The Experiment: Day 26 ~ Ikigai, The Secret To Healing The Body/Mind/Spirit Split…

As I was answering comments after yesterday’s post about trying to find my way home to my body after living for so many years disconnected, unable to live comfortably in my own skin, I told a friend that after writing that post I was thinking of something I heard author Glennon Doyle Melton say. She said “We are all trinities — body, mind and spirit.” And I thought yes, we are trinities, but we, a great many of us, are fractured trinities, broken, body, mind, and spirit disconnected, and we go through life trying to heal this coming apart at the seams in many ways that simply are not healthy. We are scared, we are lost, we don’t know how to find our way home to our sacred selves, all of a piece.

I continued on with my day thinking about this and lo and behold came upon an article (3 Japanese Words That Lead To A Happier Life) that referenced this book that simply blew me away. (You can click on the cover above to get more information about the book at amazon.) I have spent hours reading everything I could find about it online, I ordered the above book and plan to carry it around with me like a touchstone, reading and rereading and studying it. It is the missing element. I can change my ways of eating, exercise more, and get more comfortable in my body, but if I don’t also, at the same time, tend to the mind and the spirit, I will never get to the place I want to be. Enter Ikigai (pronounced ee-key-guy).

From the information about the book on amazon…

“According to the Japanese, everyone has an ikigai—a reason for living. And according to the residents of the Japanese village with the world’s longest-living people, finding it is the key to a happier and longer life. Having a strong sense of ikigai—the place where passion, mission, vocation, and profession intersect—means that each day is infused with meaning. It’s the reason we get up in the morning. It’s also the reason many Japanese never really retire (in fact there’s no word in Japanese that means retire in the sense it does in English): They remain active and work at what they enjoy, because they’ve found a real purpose in life—the happiness of always being busy.”

I sat up suddenly and my mouth dropped. After the fire I lost my ikigai, I could find no reason for living, I could not see my way into the future, I didn’t have a reason to get up in the morning other than to care for my dogs, and love them dearly, as I certainly do, it wasn’t enough to propel me forward, to make me present in my own life. Yes, the new diet is good, but finding my ikigai is even more important.

On the Penguin website on the page dedicated to this book there was the most beautiful video. I sat mesmerized watching it. It is a slow, gentle video and you must have the Closed Captions turned on because it is in Japanese. If it comes up for you without the closed captions simply click the [CC] button on the bottom of the video screen. It will soothe you and make you happy just to watch this video. These are the oldest living people in the world, they are beautiful, phenomenal, and their simple, happy lives are the reason for their long lives. I just can’t tell you how very much I am hoping you will get this book. I would love for us to read it together. If you buy the book and read it you can come back to this post any time — bookmark it — and share your thoughts with me and I will surely answer you. I realized, with a kind of surprise and delight, that doing this 365 day experiment is, currently, my ikigai, and it is moving me forward in my life in a way I could never have imagined. To have you comment here, to have a dialogue, could be very important for all of us in helping us reunite our sacred self, our trinity, as we bring body mind and spirit back together. This is my deepest wish and I am excited about where this year long journey will take me and what other gems I may find. I am on a mission and it is, yes, I can say it, thrilling!

I am going to leave you with this beautiful video. I hope you will take the time to watch it. I am going to publish this blog post and then watch the video again. It has caused an enormous shift inside of me, given me hope, I know that finding out about ikigai will have been one of the most important elements to my recovery and coming back to life when this year’s journey is through. I hope that you will join me.

With sincere love…


The Experiment ~A 365 Day Search For Truth, Beauty &
Day 1 ~ Introduction To The Project
“Do or do not. There is no try.”

If you enjoy this blog a donation would be deeply appreciated to help me continue to bring “Maitri’s Heart” to you. Thank you, and many deep blessings to one and all…


  1. Thank youMaitri for another wonderful, thoughtful post. I will check out the book. I stopped looking for my Ikigai and maybe I found it just allowing myself to be me. It sure feels easier. 🌈🦋❤️

    • Oh Jean I am so excited about this book! I hope you decide to get it. And I’d say if it feels easy, it’s right. 🙂 You’re onto something my friend…Thanks so much for coming in to say hello, it means a lot to me.

  2. Your posts are so good! I haven’t read every day, but get here sometimes and every time it’s good. I read read read all the time, so I will be looking for this book!
    I had a question about the videos posted. Is there a way to also just post a link? When I view the blog on my phone (which is the only way I can since I don’t have home wifi) it cuts the video in half, only allowing me to see the left half. Sometimes I can see enough of the title to look it up on YouTube but it would be nice to just have a link. No biggie, but thought I’d ask since I like looking at the vids you post. I will also play around and see if there’s some other way for me to get to the vids. I might well have missed something. Thanks for sharing <3

    • Oh hey, I did just figure out how to copy the url so I can open a new page and pull up the YouTube link that way. Sorry, I’m not very tech savvy!

    • Oh Sonyetta thank you so much for your kind words about my posts, that means so much to me, and I hope you get and enjoy the book. Mine is on the way, it will be here tomorrow, and I can’t wait to read it. And I’m so glad you figured out how to get to YouTube, so MUCH online is a learning curve, soon we figure things out. I hope you enjoyed the video as much as I did. Blessings to you dearheart…

  3. This is a wonderful blog post today, well everyday but this one really hit home. I think I lost my ikigai (we key guy) about ten years ago when my partner passed away and then after that my brother, my best friend, and another best friend and recently my sister. I think that sometimes we forget we are still alive and we are the living and we need to remember this. I loves the YouTube Video and I did hit the (cc) button so it had English subtitles….Thank You for this in fact I just ordered two copies of this book one for me and another as a gift……..Lovely Post today..Maitri……….

    • Oh Jim honey, thank you so much for your kind words about the post, and I am just delighted that you liked the video. It is so soothing, I know that I will watch it many times. And that you ordered TWO copies of the book to give one away, that is just so marvelous, it’s a book I’d give to everyone I know if I could afford it. I hope you enjoy it. And again and again I am so terribly sorry for your too many losses, especially for your sister who just passed. And I think she is smiling down on you and wants you to live your life fully. You are here, there’s a reason for that. Find your ikigai and LIVE! 🙂

  4. Very interesting, I hadn’t heard of ikigai before. I watched the video, what beautiful people! I love all those elders. What a contrast between their relaxed, gentle community and the frantic, hectic life of the city. It occurred to me that our ikigai will change, even subtly, from day to day. Thank you Maitri!

    • You are so welcome Jenny honey and yes! Aren’t all those beautiful, elderly people just SOMETHING! It really struck me how much of their happiness comes from being with their friends, with being active and involved. I haven’t been in a very long time and this has to change. I think, as I do this project this year, get healthier and lose weight and feel better about myself I will be more inclined to go out to do a thing or two. I’ve often thought that I would love to go to a knitting group and start knitting again but I get too shy to go. But this video, and I know this book will too, is going to change a lot of things for me. Onwards and Upwards! Much love to you honey…

  5. I’m back again, I want to add that I really love this part of your post! So beautiful…

    “I realized, with a kind of surprise and delight, that doing this 365 day experiment is, currently, my ikigai, and it is moving me forward in my life in a way I could never have imagined.”

    • Oh thank you so much Jenny. I feel this is absolutely true, and I am truly and deeply realizing and appreciating how much this means in my life. I can’t thank you enough for being here with me on this journey… 🙂

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