A recipe for happiness: The 10 rules of the Japanese for a long and happy life
Far away in Japan, there is a place called the Okinawa island. On this island, in the tiny Ogimi village with approximately 3000 citizens, there are more centenarians than at any other place on the planet. This is one of the overall 5 so-called “blue zones” in the world – the regions, where the highest average duration of life is reported. However, the amazing thing about these people is not just their longevity, but rather their ability to remain lively, happy and active until the very end… What is the recipe for their happiness? We are finding it in the 10 rules of the Japanese philosophy of a long and happy life.
1. Stay active. Those who give up the things they love doing and do well lose their purpose in life. So, never stop doing things of value, developing your skills and creating beauty around, because in this way, you are enriching your own world. And is there something more beautiful or meaningful than art? Your creation remains even after you are gone… Dare to leave a piece of yourself on the empty canvas – get inspired, create, paint!
2. Take it slow. Rushing is inversely proportional to quality of life. When we leave urgency behind, life and time take on new meaning. Take it slow… dive into a SPA rescue for the body and spirit and restore your energy with a deep tissue massage that positively impacts the high levels of stress.
3. Don’t fill your stomach. Eat less than your hunger demands: just up to the moment when you feel 80% full. Overeating depletes the body, this is why the “less is more” rule here is fully valid. If you would like to not only master the specificities of the Japanese cuisine, but also its sense for balance, come to this culinary course, in which you will learn how to prepare ramen, different types of sushi and a Japanese cheesecake with matcha tea.
4. Surround yourself with good friends. Friends are the best medicine – they are there for confiding worries over a good chat, sharing stories that brighten your day, giving advice, for having fun and dreaming together. Exploring the beauty of the Belogradchik rocks together with your best friends is once in a lifetime experience. The ATVs will take you to some unexpected spots and breathtaking landscapes, which can only be discovered off-road!
5. Stay in shape. Just like water being in its freshest and purest form while it is moving, the same way the body is at its best when it moves as well. Apart from this, exercise helps for the hormones of happiness to be released! There is a lot of ways to add exercise to your daily life… one of the most fun of them is dancing, which brings pleasure both to your body and spirit.
6. Smile. The cheerful attitude attracts others and relaxes your own self. Allow yourself to escape a little bit more often from the routine and to gift yourself more opportunities to smile. Why not add a little spice to the regular weekday by going to a comedy show with a loved one? There will be loads of laughter – so much that you will probably find yourself with abs from laughing.
7. Reconnect with nature. Although most people live in the city these days, human beings are made to be part of the natural world. We should return to it often to recharge our batteries. In the heart of the Rhodope mountain, amidst the magic of the pine trees, the meadows and the rivers, you will feel the strong energy of the mountain and you will connect with nature on a truly deep level.
8. Show gratitude… to your ancestors, to nature, which provides you with the air you breathe and the food you eat, to your friends and family, to everything that brightens your days and makes you feel happy. Spend a moment every day giving thanks, and you’ll watch your stockpile of happiness grow. One of the ways to look inside yourself, develop yоur spirituality and start living more consciously is by limiting your sensations and trying out flotation.
9. Live in the moment. Today is all you have. Make the most of it. Make it worth remembering. Be here and now – without worrying too much about the future or the past. The parachute jump is an experience, which will gift you an incomparable feeling of freedom, of weightlessness… during the free fall nothing else apart from the current moment matters.
10. Follow your ikigai. There is a passion inside you, a unique talent that gives meaning to your days and drives you to share the best of yourself. If you haven’t found it yet, your next step is to do it. What is your passion? Discover it or get inspired to go bravely after it with the map of dreams.
The rules are adapted from the book “Ikigai” by Héctor García and Francesc Miralles.
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