Why I love Ikigai: The Japanese Secret to a Long and Happy Life

This is a super late book review about Ikigai: The Japanese Secret to a Long and Happy Life. This has been in my cart for some months. I’ve decided to buy it as a gift for myself.

โ€œBe led by your curiosity and keep busy doing things that fill you with meaning and happiness.โ€ ๐Ÿฅฐ

Whatโ€™s your Ikigai? What is something that gives you meaning and happiness?
This book is a must-read. This book helps its readers to fully understand their reason for living by knowing their ikigai.

Ikigai does not have to be grand. Sometimes, it could be the simplest thing in life, and that is okay. It differs from one person to another.

This book also gives an overview about the Japanese secret to a long and happy life. The authors are so specific in their explanation. They included diet, exercise, and way of living. They share how people in a certain place in Japan live longer than others.

Major takeaways from Ikigai

  • Each setback is an opportunity to grow.
  • Worrying about things that are beyond our control accomplishes nothing.
  • It is not what happens to you, but how you react that matters -Epicletus
  • Ikigai is the reason why we get up every morning.
  • Once you discover your ikigai, pursuing and nurturing it everyday will bring meaning to your life.

Have you read this book? Share your favorite quotes, too. Here’s mine.

This is the sign that you should grab a copy of this book. Go read it, friends. ๐Ÿ™‚

La Union Trip 2021 2 Days 1 Night

Squeezing a quick beach escapade was made possible through an invite from my college friend. Last December 11-12, 2021, we were able to go for a quick trip to La Union also known as Elyu with some friends.

We were picked up at Greenfield at 12:00AM by our service. We were joiners. There were also other passengers who were with us on this trip.

Day 1 – Tangadan Falls, Baluarte Bell Tower, and the Beach

We reached the North at around 7:00AM. We ate breakfast in acarinderia along the way. Look how sumptuous our breakfast was.

After having our breakfast, we headed to Tangadan Falls. We were transferred to a jeepney. It was a 30-minute ride, and a 10-minute walk going to the falls.

Tangadan Falls was one of the main destinations for this Elyu Trip. The water was cold, and the surrounding was indeed peaceful. You can feel the fresh air in this place.

We stayed there for two hours, before we headed to our next destination.

Our next stop was the side tours. This included the Baluarte Watch Tower. We also ate our lunch there. We passed by the Bahay na Bato and Namacpacan Church.

After our quick day trip, we headed to our hostel. We stayed in a hostel room in front of El Union Cafe. It was already coordinated by our tour guide.

After resting, we headed to have our merienda at San Juan Beach. No entrance fee. Here, you will see the majestic sunset.

I loved looking at the sunset while enjoying our barbecue, shake, and our alone time. My friends respected each other’s alone time here. We were never required to be with each other at all time. But, we made sure that our companion was safe all throughout the trip. We tried to go to Kabsat and the other popular go-to destinations in Elyu. However, one will lose patience on how long the line was. Anyway, our group was not a fan of drinks so it was just fine with us.

Day 2 – Elyu beach and Slowing down

We woke up early the next day. 7:00AM to be exact. After doing our personal morning routine and eating our breakfast provided by our tour guide, we went straight to the beach which was just near where we stayed.

We stayed in the beach until 10:00AM. Packed our bags. At 12:00NN, we were fetched by our tour guide. We were dropped at SM La Union while the others went to Thunderbird Resort. We were fetched (again) at 3:00PM. I would never rant how we waited for a very long time for this was one of the many consequences of being a joiner in a big group trip. We went straight to a temple.

After taking some photos here, we went to the grape farm. Here we tasted the wine.

We bought pasalubong along the way. We reached Starmall Mandaluyong at 10:00PM if I am not mistaken.

Lessons from Joining a Tour

I enjoyed the place itself. However, if you want a more peaceful trip, just rent a van and do things by yourself. For me, I only need to relax by the beach. Hence, some trips were unnecessary for me. But still, when I went there, I enjoyed.

Joining a group took too much of our time. We were fetched late by the service. Two hours late. When our co-joiners go to the washroom, and take photos, it also consumed time. When they were headed to another optional trip, much of our time were wasted.

This is just for me. Maybe, group tours work for some. ๐Ÿ™‚ As for an introvert, DIY-ing is preferable. You’ll have better options as well in terms of hostel booking.

Please note that we followed all the requirements asked by the local government. We also are fully vaccinated when we proceeded to this trip.

Again, this was the only time we went out after being stuck at home for a long time.

Did you also go somewhere in 2021? Where are you planning to go next (once everything is okay)?

It’s the little things that matter.

Life lately has been so challenging to the point that no matter how hopeful I am, I still feel disappointed about the things happening in the country. Upcoming elections. Politicians and their ads on TV and on different social media platforms. All of these during pandemic.

Aside from that, I’ve seen a lot of people contracting COVID, getting sick, or losing their loved ones. (I also almost lose my job because #pandemic.) This is definitely saddening. It makes me think when will our country surpass this pandemic, or can they even handle the crisis? Nobody knows.

In the other part of the globe, people have been moving forward. Their government has been very efficient in dealing with pandemic. I hope that we Filipinos will experience the same thing.

With everything that’s happening to me, I’ve decided to examine how my life has been recently. This week, my puppy had parvo. She’s confined for six days. She’s now with us. As of this writing, she is currently under medications.

This event made me realize to appreciate the little things around me. Literally, Tiny, my shih tzu, is one of those little things. She matters.

Being with her every day, feeding her, and cleaning her regularly, I tend to forget her value and presence. I disregard her existence just because I know that she will be always there no matter how busy I am.

I believe this appreciation applies to all. I don’t have control to everything, but I believe I can control what I can do and think at the moment. I can choose to be happy. I can control my response to my situations.

I am trying to make a conscious effort to be grateful and to appreciate the little things. How?

  • I will write the things that I am grateful for.
  • I will find time to list the things that give me joy.
  • I will appreciate the people I regularly or seldom see everyday.
  • I will value friendships even if we meet virtually only.
  • I will not hesitate to pamper myself with small rewards because I know that I am working hard.
  • I am allowing myself to be happy.
  • I will listen and celebrate Mass everyday virtually.

I hope you don’t give yourself a hard time. If there’s something that would make you happy, grab it, as long as you won’t hurt anyone. As long as you are in peace and comfortable. Don’t be too hard on yourself.