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5 Reasons to Keep Our Wine (Life) Glass Half Full

5 Reasons to Keep Our Wine (Life) Glass Half Full
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The Wine Glass is how we hold (and behold) our lives on our journey. And keeping it half full or half empty (abundance vs scarcity) leaves room for the good stuff that is yet to come.

So let’s have some fun with this “wine-life” analogy and brush up on our Sommelier skills along the way and maybe even apply it to our living.

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Sommelier

     1. Creating our own “wine cellar”.

    The wine we put in our basement requires some planning. We check our budget. We make decisions on white, red, rose, sparkling wines, and even throw in some after dinner liqueurs. There are many types of wine categories but our wine stocks usually contain table wines (with meals and Hors d’oeuves) as well as cooking wines, Sherrys, and Ports. Do your homework and know your wine terms. Go here to know your wine types by region, grape, and type.

    The things we put in our “life cellar” will also require some planning. Our relationships, our career, our spirituality, our lifestyle, and our health style all contribute to what we do to and for ourselves. We can make our life as purposeful as our wine cellar.

     2. Creating our meal to pair with our wine.

    The wine and meal pairing can be done either way. Do we reverse engineer the meal by picking the wine and then designing a meal around it? Or do we decide on our meal items first and then go find the perfect wine pairing to compliment the flavors of our meal? Well, go ahead and try them both! Either way, you need to know what you want (and what you have) to create the result you desire.

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    The life pairing requires that you also know what you want (and what you have) to create the desired result. But the challenge is to stop reaching for other people’s goals and dreams. They are not you. Our genetics and environmental experiences make each of us a one-of-a-kind creation requiring a one-of-a-kind life-plan. Our decision needs to be our decision!

    3. Let the wine “breathe”.

    Our wine needs to breathe so decanting it allows the oxygen to bring the wine alive. For older wines it also allows the sediment to “settle”. Then by pouring it into a glass half full, it can continue to breathe and will unlock the aroma and bouquet that hints of vanilla, berries, nuts,  roses, or countless other earthly delights!

    Our life needs to breathe as well. Our day-to-day life is full of saying “yes” to too many things that suck the oxygen out of us, so that we can’t breathe and fully live our lives. Maybe we need to plan each day half full and leave room for the rest.

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    4. Enjoy the pairing and take in the experience.

    The wine (if paired correctly) should connect everything during and after the dinner. The food, the wine, the company, the conversation, and the experience are many times the beginnings of great memories.

    Our life (if paired correctly) can also connect ourselves to our passions and dreams. Having space and purposeful planning can create the right environment for you to thrive and “breathe”.

    5. Design your future menus with the key learnings of your past wine pairings.

    What wine discoveries did you experience? What pairing ideas do you now have for wines and foods to prepare? And who do you want to include on your journey?

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    What life pairing discoveries have you learned? Are you becoming the person you want to be? Are your dreams yours? Does it feel right?

    Make room for the good stuff such as more wine, aromas and bouquets, and even swirling the wine to enhance the flavor.  My French-born father, Roger Voisin, many times took peaches, raspberries, strawberries, or pears and dropped them into his half filled wine glass after dinner. He cut up some Camembert or Brie (he loved the soft cheeses), added a piece of French bread and had that for his dessert. The conversations that usually followed were full of life, love, and reflections on the good things in life. He made room for the good stuff!

    Do the same with your “life-glass” – unexpected experiences, conversations with like-minded people, reflections of the moment, a sunset cloud formation, anything you might discover in your day-to-day life. Keep working and your future will mature into a life half-full!

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    Featured photo credit: Wines glass half full via farm8.staticflickr.com

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    Last Updated on July 21, 2021

    The Importance of Reminders (And How to Make a Reminder Work)

    The Importance of Reminders (And How to Make a Reminder Work)
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    No matter how well you set up your todo list and calendar, you aren’t going to get things done unless you have a reliable way of reminding yourself to actually do them.

    Anyone who’s spent an hour writing up the perfect grocery list only to realize at the store that they forgot to bring the list understands the importance of reminders.

    Reminders of some sort or another are what turn a collection of paper goods or web services into what David Allen calls a “trusted system.”[1]

    A lot of people resist getting better organized. No matter what kind of chaotic mess, their lives are on a day-to-day basis because they know themselves well enough to know that there’s after all that work they’ll probably forget to take their lists with them when it matters most.

