What British bakers taught me about life

Over the past few months I’ve become enamored of the British Baking Show. There’s just something relaxing about watching them kneading and mixing and activating gluten. Whenever the pressure starts to build, the camera always cuts to someone enjoying a cuppa, the upper lip stiff as can be.

I was talking to a friend about the show (okay, I’ve talked to ALL of my friends about it) and its appeal. It’s not the baked goods (all of which I could never eat…boohoo!). It isn’t their accents (although that’s kind of nice). And it isn’t because I have nothing better to do (because I DO!).

The reason I love that show is because of the people.

Sure, they’re in competition to win the crystal cake stand at the end of the season. But they don’t undercut, backstab, or create unnecessary drama. In fact, they’re helpful, encouraging, and pretty chill.

When one of their competitors’ cakes falls flat, they have a sympathetic nod. When another receives good marks for their meringue, they share a sincere smile. They cheer each other on and commiserate over failure.

We can learn a thing or two from those baking Brits.

  • When the pressure’s on, take a breath. Maybe even grab a cup of tea. As an English born friend once told me, “There’s nothing so bad a cup of tea can’t fix”. My favorite calming tea is honey vanilla chamomile.
  • Never resent someone else’s success. Instead, celebrate with them. You’ll get your turn soon enough and you’ll want them to be happy for you, too. Besides, it’s just better to live life without bitterness.
  • Never rejoice in someone else’s failure. Nobody becomes a better person by taking part in a schadenfreude party (delight in the misfortune of others). In fact, people who do usually end up being lonely and intolerable. Instead, offer some mercy, a little encouragement, and a cookie. Everybody likes cookies when they’re down in the dumps.
  • Kindness is usually a good choice. Kindness offers to help. It desires the best for others. It values friendship over winning. And, if nothing else, it does your soul good.

And, above all else, it never hurts to have a good recipe for something yummy.

8 Comments on “What British bakers taught me about life

  1. I so agree with everything in this! I love their attitudes toward one another, too. It is absolutely refreshing. Dear little bakers!!


  2. My daughter loves that show! I may have to check it out, based on your glowing review. Thanks, Susie!


  3. Yes! Exactly This! It is best, sweetest competition and I love your insight.

    No need for drama, be still and know!


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