|Pic source : https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ikigai
According to the Japanese, there are four primary interrelated elements : things that you love (passion), things the world needs (mission), things that you are good at (vocation), and things that you can be paid for (profession). If you lack in one element, you can’t maximize your life’s potency.
So, how to find your Ikigai?
- Seek within self what really matter
You are the captain of your life. But sometimes, you live on ‘autopilot’, the state which you are living life like being a zombie : distracted, partially aware, and missing the moment. The situation which may be seen as ‘routinity’. To create your ikigai, take time to contemplate about what really matter for you and what values you are holding on tightly in life. A way to seek within self is asking. Keep asking your self. What is your job? Why do you work? Do you feel good on it? Will it make difference for other people? Dig a little deeper and deeper. Keep asking until you find what really drive you.
- Know what you can do to others
Never been anything better than the feeling that we can help those in need, you can start from asking yourself : what good deeds you are able to do today. Make an attempt to be the reason that someone be uplifted. Be more altruistic toward others.
- Count your blessings, appreciate any achievement
Everyone is special and so are you. No matter how small an achievement is, it can be a clue about what you are good at and what you like to do. Try to remember any achievement or acknowledgement that you acquire during your life so far.
- Write down
Once you have reflected about what really matter in life, take a note and write down about those four elements of Ikigai. What things that you are willing to do them like someone falling in love? What are your contributions to other people? What make you above average? What are your talents and abilities? What things that can make you be paid?
- Relate one another
Passion is the combination between things which you are good at and things which you love. Mission is the combination between things which you love and things which the world needs. Vocation is the combination between things which the world needs and things which you can be paid for. While profession is the combination between things which you can be paid for and things which you are good at. Relate what you have listed to one interconnecting circle and your Ikigai is in the middle of the circle.
At last, physical health alone is not enough. You need mental resilience and Ikigai will nurture your vigorous soul. Cited from Kyosei Consulting3, research in Japan has elaborated that a lack of Ikigai is ‘related with poor general health, increased risk of intellectual dysfunction, and increased mortality in older people’. Furthermore, the Kyosei stated that similar research in the west had discovered the connection between significant health benefits for people at any age and having a sense of purpose and meaning.
Now, can you imagine waking up in the morning feeling so energized because you will do something beneficial that you love, you are paid for that and you have a flair on it? If you do, congratulation! You are living your life truly worthwhile. But, if you haven’t felt that way yet, find your Ikigai that will lead you to get a second bite at the cherry!
Ikigai is your personal experience. Discover your own and live your life to the fullest.