Unveiling 10 Rules of ‘Ikigai’ – The Japanese Secret to a Long and Happy Life

For a long and fulfilling life, the 10 rules of "Ikigai: The Japanese Secret to a Long and Happy Life" have become a beacon of wisdom.

In the pursuit of a long and fulfilling life, the principles of “Ikigai: The Japanese Secret to a Long and Happy Life” by Héctor García and Francesc Miralles have become a beacon of wisdom. Ikigai, loosely translated as “the happiness of always being busy,” revolves around the concept of finding one’s true purpose, making life inherently more meaningful. In the blue zone of Okinawa, Japan, renowned for having the highest concentration of centenarians globally, Ikigai is a common thread woven into the fabric of daily existence.

Unlocking the Secrets: The 10 Rules of Ikigai

Stay Active; Don’t Retire

Contrary to conventional notions of retirement, many of the world’s longest-lived individuals continue to work well into their 80s and 90s. Notable examples include centenarians like Jayne Burns, a 100-year-old crafting enthusiast from Ohio, who humorously wished to “keep working” after turning 100.

Take it Slow

In a world that often rushes, García and Miralles advocate for taking the time to savor life’s moments. Slowing down is not merely a pace; it’s a prescription for a more meaningful and higher-quality life.

Don’t Fill Your Stomach

Centenarians advise eating only 80% of what’s on your plate. The authors suggest that foregoing the extra side dish or unnecessary snacks brings long-term happiness, outweighing short-term pleasures.

Surround Yourself with Good Friends

Strong relationships are a cornerstone of happiness and longevity. Drawing from an 85-year Harvard study, García and Miralles highlight the significance of great relationships. In Okinawa, centenarians prioritize communal activities, fostering friendships through sports and community centers.

Get in Shape for Your Next Birthday

Exercise emerges as a vital contributor to longevity. Whether through strenuous workouts or simple daily activities like radio taiso, the oldest residents of Okinawa emphasize the importance of staying physically active.


Acknowledging life’s challenges is essential, but García and Miralles emphasize the privilege of being present in a world full of possibilities. A simple smile can be a powerful reminder of this privilege.

Reconnect with Nature

Despite urban living, finding time to breathe in fresh air and take a walk in nature is crucial. Contrary to being a waste of time, spending time in nature can boost productivity, enhance mood, and improve memory.

Give Thanks

Practicing gratitude is a powerful way to appreciate the positive aspects of life. Taking a moment to express gratitude for family, friends, and oneself can contribute to overall well-being.

Live in the Moment

Let go of past regrets and future fears. Embrace the present, as today is all you have. García and Miralles encourage making the most of each day, ensuring it’s worth remembering.

Follow Your Ikigai

Discovering one’s passion and allowing it to guide life’s journey adds purpose and happiness. Following one’s Ikigai, or true purpose, is the key to a fulfilling and joyful life.

Here’s how you can find your Ikigai:

  1. Reflect on your values and passions. What are the things that are most important to you? What makes you feel alive? What do you enjoy doing in your free time?
  2. Consider your skills and talents. What are you good at? What do people often compliment you on? What are you naturally drawn to?
  3. Think about what the world needs. What problems are you passionate about solving? What contributions can you make to the world?
  4. Experiment and try new things. Don’t be afraid to step outside of your comfort zone and try new things. You may be surprised at what you discover about yourself.

Be patient. It may take time to discover your ikigai. Don’t get discouraged if you don’t find it right away. Just keep exploring and learning about yourself.

As the wisdom of Ikigai continues to inspire, these ten rules offer a roadmap to a life rich in purpose, joy, and longevity. Embracing these principles, we can unlock the secrets to a long and happy life, drawing lessons from the centenarians of Okinawa.

Also Read: Recent Study Reveals That Short Sleep, Shift Work Can Lead To High Blood Pressure Problems

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