel pretty confident both talking and writing about music — and indeed teaching it.
On the subject of music, I have a curious (and probably not all that interesting) anecdote to share. I tend to find that my subconscious often reflects things that are at the back of my mind or causing me anxiety through my dreams, and one recurring dream I seem to have is that I’m back at my old school, I know that there are orchestra and concert band rehearsals going on — these are both groups that I was a member of throughout my entire time at school — but I deliberately choose not to attend them, nor to participate in the regular school concerts. In the dreams, I often run into my old music teacher Mr Murrall, one of my absolute favourite teachers in the whole school, and he’s extremely disappointed in me for not attending. Perhaps this is some sort of subconscious signal that I should try and do more with my music once again — question is, what?
That annoying question “what?” is the thing that I feel holds me back most from finding a purpose. Whenever I look for a job, I get hung up on what I should be looking for. Whenever I consider offering private services such as music teaching, I wonder what I should be charging and offering. Whenever I consider training myself up in a new field to try and find a new career, I stall on what I should be studying. What, what, what.
What should I do? I don’t know. But hopefully the answer will come to me at some point, otherwise I’ll just find myself staggering into middle- and old age feeling like I’ve not really accomplished anything along the way. And that’s not a prospect I’m particularly happy about.