In a fast-paced world filled with demands, responsibilities, and an ever-increasing sense of disconnection, the pursuit of purpose has become a universal quest. Many of us yearn for that elusive feeling of fulfilment and meaning in our lives. Finding our Ikigai is step one.
What is Ikigai?
‘Ikigai’ (pronounced ee-kee-guy) is a Japanese word that roughly translates to “a reason for being“. At its core, Ikigai represents the convergence of four essential elements:
What You Love:
This is your passion, the things that make your heart sing and bring you joy. It could be a hobby, a skill, or an activity that lights your inner fire.
What You’re Good At:
This refers to your strengths and talents. It’s about recognising what you excel at and using those skills to create value in your life and the lives of others.
What the World Needs:
This aspect involves identifying how your unique abilities can contribute to making the world a better place.
What You Can Be Paid For:
Practicality matters, too. To find your Ikigai, you must consider how you can sustain yourself financially through your chosen path.
The Overlapping Zones
Ikigai isn’t a singular point but rather a complex interplay of these four elements. When you discover the sweet spot where your passion, talent, societal contribution, and economic sustenance align, you’ve found your Ikigai. It’s the place where you feel most alive, fulfilled, and purposeful.
Finding our Ikigai
Finding our Ikigai requires self-reflection, exploration, and a willingness to adapt. Likewise, you must reflect on your passions. What activities make you lose track of time? What brings you joy and contentment? Your passions are clues to your Ikigai. You must identify your strengths, this is equally important. Recognise your unique talents and skills. What do people compliment you on? How can you leverage these strengths to make a difference?
You must consider the greater good. Think about the needs of your community or the world. How can your passions and strengths address these needs? You must also make practical plans. While pursuing your Ikigai, ensure you have a practical plan to support yourself financially.
The Fulfillment of Ikigai
Discovering your Ikigai can lead to a profound sense of fulfillment and happiness. It’s not about grand gestures but about finding meaning in everyday life. Whether it’s through your work, relationships, or personal pursuits, Ikigai reminds us that we all have the potential to live a purposeful life. So, take a step back, reflect on your passions and talents, consider how you can make the world a better place, and embark on the journey to uncover your Ikigai. It might just be the key to a more fulfilling and meaningful existence.
As I sit here and reflect on the concept of Ikigai and the ever-quest to find my purpose, I can’t help but acknowledge that my journey is far from over. It’s a winding path with no clearly defined endpoint, and although I am an early riser, I still am searching for that elusive “reason to get out of bed in the morning.” But you know what? That’s okay. The pursuit of purpose is a deeply personal and lifelong journey. It’s about growth, self-discovery, and the willingness to embrace change. While I may not have pinpointed my Ikigai just yet, I’ve come to understand that the journey itself is just as important as the destination, if not more so.
I will stay curious, I will embrace failure, I will seek inspiration. I will practice self-reflection, I will connect with others, and I will 100% give back where I can. Furthermore, I will learn to be more patient, and I will wait for my Ikigai to present itself when my body and mind are ready. Until then, I’ll keep moving forward, one step at a time, on this beautiful journey we call life.
Written by Editor, Rhian Cable
Mum, Wife, Marketing Specialist and Blogger – Living life every minute.