Nia M Wardani | A Logbook of Life Discoveries

The Breakfast Dilemma



Should you have breakfast or not

Hi! Good morning!
It's been quite a while I haven’t greet you. Days are rough, as usual. Like all the usual days a teacher has. Every single minute counts.

This might sound strange for people who are not familiar with this profession. Many people think that being a teacher is a very comfortable and relaxed job. My mother does think so. Nothing can be further from the truth. A teacher’s work is defined by each minute they spend with their students. Don’t believe me? Look at our lesson plans. Everything is detailed down into the minutes. The minute the bell rings, you should give yourselves 100 % to your students. You can’t procrastinate, because students are watching you. Forget about all those butterflies flying inside your stomach. Or sudden diarrhea in the morning. If you leave a class, it means other people will be busy substituting for you, or you will not be able to finish all the topics included in the syllabus.

From all the problems that hanged around the teaching profession, what occupied my mind these days, is a very simple problem I called the breakfast dilemma.

My husband and I are both teachers. We got up very early in the morning, but we also left for work very early. We hardly prepared for a nice breakfast. Well, a nice breakfast is a privilege, you know. It is something we can have only on Sundays.

And I think this phenomenon is something very common among teachers around me. Every morning, most of my colleagues open the breakfast bundles once they arrive in the teacher lounge. Mostly buy their bundle from a nearby food stall. Some packed the breakfast they cooked themselves but had no time to have it at home. Some choose to only drink a cup of coffee or tea as breakfast. Some choose to not have any for the day.

While we ask students to have their breakfast before coming to classes, teachers themselves cannot afford the time to have it.

The Importance of Breakfast

4 Reasons Why Breakfast is Important

My husband and I have different points of view about breakfast. While my husband said that it was okay not to have breakfast, I personally feel that my bad mood always visits in the morning when I don't have a proper breakfast. And showing a bad mood to students is absolutely not a good thing. My husband argues that it could be something more related to the problems females have, rather than the breakfast itself. I disagree.

I dig into more information about how breakfast can affect one’s mood in the morning. And wala! I found more shocking news! According to, routined breakfast is so important that a person can lose focus in the morning if they don’t have breakfast. Even more astonishing research results suggest that a person who doesn't have regular breakfast is at the risk of obesity and cardiovascular diseases.

Affect of Commute to Breakfast Habit

Commuting is one of the biggest problems affecting breakfast for these teachers. They need to leave early to escape from rush hour traffic. Especially in crowded countries like ours, people leave for work just after dawn.

Early morning schools don't help at all. Our school begins at 7 a.m. Other schools even sometimes apply what is called a zeroth session where students and teachers must be in class for lessons at 6.30 a.m. Yes, we are all morning people.

Breakfast Choice: Complex or Simple?

Complexity of a traditional breakfast here in our culture is another thing. While in most western countries breakfast consists of simple forms of staple, breakfast in Indonesia can be more complex in terms of ingredients and ways of cooking.

During my undergraduate years in Turkiye, my breakfast consisted of store-bought bread with jam or boiled eggs. Furthermore, the days start not too early in Turkiye, with earliest classes starting at 8 a.m. Campus can be reached around 15 minutes on foot, or faster if I choose to ride a bus. Traffic jams are a very rare sight. So if I want, I can have my breakfast at home, with hot milk or a cup of hot tea. I even have time to chat with my roommate, or check on my notes before entering classes. I didn’t come to classes with an empty stomach and my mind is full of focus.

Meanwhile in Indonesia, breakfast usually consists of rice or rice porridge, with various side dishes ranging from vegetables to fish. Yes, breakfast here is usually fresh and warm, but the preparation needed to prepare the food is complex and takes a long time. Most people would prefer to buy fresh food from a food stall. Others will warm their left overs from the night before, or intentionally prepare it from the night before. Some more lucky ones have spouses or family members who stay at home and cook for them from very very early in the morning.

Western Breakfast vs Indonesian Breakfast

As for me and my husband, we both already reached a ‘consensus’ that meals do not always have to come with rice and its traditional side dishes. This helps me a lot with the timing of making breakfast. I can arrange different types of breakfast for different days. Sometimes our breakfast only consists of fruits like bananas, sometimes boiled eggs, sometimes vegetables, sometimes steamed dumplings, sometimes store-bought bread. Those things need no or little preparation. Boiling and steaming something can be a way to have a warm breakfast because I can leave them cooking while doing something else. I also always have emergency instant oatmeal ready in my locker in the office in case I really don’t have time to go to groceries or cannot even pack a thing.

I also tried different tricks like freezing cooked rice to be steamed later in the morning, but some tricks are not always successfully tasty. But learning different ways of instant cooking is worth your time.

Food Prep

Food prep techniques are quite popular today, especially in social media. Although it can reduce the time for preparation before cooking and save food materials, it cannot guarantee that you will actually use the materials as you planned. Sometimes, you planned a meal, but you don't actually have time to cook the meal. Sometimes, we just didn't have the time to open the fridge, and they would just become spoiled.

Evaluation from time to time is required. Some techniques that work for someone don't always work for some other people. Choose recipes that are simple to execute. Don’t choose a recipe that needs special skills.

But, again my dilemma is my longing for a proper not-rush breakfast. I want all day to begin with Sunday breakfast. ✌

Personalized Catering Services

What captured my attention recently is that there are several food catering services that offer individual meal service. This includes breakfast, lunch, and dinner delivered to your office according to a personal dietary program. This service is usually available only in big cities. But as you can guess, the price is far high above what a teacher can afford.

Anyway, my breakfast dilemma remains a dilemma. Whatever options I choose, I just make sure that I can have my breakfast regularly, in accordance with my time allowance and budget. I just hope that one day there will come a time when I can have Sunday breakfast everyday.

We would also like to hear from you. How is breakfast in your culture? Do you have a routine breakfast? Does breakfast affect your morning work? What is your food choice for breakfast? Share your thoughts in the comment form below.
Nia M Wardani
Hi! Call me Nia. I discovers interesting things in life and I love to share them with all people around the world.

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  1. breakfast is a must for meπŸ˜ƒ. My math Will be myth without breakfast πŸ˜‚

    1. What a quote, Ma'am! Math will be myth without breakfast


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