The advice of Ikigai coach Barbara Garbagnati to make the most of these weeks of quarantine and find traces of one's personal mission in the folds of everyday life
"I want to find meaning in this life", sang the dear Vasco Rossi in the now distant 2004. And the national Blasco, apparently, had seen us long: according to some research conducted at an international level, in fact, who gives to their existence a very specific reason – which can range from family care to professional implementation – tends to live up to 7 years old. In the East, above all, they have a clear question, so much so that the "sense of life", that momentum that pushes us every day to get out of bed and roll up our sleeves despite the many difficulties, has been baptized with a very specific Japanese word: ikigai.
What is it?
A concept too far from our western lifestyle to be understood and pursued? Absolutely not. And to remind us, in these turbulent weeks of quarantine, it is also Barbara Garbagnati, real Ikigai coach, who in collaboration with the Wiko phone brand has decided to give us some invaluable advice to trigger a path of personal change and improvement, also remaining within the walls of the house. Starting from one's habits, and moving from the relationship that each of us has with food, technology, training, emotions. "In this difficult period, we have shifted our focus to three aspects, which represent the pillars of Ikigai: nutrition, training and attitude. The ingredients of a real long life elixir ", explains the expert. "A study conducted in the Blue Zones1, the regions of the Earth where there is a high rate of longevity and the centenarians are not an exception, it revealed that the people who live longer are those who take care of their diet, they dedicate themselves daily exercise, they are in balance with their emotions and live a very deep sense of community .
Balance, therefore, seems to be the key word to focus on our goal in an effective and healthy way. The isolation to which we are called, in this sense, can be transformed into a precious test bench: on the one hand, with the agenda suddenly reset and the house as our only horizon, we had to necessarily confront ourselves and the our emotions, clashing with fears, difficulties and also with the boredom. At the same time, however, we were able to engage in activities that perhaps we had put off too long, dusting off ladles and pans, and rediscovering the importance of taking care of yourself. A lesson that will surely leave us something even once this emergency is over, to be reviewed from time to time by following the points well underlined by Barbara Garbagnati herself. All this, without ever forgetting the beauty of small everyday things: because it is right there, between a caress and one Homemade Pizza, that we can find tangible traces of our Ikigai.
The sense of community
"When the isolation is over, don't stop dedicating yourself to your family and friends," reiterates the expert. "For those who have been away for so long, embracing each other will be a rediscovery, but those who have lived the quarantine in close contact with their family should not forget the importance of the bonds strengthened during this period. After all, with all the video calling apps that we have experienced, far or near, we have no more excuses for not seeing each other regularly .
«Having learned to be alone and to live time as an ally rather than an enemy is a precious resource. Taking care of your well-being is important and can be more contagious than any virus, but in a positive way! Even a healthy digital detox to be granted every now and then, far from any solicitation of technology, is therefore more than recommended .
A varied and balanced diet
«Maintaining a balanced diet, which correctly balances proteins, carbohydrates and sugars, helps the immune system. Then continue to take care of your diet, make it healthy and pamper yourself by cooking for yourself and your family. As we have recently rediscovered, cooking can be a cure for both body and mind: it will allow you to always feel fit and face any difficulty "taking it by the throat". Remember also that meals are an important moment of union: share them with the people you love, live and also on your social feeds .
«During this quarantine even the most loyal chair lovers dusted off tools and treadmills. With so much time available, we reevaluated training as a positive and regenerating activity. And even the most sporty have had to review their attitude and goals, rediscovering the fun of training for the pleasure of doing it, at home. Very important, then, to continue to do physical activity with passion even after the quarantine: from the pedometer app to the video lessons, keeping fit is really within everyone's reach and for all ages ".