Ikigai … a sense of purpose

Day 460.

“Motivation is fleeting. Inspiration is transient. But purpose is fuel that sustains. Gets you through the hard, dark moments when giving up feels like the only option. Inside all of us is a latent Ikigai (sense of passion and purpose). And everyone is visited with pivotal moments that fire up that latent Ikigai.
My wish is that you cultivate the awareness required to recognize them when they arrive, followed by the hard work required to translate that potential energy into a new, more meaningful trajectory. Do that, and watch your life flourish.”
           — Rich Roll

Rich Roll is known for his super athleticism and ultra-marathon runs; but he’s much more than that. Rich too battled alcohol addiction – as well as food addictions. His story is an inspirational one, though I think I will skip the ultra-marathons part!  He has a lot to say about personal growth, health and responsibility.  I recommend his podcast series. Pick through his guest list and see what you think.

We must find Ikigai in ourselves.

In the quote at the top, Rich is referring to Ikigai, a Japanese idea of how much humans must have a sense of passion and of purpose. We need to be needed, we need motivation to get up every day – we need community. When I started dipping too far into the wine, I was discarding a social life – I was turning down invitations. While I was deeply unhappy, the wine did not help. Everything seemed to be an interruption of my reverie of the bottle. I stopped contacting friends. I had not only lost my way, but lost my purpose – my passion for life.

I thank myself for recognizing a pivotal moment in which I had a chance to change the trajectory of my own life, my own path. I thank myself for making the huge effort, the leap of faith — and forced my much-dented confidence to take the leap too.

Taking control of my life by moving away from what was draining me was hard but important. This included the relationship, and also, importantly, the alcohol I was using to dull the pain of that relationship.

On this new path I am finding passion, purpose and joy again.


8 thoughts on “Ikigai … a sense of purpose

  1. This is beautiful… I agree about your statement of turning away from social life when dipping too far into the wine… sometimes I glamourise wine and social going together in my mind, when in fact the reason I finally decided to stop was because it meant either that or shut myself more and more off from the world. I thank myself for having the awareness to recognize where change would be best and for having the courage and kindness to begin to see it through. And I thank you for your wonderful inspiration and example. 💛🙏

    Liked by 3 people

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