Activities to teach Ikigai

10 Engaging Activities to Teach IKIGAI

IKIGAI is a Japanese concept that means ‘a reason for being’. It is about finding joy, fulfillment, and balance in the daily routine of life. It is the sweet spot where your passions, strengths, values, and the needs of the world intersect.

For many Filipino professionals, finding their IKIGAI can be a transformative experience that brings clarity, purpose and a deep sense of fulfillment.

However, the journey to discovering one’s IKIGAI is deeply personal and requires self-reflection, self-awareness, and a willingness to explore new possibilities. 

As a facilitator, it is essential to create a supportive and engaging environment that encourages participants to explore their passions, strengths, values, and the needs of the world.

Interactive activities are a powerful tool to facilitate this exploration. They encourage participants to engage with the material on a deeper level, to reflect on their own experiences, and to learn from others. 

Moreover, interactive activities make the learning process more dynamic, engaging, and memorable. They also allow participants to apply the concepts of IKIGAI in a practical and meaningful way.

After you study these activities, explore 10 Life Rules Inspired by IKIGAI.

Activities to teach Ikigai

10 Ways to Teach IKIGAI

In this guide, I have outlined 10 interactive activities that will help participants discover their IKIGAI. 

These activities are designed to be engaging, thought-provoking, and ultimately, transformative. They cover different aspects of IKIGAI, from self-reflection and strengths assessment to vision board creation and action planning.

We encourage facilitators to adapt these activities to suit the needs and preferences of their participants. Remember, the journey to discovering one’s IKIGAI is unique for each individual, and as a facilitator, your role is to guide and support your participants on their journey.

1. Self-Reflection Journaling

Start the workshop with a brief introduction to IKIGAI and the importance of self-reflection in discovering one’s purpose. Distribute a handout with reflective prompts to each participant.

Prompts can include: “What activities bring me the most joy?”, “What are my natural talents and strengths?”, “What values are most important to me?”, and “What needs in the world do I feel most compelled to address?”.

Ask participants to spend 15-20 minutes reflecting on these questions and jotting down their thoughts.

Duration:

15-20 minutes

Materials:

Handout with reflective prompts, and pens.

Create a safe and supportive environment so participants feel comfortable sharing their thoughts if they choose to. Emphasize that there are no right or wrong answers and that this is a personal journey of self-discovery.

2. Vision Board Creation

Explain that a vision board is a visual representation of one’s dreams, goals, and values. Provide each participant with a variety of magazines, newspapers, colored pens, and a large piece of paper or cardboard.

Ask them to create a vision board that represents their passions, strengths, values, and how they can contribute to the world.

Duration:

30-45 minutes

Materials:

Magazines, newspapers, colored pens, large paper or cardboard.

Encourage participants to think creatively and use images, words, and colors that resonate with them. Remind them that the vision board is a personal reflection tool and does not need to make sense to anyone else.

3. Strengths Assessment

Explain to the participants that recognizing one’s own strengths is a crucial step towards finding their IKIGAI. Distribute a strengths assessment tool, like the StrengthsFinder, to each participant and ask them to complete it.

Once completed, have participants share their top strengths in small groups and discuss how these strengths can be leveraged to contribute to the world.

Duration:

30-40 minutes

Materials:

Strengths assessment tool, pens.

Encourage participants to reflect on how their identified strengths relate to their passions, values, and the needs of the world. This can help them better understand their IKIGAI.

4. Passion Circle:

Arrange the participants in a circle. Ask each participant to share one passion with the group. The next participant will then share a passion inspired by the previous participant’s passion. Continue until each participant has shared.

Duration:

20-30 minutes

Materials:

None.

Encourage participants to actively listen to one another and to be inspired by each other’s passions. This activity can spark new ideas and connections.

5. Value Cards Sort

Provide each participant with a deck of cards with different values written on them. Ask participants to sort the cards into three categories: important, very important, and most important. Once sorted, ask participants to share their top values with a partner and discuss why they are important to them.

Duration:

20-30 minutes

Materials:

Value cards, pens.

Encourage participants to reflect deeply on their values and how they relate to their passions, strengths, and the needs of the world.

6. Group Brainstorming:

Divide participants into small groups. Ask each group to brainstorm ways they can use their passions and strengths to address a specific need in the world. After 15-20 minutes of brainstorming, ask each group to share their ideas with the larger group.

Duration:

30-40 minutes

Materials:

Flip chart, markers.

Encourage participants to think creatively and to build on each other’s ideas. Remind participants that this activity is about generating ideas and that no idea is too big or too small.

7. Role Play

Divide participants into small groups. Assign each group a scenario where they can use their strengths and passions to contribute to the world. Ask each group to create a short role-play based on the scenario.