    Fortunately, there are ways to make sure we remember to check our lists — and to remember to do the things we need to do, whether they’re on a list or not.

    In most cases, we need a lot of pushing at first, for example by making a reminder, but eventually we build up enough momentum that doing what needs doing becomes a habit — not an exception.

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    From Creating Reminders to Building Habits

    A habit is any act we engage in automatically without thinking about it.

    For example, when you brush your teeth, you don’t have to think about every single step from start to finish; once you stagger up to the sink, habit takes over (and, really, habit got you to the sink in the first place) and you find yourself putting toothpaste on your toothbrush, putting the toothbrush in your mouth (and never your ear!), spitting, rinsing, and so on without any conscious effort at all.

    This is a good thing because if you’re anything like me, you’re not even capable of conscious thought when you’re brushing your teeth.

    The good news is you already have a whole set of productivity habits you’ve built up over the course of your life. The bad news is, a lot of them aren’t very good habits.

    That quick game Frogger to “loosen you up” before you get working, that always ends up being 6 hours of Frogger –– that’s a habit. And as you know, habits like that can be hard to break — which is one of the reasons why habits are so important in the first place.

    Once you’ve replaced an unproductive habit with a more productive one, the new habit will be just as hard to break as the old one was. Getting there, though, can be a chore!

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    The old saw about anything you do for 21 days becoming a habit has been pretty much discredited, but there is a kernel of truth there — anything you do long enough becomes an ingrained behavior, a habit. Some people pick up habits quickly, others over a longer time span, but eventually, the behaviors become automatic.

    Building productive habits, then, is a matter of repeating a desired behavior over a long enough period of time that you start doing it without thinking.

    But how do you remember to do that? And what about the things that don’t need to be habits — the one-off events, like taking your paycheck stubs to your mortgage banker or making a particular phone call?

    The trick to reminding yourself often enough for something to become a habit, or just that one time that you need to do something, is to interrupt yourself in some way in a way that triggers the desired behavior.

    The Wonderful Thing About Triggers — Reminders

    A trigger is anything that you put “in your way” to remind you to do something. The best triggers are related in some way to the behavior you want to produce.

    For instance, if you want to remember to take something to work that you wouldn’t normally take, you might place it in front of the door so you have to pick it up to get out of your house.

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    But anything that catches your attention and reminds you to do something can be a trigger. An alarm clock or kitchen timer is a perfect example — when the bell rings, you know to wake up or take the quiche out of the oven. (Hopefully you remember which trigger goes with which behavior!)

    If you want to instill a habit, the thing to do is to place a trigger in your path to remind you to do whatever it is you’re trying to make into a habit — and keep it there until you realize that you’ve already done the thing it’s supposed to remind you of.

    For instance, a post-it saying “count your calories” placed on the refrigerator door (or maybe on your favorite sugary snack itself)  can help you remember that you’re supposed to be cutting back — until one day you realize that you don’t need to be reminded anymore.

    These triggers all require a lot of forethought, though — you have to remember that you need to remember something in the first place.

    For a lot of tasks, the best reminder is one that’s completely automated — you set it up and then forget about it, trusting the trigger to pop up when you need it.

    How to Make a Reminder Works for You

    Computers and ubiquity of mobile Internet-connected devices make it possible to set up automatic triggers for just about anything.

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    Desktop software like Outlook will pop up reminders on your desktop screen, and most online services go an extra step and send reminders via email or SMS text message — just the thing to keep you on track. Sandy, for example, just does automatic reminders.

    Automated reminders can help you build habits — but it can also help you remember things that are too important to be trusted even to habit. Diabetics who need to take their insulin, HIV patients whose medication must be taken at an exact time in a precise order, phone calls that have to be made exactly on time, and other crucial events require triggers even when the habit is already in place.

    My advice is to set reminders for just about everything — have them sent to your mobile phone in some way (either through a built-in calendar or an online service that sends updates) so you never have to think about it — and never have to worry about forgetting.

    Your weekly review is a good time to enter new reminders for the coming weeks or months. I simply don’t want to think about what I’m supposed to be doing; I want to be reminded so I can think just about actually doing it.

    I tend to use my calendar for reminders, mostly, though I do like Sandy quite a bit.

    More on Building Habits

    Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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    Reference

    [1] Getting Things Done: Trusted System

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