Why it's time to get uncomfortable about 'purpose' and 'meaning'

 Me and our hosts on a “field visit” in Masvingo Province, Zimbabwe, in February 2012. Having a good time, but also feeling very, very uncomfortable. © T. Rossing.

Me and our hosts on a “field visit” in Masvingo Province, Zimbabwe, in February 2012. Having a good time, but also feeling very, very uncomfortable. © T. Rossing.

“Doing good” is all the rage. But in our pursuit of that warm glow feeling, we often overlook all the clever confusions masquerading as system change. They are “near enemies” of change, propping up a system rigged to do anything but. Welcome toThe Good Jungle.

Doing good is becoming the new currency of success for my generation of Western, middle class millennials who’re learning that putting purpose before pay check brings more happiness.

Scores of us are leaving profit-driven careers or, like me, avoid getting one in the first place, in order to pursue more meaning as social entrepreneurs, charity workers, in philanthropy or international aid, corporate social responsibility or voluntourism. Social media is sprawling with offers of coaching, self help books, and retreats in the great outdoors to plot our journeys into more purposeful careers.

In so many ways, this feels like an awakening. But in other ways, it is dangerous too.

 Continue reading on Medium