There's a new show out on Hulu called 'The Bear.' Have you seen it?
It follows a Michelin chef and his staff as they navigate the struggles of restaurant life.
If you know me, you know I don't binge on tv but this show hit so close to home, I had the episodes on back to back in the background for three days while I worked.
As most of you know, I'm a classically trained chef with two degrees from what was one of the best schools in the country. And in less than three years after school, I'd worked my way up to my dream job.
Working for Azure, a sister to the legendary 3 Star Michelin restaurant: Le Bernardin in New York.
The show triggered something DEEP in my soul.
Emotions flooded my memory.
The adrenaline rush of going to battle every night...
The high-stress environment of perfectly executed works of art...
The feeling of being 'in the weeds' with tickets as far as the eye can see...
And the absolute PRIMAL drive to conquer it all.
Being a chef, a professional, high-level chef, requires a level of not only skill but an attention to detail that addresses everything from plating and flavor combinations to lighting and the sound a plate makes when it's 'dropped' at a table.
The late, great chef, Charlie Trotter, literally wrote the book(s) on how excellence would be maintained in a fine dining restaurant.
Explaining how he would even put tape onto the soles of the serving staff to remove excess lint from the floor. Nothing, and I mean NOTHING, was to take away from the guest's experience of the food.
While these standards may seem a bit extreme to the average person, consider this for a moment...
When you look around your life, how many things distract you from being fully present in the moment?
Are you able to get fully LOST in whatever you're doing or are you constantly pulled away and drained by trying to FORCE yourself to focus?
As a chef would consider removing ALL distractions to focus the guest's attention on the food, are you making that level of commitment to your own goals?
If you have goals sitting in the Land of Someday, perhaps it's time you gave it a shot.
If you're being honest with yourself...
Do you take the time to consider the LITTLE details?
Are you thinking of how the all these pieces fit together?
Do you plan ahead for the BEST performance?
Something I learned from a guy I dated many years ago was the simple act of drying off the bathroom sink after washing my hands.
At first, I thought it was ridiculous.
How 'obsessive' was this need?!?
But best believe, once I started doing it, I noticed a craving to see that type of beauty in more areas of my life.
Excellence in one thing becomes a snowball effect.
The same way a chef would wipe the plate of any smudges or spots before serving, so as not to deter from the experience of the ART on the plate...
Can you imagine how different your life, your mindset, and even your performance would be if you removed EVERYTHING that wasn't supporting your goals from your viewpoint?
If you treated every detail in life like the miracle it truly is?
Crafting your life experience with pure intention?
The late Buddhist monk, Thich Nhat Hanh, once wrote:
“People usually consider walking on water or in thin air a miracle. But I think the real miracle is not to walk either on water or in thin air, but to walk on earth. Every day we are engaged in a miracle which we don't even recognize: a blue sky, white clouds, green leaves, the black, curious eyes of a child—our own two eyes. All is a miracle.”
He believed that to reach enlightenment, we must learn to be PRESENT in every moment.
From washing the dishes...to using the bathroom.
Be IN the moment.
But, most of us are too distracted by overthinking, clutter, worry, and even social media to be HERE NOW.
And THAT is where the shift begins.
What would it take to shut out the world?
To see your life like the GREATEST work of art?
To pay attention to every detail as part of your masterpiece?
And to take pride in making sure that all of the pieces worked together, intentionally, to create it?
You don't have to be a chef to understand this level of excellence.
You simply need to have a curiosity enough to explore HOW your life would change IF you decided to level up the little things.
Try it and let me know how it goes for you.
In the words of the legend, Anthony Bourdain:
“The way you make an omelet reveals your character.”
In other words...
How you do ONE thing is how you do everything.
Consistency really is the KEY to a great and fulfilling life.
To your excellence,
Alida, The Oracle