Scandinavian home and lifestyle trends have been all the rage in 2017. What first began as a hygge takeover (AKA the Danish word for a cozy or charming feeling) has now become even more widespread, with offshoots like friluftsliv and lagom gaining in popularity on Pinterest and Instagram. But the latest good-for-you trend doesn鈥檛 come from Scandinavia. In fact, the secret to a long and happy life according to the latest 鈥渋t鈥 wellness craze comes from a tiny island in Japan.

After a long discussion of the philosophical questions of life one rainy night in Tokyo, researchers H茅ctor Garc铆a and Francesc Miralles recalled the Japanese concept of Ikigai. What a French philosopher might call someone鈥檚 raison d鈥tre, the concept roughly translates to 鈥渢he happiness of always being busy.鈥 According to experts, every person has an Ikigai 鈥 although they also warn that it may take a lot of patient soul-searching to find it. While there are many unique variations, it鈥檚 generally believed that finding balance between your passion, mission, profession, and vocation is the key (as seen in the graph below).

It was this discussion of the roots of Ikigai that led Garc铆a and Miralles on an intellectual scavenger hunt that led to over a year of research and took them all the way to the Japanese island of Okinawa 鈥 specifically to Ogimi, which boasts the highest life expectancy in the world. Here, they lived among the locals to learn all their secrets to living a long and happy life, most of which they claim had to do with finding their Ikigai.

They documented their findings, along with various other reputable research done on the subject, in their new book Ikigai: The Japanese Secret to a Long and Happy Life ($20), set to hit stores this August in an effort to help Westerners learn to channel the ancient wisdom found on the island (and to help us live happier and longer, of course). Along with detailing the heart-healthy Okinawa diet and proven science-based exercises from the East that promote health and longevity, the authors created a master list of 10 rules to help beginners find their Ikigai based on real practices in Okinawa.

The 10聽Rules of Ikigai

1. Stay active and don鈥檛 retire. Once Garc铆a and Miralles arrived in Okinawa, they were shocked to find out how many people simply do not retire 鈥 in fact, they even note the lack of a Japanese word for the concept. In order to do what you love for as long as you can, the authors suggest that you make it a priority to stay active in all stages of life.

2. Take it slow. 鈥淲hen you leave urgency behind, life and time take on new meaning,鈥 the authors advise. So instead of rushing your daily tasks, try to savor and enjoy them for the sake of your Ikigai.

3. Don鈥檛 fill your stomach. 鈥淟ess is more when it comes to a long life. Eat a little less than your hunger demands.鈥 According to Garc铆a and Miralles, one of the most popular phrases in Japan is 鈥淗ara hachi bu,鈥 which means something akin to 鈥渇ill your belly to 80 percent.鈥

4. Surround yourself with good friends. 鈥淔riends are the best medicine, there for confiding, sharing stories, getting advice, having fun, dreaming鈥 in other words, living.鈥 Basically, it鈥檚 a great excuse to gather your girl squad for drinks more often. Hey, it鈥檚 for your health!

5. Get in shape for your next birthday. 鈥淭he body you move through life needs a bit of gentle daily maintenance.鈥 While the folks on the Japanese island of Okinawa do not perform rigorous exercise, they do regularly get up and move their muscles. Try setting an alarm on your phone every hour to remind yourself to get out of your office chair and move around.

6. Smile. 鈥淚t鈥檚 a privilege to be in the here and now 鈥 and in a world so full of possibilities,鈥 say Garc铆a and Miralles. Do your best to stay positive no matter what life throws your way, lady.

7. Reconnect with nature. 鈥淗uman beings are made to be part of the natural world. Return to it as often as you can,鈥 the authors say. In other words, do your best to make time in your busy schedule to get back to nature, whether that鈥檚 a weekend hike with friends or a summer goal to bike to work once a week.

8. Give thanks. 鈥淕ive thanks for everything that brightens your day and makes you feel lucky to be alive.鈥 Whether it鈥檚 committing to writing in a gratitude journal or simply being more conscious of voicing your gratefulness to the Starbucks barista who saves your morning, do your best to give more thanks throughout the day.

9. Live in the moment. We all have those moments where looking ahead at our busy schedule leaves us feeling mega overwhelmed and stressed. 鈥淭oday is all we have,鈥 the authors note. 鈥淢ake it worth remembering.鈥

10. Find your Ikigai. 鈥淭here is a passion inside you, a unique talent, that gives meaning to your days and drives you to share the best of yourself until the very end.鈥 You heard it 鈥 go get 鈥檈m, lady!

Do you think Ikigai is the next trendy feel-good movement? Tweet us your thoughts @BritandCo.

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(Graph via Mark Winn)