After 15-20 minutes of preparation, ask each group to perform their role-play for the larger group.

Duration:

30-40 minutes

Materials:

None.

Encourage participants to think creatively and to incorporate their strengths, passions, and values into the role-play. This activity helps participants visualize how they can apply their IKIGAI in real-life situations.

8. Mind Mapping

Provide each participant with a large piece of paper and colored pens. Ask participants to create a mind map that connects their passions, strengths, values, and the needs of the world. Encourage participants to draw connections between these different aspects of their IKIGAI.

Duration:

20-30 minutes

Materials:

Large paper, colored pens.

Encourage participants to think creatively and to explore the connections between their passions, strengths, values, and the needs of the world.

9. Storytelling

Ask each participant to share a personal story of a time when they felt most alive and fulfilled. Encourage participants to reflect on what activities they were doing, who they were with, and how they were contributing to the world. After sharing, ask participants to identify the common themes and patterns in their stories.

Duration:

30-40 minutes

Materials:

None.


Encourage participants to listen actively to one another’s stories and to reflect on the common themes and patterns that emerge. This activity can provide valuable insights into the participants’ IKIGAI.

10. Action Planning

Provide each participant with a template for creating an action plan. Ask participants to outline specific actions they can take to use their passions, strengths, and values to contribute to the world. Encourage participants to set SMART goals and to identify potential obstacles and strategies for overcoming them.

Duration:

20-30 minutes

Materials:

Action plan template, pens.

Encourage participants to create realistic and achievable goals. Remind participants that finding their IKIGAI is a journey, and it is okay to start small and gradually build up to bigger goals.

How to Prepare for an IKIGAI Workshop

Preparing for an IKIGAI Workshop involves several key steps to ensure that the workshop runs smoothly and provides a valuable experience for all participants. 

Here’s how you can prepare:

1. Understand the Concept

First and foremost, you must have a deep understanding of the IKIGAI concept. Read books, articles, and other resources to fully grasp its nuances. Remember, IKIGAI is a Japanese concept that combines the terms ‘iki,’ meaning life, and ‘gai,’ meaning value or worth.

It is often translated as ‘a reason for being’ and is about finding joy, fulfillment, and balance in the daily routine of life.

2. Know Your Audience

Understand the needs and expectations of your audience. Are they professionals looking for purpose in their careers? Are they retirees seeking a new passion in life? Knowing your audience will help you tailor the workshop to their specific needs.

3. Set Clear Objectives

Define what you want your participants to achieve by the end of the workshop. For example, your objectives could be for participants to gain a deeper understanding of their passions, strengths, and values, and to create an action plan to incorporate these elements into their daily lives.

4. Prepare Materials

Prepare all the materials you will need for the workshop. This could include handouts, pens, paper, markers, and any other materials needed for the activities you have planned.

5. Plan Activities

Plan a series of interactive activities that will help participants explore their passions, values, strengths, and the needs of the world. Make sure to include a mix of individual, pair, and group activities to keep participants engaged.

6. Create a Safe and Supportive Environment

Create an environment where participants feel comfortable sharing their thoughts and feelings. Make it clear that there are no right or wrong answers and that everyone’s perspective is valued.

7. Practice

Run through the workshop activities yourself or with a friend to ensure that they flow smoothly and achieve the desired outcomes.

8. Get Feedback

After the workshop, ask for feedback from the participants. What did they find most valuable? What could be improved? This feedback will help you refine your workshop for future sessions.

9. Reflect

Take time to reflect on the workshop. What went well? What could be improved? How can you apply these learnings to your future workshops?

Remember, the goal of the IKIGAI workshop is to help participants find a deeper sense of purpose and fulfillment in their lives. 

By carefully preparing and delivering a thoughtful and engaging workshop, you can help participants take a meaningful step toward finding their IKIGAI.

Conclusion

In conclusion, preparing for an IKIGAI workshop requires thoughtful planning, a deep understanding of the concept, and a genuine desire to help others find their purpose and fulfillment. 

By creating a safe and supportive environment, planning engaging activities, and reflecting on the feedback and your own performance, you can deliver a meaningful and impactful workshop.

Remember, the journey to finding one’s IKIGAI is deeply personal and unique to each individual. As a facilitator, your role is to guide participants on this journey, providing them with the tools and support they need to uncover their own path.

It’s a rewarding and fulfilling role, and with careful preparation, you can make a real difference in the lives of your participants.

We would love to hear your thoughts, stories, and questions. If you found this guide helpful, please feel free to share it with your friends and colleagues. Together, we can help more people discover their IKIGAI and lead more fulfilling lives.

Thank you for your dedication to personal development and for being a part of this important journey. Here’s to finding our IKIGAI and making the world a better place!

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