Book Review: Ikigai
In Japanese, Ikigai means ‘Art of Living and the book justifies every word. It speaks to the heart of readers, educating them about leading a purposeful life. Many avid readers have put their thoughts on the book and stated that it is a book of secrets to leading a happy, stress-free life.
About the Book
Ikigai; The Japanese Secret to a Long and Happy Life is a book by Francesc Miralles and Hector Gracia Puigcerver. They visit the town of Okinawa in Japan, which is considered a village that is known for its longevity and leading a healthy lifestyle. The authors interviewed the locals and villagers to understand the meaning of the term ‘Ikigai.’ It is comprised of a blend of cultures and is now the epitome of a self-help book that guides its readers in the right direction to gaining non-material happiness.
The book talks about embracing techniques to lead a healthier and happier life by discovering our ‘Ikigai’ and following the road to lead a prosperous life. Various aspects of life, like the importance of friendships, the importance of flow, motivation, and other subjects, are covered in this book. In concise, it talks about the rule of personal Ikigai:
- Don’t retire; stay active
- Take slow steps
- Don’t fill your stomach to the brim
- Surround yourself with good people
- Get in shape
- Smile more
- Have an attitude of gratitude
- Live in the moment
- Follow your Ikigai
The villagers of Okinawa swear by these rules, which have helped them stay happy and kept their heart diseases at bay.
The second part of the book talks about the significance of taking care of one’s mental health, which people in the modern world often neglect. It also provides tips on activating the brain solely based on patterns and practices. One of the book’s main aspects is to help people avoid stress in life, which is one of the leading causes of many diseases and premature aging. A brief part of the book also talks about yoga and how it can help people stay flexible and active.
The third segment mainly talks about Morita Therapy, which helps alleviate anxiety and obsessive behavior. It also talks about the techniques that can be followed for this therapy and how they can be used to attain one’s Ikigai.
The last segment talks about the concept of ‘flow,’ which primarily revolves around enjoying even the more minor aspects of life, with concentration to prevent boredom. This book also encourages small gestures that can help establish and preserve friendships and healthy relationships with people.
Overall, Ikigai is an uplifting book that provides positive perspectives on various aspects of life. The simple and calming tone of the book welcomes even beginners to get through the entire book. Furthermore, talking about the Japanese Zen philosophy inspires many by helping them find their true Ikigai.