“Happiness is not something that comes to us when every problem is solved and all things are perfectly in place, but in the shining silver linings that remind us the light of day is always there, if we slow down enough to notice.”Brianna Wiest
It occurred to me recently that, no matter what, it seems we’re never satisfied. We strive so hard to achieve one thing – but, once we do, we immediately become transfixed upon what’s next.
Don’t get me wrong, there’s nothing wrong with having goals and wanting to continually improve yourself, but I do believe that this can be taken to an unhealthy extreme. Surrendering to the lessons my life has been teaching me the past several years is helping me to realize the importance of creating a healthy balance.
Take my morning coffee, for instance. For years, I have been trying to find a healthier alternative to the sugar laden, whip cream topped lattes that I have grown to know and love. One that I enjoy as much as these dessert equivalent treats. Through repeated attempts and multiple fails, I have finally discovered that I prefer a light roast coffee or espresso. I’ve graduated through multiple “levels”, so to speak, decreasing cup size, withholding the whip, decreasing flavor syrups to half, and eventually eliminating them altogether. I now opt for ordering a “tall, coconut milk latte, using blonde espresso roast”. No cream, no sugar, no flavor syrups, no whip. And it actually is my preferred coffee drink when “on-the-go”.
When enjoying a cup at home, or brewing my coffee to take to work, I use a light roast coffee and carefully measure out a single serving of brown sugar oatmilk coffee creamer. It’s non-dairy and contains just a few grams of sugar, so it’s a healthier alternative to the dairy based, high sugar content, and oil laden counterparts sold in grocery stores worldwide. But the delicate sweetness and comforting texture that this option adds to my morning brew is something that I have grown to love and look forward to. It’s my morning treat, and I savor every sip. I limit my intake to just one cup – sometimes two on a lazy, Sunday morning.
Looking back, I’ve come such a long way, improving with this particular morning routine. Nonetheless, I’m continually looking to improve even further. So, there I was, standing in the refrigerated section of Fresh Thyme last Friday, reading more labels on “superfood” coffee creamer options. They outrank my current creamer on nearly every ingredient level, so I decided upon two flavors that I was interested to try – cinnamon and vanilla.
I went to bed that night, feeling like a kid again. Growing up, my mom used to let me pick out my favorite cereal at the grocery store. That’s how she got me to go to bed at night – by promising me that, when I wake up, I’d get to have my “Lucky Charms” or “Cocoa Puffs”. Now, as an adult, this is literally how I feel going to bed at night… excited to wake up in the morning, and enjoy my favorite cup of coffee.
Imagine my disappointment when, the very next morning, I tried the vanilla creamer and cringed at the smell, as well as, the taste. I immediately dumped it out. I brewed another cup, this time adding the cinnamon creamer. Same result. On the third attempt, I mixed them both together. I’ve always loved a good cinnamon vanilla flavor combination – but, NOPE! Not this time. In order to simply tolerate this “superfood combination” in my coffee, I had to add TWO servings of each flavor blend, which literally calculated to more overall sugar content than a single serving of my oatmilk coffee creamer – and I still didn’t love the taste or find comfort in its texture.
Long story, short? Totally not worth it to me.
I’m a big fan of the “when you know better, do better” concept… but I don’t believe in sacrificing anything that you truly love, for something that you never will.
In regards to my morning coffee, I am done with searching for more. I’ve decided that this morning brew is something to be savored, not suffered through… and I’m learning that the same should be true for my run.