Give Yourself Some Space

by Hisako Yukawa

ISBN978-4-7631-3663-3 C0095

191 pages / November 2017 / 1,300 yen (w/o tax)

Open your heart, and don’t judge.
A wise 90-year-old lawyer explains how to be the best version of yourself.


Personal relationships can produce thorns and entanglements.

Do anger and jealousy get in the way of your efforts to be a better, nicer person?


Whether with a spouse, your children, a daughter-in-law or son-in-law, temperamental friends or neighbors, taking just a half step back from your relationships with those around you will allow you to regain your natural capacity for kindness and live a much more comfortable life. So says the author of this book, 90-year-old author and active lawyer Hisako Yukawa.


Since beginning her career in Fukuoka as the first female lawyer from Kyushu, she has dealt mainly with unraveling issues related to divorce and inheritance cases. She has learned from the over 10,000 cases she has worked on that “all people, although they don’t show it, suffer from worry and doubt.” This led her to the understanding that “giving yourself enough space is essential for living a comfortable life.”


The law can’t judge a person’s heart, and the wins and losses determined in the courtroom have no ruling over one’s true happiness. Witnessing various personal relationships firsthand for over 60 years, and realizing the difficulty behind analyzing them through the eyes of the law, she began to wonder what true happiness actually is. Her conclusion is here.


This generation is burdened by a number of issues including divorce, nursing care and suicide. Although it has become easier to connect with people, it’s almost as if that has had an adverse effect on our relationships. Relationships are weak, and people suffering from loneliness are increasing in number. In such times, let’s think about what a happy way of living actually is:  To be nice, flexible and refrain from fighting things, all without draining your spirits.


Hisako Yukawa has gained a lot of trust from her clients, who have said that just talking to her helps lift their spirits. This book will help you rediscover the tenderness that’s inside us all.

From the table of contents

◎ Don’t waste precious time with quarrels

◎ Be gentle when saying what is right

◎ Don’t poke your nose into other people’s business

◎ Communicating promotes moderate distance

◎ Tears spilled for others feed the soul

◎ People express their second intention before their first intention

◎ Stop yourself from saying “that’s obvious”

◎ Although you intend to live alone, you can’t keep living alone forever

◎ People who pass away don’t leave extra money behind

◎ As time goes by, the worst moments will change to the best memories

From the editor "HANA"

When I first met Hisako Yukawa, I couldn’t believe that she was 90 years old. She’s called me in the middle of the night to let me know an interesting drama on NHK, and she’s also accompanied me in editing the book’s script until the  late hours of the night. She not only taught me but showed me how to live a full life. I strongly felt I wanted to be like her at that age. This book is a wonderful gift from a person well experienced with life on this earth. Hisako Yukawa will teach you the joy of living a long and happy life.


Hisako Yukawa

Hisako Yukawa was born in 1927 in Kumamoto Prefecture, Japan. She is a graduate of the Chuo University Law Department. She married soon after passing the bar examination in 1954, and opened a practice in Fukuoka in 1957 as the first female lawyer in Kyushu. While raising two children of her own, she worked on over 10,000 divorces and succession cases in a career exceeding 60 years, studying the lives of women and happiness while witnessing numerous types of personal relationships.  


She was a member of the Fukuoka Family Courthouse Mediation Committee from 1958 to 2000. During family cases, she took off her lawyer’s badge and assumed the role of a life coach. After becoming a lawyer, she took up Noh as a hobby and even worked as a commissioned instructor, teaching the Hosho style of Noh. While usually very gentle, she occasionally encouraged her clients with a stern voice, consoled their hearts, and helped them to unravel the complications in their lives. She is still active at 90 years of age and has clients of all ages and generations.