IKIGAI – TRUE PURPOSE – A Reason for Being

In more recent years, I have developed a keen interest in the practice of IKIGAI. A pathway towards achieving good health and longevity, through purpose and meaning.

There are many parallels with IKIGAI and the PIVOTALS of my journey in pursuit of mastery.

As a ‘visual model’, IKIGAI takes the form of a four leaf clover, with leaves intersected. This Venn diagram, served to inspire the FOCUS ON PROCESS video visualisation of my process of practice.

In essence, IKIGAI is a practice. It assists with the origination of strategies to generate flow, to work in unison with the order in one’s life, and create a new balance. Realisation is achieved through discovery of enduring purpose, abandoning urgency, exploring passions, and nurturing relationships.

organisation towards IKIGAI:

  • eat a balanced diet including calcium
  • take daily exercise with moderate exposure to sunlight
  • sleep eight hours per night
  • live at a measured pace – slow and relaxed
  • avoid stress and adopt mindfulness
  • do not take yourself too seriously
  • socialise regularly – nurturing connections
  • enjoy wine in moderation
  • perpetuate order and routine
  • set out to achieve flow
  • focus on clear objectives driven by process
  • perpetuate single-mindedness & single tasking

benefits of single-mindedness and single tasking:

  • allows for calm retention
  • brings incremental advancement to process
  • increases manners and awareness of others
  • enhances productivity and flow

to assist with advancing a state of flow:

  • complete scopes of practice slightly outside the comfort zone
  • focus on increased time spent at pure practice
  • practice gradual immersion into flow
  • understand that flow exists only in the present  
  • surrender to the rhythms of flow
  • maintain mind balance through order and routine

the power of flow:

  • advances the sense of “this is what I should be doing
  • focuses on the sense of the present
  • gives calmness and clarity of thought
  • enhances feelings of control and enjoyment of simplicity
  • increases abilities with attention to detail
  • fosters a ritualistic ‘practice-place’ environment

benefits of rituals:

  • offer clear rules and objectives
  • have process and repetition at their core
  • allow for focus on enjoyment
  • lead to outcomes that are gradual and natural
  • serve to strengthen entrances into a state of flow

‘stations’ to visit en route to one’s “raison d’etre” include:

  • Practice patience perseverance and implement the positive – receive feedback from those trusted – seek mentorship – imitate – share – move beyond comfort – ‘brand’ strategies and activities – recover childhood dreams + use the past to understand the present – identify life’s ‘greatest hits’ – give greater attention to positive friendships – write on a daily basis, and include Haiku [three line verse] – embrace ‘slow life’+ avoid any multi-tasking – distance from sources of negativity . . .

additional points to assist:

  • the calmness typical of seasoned travellers, who flow with their various journeys
  • the willingness of spirit is an essential companion, to move us beyond our comfort zones, with uncertainty ahead, but towards new horizons
  • being on good terms with the past, and connecting the dots of previous experiences
  • The Shinto Shrine at ISE in Japan is rebuilt every 20 years, bringing the past and future together to honour an ‘eternal present’.

analogy | KYUDO – the art of archery

  • a practice to exercise the soul, body mind and spirit simultaneously
  • be patient – practice without force
  • be humble – first fail in order to improve
  • be flexible – grasping lightly
  • allow the mind to think without obsession
  • Kyudo practice requires balance, patience, marksmanship + physical and mental ‘stability’
  • creating the ability to see through a prism of serenity and sharpness
  • the important thing is not the exterior target, but what is inside
  • the Kyudo archer IS the target!
  • practicing towards spirituality and the inner self