Green Tea (as Ritual and Relaxation)

Over the past weeks, ProfHacker has provided tips on how we can take care of ourselves during the busiest times of the semester, this midterm insanity.  We have written about taking naps, balancing our lives, eating well, and trying a mind sweep.

Today another tip:  drinking some green tea.

Some years back, I lived in Japan, and drinking green tea was a daily habit.  I would have it in the morning with breakfast (which consisted of fish and rice), after meals, and in the afternoon while doing household chores.   It was especially welcomed during the cold winter months.  Many people believe that drinking green tea prolongs life by keeping some illnesses at bay; others thought that drinking cups of green tea each day could improve memory and learning ability.  Indeed, many doctors confirm that green tea can lower cholesterol and blood pressure, burn fat, fight heart disease, and can stave off dementia.

Drinking green tea is a good choice if you are tired and feeling overworked.  However, what may be a better choice sometimes is the action of preparing yourself a this drink.  It is easy to walk to the ‘fridge and pull out a soft drink.  But with green tea, there is a preparation ritual that can be soothing.  Heating water in a kettle or a microwave, steeping green tea leaves for some minutes.  Drinking slowly.  In the midst of a hectic and crazed day, a few moments of taking care of yourself can be calming.

Think about the ancient art of the Japanese Tea Ceremony.  It is a slow and precise ritual meant to actualize respect and harmony.  If you need harmony and respect in your own life, maybe a cup of carefully prepared and considered green tea will be beneficial.  If you are unfamiliar with the Japanese Tea Ceremony, take a look below:


You don’t need to don a kimono and preform the ancient tea ceremony ritual on tatami mats, but you can slow down, make some tea, and relax.  Once relaxed and calm, you can complete the work that needs completion.

Do you have a ritual that helps you calm yourself during hectic and stressful periods of your life?  Are there green tea tips you can provide?  Please leave suggestions in comments below.


[Image by Flickr user Kanko' and used under the Creative Commons license.]

Return to Top