BeFunky_1420-FINAL.jpg copyA Note from the Chef


Most good cooks are masters of the art of reinvention. Why? We have to be. In the kitchen, we quickly learn to expect the unexpected so we also learn how to adapt and find another way. As it turns out, this is a good thing to know if you want to live a peaceful life. So this peaceful kitchen warrior can tell you this…

1. Trust Your Instincts

Cooks are always fussing with recipes. Each time we make something, we want to make it better than the last. We also know that sometimes we can fuss too much and that this usually ends up ruining the dish. This teaches us to trust our instincts.

2. Always Keep Learning

Sometimes we add something new to the mix just to see what happens; just because we’re curious; and this keeps us adventurous and always learning.

3. Be Resourceful

We’re great at finding new uses for things because in a pinch, we’ve had to. And so we learned to be resourceful.

4. Learn to Let Go

When we don’t have an ingredient, we simply substitute it with another. We make due with what we have and hope for the best. So we learn to let go.

5. Get Your Priorities Straight

If we’re missing an essential ingredient, we go get it, or we make something else. This sets our priorities straight.

6. Begin Again

If we try something and it doesn’t work, we begin again. This teaches us that it’s that simple.

7. Learn to Forgive

We understand that sometimes we make mistakes, so we forgive ourselves. And this makes it easier to forgive others too.

 8. Trust Your Mistakes

We’re trained to trust because often our mistakes turn into something delicious.

 9. Envision

We look at a clump of dough and see the bread it will be; and so we learn how to envision.

10. Keep Things Balanced

We learn the importance of balance because every good recipe has it.

11. Don’t Judge

We know not to judge, because some of the ugliest looking things are the most exquisite to eat.

12. Be Generous

We’re inherently generous because we love sharing what we make.

13. Embrace Change

We know that recipes by their very nature are never static, and neither are we; they evolve and change, and so we do too. This brings us peace.

In the kitchen, these simple lessons were repeated to me almost daily, even when I didn’t know they were such. Slowly they began to seep into my awareness and I began to apply them to my life outside the kitchen. And when the unexpected happened there – as it does in every life – sometimes I fell…and the lessons of the kitchen would begin again.

After decades of cooking almost daily, I think I’m finally catching on…

“Life works the same way a recipe does. It’s simply a guide. What we do with it is up to us.”


  1. Elyse Sparkes September 21, 2013 at 7:28 pm - Reply

    I love these peaceful life habits! Simple and straight to the point. I just might print these out. ;) Thanks for a great post Silvia!

    • chefsilvia September 21, 2013 at 7:35 pm - Reply

      Thank you so much Elyse. Sometimes the simplest things are the most powerful

  2. Melissa Burkheimer September 22, 2013 at 3:17 pm - Reply

    Love your end quote. This list is really powerful. Love #8.

    Thanks for your genius!

  3. Julie Marah September 22, 2013 at 11:14 pm - Reply

    Great rules for living a peaceful life Silvia – love that they translate from lessons in the kitchen! Also love your last quote – so true!

  4. September 25, 2013 at 7:39 pm - Reply

    mmmm, I love the be generous one : ) I grew up with my dad, who was a chef, and he always wanted to share his food with everyone! It was fun and beautiful and people flocked to be around him… I love that principle of hospitality and generosity and definitely feel the goodness of its benefits when that is the way I approach my life! thanks for this list. absolutely beautiful!

  5. Lorna September 26, 2013 at 5:48 pm - Reply

    The answers were right under my nose all this time. Hopefully I will transfer my kitchen knowledge to work for me as life knowledge. Thanks Silvia. Insightful as always.

  6. Elise Museles September 26, 2013 at 9:02 pm - Reply

    Silvia, I just wrote a post on life lessons that we can learn in the kitchen, trying to encourage people to not feel stuck or rigid around food & cooking. You put it so beautifully and succinctly. Thanks for always sharing in an impactful and meaningful way.

  7. Adi Maor Siso September 27, 2013 at 1:34 pm - Reply

    Wonderful! Love it!
    It’s amazing what we can learn if we just open our eyes and heart about what’s in front of us.
    I would love to read more of your insights in the future (:

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