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  • Joy Therese Gomez

6 Ways to Bond with Someone Over Coffee


“Let’s have coffee sometime.”


More or less, this set of words form a statement we casually encounter and even throw around ourselves here and there. It’s one of those expressions that are so normalized to the point where we often forget to take a second look into why exactly people bother to say these words to someone in a handful of situations like say, after having made a new acquaintance or after bumping into someone you haven’t seen in a while.


What can we possibly be implying when we suggest having coffee with someone and vice versa? The answer to this is evidently arbitrary. It can be a lot of things, but we can all probably agree that we suggest having coffee with someone in the hopes of establishing a certain bond with someone in one way or another.


Coffee habits spread like wildfire for one of the main reasons being that having company is just so much better over a cup of coffee. It is that dependable buffer you can turn to whenever you’re interacting with someone. With that point being said, we’ve gathered up the top 6 ways you can bond with anyone over coffee.


Meeting new people


In case you didn’t know, coffeehouses back in the 1800’s were said to have spawned the French revolution;[1] this is on the grounds that coffeehouses served as the breeding ground of heated political discussions that were open to any person of any economic class. Such a phenomenon of the coffeehouse can also be observed in India wherein it was said to be the single most important and Influential mental powerhouse that molded the lives and minds of a whole generation.[2]


The coffeehouse is now typically called the Café and has become a third space. It is a break away from the home and the workplace and that has been observed to be where people can be alone together. Nonetheless, it is also somewhere you shouldn’t be closing any doors.


A whole movement has actually been organized with the ideology of meeting new people and informally networking over coffee; Likemind which is held every third Friday of the month at over 60 countries around the world, are get togethers of creatives and young professionals (that may not necessarily know each other personally) at a local café.[3]


And so, what we’re trying to say is that you can basically initiate your own version of this any time you’re in a café. Just like the what they did in the old days, the familiar and yet open-ended atmosphere of a cafe, can be a convenient setting to step out of your comfort zone and try to strike up a discussion with a new person (if you’re not bothering him/her of course).


It’s safe to say that in a café, the saying ‘don’t talk to strangers’ isn’t something to keep in mind that much.


A better second impression


It is a reflex for most people to ask someone on a coffee date and they’re not to blame. Coffee is a casual and somewhat effortless (except maybe spending a bit of money) way to get to know someone you’ve recently just been acquainted with, as the interaction usually flows smoothly from thereon.


Figuratively speaking, the small talk doesn’t have to stay, well, small; it can develop and expand in every sip. Having coffee allows you to get to know each other in a comfortable manner. As we all know that caffeine can make you seem more energetic and give you a certain buzz, we can infer that this may well be used to make a conversation more fun and animated.


You don’t really need that much of a strategy, staying open and simply being a livelier version of yourself – with the help of coffee–can ultimately leave a better second impression and even leave them wanting to spend more time with you.


Brainstorming and Planning


You’ve probably noticed that most meetings aren’t complete without those white paper cups filled with coffee. These aren’t there for the sheer reason of waking people up, but also, to keep their mind sharp and in the appropriate headspace to map out their visions and plans for the company.


This state of mind and a collective one at that, is especially needed when it comes to making crucial decisions about the future strategies of a company. Rest assured that providing a delightful beverage for those dreary mornings can also help keep the cranky arguments in check.


Nevertheless, consuming coffee whilst planning relatively less serious things like events or vacations can also function accordingly. Being able to come up with a clear-cut and purposeful itinerary for said happenings obviously also involves people attentively working on the same page. Regardless of the differences in preferences, even just the aroma of coffee naturally draws in a moment of shared hope[4] for said plans as it initiates a warm but productive rendezvous.


Coffee break


This one’s probably the most expected, the coffee break, which throughout the years has become a necessity for anyone who’s been even remotely exposed to the daily grind. It is what it is: a well-deserved time out from the hours of hustling to make ends meet.


