Just came across this great read over at Harvard Business Review - The 4 Things You Need to Thrive in the Gig Economy.
The article explains that the most effective independent workers cultivate four types of connections - to place, routines, purpose, and people.
The segment on purpose:
For most people in our study, striking out on their own initially involved doing whatever work would allow them to find a footing in the market. But they were adamant that succeeding means taking only work that clearly connects to a broader purpose. All could articulate why their work, or at least their best work — be it to empower women through film, expose harmful marketing practices, sustain the American folk music tradition, or help corporate leaders succeed with integrity — is more than a means of earning a living. Purpose creates a bridge between their personal interests and motivations and a need in the world. Matthew, for example, said that although at first he felt “a certain desperation around having clients and making an income,” over time his view of success shifted “to one that is a lot about living a life of service to others and making the planet a better place.”