Being The Best You & Encouraging Others

I found myself having a discussion about who I’d be in an ideal world if money wasn’t an option. I said that if I could buy what I liked, when I liked, that I’d be one of those women who ate avocado toast for breakfast, drank healthy smoothies for lunch, did yoga in the early hours of the morning and pole dancing lessons to strengthen my core. My partner said he’d love to take up skating again and get some sort of exercise routine going.

Our discussion got me thinking about how we could mutually encourage each other to do these things, to make ourselves the best versions of ourselves. We ended up looking for used in-line skates on Facebook marketplace and gumtree to see if there were any cheap skates going. Unfortunately there weren’t at that point but the seed had been planted so that we could keep an eye out for the future.

My partner suggested that I start getting up with him in the morning and doing my yoga then in the living room, following along to a YouTube video. The only hurdle I have to overcome in the mornings is actually getting out of bed that early and not just wasting the time on my phone.

I enjoyed our discussion, our small sharing session incited excitement and got the brain cogs whirring. It also felt like an intimate discussion, an honest expression of our hopes and dreams, albeit humble ideas. It’s these kinds of conversations I live for, these two way streets which allow both parties freedom to express themselves without fear of being judged or persecuted.

I highly recommend opening a dialogue with your significant other about what each others hopes and dreams are for the future. If both couples are willing to discuss, it’ll offer a really fulfilling conversation which I think is much needed during this current climate.

So how about it? What are your hopes and dreams for the future? How can you see your best self? Are there small steps you can take now to achieve these goals?

Until next time.

Ikigai & Finding Inner Peace

As a young person I often feel like time is slipping away from me and it seems like this is the general consensus across the board. We worry we’ve left it too late to start a new career path, left it too late to get married and have children. The ever encroaching deadline that is our thirties looming over us as if life ends there.

As someone with older friends (I won’t name any names because I would probably end up with a slapped wrist) I realise that it is never too late or too soon to do anything as it is simply our social constructs that dictate our paths in life.

I don’t have the inclination to follow a path set out for me by the rules of society, I am quite content with making this up as I go along, following my heart and my head combined for a complete happiness package.

There’s a Japanese word for this wholesomeness: Ikigai, a word which has no direct English translation that simply means “a reason for being” which I think is utterly brilliant and thought provoking. It’s thought to be achieved when one has balanced what they are passionate about, what they excel at, what positively impacts the world, as well as something that provides an income.

Thomas Oppong puts eloquently that “Millions of people still struggle to find what they are meant to do. What excites them. What makes them lose the sense of time. What brings out the best in them.” Which is completely true, especially when we hear about someone who has succeeded in life, it brings out our inner demons that want to be snide and snap, as if a reaction like this was some how going to cause a positive response.

When I think about Ikigai, I look to it as a final goal, something to achieve, as opposed to something I have in the present moment. Instead of allowing social paths to lead us down a supposed route to happiness, we need to find our own happiness, our own Ikigai.

Ways to achieve Ikigai:

1. Ask yourself what you’re passionate about and what you excel at.

2. Consider how you can plausibly create an income from that which you love doing.

3. Think about what the world needs.

Lastly, never give up the hope that one day you will be content with life.

Until next time.