When people ask me what makes our matcha different from everyone else's, I often reply, "we like to pause."
It's not the answer anyone expects.
Before I mention anything about using the youngest leaves, not taking shortcuts, striving for zero bitterness, working with people of integrity, and other process-related answers, it seems important to get at the heart of the matter right away.
Our minds are speedy, and they're relentless. They have to be -- we inherited that neural architecture. That constant vigilance is what has allowed our ancestors to live long enough to pass on their genes to us.
It's exhausting. More speediness begets more speediness.
But really: it is possible to get off this train. You just have to hit the pause button.
A purposeful pause is a mini break in the momentum and speed of our mind and our days. Pauses give us the space to reset and re-center, and, when we do, we're more likely to make conscious choices about our work and our lives that are productive, creative, and compassionate. And meaningful.
You needn't set a specific time to pause (though it may be helpful if you do). When your mind pauses for no specific reason, follow it! Allow the silence to expand; try not to quickly fill your mind again with something, anything.
When you sense the presence of this silence, stop what you're doing for a moment and enjoy it. All we will ever have is this present moment. Try to remember this. And sink