Seeking your ‘Ikigai’
Uncertainty is jarring. It stops you from following your dreams. It leaves you with no courage to walk the road you have always wanted to explore. And worst of all, it leaves you helpless and subjective to circumstances. Gradually, you start making up for inner peace by finding comfort in the cozy materialistic life you have weaved. But when your soul is suffocating; how much do you think you can hold up?
In my brief discussion with Suruchi Shah a life coach and entrepreneur, we explored various emotional and mental hurdles a person encounters during their self-discovering journey. One thing that inspired me to my core was the role of ‘Ikigai’ – the Japanese philosophy in transforming Suruchi’s and thousand others’ life.
Eager to learn, and share the knowledge what I found out, I dedicate this blog to ikigai and its role in achieving our goals. But, before we go further, do catch my exclusive interview with Suruchi Shah on my Instagram page. Needless to say, it will help you gather the courage to take the first step towards your dreams and how to mentally support yourself throughout your journey.
Ikigai for finding your passion
What is life like when you are not following your dreams? Probably mundane, unfulfilling. Each day waking up to an ear-piercing alarm clock you want to smash on the ground, peering through beady eyes and cursing the day ahead, how do you propose to change your situation. Why do we inflict so much pain on ourselves? Just because of fear of failure. It is downright sadistic.
It is our moral duty to keep ourselves happy. Work towards finding a reason to get out of the bed. And do one thing each day that makes you happy. At the end of the day, you would be able to answer your soul that you have done something that is taking you towards serenity.
Ikigai is nothing but finding that very reason. This Japanese art of living was formulated to help people find balance within themselves, connect with others and the world. It opens up huge possibilities for personal development. Ikigai emphasis on starting each day with positive thoughts. Switching between moments to chid away anything negative that stands between you and your ultimate goal. Simply put, it is not about how you finish your day; it is about a positive start.
Ikigai for finding courage within
Positive thoughts have a huge impact on our lives. They help you in creating a good mood and generate happiness for yourself and others. Each day when you wake up, no matter how cranky you feel force a good mood on yourself purposefully. It will motivate your body to work towards your dream the whole day and keep discouragement at bay.
It promotes focus. It will channel your energy, and allow you to take control of your mind and body to work harmoniously for what satisfies your soul. Happiness attracts happiness and sadness attracts sadness. A blissful life requires you to ignore the ruckus around you and enjoy the beauty of your goals.
Ask yourself, why are you in this world? What is the reason for being? What makes sense to you the most? Do you want to have a carefree life? or do you dream of becoming financially strong?
Find what makes you happy, what satisfies your soul. And don’t be afraid to set goals too high or too low. Just set an objective for being in this world and channel happiness and your efforts in reaching it. And your reason of being shall bestow energy, skills, ideas and ability to use them productively.
Ikigai for respecting your individuality
Right from the day we are born to the day we leave this world; we make connections with people. We engage with them to create emotional and physical bonds and in this course, we expect them to be understanding.
But mostly they are not. And you can’t blame them. Because nobody else is witnessing the battle going between your mind and soul. It is you alone who is going through the misery and know how disturbing it is. With this we come to two conclusions. One, respect people even when they are unable to understand you. And secondly, you don’t need their confirmation to get off that misery boat.
Ikigai encourages you to come of use to the world. It believes you have a special role in the community to play and you can create a positive impact. And, you can make a big difference in the society, just by helping yourself. Nature never gives birth to anything that is useless. The world needs you to realise your potential and work hard to reach your goals so that you can add to the greater good.
Ikigai doesn’t want you to think about yourself or have an opinion or belief about yourself. But it stresses you to find what you think about yourself in heart, body and mind. This alone unleashes infinite opportunities. Self-acknowledgement further protects you from making false assumptions about yourself and the world. It teaches you to respect difference in opinions and thoughts, meanwhile also respecting your own individuality.
Now that we have talked in length about what is ikigai, what does it require you to do, how does it help you in your entire life, here is how you can start practicing it.
Find what you love to do
It need not be your childhood dream, and it need not be something very realistic. It can be vague and you can redirect yourself later to change your goals again. Start by finding what do you love to do?
Scale it to a professional level
Do you see yourself enjoying what you love to do for a long time? What can you do to add value to it? How can you scale your present skills and abilities to reach pro level? Find answers to these questions.
Convert your passion into vocation
Financial uncertainties stop people from following their passion the most. For that, once you have found your passion, try to find vocation opportunities for your passion.
Add to the greater good
In the end it is all about how you can add value to yourself and to others. Most the time people leave this fourth leg of ikigai and fail miserably. It is very important that whatever you are doing should add value to not just yourself but to others too. Make it a mission. In the end ikigai is not just a personal development tool but a global philosophy.
Thanks for staying till the end. I hope you loved to learn about Ikigai. Tell us if you knew about Ikigai already, or you have been practicing it. You can also share your experience and how it changed your outlook towards life and made you more positive in the comments below.