So what does the application of Ichiryo Gusoku look like?
That is a question that I need to spend time looking at, now that the decision to slowly remove myself is upon me. It changes a lot of things, really a sort of moving from the theoretical to more of the actual.
One place, of course, is simply what I do. There is a lot of what I do or what I want to do that is built on presuppositions of how I want my life to work and run, things that I considered (past tense) important. These are moved to the side now and the activities need to be couched and considered in terms of my more ultimate plans.
Some of the things- cheesemaking or gardening or those darn quail - will continue to happen and in fact, need to start happening more regularly, more frequently, and more completely. These are activities that directly impact (in small ways, to be sure) my independence of the system (it seems silly, but eggs climbed here by almost 100% in price and are limited in how much you can purchase. My sweet quail continue to give me two to three eggs a day).
But there are other activities I need to explore, things that I am simply not skilled or good at right now: minor carpentry or some appliance repair (managed to figure out how to clear the inlet on the washing machine such that the hot water can flow again), the sort of thing that comes in useful on a daily basis.
Career - Ah, here is the biggest question of them all. The career path I have is neutral to this sort of thing - it neither increases my skills nor decreases them in this area. The unfortunate reality is, given my age and time in life, this is not something that will readily change to my benefit. At best, I can hope to end out best working years here; at worst, we either stay here at a reduced income or go somewhere else to start over. The things I can do within this current construct is to get as much training and experience as possible to make myself as marketable a possible for as long as possible.
Finances, of course. Always kind of a difficult subject, but it is time that the discussion began in earnest. And not just about the big things but about the underlying concept of reducing expenses in every area and learning to live more simply.
That is part of quietly disappearing of course, the art being unremarkable. To let your presence rest so lightly everywhere - both commercially as well as publically - that you are simply overlooked.
And then to take that time, that money, that lack of attention, and invest it making your life and the lives of those you love better, more independent and less dependent. To truly live as an Ichiryo Gusoku.