‘The trees that are slow to grow bear the best fruit’ – Molière

Thanks to Richard Bertinet’s Dough, some fantastic flour from Stoate & Sons and a sourdough starter from a former client of mine, we’ve been making our own bread for a few years now. We’ve made wholemeal, brioche, bagels, rye, raisin and caraway but our favourite is probably the straightforward sourdough.

This bread is delicious: the opposite end of the spectrum from sliced white. There is one drawback though: you can’t make it in a hurry. Sure, it only takes about 15 minutes to knead but that’s just the beginning of the process. The natural yeast in the sourdough starter takes time to work its magic and the current cooler temperatures mean that it takes even longer than usual to rise. For a couple of hours, it seems like nothing at all is happening and then you notice that the dough has in fact crept up the sides of the bowl. Some time later, it’s ready to be shaped and to be put on to the baking tray … and then you wait again.

Best bread ever

Sadly blurry photo of the best bread ever

It’s worth the wait though. It looks fantastic and tastes even better. Chewy, flavoursome, and holey, this is bread you want to savour.

I was talking about this with a client  – let’s call her Anna – the other day. When we’re working towards personal and professional goals, we sometimes want the speed and convenience of a sliced white loaf. We think we’d like someone else to do the hard work for us and maybe even provide us with an ‘off the shelf solution’. As  Anna pointed out though, ‘sometimes I think I’d like a quick fix but I know I won’t be satisfied unless I put the effort in myself.’ We worked together to develop her ‘sourdough solution’ and we’re going to celebrate her slow but steady progress towards her goal. She wants to savour her success.

Today’s pebble for your thoughts: if your progress is more sourdough than sliced white, how can you celebrate that progress and stay on track?

What do you think?


Turning over pebbles is the blog of Thinking Space Coaching.

If you’d like to make progress in your work and life, why not email me to see how we could work together?

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