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Pasindu Chinthana
Pasindu Chinthana

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How to find and do work that you love (Ikigai)

This article is based on a lecture delivered by dr. Nayanapriya Gunawardhana, former general manager, supply chain excellence, Brandix, Sri Lanka. It was about work for a mission-powered by passion and was organized by Software Engineering Teaching Unit, University of Kelaniya.

Ikigai - Reason for being

Ikigai is a Japanese concept of having a direction or purpose of you live for or your reason for being. The work consists of 'iki'('to live') and 'gai'('reason').

The opportunity to do what you love is a dream come true for many of us. But this doesn't have to be just a dream through the Ikigai exercise, we can be our own guideline to become dream true in our everyday life.

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Those circles are overlapped at the middle. If you have something that belongs to every circle, that would be your reason for being.

  • What do you love?
    This section includes what we do or experience that brings us the most joy in life and makes us feel more alive and fulfilled. What is important is that we allow ourselves to think deeply about what we love, without any concern for whether we are good at it, whether the world needs it, or if we can get paid for doing it.

  • What are you good at?
    This section includes anything that we are particularly good at, such as skills we have learned, hobbies we have pursued, talents we have shown since an early age. This only concerns talents and capabilities, whether or not we are passionate about them, whether world needs them or if we can get paid for them.

  • What skills are in demand that you can get paid for?
    This dimension refers to the skills what someone else is willing to pay us for. Whether we can get paid for our passions or talents depends on factors such as the state of the economy, whether our passions or talents are in demand etc.

  • What does the world need right now?
    The 'world' here might be humanity as a whole, a small community you are in touch with, or anything in between. What the world needs might be based on your impressions or needs expressed by others.

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