Ikigai: The Japanese secret to a long and happy life

Ikigai: The Japanese secret to a long and happy life

THE INTERNATIONAL BESTSELLER We all have an ikigai. It’s the Japanese word for a reason to live’ or ‘a reason to jump out of bed in the morning’. It’s the place where your needs, desires, ambitions, and satisfaction meets. A place of balance. Small wonder that finding your ikigai is closely linked to living longer. Finding your ikigai is easier than you might think. This book will help you work out what your ikigai is, and equip you to change your life. You have a purpose in this world: your skills, your interests, your desires, and your history have made you the perfect candidate for something. All you have to do is find it. Do that, and you can make every single day of your life joyful and meaningful. ‘I read it and it’s bewitched me ever since. I’m spellbound.’ Chris Evans ‘Ikigai gently unlocks simple secrets we can all use to live long, meaningful, happy lives. Science-based studies weave beautifully into an honest, straight-talking conversation you won’t be able to put down. Warm, patient, and kind, this book pulls you gently along your journey rather than pushing you from behind.’ Neil Pasricha, bestselling author of The Happiness Equation



Very enjoyable book, specially made for folk who like to learn about other people and so more about themselves. It’s gentle and informative, giving thoughts on everything from how people tune their minds, to different forms of exercise and tips on tea, as well as news of the way certain parts of Japan live their lives, given in such a way as to feel more like we are visiting than reading.
If you are expecting it to help you find your Ikigai, give you step by step solution as to how you can find it, and reward it with millions of dollars, you’ll be disappointed. This book is full of facts, and real-life experiences from Japan’s Okinawa and compels you to focus more on yourself: your health, your choices, your focus, and your inner happiness. It will probably be the only book you’ll come across that tells you to take it, relax, and also burn in your passion.
The book does a decent job of relating the concept of Ikigai to modern-day psychology (with Frankl’s Logotherapy from Man’s Search for Meaning among others) and a few scientific references in a simple manner. It talks about how purpose plays an important role in a man’s life and the different ways in which it manifests itself. It also tackles some ways to ‘find your flow’ and ensure that what you do receives 100% of your attention and that you enjoy whatever you are creating.

Very enjoyable book, specially made for folk who like to learn about other people and so more about themselves. It’s gentle and informative. The book also discusses certain other Japanese concepts like Takumi (specialized workers) and moai (connections with community or friend-circle). The brief discussions have the benefit of being to the point and simple but also pose the risk of trivializing them into regular self-help advice. The book also delves into Japanese perspectives on living life and persevering without getting caught up in artificially-created urgency. But again, maybe the authors wished for the readers to research more or meditate more on the content given the concise treatment of the same.

The chapters on diet and exercises have more details and thus, may be more useful. Certain foods are dealt with in greater detail as is the concept of ‘Hara Hachi bu’ wherein one eats only 80% of what would assuage his hunger. The chapter on exercises includes illustrations and steps. While they may suffice for some of the purposes mentioned in the book – the philosophy behind them, progressive increments and other essential details are missing or insufficient.