There is nothing like a good full-bodied flavor cup of coffee first thing in the morning to give you that burst of energy to start your day! You look forward to its fresh aroma and flavor to wake up your taste buds, so, none of that bitter, watered down stuff.
Now, imagine waking up in morning to living a full-bodied flavored life instead of a bitter, dull life. Living a joyful life with fulfillment and adventure instead of a tasteless life filled with anger and frustration.
What does life have to do to with coffee?
Well, I am glad you asked. I recently visited a coffee farm in Salento, Colombia where I learned two very important secrets behind a good full-bodied flavored coffee. The next morning, while having my cup of coffee, it got me thinking and I began reflecting on everything I learned. Maybe the view of the mountains around me had something to do with it, but, suddenly, it hit me. An understanding that these are the same two secrets behind creating that good full-bodied flavored life we want. Yup, you can say I was inspired by my cup of coffee! Check this out. You will not look at your next cup of coffee in the same way.
First, it all starts with the quality of the coffee bean.
Coffee beans are the seed of a fruit (coffee cherry) grown in a tree. These trees produce their best beans depending on the conditions, location and richness in soil. These factors along with the way cherries are processed after being picked determine the quality of the coffee bean. What’s really interesting is that before exporting the beans, a manual grading and sorting is done to remove the defective beans and insure that only the finest quality beans are exported. Beans of unsatisfactory size, color, insect damaged or anything else that is unacceptable are manually removed. Talk about having patience!
Second, it is in the Roasting. It is the magical secret to adding aroma and flavor to our cup of coffee.
Coffee beans are exported as “green beans”, unroasted. Roasting (exposing the beans to heat) will cause the “green beans” to change in color, smell, taste and density. The big difference is in the temperature of the heat and the length of time. Over roasting or under roasting will have an impact on the flavor and aroma. There are many varieties, depending on each individual taste:
City Roast (Medium brown)
Vienna Roast (Moderate dark brown)
French Roast (Dark brown with shiny oil)
Italian Roast (Very dark brown and shiny)
The quality of unroasted beans holds all of coffee’s acid, protein and caffeine, but not the taste. It takes heat to spark up a reaction and release its full coffee flavor.
First, it starts with the quality of the seed of life, called the “Real You,” planted inside every one of us.
Although, we have all been given this seed, each one has been handpicked to contain a special, unique talent unlike no other. In order for this authentic seed to grow and produce the best quality of life, we must ensure that it’s properly cultivated. Just like the seed of the fruit (coffee cherry), you must not compromise on keeping the conditions, environment and soil healthy for growing that unique, authentic Real You. Doing so will tamper with having a joyful and meaningful quality of life. Dig up that soil and create the ideal environment to recognize and revive your interests, strengths or unique talent.
To really get that authenticity to ripen, involves expressing yourself and being honest about who you are.
It requires a special tool known as courage because you are opening yourself and exposing your raw, vulnerable self to others. In doing so, you will connect with the Real You, strengthen your self confidence and move forward towards growing that seed in reaching your full potential. Keeping negative thoughts and feelings inside will contaminate your authentic seed.
Which takes us to grading and sorting.
You need to remove all the defective seeds that are preventing your personal growth and the Real You to shine through. They come in a variety of sizes, colors and density such as: Other’s beliefs and expectations of you, past experiences, fear, anger, and your own sabotaging thoughts of not being good enough, victimizing yourself, etc. Recognize them, confront them and let them go.
You are worth of only the finest quality seed that is uniquely and authentically your own.
Second, is adding aroma and flavor to your life.
Here is where the magic happens. Roasting your seed to add flavor to the Real You according to your own individual taste. For a medium roast, enjoy being in the present moment, be spontaneous and use all your senses. See different places, taste different foods, smell and stay connected to nature, feel different textures and temperatures, listen to music and different sounds around you. Live a little messy, laugh every day and find a creative way to add flavor to every given moment and life experiences.
When you are faced with a challenge or adversity, sometimes the heat seems unbearable. Just like the coffee grain that gets better in the face of heat, a dark roast will release your finest flavor and aroma to see it as an opportunity to keep your seed growing.
For a very dark roast, keep the heat going a little longer and spark up some adventure by doing something you’re afraid of. Learn different things to get outside of your comfort zone. Whatever it is, remember, the roasting process is a long and gradual one that requires patience. It takes time, accept and learn from every mistake. Giving this time is what will add the optimum, exotic full-bodied flavor to the Real You and stimulate your unique talent.
As you begin cultivating and adding flavor to your seed of life, keep in mind that what you really want is the quality of life, not the “cup”. Just like the cup doesn’t define the quality of coffee, external factors will not define the quality of life. If you focus on having the fanciest and most expensive cup, you will never achieve to savor and enjoy life. Here’s a short story that best describes this analogy.
I am off to do some roasting of my own. There is something I have been putting off for a while because of my fear. So, I am going for a Very Dark Roast and add some flavor with adventure! I will definitely let you know how it turns out. How about you?
As you savor your next cup of coffee, think about the choices you can make to wake up every morning and savor a full-bodied flavor cup of LIFE!
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