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Published: May 20, 2021

Book Review – Ikigai

I decided to write this blog after reading a brilliant book called Ikigai by Hector Garcias and Francesc Miralles.

Ikigai is the Japanese word for ‘a reason to live’ and the book makes it clear that if you find your Ikigai you live a longer and happier life.

It also looks at the other aspects of Japanese life that helps us understand why the Japanese boast of one of the longest life expectancies on earth, with men living on average 81.1 years and women 87.1 years.

This book is a gentle reminder of what we already know. Living a healthy balanced lifestyle means we live much longer.

With lockdown I have had more time to reflect and put into practice some of the suggestions in this book. The book speaks of different techniques to keep your mind and body intact such as practicing meditation and yoga. When doing these practices you must be focused and find your flow. This means you can enjoy and immerse yourself in your task without being distracted by your surroundings.

The book also suggests a little stress is good for you whilst a lot will have a negative impact on your health and life expectancy. One of the stress busting methods the Japanese have, is to be connected and active in your community. They, as a culture, are so connected to their neighbours, family and friends and have a policy of always offering help. I found this incredibly relevant to our situation with COVID-19 as I believe Jersey pulled together and really put the vulnerable first.

The books also explores the zen philosophy, exercising daily in groups and not over eating. For an enjoyable light summer read I would highly recommend this book, it certainly has inspired me.  

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