Looking For Ikigai

“Your purpose in life is to find your purpose and give your whole heart and soul to it” 

Buddha


I Need Something To Do

I’ve talked about in other posts about how recently I’ve been struggling with mental health and some physical stuff as well. On the whole this has dragged me lower than normal as of late for reasons I am almost ashamed to admit because it feels so childish/selfish.

That reason is that people around me are getting on with their lives while I seem to be stagnant. I know people who are incredibly talented in various professions/hobbies. I know people who are making great strides in their work and personal lives. I know people who are starting to make big names for themselves both online and in real life.

And then there’s me.

I didn’t finish my university degree because I had a nervous breakdown. I haven’t had a job for over a decade. I keep struggling with my mental health problems and every step forward is quickly followed by a swift kick pushing me back. I’ve had physical health problems pretty much nonstop for the last decade. I’m currently in therapy for PTSD which has made my emotions very volatile and unpredictable. I need a CPAP machine to now get a decent nights sleep. I am awake til 5/6 am most nights and it can take me several hours to get out of bed because I don’t have the energy to do so.

Basically, my life is a fucking mess at the moment and it’s hard to see a way out. I have no purpose or direction in life and it’s really getting me down (big shock).

I mentioned in my recent Black Mirror post that I’ve been on a bit of a philosophy binge as of late and in my recent reading I came across the Japanese concept of Ikigai.

Ikigai is the concept of having a “reason for being” in life. There have been plenty of books on the subject that suggest it’s why Japan has so many over 100 year olds (nearly 70,000 at the last count).

It seems to be such a powerful force in fact that when a recent study asked just over 43,000 people if they had Ikigai in their life, over the following 7 years a significantly higher number of the people that died were those who said that they didn’t have Ikigai in their life. People without Ikigai had an “increased risk of all-cause mortality”, with the biggest spike being in cardiovascular disease.

It’s not a particularly nice topic, but having no sense of purpose in life can actually be life threatening it seems. And now that that depressing not is over let’s get back to my shit existence.

I’ve mentioned on this site before that I used to be a singer in a band. I used to be very into amateur dramatics and was in plenty of local production type stuff when I was younger. There’s a link up there in the header of this site to my old YouTube channel that I used to be really into. I’ve started plenty of long-term projects over recent years only for them to fizzle out,  I currently have 3 “books/stories” that I know will never get finished.

I really need to find something that I can sink my teeth into to keep me going. All I seem to have at the moment is Video Games and writing for this site (I guess). Obviously I’ve got my partner as well but I would hope that goes without saying. In fact if they are reading this then I love you and I’m sorry I moan a lot.

I’m really hoping I can get back into recording some stuff to put online (I currently have a whole playthrough of a game that I haven’t bothered to upload. And I wouldn’t mind getting some of those books/stories finished at some point as well.

Sorry if this came across as wholly depressing but I just wanted to get some of this stuff written down. Maybe I can come back to it and help myself try to move on from this decade long slump. Fingers crossed it works.

Thanks for reading and until next time, remember to take care of yourselves. Peace.

LeighPouse


Bonus Video

A song I was listening to in the background while I wrote this.

2 thoughts on “Looking For Ikigai

Add yours

  1. I’m sorry that things still feel so bad for you and it all seems a bit hopeless. As someone who is going through a good patch at the moment (and as someone who recognizes how lucky I am to have good AND bad patches), I hope that you will keep on keeping on so that you can really enjoy when things get better. I went through a horrifically bad patch from the age of 16 to 25/26 (so almost 10 years). I was on and off benefits, constantly in debt, living hand to mouth and from roof to roof, in and out of work. My depression was so awful I was constantly at threat of being hospitalized again and things were very, very dark. Although things are obviously much better, there are still times when I struggle a lot. To be honest, the only reason I’m mostly ok right now is because I can throw myself into my education, living off of student loans until the money runs out and hope that by the time I come out the other side I will be in a stable enough position (financially, employment wise, etc) to actually be able to get on with my life.

    It might not always be “better” and there will be many ups and downs, but hopefully you can get to a place where things feel happier and more comfortable for you. It can just be a struggle to break out of that hole that we find ourselves in and get back on your feet. You can do it though and although things are difficult with external support services, there are lots of us around you who are here to help.

    PS – I would still LOVE to collaborate on game streams, I just struggle a lot to get things initiated so if you were still interested then we could definitely work together on that which I think will be a good thing for us both to throw ourselves into! I’m always happy to chat about writing things as well!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m glad you’re having a better time of it at the moment ❤ . One of the things I hate most about depression is that I know I'm lucky/happy really. But good luck convincing my brain that some days.

      Doing a collab would be really fun at some point, but please don't feel obliged to or put your own stuff on hold for it 😛 .

      Like

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