Everyone needs to take time for a coffee…



Are you a busy person? Sure you are.  If you live in the western world, you are most likely a very busy person.  Allow me to share a conversation with you from the movie, “My life in ruins”.

“Come on. You don’t have a life plan?” -Gloria
How do you plan life?” -Poupi
What?” -Gloria
Come on, we’ll get some coffee and you can talk.” -Poupi
What? We’re working.” -Gloria
Everyone should take the time for a coffee.” -Poupi
That is the typical Greek mentality.” -Gloria

I love how this movie shows the difference between living a life of stress and living life, period.  Gloria was too anxious and concerned about her agenda and interests.  She didn’t take the time to soak in her moments and notice the beauty around her.  She didn’t value quality time with another, nor the interests of others.  She was too focused on how she thought things should be done and on getting them done her way.

Poupi, on the other hand, is a laid back kind of guy.  His value system was completely the opposite of Gloria.  He was a listener and appreciator of people and relationships.  He noticed the moments and beauty of life.  Not once in the film do you see him anxious or frazzled.

I have learned something about cultures, and that is that hot-climate cultures are known to be “relationship oriented” and cold-climate cultures “task oriented”. In my opinion, this is what had influenced their different ways of seeing things and living life.  However, I don’t believe that this difference always existed.  I am of the same mindset as ‘Sarah A. Lanier’ who wrote the book, “Foreign to Familiar; A guide to understanding hot and cold climate cultures”.

“I have a theory that the whole world was at one time much more “hot-climate” and that only with the industrial revolution and the artificial imposition of structured time did that change in certain societies.”

The postindustrial western world has become a place where values such as affluence, the acquisition of things and redeeming time have become more than relevant. However, there is still a hunger within people to connect with others and have relationships. 

A blogger friend, The Culture Monk, is currently on a year-long coffee-house tour across North America in the quest to understand more about western culture and society. It’s worth stopping by and reading what he has to say.

Who do you most relate to – Gloria or Poupi? Do you find yourself too busy to notice and appreciate the beauty and simple things of life? Are you constantly trying to beat the clock and fulfill your schedule?  And how about planning life? Do you think you can ‘plan’ life?  What about unexpected turns of events?  Things that are out of your control? Hmmmmm.

Photo credit: Kelly Sikkema


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26 thoughts on “Everyone needs to take time for a coffee…”

  1. I intentional don’t fill up my daily schedule. Leaving down time for divine and human interruptions. It’s one of the wisest things I’ve ever done. Have a great weekend Staci!

    1. I sooooooo appreciate my quiet times. And need them too. I have to confess though, I have difficulty with human interruptions. Eek. Did I just write that? My husband swears I have Asperger’s syndrome. hahaha
      You have a great weekend too Rita.

  2. Greetings Staci,

    I believe there should be a time for everything. A man who wakes up every day and devotes all his energy and time to his work that he barely knows what’s happening around him, or even, the time he’s supposed to rest, will certainly break down. It’s proven that such a person finds it hard to build or sustain relationships with others.

    Listening or making out time to visit friends doesn’t make a person less human–though there are a few people (busy minds) think it does.

    As much as possible, I try to take Poupi’s approach to life. I won’t punish myself because I want to beat the clock. I’ll do what’s possible within my human limit and give room for interruptions.

    Thanks for this thoughtful post.

    1. Awesome Uzoma. You live in a hot-climate culture, and hot-climate cultures are much more relationship oriented. Cold-climate cultures are task oriented. But, as I stated in my post, I don’t always think that cold-climate cultures were like that. I believe the isolation and individualism probably came about post-industrial.

      So glad you take Poupi’s approach to life. Hey, why not come on over for a coffee. 🙂


      1. Aw, that’s sweet of you. I’d very much love too join you for coffee. Dark coffee would do 😀

  3. Thank you for this thoughtful, and thought-provoking piece, Staci. I am intrigued by the theory of hot- and cold-climate cultures–and not too surprised. I value and aspire to the Poupi worldview, but come from and currently live in a very “Gloria” environment. Connection: so important. By the way, I thought of you today when I was EARLY (say, what?!) for an appointment and wondered if I should try to squeeze another errand in :). Nope. The comparative calm was refreshing and wonderful. Hope you have that, too, my dear. Thanks for all of the inspiration. xo

