IKIGAI by Hector Garcia and Francesc Miralles: Book Review

ikigai Ratings
Ratings: Ikigai

Have you ever experienced the feeling of being lost in the path of success or love? If yes, Ikigai is meant for you.

As human beings, we live in a world that’s driven by competition and conflicts. Each day we see people fighting to become better than their opponent. We see ego at its pinnacle with the only purpose to stand ahead of others.

The competition leads us to a question. Does this fight bringing us a life full of happiness? How long-lived is that happiness? Do you wake up the other day, still feeling empty and disconnected? What is your life purpose? For all answers and understanding the meaning of life, Ikigai will help you.

Ikigai: The Japanese Secret to a Long and Happy Life, comes with all the notions you’ll need. It’ll help you discover a way to lead a happy, long, and purposeful life.

Ikigai is a Japanese word, García (A Geek in Japan), and Miralles (Love in Lowercase) translates as “the happiness of always being busy.”

The term derives from iki, meaning life and kai, meaning the realization of hopes and expectations. It refers to finding joy and happiness in small day-to-day activities.

It’s the purpose you live with and live for. This gives us a reason to jump out of bed each morning and run for a happy life.

In a society of rush and haze, Ikigai focuses on the importance of a healthy and happy life.

This book stands with you and makes you understand why you need a purpose to live. It’ll be the reason you’ll want to dive deep into finding your own Ikigai.

Introduction to the Authors: Héctor García and Francesc Miralles

Héctor Garcíais is born in Europe and a citizen of Japan, where he has lived for over a decade. He was a former software engineer. And later, he worked at CERN in Switzerland.

Moving to Japan, he developed voice recognition software. And the technology needed for Silicon Valley startups to enter the Japanese market.

Héctor is the author of several books about Japanese culture, including two worldwide bestsellers, A Geek in Japan and Ikigai. He is the creator of the popular blog- kirainet.com.

Héctor García - Booksloveme
Author: Héctor García

Some other books by Héctor García are:

  • A Geek in Japan: Discovering the Land of Manga, Anime, Zen and the Tea Ceremony
  • Forest Bathing: The Rejuvenating Practice of Shinrin Yoku
  • The Ikigai Journey: A Practice Guide to Finding Happiness and Purpose the Japanese Way
  • The Book of Ichigo Ichie: The Art of Making the Most of Every Moment, the Japanese Way

Francesc Miralles

Francesc is an award-winning author. He has written bestselling self-help and inspirational books. Born in Barcelona, and studied journalism, English literature, and German.

Francesc has also worked as an editor, a translator, a ghost-writer, and a musician. His novel, Love in Lowercase, has been translated into twenty languages.

Francesc Miralles - Booksloveme
Author: Francesc Miralles

Some other books by Francesc Miralles are:                                         

  • Perdut a Bombai (Lost in Bombay) (2001)
  • Un haiku per l’Alícia (A Haiku for Alice) (2002) for which he was awarded the Gran Angular Prize
  • El somni d’Occident (The Dream of the West) (2002)
  • Café balcànic (Balkan Café) (2004)
  • Jet Lag (2006)
  • Barcelona Blues (2004)
  • Amor en minúscula (Love in Lower-Case Letters) (2006)

Ikigai Book Review

” Only those who remain busy want to become hundred”

Japanese proverb

According to the Japanese, everyone has an Ikigai – what a French philosopher might call “raison detre.” Some people have found their Ikigai while others are still looking for it.

Every person alive today has an Ikigai. Each one of us carries it within us but what stays, at last, is how you recognize it. This Book Ikigai will guide you through a journey to find and hold your Ikigai till the end.

The meaning of Ikigai may differ from person to person. Ikigai is nothing but finding a purpose in life. Others say that it is something you do for yourself when no one else has asked you to do it.

Both these things stand together and lead us to the fact that Ikigai is the reason to live. It is the reason life seems interesting. It helps you to keep going even when situations are not in your favor.

Ikigai book review
Reading Ikigai

This book will be your go-to when you are feeling drained and empty. It will provide you with a sense of satisfaction in finding your Ikigai.

“Ikigai” is a kind of a guide that will tell you a step by step formula to persue what you want to do. It could be challenging to find your Ikigai. But what will keep you going is the fact that finding your Ikgai will give you a reason to live.

And it will provide you with a passion for maintaining your life and not getting tired of it. It will provide you with an urge that will give meaning to your days and will drive you to share the best of yourself until the very end.

Finding Meaning To Life – The Japanese Way

Hector Garcia and Francesc Miralles have tried to understand life. They have defined Ikigai taking note of the specific points from the perspective of the old age people of Japan.

We all are well aware that Japan is one of the developed countries of the world. Hector and Francesc started Ikigai by focusing on one of the villages, Ogimi in Okinawa, Japan.

At this place, there are 24.5 inhabitants of age more than 100 for every 1,00,000 people. They interviewed these people who have lived long enough to impart incredible wisdom.

