Ikigai – the Japanese secret to a long and happy life by Hector Garcia and Francesc Miralles

I was super excited to get stuck into this book. The authors reference Victor Frankls logotherapy (of which I am a huge fan) early on which really got my juices flowing. I imaged this fusion treat combining Japanese flavored ‘stoicism’ and the Viennese psychology, expertly crafted with skill and precision and then nearly wrapped in nori.


So imagine how disappointing it was to get stale, conveyor belt wisdom instead.

Ikigai starts off really strong, but by page fifty I let out a long exasperated sigh. The only reason I finished this book was because it was so short. To be fair I skipped through all the yoga/Tai chi/breathing stuff (with illustrations) and only half heartedly perused the Okinawan diet chapter. I feel the authors were just padding out the last half of the book because they’d run out of things to say. None of that is strictly Ikigai anyway.

Stack this on top of your Marie Kondo and donate them both.

This book is largely a missed opportunity to do something profoundly cool. Instead it’s literary clickbait meant to sucker you in with promise and gives you very little in return.

The Wikipedia articles on Ikigai, Victor Frankl, logo-therapy and wabi sabi are much better than the book.

Future note to self don’t read books recommended by magazines. (I feel I should have known this already)

Oh well.