One Step at a Time

I take my cup of coffee seriously. I like to buy small batches of locally and recently roasted coffee. I splurged on a burr grinder (it is easy to use, grinds the coffee evenly and therefore captures “the volatile flavors and aromatics concentrated inside” the bean, to quote an article in the New York Times discussing why to invest in a burr grinding). On weekends, for a treat, I use a Bialetti expresso maker and have an Americano (expresso with a little bit of hot water) in a nice cup and saucer instead of the everyday mugs of the work week.

On most days I make my coffee using a French press. I accidentally cracked the glass while washing it one morning. The replacement I got works fine but the bottom metal plunger does not quite properly align with the slender rod connecting it to the silver cap on the top of the press. Each day I found myself struggling and fidgeting to get it all situated correctly inside the carafe.   

I occurred to me one morning that I was making it harder by keeping the plunger and the cap together, trying to do it all in one step. It was so much easier to work with just the plunger, and then as I slid it down inside the glass, the cap followed into place without any resistance at all.

This simple guideline, taking one step at a time or making incremental changes as opposed to doing everything all at once, helps reduce feeling unnecessarily overwhelmed in my life at large. For example, I am contemplating some big upcoming changes. I will be moving out of a loft I am renting and into my condo, and I am also looking for a new work space to rent. To do them both at the same time doesn’t make sense now, but for some reason I was considering doing them both in the same month. And how I imagine something going does not always match the actual experience of living it out. Better to make one change, evaluate the new landscape and adjust, and then continue to tweak as I go.

With all this talk about coffee (and in honor of today being Friday), I think I’ll pull out the Bialetti and kick off the weekend with a little brew…in a pretty cup and saucer, of course.