My friend Tomi and I met up for lunch, having not caught up properly for a few years. We spoke a lot and during our conversation, he told me that he was really enjoying cooking. It wasn’t just about the food, it was the whole process, from buying the ingredients to preparing the kitchen, to chopping all the way through to clearing up at the end, putting everything away.
So often are we focused on the outcome, that we rush our way through the process. Just hearing him talk about how he appreciated every part of the process was meditative. Taking the time for each part was as important as eating the food itself.
A good reminder to be mindful in what we do. Easier said than done as we’re trying to finish something off, hoping for an outcome. The thing is, we typically cannot always predict the outcome, of course, we do have partial control over what happens, but what we can do is work on the process. So why not enjoy that in the meantime.
Focusing on the process also takes pressure off the outcome. It allows more room for experimentation, trying out different things along the way. What came to mind when I spoke to him was these Japanese Zen sand gardens. Starting with a blank slate of sand, meditatively producing a form in the sand and then later raking it down for another time.
From writing blogs to making a cup of tea, where can you appreciate the process?