Irfan Ahmad bio photo

Irfan Ahmad

Software Critic

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My last Saturday was supposed to be a relaxing day and why not since after a very long time post the busy month of ramadan and couple of busy weekends i got a day with nothing to do.

Story

As planned on Saturday morning i missed all three alarms , broke my routine and when i was awake it was already past 12 noon.But wait! i still could not get up but why?
Although my heart was expecting me to get up and go out but my mind wanted me to me to relax unless i answer the question “wake-up but why?” and i could not answer this question since there was

  • no urgent work to do
  • no deadline to achieve
  • no event to attend or prepare
  • no bills to pay
  • no miscalls or app notifications (phone was off :p)
  • no hunger to eat
  • no routine to follow

Fight

In short there was no reason to get up at all and i ended up losing an entire morning only to get up during lunch time.

Research

This whole event made me curious on why do people get up in morning ? specially the most fortune ones who have all the money ,power and glory and no debt , what makes them jump out of bed each morning and do all the great work they do.The answer was that they knew their “ikigai”.

What is Ikigai ?

An ikigai (pronounced Ick-ee-guy) is a Japanese word which essentially means ‘a reason to get up in the morning’. According to the Japanese, everyone has an ikigai. A reason to enjoy life . In simple words it defines purpose of your life.
Discovering your own ikigai is said to bring fulfillment, happiness and make you live longer.

“Your ikigai is at the intersection of what you are good at and what you love doing,” - Hector Garci

Simplifying ikigai

Your ikigai is seen as the convergence of four primary elements:

  • What you love and can do without getting paid for (passion)
  • What the world needs and you can provide for (mission)
  • What you are good at and can get paid for (vocation)
  • What you can actually get paid for (profession)

ikigui
The intersection of the above four components is your life purpose and once you get to know this you will realize life is much beyond anything materialistic.

Finding your ikigai

In their book Ikigai Japanese Secret to a Long and Happy Life, Hector Garcia and Francesc Miralles break down the ten rules that can help anyone find their own ikigai.

  • Stay active and don’t retire
  • Leave urgency behind and adopt a slower pace of life
  • Only eat until you are 80 per cent full
  • Surround yourself with good friends
  • Get in shape through daily, gentle exercise
  • Smile and acknowledge people around you
  • Reconnect with nature
  • Give thanks to anything that brightens our day and makes us feel alive.
  • Live in the moment
  • Follow your ikigai

I started to find my own Ikigai from my about page and looks clearly visible to me now however it is a continuous process and needs to evolve over time.

Conclusion

Ikigai is all about finding joy, fulfillment, and balance in the daily routine of life. This made me realize its possible to be true to your passions, improve your vocation and still move towards live a life of meaningful consequences all at the same time in harmony.
So what does your Ikigai looks like ? have you started looking for it , let me know about it?