In a previous blog I mentioned how I was trying the live the phrase ‘focus and finish’ to keep myself from half-done tasks and needless injuries. It is hard because I am highly distracted (insert “squirrel!” joke here) but I’ve remembered it this long, so hopefully it becomes a habit. And I know that our brain cannot focus on more than one thing at a time; we toggle between them inefficiently. However, steeping tea just begs for multi-tasking.
Green tea steeps for a minute or so. There is no walking away to do something or it will be forgotten and icky. But staring at the clock for an entire minute is boring. I try to zen out watching the steam, breathe more deeply, say a prayer, or do a yoga move. (Practicing ninja moves works well too, though teenagers in the house may not take your seriously for the rest of the day.)
Black tea steeps longer at 4ish minutes, but Earl Grey is finicky because the bergamot flavor can become bitter (bitterize?) if over-brewed, so I keep that to only 3ish minutes. Yet chai should be steeped longer to get the most out of the spices, so I do that around 7ish minutes. I usually set myself a task like making a snack to go with the tea, wash a few dishes, fold some laundry. I need to stay in the vicinity of the brewing cup because walking through doorways wipes your mind of all you thought you would remember. I’m not kidding.
Herbal (tisane…let’s go insane!) teas steep for 10ish minutes to get the full flavor and/or medicinal properties. My morning routine usually is to set up my herbal tea, take a shower, and come back to a perfectly brewed cup. Keeping a ceramic lid on it keeps it hot for breakfast.
I enjoy having multiple projects steeping in my mind. My days are filled with routine tasks, like green tea, I need to focus on them to do well. Some to-do’s require black tea brewing like posts for blogs. (Like this one! Yes, I actually think about it ahead of time…) And then there are the herbal tea time projects that require more imagination, like my upcoming TeaPunk Soiree.
(Tea! Food! Games! Prizes! Crafts! More tea! If you are in my area, join me! You can just show up too! Now with more exclamation points!!!)
I am most content when I am busy during the day, knowing my mind is steeping something creative. I don’t need to be aware of what exactly is brewing, but when I sit down to work on the project, all these ideas bubble up, and I know they were gathering steam the whole time just waiting for me to notice them.
I hope you find time to brew a perfect cup of tea with some fantastic ideas.
Move with intention.