Define your Life Purpose with the ancient Japanese Concept of Ikigai

Mar 16, 2020

Written by Beatrice Lugano - Business Consultant

Hello, my name is Beatrice Lugano and I am an Intuitive Business Consultant. What I love to do in my business is to support creatives and help them find an aligned strategy to create success not only in their business but in their life as a whole as well. I like to define my approach as holistic.

Today I want to discuss with you, a wonderful resource that I appreciate very much since I had wonderful results with my clients. I used it for a couple of years right now, and it is called Ikigai. Ikigai is a Japanese concept, its meaning is "to create a fulfilled life".

Its main brilliance is to split life (or in this case business) into 4 main areas:

  1. What you love
  2. What you are good at
  3. What you can be paid for
  4. What the world needs

When you define these 4 areas in your life or in your business, and you see what emerges from that, you will find fulfilment. What I find brilliant in Ikigai and what, in my opinion, differentiates this method from all kinds of other defining purpose strategies is the merging of two aspects often considered one opposed to the other (what is profitable for you and what you can do to make an impact in the world).

Ikigai will consider your career, meaning the way in which you can excel in the world, but also what the world needs and what you can do to improve the quality of other's life. What inspires you? What are your values? What are your ideas? How can these be of impact to the world and to other humans?

This is, I find, one of the most important aspects that need to be considered into building a profitable and sustainable business and that often is forgotten or not kept enough in importance. Not only what you love is important, not only what you're good at, not only what you can use as a profitable activity, but also your ideals and what kind of impact you decide to have in the world. I find that this is a fundamental part of the Ikigai process. It has been proven that if we live out one of these aspects, the balance will not be optimal and so we will not be fulfilled.

So, for example, even if we feel a very strong vocation but we don't have a profit out of the activity that we do, we will feel not balanced. And, somewhere inside of us, consciously or unconsciously, we will feel dissatisfied.

A healthy foundation considers with equal weight the profitable activities and the impactful activities. In this way, we will have a successful business, and we will be able to create something that really fulfils us and that fills us with joy; that fills our days and that uplifts us and the others. Not only something good, cool, nice, profitable; but really something that goes into the depth of our core values.

The other point that I want to highlight using the Ikigai is that your business needs to be something that comes easy for you because otherwise, sooner or later, it will be perceived as a burden and you will not have any more fun in doing it. It can be a very honourable mission, and it can be also profitable, but if it is something that comes to you as a burden that weighs you and makes you loose all the joy into your life, then it is not sustainable. You have to find something else, something that you love, but also that is easy for you to do. For example, I love to write, but I am Italian and all my content is in English. So for me, even though I love to write, it is very difficult, especially in English. That said, I will never ever, although I love communication and I love to express myself into the written word, open a business that offers copywriting as a service because I know that it is not my brilliance. It doesn't come to be easy. I would spend day after day blaming myself on why I can't perform better than that.

Summing up what has been said before, to have a fulfilled and sustainable business that leads you to a fulfilled life, define all the core 4 areas and then look where these areas overlap without leaving any behind. Look at the singular intersections and the intersections altogether and find the sweet spot that includes all 4.

If you want to know more about the Ikigai, find out how it works and go in-depth of the singular aspects and the singular parts of it, you can have a look to my homepage where you can download a workbook that guides you through the 4 core aspects of Ikigai and its intersections. Always remember that having a fulfilled business and having a fulfilled life is absolutely possible. It is up to us and it is our responsibility to make it happen.

Start with Ikigai and make it happen. To your success!


About Beatrice

This guest blog was created by Beatrice Lugano - Business Consultant. After spending 10+ years in Milan Fashion Business she decided to shift to a more sustainable business model. She transitioned her business online and now she help creatives and therapists in having a healthier and more profitable business. She loves the holistic approach and uses not only strategy but mindset and spiritual practices as well.

Find Beatrice online:


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