I've blogged enthusiastically about tea in the past. I enjoy discovering new varieties and the winter weather in particular makes an ever-ready cuppa almost obligatory.
I've been busy with work projects in the past month or two, so I was surprised to realise how much my caffeine intake has increased, almost imperceptibly. Prior to my intervention, I was drinking perhaps two or three cups of caffeinated tea per day. That may seem like nothing to those of you with a six-coffees-a-day habit, but my body (and mind) is more sensitive than most to caffeine. Three cups per day left me feeling rattled and edgy.
Caffeine, for me, can be good in certain very specific circumstances. It's great when I'm generating ideas -- either for a particular work project or just in general -- but particularly bad when I need to sit down and write (and focus). Caffeine seems to stimulate the randomly associative part of my brain, the one that has me connecting chocolate to fish sentience or making some other strange link.
I've found that when I need to focus, I tend to prefer drinks that are completely caffeine-free. Even my newly-discovered favourite, kukicha or twig tea, comes with a caffeine punch, albeit one that is greatly reduced.
So a few weeks back I instituted a caffeine-only-very-seldom policy. It's working well so far. I feel much better, more focused, less jittery, and when I do choose to drink a cup of chocolate puerh, for example, as I did this morning, one is more than enough. (I've done similar things in the past with salt and sugar and had equally positive experiences.) As always, Beeminder is holding my hand all the way.