Jan Dirk’s farm is pretty similar to this idea of a purpose economy. Is it still part of a purpose economy if you don’t start out wanting to make a generic difference, but a specific one? So Jan Dirk and his wife wanted to make better cheese and milk and healthier cows and then by default it seems that they found purpose in that, they educate the public, he’s on the board of some Ag organization- someone made a movie about them, etc. It’s a little different from Hurst’s examples but I think Hurst’s examples are on the far end of the purpose economy spectrum.
The characters in Little Titans are the antithesis of this idea. None of them got to find their purpose. Maybe because they were too old- it was too long ago but mostly because they were too poor.
I don’t think this is anything super new, other than maybe parents letting their children know it’s okay not to be a doctor or a lawyer. On a smaller scale than Hurt’s examples, this kind of thinking is evident in what kind of law one chooses to practice or where one chooses to work. I’m sure this works better in the Netherlands because their social systems are set up to support people. They have paid family leave and a childcare allowance, and child benefit, and public daycare options. They have social housing and housing tribunals and healthcare and just more support for people to go make cake jars and start non-profits.