Hanging out in a restroom usually doesn’t lead to epiphanies about one’s reason for being. To quote that gentle philosopher Winnie the Pooh, “Sometimes I sit and thinks, and sometimes I just sit.” Certainly, there are some of us who like a good bathroom read, but a deep dive into the soul normally doesn’t materialize in the loo unless you run into something like this, as seen recently in a Minnesota Public Radio newsroom bathroom stall.
Strangest of Places
I had not heard of the Japanese concept of Ikigai before reading about it. (Thank you to the MPR employee group that pasted this flier on the stall wall as a way to spark interest in volunteering.) I agree that everyone has a reason for being or ikigai, and the search for that reason can take a lifetime.
One focus of The Convenings is planning for how you’d like the end of your life to go. An advance care plan is a gift you give your family and friends. But an equally important focus of The Convenings is about discovering what gives your life meaning. If you know what gets you out of bed in the morning, the reasons to enjoy your life, what your purpose is, we think that can help inform needed reflection on how you want to live now AND at the end of your life.
Discovering your purpose or ikigai takes time but the search is part of a satisfying, fulfilling life…one lived with joy and intention. Why wait to discover your ikigai? Start now. Live with purpose and know it is still possible to do so despite serious illness, disability and impending death. Those who’ve attended The Convenings have heard from people who’ve done it.
Take a look at this graphic. Ikigai is a puzzle. A riddle that asks good questions. Take the time necessary to find your unique answers and start where you are… even if it’s in a bathroom stall.