Of course, you can sip on a cup whilst doing your work; but there’s just something so satisfying about momentarily stepping out of the typically distressing atmosphere of your workplace and only thinking about if you should have it iced or hot.


A coffee break is also more effective if you have your coworkers to take the time out with, as chatting and sometimes even venting out to people who probably share the same struggles as you helps develop relations and almost always come with an instant relief. This break-room tradition is undeniably not complete without an uplifting cup of coffee to help coworkers blow off steam alongside each other and help them recharge for the rest of the day.


Catching up with an old friend


There are those inevitable moments when we bump into or are reunited with someone we knew or go way back with but haven’t really kept in touch with due to certain circumstances. He or she may be from our childhood, a friend from high school, a former coworker, and whatnot-- the list can go on.


Evidently, it can get a little awkward just because it’s not that easy to pick up where you left off with a person you haven’t interacted with in a while. At the spur of the moment, neither of you exactly know what to say or do but if its someone you really clicked with back then, you would want to at least try to do something to rekindle the bond you once had.


This can effectively be done by going back to that common grounds you shared and what better way to do that than to reminisce over the most popular grounds today –coffee.


The laidback and almost homey vibe of chatting over coffee with a certain person is a relaxing way to catch up with someone. Almost instantly, you may find yourself recalling the good old days and touching upon many aspects about each other without the pressure of having to prove anything–just pure free-flowing nostalgia fueled by coffee.


Treating oneself


After being made aware of how coffee literally and figuratively brings people together, of course, we shouldn’t forget that the first person that coffee should immediately help us bond with is ourselves.


Do you remember the first time you tasted coffee? Didn’t it just make you feel a certain type of way? And didn’t you find yourself craving for more?


While we don’t have to verbally ask ourselves if we would like to have coffee sometime, grabbing a cup of it can be something we could consistently reward ourselves with. For those slow weeks, however, we could try to spark up our routine by expanding our coffee horizons and exploring different types of brews or variants.


Ultimately, a good and reliable coffee experience is something to invest in not only for its health and social benefits, but also because it is most often than not, an act of self-care as bringing coffee to the table is a delightful moment of reflection and sitting with ourselves with the occasional company of others.



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References:

· Aziz, Khursheed Kamal. The Coffee House of Lahore, a Memoir 1942-57. Lahore: Sang-e-Meel Publications, 2013. p. 22.

· Hester, Jessica Leigh, and CityLab. "A Brief History of the Office Coffee Break." CityLab. September 29, 2015. Accessed August 3, 2019. https://www.citylab.com/life/2015/09/a-brief-history-of-the-coffee-break/407782/.

· Parker, Scott F., and Michael W. Austin. Coffee: Philosophy for Everyone: Grounds for Debate. Chichester, West Sussex: Wiley-Blackwell, 2011.

· Pendergast, Mark. Coffee Black Puddle Water or Panacea? in Coffee: Philosophy for Everyone: Grounds for Debate. Chichester, West Sussex: Wiley-Blackwell, 2011. P. 12

· Williams, Alex. "That Business Card Won't Fly Here." The New York Times. October 24, 2008. Accessed August 1, 2019. https://www.nytimes.com/2008/10/26/fashion/26likemind.html.


[1] Pendergast, Mark. Coffee Black Puddle Water or Panacea? in Coffee: Philosophy for Everyone: Grounds for Debate. Chichester, West Sussex: Wiley-Blackwell, 2011. P. 12

[2]Aziz, Khursheed Kamal. The Coffee House of Lahore, a Memoir 1942-57. Lahore: Sang-e-Meel Publications, 2013. p. 22.

[3] Williams, Alex. "That Business Card Won't Fly Here." The New York Times. October 24, 2008. Accessed August 1, 2019. https://www.nytimes.com/2008/10/26/fashion/26likemind.html.

[4] Hernandez, Jill. The Existential Ground ff True Community in Coffee: Philosophy for Everyone: Grounds for Debate. Chichester, West Sussex: Wiley-Blackwell, 2011. P. 69

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