This Is How the Japanese "Wake Up to Purpose Every Day" (and What We Can Learn)

Some of the most powerful lessons we can learn in life are the simplest. Ken Mogi, neuroscientist and author of Awakening Your Ikigai, had this realization when an American speaker mentioned the Japanese practice at a TEDx conference. “The way she spoke about the concept in a passionate way made me rethink the value of ikigai, which comes quite naturally for a Japanese, like the air we breathe,” he says.

It might be second nature for those who live in Japan, but there’s a lot we can learn from this ancient philosophy. “Ikigai is a Japanese word for describing the pleasures and meanings of life. The word literally consists of iki (to live) and gai (reason),” Mogul explains in his new book, which launches in January 2018. When ikigai is practiced and present in life, it holds the potential to dissipate stress, ease anxiety, and help you find the purpose to “wake up to joy” every day. Who wouldn’t want that? Don’t worry, it doesn’t involve a drastic lifestyle change. Here’s how you can incorporate ikigai into your routine in one day.