And for a Friday, enthused by my ex colleague venturing into setting up new business, some thoughts….. some musings…..
Nothing great about starting a new business. But when a 75 year old travels from Bangalore to Chennai by train to set up a new Venture, I feel great and am reminded of the Japanese concept of IKIGAI – the Art of staying Young while growing old. It is universally accepted truth that only staying active in mind and body and loving each day as it unfolds will make you want to live a 100 years, enjoying life, spreading love, laughter and care. After 60, with family responsibilities settled, monetary rewards do not have the same adrenaline pumping power as the fun and excitement of doing and learning new things and loving what you do. My friend is setting up a “Organic Farming” certification company. COVID precautions in train travel, Mask at all times, only home food, nothing enroute, known surface transport, stay in regular COVID protocol hotel and ravel at the uncertainties of a new business.
Age is just a number. When you can enjoy what you are passionate about, is part of your mission in life, is what you are good at, what Society needs and what you can even get paid for – that’s the concept of IKIGAI, concept of “happiness of always being busy”. My close relative, at age 90 plus, walks religiously and till late would hit the Gym. I admire him for his positive attitude, zest for life, his contribution to Social causes, lavishly gifts his children, Grand and Great G Children, is now embarking on a Project to write a Biography along with his Siblings of his Barrister Father – a constitutional law expert from the famous “Meloth Tharavad” born in Chembad village in North Kerala in 1898. That’s the Spirit, more power to such ikons.
IKIGAI has simple straightforward recommendations for enjoying long life. 30 minutes walk, eat only to max 80% capacity, enjoy and drink with your friends, play with your or your neighbor’s grandkids, work and never Retire. Let’s all of us, the Senior citizens, enjoy life the IKIGAI way, the COVID vaccinated way, the SEEGOS way.