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How To Find And Where To Look For Your Ikigai

by Aarti Singh

October 29, 2022

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Ikigai (生き甲斐), a Japanese concept which means purpose of living. To put it simply, a reason of being. The cause for which you wake up every morning. Something that gives you direction in life. Something that moves you and gives you a reason to keep trying, keep going on, no matter what. 

Your purpose needn’t be as huge as World Peace. Infact the one time you should be truly and genuinely selfish is while looking for the purpose of your life. Your purpose should be yours only. It should be special and personal to you. Afterall it’s yours.

It’s yours to build, it’s yours to work upon, it’s yours to wake up to, it’s yours to sleep to, it’s yours to dream, it’s yours to achieve.

Your purpose, your calling is the one thing in the world that is completely yours and no one else can take it from you. Your reason does not need to make sense to anyone but you. And you know what, it should not. It makes sense to you, and that’s enough because you’re the only one who gets a say in this matter.

You might think that the most critical decisions in your lives are maybe your choice of subject, or your partner, or maybe the college you want to go to. But no, the most important decision of your life is whether you really want to find your purpose or whether you want to lead a life without ever knowing your full-potential. Because your full potential can only be unlocked when you’re doing something you love whole heartedly and believe in. 

Your Ikigai is something so very personal. Just like that diary you made when you were a teenager. Your purpose consists of all your failures, your hardships, your success, your attempts, your good days, your bad days, your self-doubt, everything. But most importantly, it has seen you try even when you were at your lowest and were considering to give up.

But you know what the most tiresome part of this process is? It’s not the numerous failures. It’s definitely not the self-doubt. It is the search. The search for you Ikigai. The search for your purpose.

Maybe you haven’t found your purposed yet. Or maybe your purpose hasn’t found you yet. But that, my friend, is the beauty of it. That you can go look for it yourself. You can look for it right now if you want.

Look for it in the deepest darkest crevices of those nights where nothing seemed to make sense, look for it in the firs ray of sunshine on the mornings which felt like a new start, look for it in the classes that always felt useless, look for it in the clouds which were too stormy and in the silver rays of hope which shone after it, look for it in the daydreams that you’d rather live in and look for it in the nightmare you never wanna relive. 

Your reason will start as a dream initially. It will seem like something that you have to achieve one day. Sometimes it may also seem like a hazy wish but you have the power to make it your reality because it isn’t something you achieve, no, it is something that you cherish everyday as you wake up. It is not a pedestal, it is something in you, that makes you, you.

Your purpose should be yours only. It should be special and personal to you. Afterall it’s yours.

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