According to the Wikipedia definition, “The term ikigai compounds two Japanese words: iki (wikt:生き) meaning “life; alive” and kai (甲斐) “(an) effect; (a) result; (a) fruit; (a) worth; (a) use; (a) benefit; (no, little) avail” (sequentially voicedas gai) “a reason for living [being alive]; a meaning for [to] life; what [something that] makes life worth living; a raison d’etre.”
In people who have managed to find and sustain excellence throughout their lives, this concept of Ikigai repeatedly comes up as a common denominator. For some it can be as simple as family and children while others will have a more complex definition.
Socrates, for example, famously said that “An unexamined life is not worth living”. Albert Einstein often made references to his curiosity about the universe as his biggest personal drive.
Ikigai, like excellence, can be found by anyone…So what is your IKIGAI?
Sources: Wikipedia: Ikigai (Retrieved 2017)