    1. Hi Chloe. I also am intrigued by the ‘hot-climate/cold-climate’ theory. Actually, there’s a book on it, written by Sarah A. Lanier called, “Foreign to Familiar: A Guide to Understanding Hot – And Cold – Climate Cultures”. I love experiencing other cultures period. I see good, and not-so-good in both.
      I hear you about living in a ‘Gloria’ environment. I also grew up in that. When I was fairly new to living in Brazil, my husband would say to me, “Staci, people are more important than work”. It’s a tough lesson to learn, but oh so true. Sometimes we get our values and priorities all mixed up.
      “I thought of you today when I was EARLY (say, what?!) for an appointment and wondered if I should try to squeeze another errand in :). Nope.”
      –Ohhhhh, I feel honored that you thought about me. I am almost never early (unfortunately). However, I like to blame it on my ADHD (undiagnosed, but I’m scheduling testing.).
      Blessing to you sweet Chloe.

  4. Very interesting post Staci, I come from a hot country and my focus has always been on relating and there is always time for a cup of tea and music 🙂

  5. Great post Staci. I have been guilty of living in a Gloria style environment.
    I find the theory of the hot and cold climate cultures interesting and with more consideration, I’d agree that my experience living in the relative climates has made that true.

    Whenever I have been in the tropics, people are almost ALWAYS late for meetings (Guilty) and whenever attending meetings down south, people are almost ALWAYS on time if not early.

    Interesting stuff…


      1. My lifestyle has fluctuated, depending on the work I am doing mostly.

        A few years ago I had a very stressful position that saw me in the office for about 17 hours of my day. I have been much more disciplined with my work time since then, and careful about the work that I undertake. Hopefully, I will never see myself doing that again.

        #FamilyIsPriority #CaringforMentalHealth #EmotionalWellbeing

      2. *nods* 🙂

        Better times now though..

        sometimes we have to go through stuff to learn the lesson eh.. 🙂


      3. It’s tough when you live in a culture that you can’t really identify with, isn’t it. I come from a ‘Gloria’ culture, and that has effected me somewhat. However, after living in a ‘Poupi’ culture for 12 years now, I really prefer it.
        So sorry to hear about your friends cutie. Maybe you can try and influence them hmmm…

    1. Hey there ML. I have been guilty of both types of cultures. However, living in Brazil for 12 years has helped me see and understand more on this issue. Not to mention, that I’m a YWAM missionary. There’s a book written by Sarah A. Lanier called, “Foreign to Familiar: A Guide to Understanding Hot – And Cold – Climate Cultures”. You can check it out here:
      I think I’m somewhere in between now. However, I’m very guilty of never being early. I’m almost always just a tad bit late, unfortunately. 🙂

  6. I’ve been way more like Gliria for longer than I can remember. Just last week, I made a resolution to become more relationship-oriented–a timely post, for me! I’ve been enjoying the new approach already. 🙂

    1. Spoken like a true Canadian. But it’s great to hear that you made that resolution. My hubby would always tell me, “Staci, people are more important than work”. Glad you’re enjoying it.

  7. I am very much a Gloria-type person, always fighting the constraints of time. Due to my upbringing, I have become too focused on results and therefore have neglected far too many relationships because of this. I really need to find a better balance for the sake of my own happiness and peace of mind.

    1. Oh yes, I think most people from the United Kingdom probably are. Most people from Canada are too. It’s the whole ‘cold climate culture’ thing. I had a tough time sometimes when I first moved to Brazil. It was really difficult for me to respect people that showed up late for things. For me, it was a lack of integrity. I’m more used to it now, but it can still be tough.

      1. Tardiness is unfortunately one of the things that tends to set my annoyance soaring. I have no idea why I am so impatient about so many things but I guess it is because I am part of the ‘instant’ generation whereby we want things and we want them now. Patience is definitely not my strong suit! 🙂

  8. The thing I loved most during my travels in Europe and growing up Middle-Eastern, was how in the afternoon and right after work all the cafes would be filled with people drinking coffee, just simply taking a break from the day…there it was a daily thing to sit with friends at a cafe and have a cup of coffee which I simply loved 🙂

    1. Ohhhhhh, I just got this comment now. I can’t believe it. WordPress is doing this a lot lately. I’m not getting my notifications. I only saw this because I was going through some old posts. So sorry.
      Oh yes, the cafes, sitting around and chatting… I love that too. It’s very much like that in Canada too. Not so much in Brazil. Every time I go to Canada, I make sure I go to coffee shops a lot. Hahaha.
      Thank you so much for your comment and take care.

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