Indulge me, readers, for just a few minutes. At the end of the second paragraph I want you to close your eyes, take a deep breath and, for a minute or two, daydream a little about what your perfect life might look like if you could choose any location and any way to earn a living.
What's your geography? What are you wearing? Where are you heading off to for work? Who is with you? Now test it. Imagine it's Sunday night and your weekend is coming to an end. Do you feel dread or are you excited for the week ahead?
Right. Back to reality. Life isn't a fantasy and no matter where we are and what we do, our lives aren't free of problems. But that doesn't mean many of us can't do a better job of imagining a better life for ourselves and our families and then taking the leap to actively change course. So often we're told to stop dreaming and get on with things, but I believe our dreams are signals from our subconscious higher selves. The time we spend letting our minds wander can, if we're prepared to listen, lead us to build lives that are happier, more fulfilling and filled with opportunity to give back and help others.
I've just returned from an incredible holiday – Nicoya Peninsula in Costa Rica, filled with perfect surf, amazing food and some of the most sensational wildlife and jungle you'll ever see – and of course I found myself drifting off, planning what my dream surf store would look like, or wondering how I could start a vintage recycled sports and resort wear clothing store with locally grown coffee in an idyllic beachfront location.
In between daydreaming, however, it occurred to me that while many of these ideas were just holiday fantasies, the very act of spending time exploring what directions my life might take next is something I only ever do on the rare occasions I'm on vacation. And that seems like a shame.
So without sounding like I've been kidnapped by Gwyneth Paltrow, I'm making time to dream from now on. For me it takes five minutes, my AirPods and a cortado, and I can whisk myself away thinking about what my next steps are and how I could make my life happier and better.
I'd urge everyone to think about making time for this. Spend five fewer minutes glued to CNN or hypnotized by TikTok and instead make space for your real self to suggest a path. If nothing else you'll emerge refreshed but hopefully, in time, you'll begin to really get clear on what it takes to change your path for the better.
This morning, flicking through the draft pages of this issue, I had just such a moment. I've thoroughly interrogated what my own furniture upcycling business might look like (Japanese modern with wild White Lotus style vintage Hawaiian prints) and imagined my take on the incredible Iyoshi Cola (a modern and fresher take on Italy's delicious chinotto).
As our incredible cover stars remind us, it is entirely possible to move your life in whatever direction you choose and, in the process, find satisfaction and joy along the way.