First things first, Ikigai is not anime. It’s not exactly a superpower, but in a way, it can be.
Ikigai, pronounced “ee-kee-gah-ee” is a Japanese term referring to a concept that means “reason for being,” or “reason for waking up in the morning.”
How many of us spend a good portion of our lives in pursuit of happiness?
“For many of us, a large portion of our days is spent at work; in fact, the average person will spend 90,000 hours at work over a lifetime.” –Andrew Naber, Gettysburg College.
For others, defining a purpose is as elusive as finding extra time in the day. Many of us ponder being happier or more fulfilled in life. On the outside, it may appear like we have it all. Still, the mind may frequently entertain the notion that “there must be more,” to life.
It stands to reason that a person wants to be happy in whatever they do the most, which for the vast majority of people is work. According to a survey conducted by LinkedIn CEO, Jeff Weiner, happiness is the leading factor in a dream job. “Workers of all ages, genders, and regions say that happiness is the most important factor in their dream job, followed by purpose, work-life harmony, and money.”
So, are you happy at work?
Are you able to list your job as one of your reasons for being?
Do you look forward to waking up in the morning to pursue your career?
Have you got Ikigai?
Maybe you’re thinking at this moment, “I might not have Ikigai, but I got bills.”
Translation = let’s be real.
Struggling as a starving creative isn’t ideal when you’ve got mouths to feed. So, maybe you missed the deadline to apply for an awesome opportunity, but that doesn’t mean you can’t find a purpose for your life and a motivation for living. You can even find enjoyment in that seemingly humdrum 9 to 5 or that cool gig you’re rocking.
Growing up, it’s common for parents to encourage their children to live their dream. We were supported even in our wildest dreams of becoming an astronaut, celebrities, or maybe even a superhero (with some strong suggestions to entertain more realistic career options like teachers, lawyers, and doctors.)
Kids live in a dream world. They imagine and visualize things that make them happy, and they do it often. As we mature, we move further and further away from that dream world. But who says we must?
Imagination naturally inspires visualization.
Visualization seeds action — which leads to creating your reality. Spending time daydreaming, imagining, and visualizing leads to manifesting your hopes and dreams but might even help you discover your purpose.
Visualization might spark your passion, your purpose, your “Ikigai.”
For the most part, there’s more to life than the daily grind and paying bills. Even if you decided to set your dream job aside for something more reliable, there is depth and purpose to be found in everything we do. There are moments of inspiration and fulfillment that can be uncovered in every interaction, every transaction, and every action. The key to finding them within your career is to be “mindful.”
Remember, none of us are “stuck” doing anything.
There is nothing is stopping you from making a career change. If you’re unhappy or looking for fulfillment and know that your Ikigai can be found doing something else, we can help you figure out a plan and make the changes.
The Begin Within team is always on standby to help you get started!
Do more of that stuff that makes you happy and brings you joy.