More Ikigai

My research into the topics of Self-Leadership and Ikigai continues and now I’ve read ‘Ikigai: Giving Every Day Meaning and Joy,’ by Yukari Mitsuhashi. This book has given me a very good understanding of what the concept of ikigai is all about.  My questions beyond the basics, were about trying to understand what ikigai is relative to personal vision and also how to work on discovering it. This author has provided me with all of that!

Ikigai is the joy we anticipate in the day ahead that gets us up and going in the morning. It’s related to everyday life and might be a person’s family, hobby, work or plans for the weekend.  People’s ikigai is as varied as people are. No two are the same and it changes with time. Yukari makes it clear that ikigai is not the intersection of what you love, what you are good at, what the world needs and what you can be paid for. In particular, ikigai is not limited to what you can be paid for.

Ikigai carries with it the idea of moving forward, towards the future. Ikigai is about attention to the present moment and has a focus on individual moments, not just on the big journey of life. This was very helpful to me in my research on Self-Leadership and the use of personal vision. It can be good to have a bigger purpose in life, finding attainable ikigai in your daily life is also important.

Common elements of Ikigai, according to Yukari Mitsuhashi are:

  1. It’s more about everyday life than your whole lifetime.
  2. It’s more about what connects you to the outside world, not just what is within yourself.
  3. It’s more about giving and contributing to others than receiving something.
  4. It’s more fluid than fixed.
  5. It’s more emotional than logical. You feel ikigai with your heart.
  6. It’s more specific than abstract. It’s achievable and you can see the impact.
  7. It’s more active than passive. It’s what gets you up in the morning.

Why have an Ikigai? What does having an ikigai bring to your life?

  • Feeling happy and content
  • Finding a stable state of mind
  • Having better control over your day-to-day life
  • Growing and progressing
  • Finding a sense of purpose
  • Feel more driven and motivated
  • Becoming more proactive
  • Finding vitality to live and move forward
  • Above all, focus and direction and serves as an anchor in your life.

The reader is given many examples of different people’s ikigai within different spheres of their lives. We are also given many tips on how to identify our own ikigai!  I hope you get as much out of this book as I did.