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That terrible mix of dread and purpose

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As you may have seen, I’ve been writing a book that explains the purpose and meaning behind Kindling. I notice that every time I go to write, I get an overwhelming sense of dread. I read what I’ve written and feel like I’m going to puke. It’s nowhere near good enough. I’m nowhere near good enough.

Part of me asks: Why expose myself to that? Why not choose things that give with joy?

But I have a deeper knowing: that dread is the tell-tale sign that this work is profound and important for me. It activates some unrealized potentials in me. It pushes me past what I believe I am capable and worthy of. If I didn’t pursue it, some part of me would never come truly alive.

What stirs up that same terrible mix of dread and purpose for you? Maybe now, in our self-isolation, is the time for us to sink into it and find out what is buried under all the muck.


Thanks for reading! Can you chip in $3 a month? For the price of a cup of coffee, you can bring at least one person into our community every month and get exclusive content from my upcoming book “Humanity is beautiful.” 

Peter Schulte

Peter Schulte is the founder and editor of Kindling. Peter is also Senior Digital Engagement Associate for the Pacific Institute and the UN Global Compact's CEO Water Mandate, connecting businesses to sustainable water practices. Peter holds a B.S. in Conservation and Resource Studies and a B.A. in Comparative Literature from University of California, Berkeley, and an M.B.A. in Sustainable Systems from Pinchot University. He lives in Bellingham, WA, USA with his wife, son, and cat.

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