CAE 013: How A School Will Get Japan’s Groove Back

How Happiness and The Life School will Jumpstart the Japanese Economy Once Again

In this episode we shift gears to do some self-reflection and zen out. I’ve snagged some time with a dear friend and inspiring filmmaker and entrepreneur, Eiji Han Shimizu.

Having realized the Japanese dream of corporate success, Eiji reached the top of that peak and realized the emptiness of this path. Since that time he co-created Happy, a groundbreaking film that documented what Happiness really means. Today, he is the founder of The Life School, a grassroots initiative to teach Japanese corporate employees how to bring playfulness, mindfulness, curiosity and creativity into the workplace and into their lives.

Eiji’s mission is much larger. His dream is to help Japan shed its culture of rigidity in order to regain its position as a world-leader in innovation and economic growth. He seeks to do this by educating and empowering the workforce from the ground up.

I know you’ll enjoy this conversation with the defacto “Happy Guy” and my personal business Yoda.

Key Learnings From This Episode: 

  • Why the Japanese economy has stagnated for the past 20 years
  • The power of self-efficacy and control over your life
  • How you can simplify your life and uncover true happiness
  • How your death holds the key to success
  • A whole lotta other awesome nuggets of wisdom for business and life!

Links And Resources Mentioned In This Episode

About Eiji

Eiji is a multi award-winning filmmaker, publisher, and educator. The focused theme of his work has been our most important emotion of all: happiness. His documentary film, HAPPY, has not only won a dozen of awards from film festivals and become the #1 documentary on iTunes, but also has been highly regarded and frequently used as an educational material in scientific and educational institutions around the world.

Based on empirical data, he also developed mindfulness-based happiness workshops to the general public together with researchers and zen monks. A number of corporations, universities, and NGOs are using his program to increase the wellbeing of their members. Eiji recently founded a grass-root business school, called The Life School, where mindfulness meets playfulness.

About The Life School

The Life School is a grassroots pop-up school that was created to encourage the Japanese workforce to explore more important, significant questions about life beyond the level of their salary.

Thanks for Listening!

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Thanks again to Eiji for sharing his story. Until next week, go forth and get it done!