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Ikigai - the Secret Formula for True Success and True Happiness

Updated on May 31, 2020
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Vikram Brahma is a Digitalpreneur, Author, Blogger, Writer, & YouTuber. He loves to write content & spend time working from home.


I know many of us want to become successful, rich and looking for true happiness. If you’re not happy with what you’re currently doing then you should look out for some other options. Because it doesn’t matter when do you start but what matters is where you want to reach.

Success is not bound by the age or skin of your colour. Success just love the person who does not give up on his/her dream.

This article is totally dedicated to one Japanese formula or you can say the system which they have discovered many years ago. Many successful people might be following this system unknowingly. But Japanese people gave name to this system. And it has been observed that by following this system people of Okinawa, Japan are thriving and living a purposeful life.

So, let’s understand what’s their secret to success and true happiness. And why this place is also known as the land of immortals, where the average life expectancy is more than 80 years.

IKIGAI - The Secret Formula of Japanese People
IKIGAI - The Secret Formula of Japanese People

IKIGAI (Pronounce ee-kee-guy)

When I first heard this word I was not aware of its significance. Then slowly when I started reading and gathering information about this then it made all the sense. In simple words, it consists of two words - IKI means life and GAI means value. We can say - things that you live for or value of life.

According to this, Japanese people believe we all are born in this world for some special reason and motive. And that reason and motive is your IKIGAI. As per this formula if you do something else in life without finding your IKIGAI you will always remain unhappy or depressed.

Tomorrow you might earn lots of money but from inside you will remain unhappy. And because of this, we will stay in stress and this will affect our life expectancy. But the good part is by using this formula we can find our IKIGAI.

Main Components of IKIGAI
Main Components of IKIGAI

What Consist of IKIGAI?

IKIGAI as formula consists of four main parts or components. And till the time we don’t search and complete all four parts we cannot say we have achieved our IKIGAI.

So, the first part is we have to find “what you love”. And this can be anything which you love, for example, cooking, eating, reading, sleeping, dancing, cricket, watching tv, travelling etc.

This first part is easy to do. And how do you know that this is one part of IKIGAI, because when you think about what you love - it gives some positive signals to you. So, whatever makes you feel good is your first part of IKIGAI.

Now the second part says, that your first part which you love should be “what the world needs too”. It should be valuable for the world. For example - suppose you love to read business books then this can become your IKIGAI. The reason being other people around the world also like to read business books. And this habit can help you in your career and the people around you.

But suppose you like to sleep a lot then this cannot be your IKIGAI, as the world will get no benefits and value if you love to sleep all day.

We need to understand that each skill are not the same and we cannot devote the same time for all. But to complete the first two components - we have to search that skill which we love and it should be valuable for the world.

Now the third component of IKIGAI says - “what you can be paid for”. This means our work which we love should be such that by doing that we earn decent money.

Many people say that we don’t need money to be happy but that’s not true. Money is needed for almost every other purpose in our life. We are mostly from the middle class and we know the value of money.

IKIGAI is a very old formula and people living in Okinawa have proved its value. So, the third formula is saying if from your IKIGAI skill you are not making money then it’s not your right IKIGAI. As most of the time, you will be worried about how you’re going to pay the bills, how you will manage your home etc. So, if you want to really live stress-free life then you must be earning through your IKIGAI. Because that’s what you love and there is demand for that.

And the last component of IKIGAI says - “what you are good at”. To make you understand this point let’s says you’re good at anchoring. So, you love anchoring, many channels need a good anchor, demand is there and you’re earning well by doing anchoring in some news channel. Furthermore, you’re very good at your skill. This way you have fulfilled all the four components of IKIGAI.

Some Real Examples Of IKIGAI Champians

I am sharing the examples of two people to make you understand this concept well.

Many of us know that Sachin Tendulkar is 10th pass by qualification. But he loves cricket, during his long career his skill was always in demand. He earned a lot and it is said his net worth is $120 million and he is extremely good at his skill. So, Sachin was able to find his IKIGAI long time back when he was in 10th standard.

The second example is of APJ Abdul Kalam sir. By qualification, he is a degree holder in Aeronautical Engineering. He loves science and technology first component. The second component - his skills were required by India and he was always in demand. Whatever missile technology we have today is because of his efforts. That’s why he is known as the missile man of India.

The third component does he was getting a decent salary and answer is yes definitely. And he was getting such a salary because of his love for science and technology. And the last component does he was good in his skill, and you know the answer he was master in his skill.

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We must understand to find all these four components in our life it will take some time. Some people are good at finding their IKIGAI early but many are still struggling. It is not like you love something and that thing will become your IKIGAI. It must fulfil all four components.

With time and practice, you can become master of your loved skill which will be in demand and will give you decent income or earning too.

Every day as soon as we get up, we start running towards our office. Struggle in traffic and work hard to earn for our living. What I have shared with you is just the tip of the iceberg. If you read more about this concept you will gain more knowledge about life. I hope you can find your IKIGAI soon.

So, this article is not just about how to live longer but also about how to live a meaningful life.

If you are reading please let me know whether have you found your IKIGAI or not?

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2020 Vikram Brahma


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