Today we live in a world where we run around in a mess trying to live for happiness. We are the creatures, lost in accepting the overwhelming nature of our thoughts.

We think we know everything and consider ourselves better than others. When elders try to give us advice, we have a habit of putting it aside.

Ikigai book summary
Ikigai Insights

But at the same time, we forget that our elders have lived a life longer than we have. They might not know about technology, but they do know about life. Sometimes, they might be wrong, but the important is to acknowledge their ideas.

One tip from Okinawan (a place in Japan) centenarians is to “worry as little as possible.” It helps us to slow down, take our time and realize that we don’t have to have it all figured out right away.

The Book “Ikigai” also includes wisdom from supercentenarians (age 110 and over) throughout the world. Over 100 interviewed residents of Okinawa shared many lessons with the authors.

They advised to spend more time with people, nurture friendships and understand love. For having a healthy life, it’s also essential to do regular exercise and eat healthily.

They asked people to enjoy the little things, be optimistic, indulge in laughter, song and dance. And always have the purpose of moving ahead with the day, a meaning to life.

Understanding Ikigai and Life

Have you ever experienced moments when you have lost track of time while doing something you loved? It is like you get so engrossed in doing that particular thing, you did not notice that it was already evening.

Well, that was your little journey with Ikigai, and that is what this book wants you to discover. Authors have presented many real-life examples of real people.

The book “Ikigai” is a storehouse of lessons from the life journey of these people. They have shared experiences that will stay with you forever.

Authors have told stories and things they understood from life. These were the people who discovered their Ikigai.

And this Ikigai does not has to be your profession. A person’s Ikigai could be anything; it could be their family, work or any hobby they love to do.

What matters at the end is that you should never get tired of it. And developing this love for your discovered Ikigai does not happen effortlessly. Instead, it requires your time and dedication.

Ikigai book summary
Ikigai Insights

Advancing further, the authors introduce the concept behind “finding a purpose to exist.” He shares summarized insight from Viktor Frankl’s Logotherapy.

And concludes in-depth the difference between psychoanalysis and logotherapy with a few key ideas. These concepts let you on a journey towards understanding Ikigai in detail.

The book contains so much in just a few pages. It will give you a sense of motivation and zeal for life. We all live but to live we need a reason.

We spend some days at the peak of laziness, but on other days it is crucial to have that love for something.

Why Should you Read this?

This book won’t give you shocks or sensations of excitement like those thriller or mystery novels. It is not a love story or a fantasy novel about vampires and werewolves.

In short, it is a life. This book will introduce you to the concept we usually know but ignore. It contains real struggles of real people.

After reading, you would have a reason not to let life just pass by. But, it will tell you to hold yourself together and find meaning in little things.

There is no magic to finding happiness in life. But, it will help you to understand that you have to create your happiness.

“The grand essentials to find happiness in this life are something to do, something to love and something to hope for.”

-Principles of Happiness that Washington Burnap stated two hundred years ago.

The Ikigai talks about resilience and also touches the delicate concept of emotions. It also talks about Stoicism which centers around the point that there is nothing wrong with enjoying life sometimes. But you have to learn to let those pleasures disappear later on.

This book touches many concepts related to reality, stress, loss, feelings, and life. It contains many Japanese theories and methods that they apply daily in their life.

It also includes words from some amazing people around the world like Ernest Hemingway, Bertrand Russell, Albert Einstein and others.

What I like the Most

The book has many amazing things that will stick with the reader. Authors have not tried hard to make it full of metaphors or adjectives.

Ikigai sounds real and genuine, fulfilling the purpose. The authors have done an excellent job and quite good research.

They explained everything that we need to find. It throws facts and realities at the face and does not try to be fancy in any way.

One thing that I, as a reader, liked most about the book was how the authors have talked to real people.

They have included those people’s stories which will not only motivate the reader. But will also let them relate and connect to them.

Overall the book is quite simple and easy with language. And it also contains pictures making it more interactive.

What I didn’t like in Ikigai

This book won’t disappoint you. But still, certain things were unnecessary.

At some point, I felt that I wanted to read more about some particular topics. And still, I had to be satisfied with the little data provided. And in some places, the information felt excessive.

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Conclusion

To conclude, I think the book is hugely inspiring and motivating. It is full of content and a more in-depth understanding of things about life. While reading, I was able to attain my flow. Throughout, the book persuasively shows that small changes can help readers find more joy and purpose in their lives. Reading it won’t take much of your time.

I had always been amazed by the organization and the perfection of everything in Japan. It does not live in chaos. It takes into consideration all the aspects of the thing they are making.

I always wanted to know how is it possible for a whole community to be so much structured. And this book is the perfect way to know that and with those lessons improve ourselves too.

“Life is not a problem to be solved. We will have to remember to have something that keeps us busy doing what you love. While at the same time being surrounded by the people who love us”

There is one such book that will help you control your mind – Think and Grow Rich

Loved it? Read more Non-Fiction Books.

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