There’s a small island in Japan – Okinawa where 24.55 percent of its population live for more than 100 years.
They know their Ikigai.
Ikigai is the Japanese concept which means finding the purpose of life which gives you happiness.
When you know what you’re meant to do, you never retired, work till your last breath and stay content with whatever you’re blessed.
The book IKIGAI unleashes the Japanese secrets to a long and happy life. It’s written after one year of research on the people of the five blue zones.
- Okinawa, Japan
- Sardinia, Italy
- Loma Linda, California
- The Nicoya Peninsula, Costa Rica
- Ikaria, Greece
All these five blue zones have one thing in common. They live a long, healthy happy life.
But what practices do they follow to reach such a long age?
Let’s find out.
The 80 percent Secret
They never eat to their stomach full. The concept is called “Hara hachi bu” which means fill your bellies to 80 percent only. When you feel that you’re half full, you mustn’t eat after it.
People in Okinawa work closely with local communities. The concept is called “Moai” which means connected for life. They find their common interests, be it gardening, farming, or painting, and work together to accomplish them. The funds they generate from their side hustles are distributed to the community.
Train their Brains
As your body needs physical activity to stay healthy. Similarly, your mind need challenges to grow. When you find work that’s a bit tough for you and you perform it successfully, you grow your mind. That’s how you stay youthful and positive. In Japanese, this concept is called “Mens Sana in Corpore Sano.”
Meditation is the best way to reduce your stress and achieve mindfulness. When you meditate, you achieve peace from within and feel a positive impact on your mind and body. You can also avoid stress through yoga, body scans, and exercise.
Avoid Sitting for Long Hours
Spending too much time seated can add to hypertension and obesity. It also reduces muscular and respiratory fitness. So, if you have that kind of job you should:
- Spend 20 minutes a day walking
- Use stairs instead of escalators
- Participate in social activities
- Replace junk with fruits and vegetables
- Join sports or play with children or pets
Focus on your Present
If you focus on the Now, you can forget the worries of the future and your past. Lose yourself in the current activity you’re involved in and let go of all your worries. Just go with the flow.
When you assign a small task to the Japanese people, they give their complete dedication to it. They do it will full attention and work hard to make the best out of it. Also, they don’t rush for the results, the aim is to give their best every time. They enjoy mundane tasks even when it’s about house cleaning or dishwashing.
They eat a wide variety of fruits and vegetables on a regular basis. Plus, their day is complete without green tea. Also, they eat at least five servings of fruits and vegetables every day. Cane sugar instead of sugar and grains are also the special elements of their diet.
They find Beauty in Imperfection
Nothing can be perfect. If you accept the people and the things the way they are, you can grow more. That’s also what the Japanese do. This concept is called Wabi-Sabi in Japanese.
Appreciate What They Have
Instead of being unhappy about the things they don’t have, they are happy in what they’re blessed with. They always appreciate the little things they have in their life. It can be sun, water, house, parents, family, or anything. This makes their hardships easier and adds to the purpose of their lives.