‘Ikigai’ authors come out with sequel


New Delhi: Hector Garcia and Francesc Miralles have authored a sequel to their book on Ikigai which seeks to find and empower all aspects of this concept that means ‘a reason to live’ in Japanese.

Published by Tuttle Publishing, “The Ikigai Journey: A Practical Guide to Finding Happiness and Purpose the Japanese Way” is being distributed in the Indian subcontinent by Penguin Random House India. It will hit the market on October 12.

Japan is said to have one of the longest life spans in the world, and the greatest number of centenarians – many of whom cite their strong sense of Ikigai as the basis for their happiness and longevity.

Unlike many “self-care” practices, which require setting aside time in an increasingly busy world, the Ikigai method helps one find peace and fulfilment in a busy life.

The authors term their book as a “tool that can revolutionise your future by helping you understand your past so that you can live your present the way you want to”.

In order to whittle that tool into shape, Garcia and Miralles set off on a new journey across Japan, the country that inspired their first collaboration, in search of essential lessons to make Ikigai the centre of the universe and a driving force for change that will enable readers to achieve their life mission.

The author duo came across the ‘Shinkansen effect’ while researching the “Japanese miracle”, which took place between 1960 and 1980, when Japan left its post-war devastation behind to become the second largest economy in the world.

The mission of Garcia and Miralles in the first part of their book was to bring the “Japanese miracle” to the personal life of each of their readers and achieve an exponential leap.

“Yet although the Shinkansen effect concept is a fascinating one, not everything in life is about doing things better and faster. In the journey we are about to undertake, we have developed techniques to make our past fuel our present, and in turn, for our present to light the way to a future in which we accomplish what we set out to do,” they write.

In their first book “Ikigai: The Japanese Secret to a Long and Happy Life”, they explored the concept of Ikigai but left a key question to the reader: “How to find your Ikigai?”

“In our second book, we answer this question and guide the reader with 35 stories travelling around Japan and practical exercises to explore your life and help all of us to find our Ikigai,” they say.

The book suggests 35 keys to living one’s Ikigai. These include: if one aims to improve by 10 per cent, he or she needs to work to improve by 100 per cent; at least one ‘impossibility’ should be included in day-to-day agenda; 21 days should be devoted to implement a positive, new habit; and he or she should ask people they trust for feedback on what he or she is doing.

It takes the readers beyond the discovery of their Ikigai with life-changing exercises outside of their comfort zone. “The Ikigai Journey” reinforces the concept of change in people’s lives as inevitable, a constant transformation depending on the phase of life.

The book has three sections: Journey Through the Future: Tokyo (a symbol of modernity and innovation); Journey Through the Past: Kyoto (an ancient capital moored in tradition); and Journey Through the Present: Ise (an ancient shrine that is destroyed and rebuilt every 20 years).

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