Time for a Cool Change

Have you felt emptiness in your life lately? Something seems amiss despite having gone ahead in life? Perhaps, it’s time for a cool change.

In 1979, the Australian pop/rock group Little River Band released the song “Cool Change” which turned out to be a monster hit. The Australian Performing Right Association included it in its list of the top 30 Australian songs of all time.

Almost four decades later, the song still resonates to me. Having stood the test of time, its message is as timely and relevant today as it was when released. And I’m sure for the years to come.

If there’s one thing in my life that’s missing
It’s the time that I spend alone
Sailing on the cool and bright clear water

Sailing on a cool and bright clear water

Photo by Math via unsplash.com

Lots of those friendly people
They’re showing me ways to go
But I never want to lose their inspiration

Time for a cool change
I know that it’s time for a cool change
And now that my life is so prearranged
I know that it’s time for a cool change

We have felt that inexplicable feeling of discontentment and inadequacy at some point in our lives. Despite of our achievements, material possessions, a supportive family and circle of friends – we yearn for that “one thing”. Even so with people who lack these things and attributes! Regardless of social status and standing, almost everyone has gone through or is currently having this dilemma.

I guess this can be attributed to the monotony of daily living which drives us to boredom. Consequently, we cease to live as human beings with the predictable cycle of activities we do. We go through the same routine year in and year out.

London_TheStrand

Photo credit: Jet Nepomuceno

Also, the innate desire to acquire wealth and lust for fame and power may be contributing factors. Most people nowadays are obsessed with the latest trend in fashion, cars, electronic gadgets and a whole gamut of other things. The crass consumerism that pervades our society may cause us to lose our footing and sense of direction. Oftentimes, we take for granted and forget life’s simple pleasures.

London_OxfordStreet

Photo credit: Jet Nepomuceno

It is a common expectation in any culture, I believe for one to receive a good education, have a secure job or stable business, be financially well-off, then settle down and raise a wonderful family. A “prearranged” life where one can live comfortably but may be devoid of challenges. This mindset is now under heavy criticisms from some liberal thinkers and adventurous souls. They scoff at the 9-5 life and avoid it like a plague. As someone puts it bluntly, “we work, pay the bills and die.”

 Well, I was born in the sign of water
And it’s there that I feel my best
The albatross and the whales, they are my brothers

It’s kind of a special feeling
When you’re out on the sea alone
Staring at the full moon like a lover

Full Moon

Photo by Ganapathy Kumar via unsplash.com

I’ve never been romantic
And sometimes I don’t care
I know it may sound selfish
But let me breathe the air
Yeah, yeah
Let me breathe the air

We need to take stock of our lives and reflect on our priorities. Life’s lessons can be discovered and learned by spending more time in communion with nature. It doesn’t have to be in the seas alone. In the mountains, woods, caves and deserts – everywhere nature has to offer. We can meditate and focus more in solitude or with our partner or family amidst nature and its wonderful creatures. It is about going back to the basics and getting away from the hustle and bustle of life. Slow down, relax and chill. Making positive changes and undergoing a new lifestyle will give one that breath of fresh air. The excitement that’s been sorely missing will make life more meaningful.

Communing with Nature

Photo by Kalen Emsley via unsplash.com

Living in a hectic world with its trappings, the highly competitive rat race and daily routine can take their toll on our lives which lead us to stress, apathy and even depression.

How about making some changes? Trying something new? Why not pursue a passion that you kept putting off? Maybe a new hobby or interest? A new skill or sport? Maybe you want to learn a new language?

Greenwich Park

Photo credit: Daryl Valenzuela

If you’re stuck in a job you don’t want, why not change career? Probably you’re experiencing a spiritual vacuum in your life? Maybe you want to do volunteer jobs? Do you want to travel and explore the world?

Maybe an unpleasant experience in the past continues to haunt you? Let go of your ghosts and learn to forgive and forget! Maybe you’re in a broken relationship? Make amends, reconcile with and love your enemies!

Have a new lease in life! Get out of the shell! Leave your comfort zone! Learn to conquer your fear and face challenges, take risks and be the best you can be! People in their deathbeds regret about not the things they have done, but over the things they have not done.

Mountain Top

Photo by Joseph Argus via unsplash.com

It doesn’t matter whatever your age is – whether you’re barely in your teens or in your golden years. All of us are equal in the playing field as long as we give our best shot. Also, we do not have to wait for the dawn of a new year to introduce and embrace changes in our lives. It is high time to act now as tomorrow or next year may be too late.

During spring and summer of last year, I came across these articles which made me pause and wonder:

Article 1

Article 2

Article 3 

These three articles revived my interest in travel. My wife and I share the same passion for travelling but it has been an on-off thing because of work and family commitments. I started following the sites and blogs of the articles’ authors and found out that travelling full-time can be sustainable and can be a career as well. That was a breath of fresh air to me. One thing leads to another and these discoveries opened the floodgates for more inspiration as I learned of other travel bloggers/writers and their adventures and I began following them too.

Inspired

Photo credit: Daryl Valenzuela

This year and the past one have been fairly good to my family in terms of travelling. We’ve been to destinations we have never been before and we hope we can carry on and visit more countries in the years to come. Our teenage son has also developed an interest for travels and we love to discover and explore new places, local or abroad, together as a family.

Iceland

Now after dilly-dallying for over a year, I am giving travel blogging a go. Number-crunching comes in handy but not with writing. I am not sure what will be the outcome but it gives me comfort that at least I tried. Definitely, I do not want to wake up every morning and regret for the rest of my life for not trying. Life is full of possibilities and unexpected surprises. I believe opportunities will open up to those who seek and chase them.

Three Simple Rules in Life

Shared from facebook.com/positiveoutlooks

How about you? Why not do that “one thing” which excites you? Go for it as no one will do it for you! It’s only you who needs to make that first step. Make your move now; otherwise you’ll be stuck in the same place and situation. Don’t be afraid to fail – it’s better to have tried and fail than not have tried at all.

Time for a cool change? Yes it is!

Featured photo by Danka_Peter via unsplash.com

38 thoughts on “Time for a Cool Change

  1. The Spirited Sloth

    Thanks for the in-depth and really thought-provoking post.
    It has always bothered me, from being expected to pick a path the second I started high school to being thought of as reckless for pursuing the things I’m passionate about.
    The most unhappy people I know are the ones who “did it all right”.

    1. Ash Post author

      It’s old-age tradition to expect people to follow a certain “path” and be branded as rebels for not sticking to it. But if pursuing your passion is what will make you a better and happier person, then go for it by all means.

  2. amer

    What a beautiful and inspiring post. You’re right if you don’t like what you do, change.. There’s no age to follow your dreams. Definitely, you’re going to be an amazing travel blogger. Good luck!

    1. Ash Post author

      One’s life will be a misery doing things he’s not happy about. The good thing is it’s not too late to change! Thanks for your nice words. All the best to you!

  3. Lara Dunning

    Sometimes I think it is hard to discover what your passion is. There can be things that interest you, but to be so passionate about it that you want to wake up doing it can be hard for someone to figure out. I know I was late in the game to finding my way back to writing. I wrote a lot in my youth, but I also liked geology and anthropology and invested myself in those endeavors. But, now that I am writing and traveling, I can’t imagine doing anything else.

    1. Ash Post author

      I believe part of growing up is having different passions in life. As years go by and for some reasons, we abandon some of them and stick to what’s really close to our hearts. Like going back to our first love as in your case.

  4. Luca

    Well, sometimes it’s hard to focus on changes when you’re into the mechanism. And it’s even more difficult if you’re in a serious relationship and you can’t just leave your partner alone for months while you enjoy what YOU want to do. It’s not even being afraid to fall, it’s something you really need to think if it’s worth doing because of the situation you’re living.

    1. Ash Post author

      I reckon you’re speaking from your personal experience. I think part of having a good relationship, aside from pursuing your common interests, is sharing and have your partner experience what you enjoy and vice versa. You or your partner may discover unexpected surprises that you end up enjoying the same passion. I can feel you and I wish the best for both of you.

  5. Brian

    I’m from the United States. Land of Consumerism. I was born in 1979, but never heard of that song. Although I’m not proud of this, the only Aussie bands I know of are Jet & AC/DC. A great Canadian man once said “enough is enough and it’s time for a change.” He died tragically a year later!

    1. Ash Post author

      Men at Work and Savage Garden are a couple of other Aussie bands I like. Sorry for that chap but not all who adopt changes in their lives suffer the same fate as him. In fact, most became better and happier persons. Therefore, it’s an isolated case.

  6. Carrie @ Two Small Potatoes

    Oh Lonesome Loser
    how I yearn for Australia
    but It’s A Long Way There.
    It’s Not a Wonder
    in the land down under
    Take Me Home, God I swear.

    So clearly I’m no poet, but a good one would have a field day with their song titles! Can’t believe I’ve never heard of this band. Any chance you like Dr. Hook & the Medicine Show? Maybe it’s just the ’70s rock band feel, but they remind me of them a bit.

    I love the positive message in this blog! Well said.

    1. Ash Post author

      Nice try, you should have a go at poetry! I grew up in the 70’s so there’s no chance I haven’t listened to Dr. Hook although I would say that I’m not “hooked.” A couple of other Aussie bands I like are Men at Work and Savage Garden.

      Thanks for the kind words!

  7. Swati & Sam

    This is an extremely thought provoking post. A lovely write-up indeed. It is true, we need to take stock of our lives and live life to the fullest. And traveling is the best way to do that.

    1. Ash Post author

      Thanks! Although there are other people who do not enjoy travels and yet are happy with their lives. People have different passions so we have different avenues to being happy and living life to the fullest.

  8. Wanderlust Vegans

    We’ve definitely felt the need for a change a few times in our lives. We moved from Canada to the UK for something different. Being just a consumer can’t be satisfying for anyone; everyone is looking for purpose whatever that may be.

    1. Ash Post author

      We shouldn’t be trees whose roots remain in one place, instead we should be birds whose wings will take us to places far and near. I heard of people doing volunteer works and they’re happy and satisfied finding purpose in their lives. It’s about being able to serve and not just being served.

  9. Joanna

    Unfortunately we are not able to do what we want whenever we want. We can’t be truly free, unless we leave behind the society. I am trying to divide my adult life responsabilities with my freedom time. Because my responsable life finances and allows me to have my freedom. It’s like a cycle but at least I am doing something for myself every year.

    1. Ash Post author

      There’s time for everything and I believe having the freedom to decide and pursue the best for us is life’s greatest gift.

  10. Parnashree Devi

    Such a thoughtful article. I completely agree with you. What excites me is to meet new people across the world during my trip. It not just gives me an opportunity to explore a new prospective about life , but it also gives me the rare opportunity to exchange my thoughts and take new ideas.

    1. Ash Post author

      Thanks for the kind words. It excites me to interact with people around the world through this blog. What more with meeting people and exchanging ideas and viewpoints up close and personal? Indeed, it’s an exciting and wonderful learning experience!

  11. Emma

    Not a band I’ve ever heard of but have just plugged them into my Spotify and am loving them. Love the lyrics too – very poignant. The photos that you’ve chosen match the song really well. Love that london one – reminds me of home!

    1. Ash Post author

      Thank you so much! May I introduce you to a couple of other Aussie bands I like – Men at Work and Savage Garden?

  12. Laura

    Thanks for the words of introspection and inspiration! Pursuing passion can be a scary thing, especially when we’re taught to be “productive” from a young age, and passions come secondary if at all. I’m frequently surprised and inspired by the community of travel bloggers, and their positive take on life and work, making a dream job into a reality!

    1. Ash Post author

      You’re right about pursuing passion. However, I knew of people putting and pursuing their passions first, conquering fear and having the time of their lives. I’ve never experienced drawing inspiration before than from the community of travel bloggers. Proud to be part of it and I hope all those positive outlooks will rub on me and inspire others as well!

  13. Tatum Skipper

    This article resonates with me because this is the whole vision of my blog. Not to settle for mediocracy in your life. It literally kills me knowing that people are okay with just being okay the rest of their life. Sitting there in a job they hate, in a relationship with someone they don’t love and reproducing just so their offspring can do the same thing. I opened my eyes in college, dropped out actually because I wanted to show people you don’t have to live the norm or have a degree to be happy or successful! Great post!

    1. Ash Post author

      As I’ve written in this post, society and conventional thinking expect us to go through a “prearranged” life where one can live comfortably but may be devoid of challenges. You’re one of those liberal thinkers and adventurous souls who have chosen to go against this tradition. I tip my hat to you and wish you nothing but the best! Cheers!

  14. Fran Opazo

    Wow this just hit at the perfect time. I just arrived home after 8 months travelling and I feel so akward. It the same feeling every time I come back. But as you say, it’s time to do something new, something that inspires me instead of laying in a corner thinking about those sunny days in Vietnam. Great article.

  15. Ash Post author

    I’m happy to know that this post is making an impact on you. All the best whatever that “something new, something that inspires” you is. Cheers!

  16. Stefano uTravelShare.com

    Very inspiring post Ash and totally agree with you… I don’t like laying always in the same place for long time or for the rest of my life, I don’t feel satisfied to live a life like that. So It’s always time to do something new and time to do what you really want, something that can really inspire you, meet new people and get know about new culture. I feel good only when I travel and I push myself out of my Comfort zone 🙂

    1. Ash Post author

      Cool! As one popular quote puts it, “Travel as much as you can. As far as you can. As long as you can. Life’s not meant to be lived in one place.”

  17. Pia

    You’re so right. I had/ made this change about three years ago when I travelled the first time ever just by myself. Because I didn’t want to wait anymore for anyone who might have time to travel with me. It easy the best decision in my life so far…

    1. Ash Post author

      Congrats for making that decision in your life. It may be daunting but liberating and I guess the challenges you faced made your life more meaningful.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *