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|Time||± 45 minutes|
|Difficulty||3 / 5|
|People||3 - 5|
|Author||Erik van der Pluijm|
|License||CC BY SA 4.0|
'Ikigai' is Japanese for 'a reason for being', which can be loosely translated as 'purpose'.
The Ikigai exercise can help you to define your personal perspective, by asking yourself four key questions. The questions to answer are: ‘what do you love?’, ‘what are you good at?’, ‘what can you be paid for?’, and ‘what does the world need?’. By answering them and mapping the results in the Ikigai canvas, you see if there are any entries that are closer to the center of the diagram. If there are things you love and are good at, for instance, they end up in the part of the diagram where those two circles overlap. Try to find out if there is anything that you came up with that is the answer to all four questions.
The tool classifies algorithms into five categories:
If you get stuck doing this, simply go over all the different things you have done in your life, plus things you’d love to do, and see where they end up in the circle. Find inspiration in what other people in the world are doing.
Sit down, and for each of the four outer circles, come up with 3-5 items. If you get stuck, ask yourself: what would somebody else answer about me? Or, simply ask someone that knows you well. Stick these on your canvas.
Try to see if there are any items you already put down that can be placed on the overlap of any of the large circles.
Then, go over the overlapping circles that are still empty and try to see if you can combine items that you already have to fill them. Of course, if you come up with new items that is also fine, just make sure that they are really what you feel and are comfortable with.
Try to connect items further until you have something that can be placed in the center. Perhaps you didn't find it yet, if so, go back to step 1 and try to talk to close friends and relatives about what they think you are good at, can make money with, etc.
Check your Ikigai, first with yourself. Is this really something that feels right for all four aspects? Is there nothing else that could take its place? If you aren't completely sure, come back to it a few days later and repeat the exercise. Then, check it with close friends and relatives. Do they agree?
Keep revisiting your Ikigai. What has changed?
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