This morning I was making a cup of coffee when I was struck with a realisation – truly the simplest things in the world have become detached, and in so doing, some of its true beauty is lost.
It all started with a coffee. I heated up my Nespresso Lattissima touch, and took out the plastic capsule, reached for my mug when I saw my good old French Press – something I’ve not used in months. This made me remember my wife, who just returned from Kenya, had brought me some coffee beans as a gift to me from one of her colleagues. Click – the Nespresso machine went off, beep, the kettle was on. Out came the grinder and the wonderful ceremony began, measuring out the beans, grinding them down, heating up the French Press with boiled water, pouring it out and adding the course grinds, more water, wait, stir, wait, plunge, pour, enjoy. But it was so much more than a cup of coffee.
The process of measuring the beans, the aroma during the grinding, the steeping, that sound when you pour – all were enjoyable, all part of the coffee experience. It made me think about how much we miss in our day to day lives when we trade in simplicity for convenience – filters on photos may enhance a picture, but the true beauty of what could be seen is lost.
Later in the day, I went to listen to a talk by a fantastic marketer (Hillel Fuld). I decided that rather than taking notes on my iPad, having it upload to the cloud through Evernote, and never having the think about it again, I would continue on the same path I took with the first coffee of the day. I grabbed a notepad and pen and headed to the event. What I learned throughout that session was without a doubt ten times more than I would have done had I constantly been looking down at the iPad typing up notes. A doodle here, a few words there, and the pages filled up with invaluable notes and what’s more, I remember far more than I would have done otherwise. I was present, in the moment, and absorbed the information without even trying.
I implore you all, take a moment tomorrow and dial down something simple tomorrow into a purer form, enjoy the experience and take pleasure in the journey. It may take a little longer, but the happiness and appreciation you have for the final product will make it worth it.
Let me know what you tried and any impact you saw in the comments section.