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How Ikigai Can Help You Live With More Purpose

How Ikigai Can Help You Live With More Purpose

The idea behind slowing down comes from the feeling that everyone seems to live in hyperspeed mode. Technology is forcing people to keep up at a faster pace with friends, family, and work commitments with seemingly little respite site. Enter: ikigai. A Japanese word that loosely translates to ‘reason for being.’ Find out why ikigai is the hottest trend in finding your purpose and how to utilize it to your advantage.

Meaning of Ikigai

Ikigai is considered a Japanese secret to living long and well. The characters ‘iki,’ means ‘life,’ and ‘kai,’ which means a certain action lend itself to discernment about how to live your best life. Ikigai is actually more than just a catchphrase, it is a way of life, a source from which to draw for personal fulfillment.

Social Connections

The concept of ikigai is felt most when people are socially connected to others. We are social beings and thrive off of communication and connection to each other. Japanese society promotes social connection whereas other cultures (American) tend to promote individualistic idealism and ‘pulling yourself up by your bootstraps.’ Worldwide, the fabric of social connections are strained because of social media, living further apart, and just the fabric of social connection changing.

How it Works

There are five main ‘pillars’ of thought in ikigai which can help you translate this into real life action. Finding your purpose in life is about focusing on these small steps, starting with yourself, and moving forward. The little joys are found in the small things. Here’s how to get started:

  • Recognize the five pillars: starting small, accepting yourself, connecting with the world (through people and environment), seek out small joys, and be present here and now
  • Start in the morning with a fresh slate, a few hours after you wake up to start off on the right foot
  • Ask yourself four questions: what do you love; what are you good at; what can you be paid for now; what does the world need

Daily Practice

There are also 10 rules to apply to your life which can be condensed into some simple daily practices with the following steps.

  • Keep your mind active by reading each day
  • Adopt a slower pace of life than you currently have; put your phone away and have tech-free zones in your home (and schedule)
  • Eat until you are 80% full rather than feeling over-full
  • Surround yourself with good quality friendships
  • Get in shape with daily exercise; tai chi, yoga, swimming, walking
  • Smile at people around you; give yourself time to write down what makes you smile
  • Give thanks each day
  • Live in the moment; take time to enjoy coffee or tea with no distractions by yourself and with friends

To seek your own personal ikigai is to take ownership of your life today, as it is, and make little transformative actions towards a more fulfilling existence.

Take ownership of your own ikigai. If you are struggling with your life purpose and want to change direction, we are here to help. Addiction does not have to be fought alone, it is done with the help of trusted, experienced professionals who can help you. Let us help you recover from addiction and seek the resources you need to keep you clean and sober. Call us 24/7 at our toll-free number: