At Fronteer, we get the opportunity to explore what interests us intrinsically, next to our work activities. We got inspired by the Japanese concept of ‘Ikigai’, with 'Iki' in Japanese meaning 'life,' and 'gai' describing value or worth.
Your ikigai is your life purpose or your bliss. It's what brings you joy and inspires you to get out of bed every day.
This sounds like a big task, but the idea is that it gives a bit of freedom to look beyond your everyday tasks and rhythm. Some time ago, I decided to put in some of my ikigai time and I am happy to share it with you
This is my twin sister who is mentally disabled and that comes with some challenges in everyday life. Merel knows all about YouTube and immediately spots whether you are wearing cool trainers and what color nail polish you are wearing, but playing sports in a team or going to hockey, soccer,...etc on her own is out of the question.
But - there is always a but - we ended up at the Willem Alexander Manege in Amsterdam a few years ago. This is a horse club where every week more than 150 of Merel's colleagues can ride a round in the arena on a horse with the effort of volunteers. The boundless dedication, patience and sociability of all the wonderful people is always a treat to see and I would definitely recommend experiencing it as well.
Walking around the Willem Alexander Manege made me feel so grateful for all those volunteers who guide my sister on her horse every week. Spending my Ikigai time with my sister was not only very nice, it reminded me of how big of an impact you can make when you are working as a volunteer with people who cannot do something by themselves.