Friday, March 18, 2011

Coffee Shop Creativity

Why am I more creative, calm and productive at a coffee shop than elsewhere?

As I’m waiting for some service on my car, I decided to work from the Starbucks across the street from the dealer.  I brought plenty of work to do.  I have lots of emails to read through and some projects to plan. 

Working seems totally effortless here.  I always enjoy working at Starbucks; whether it’s my job related work or even just personal computer type activity. It doesn’t feel like work.

So I started thinking (I actually think here) why is this.  Is it the music?  Is it seeing people come and go?  Is it the sound of the coffee grinding or the smell of freshly brewed coffee?  It’s probably a combination of all these things to a point.  But I think the main reason I’m more focused, calm and productive here is that there are no reminders of my daily stressors-or at least they are minimal.  It’s just a world of my computer, my work, my extra hot soy latte and me.  No reminders that I have to rush to a meeting, or that I don’t have enough daylight in my work area or drifting into a conversation I’m overhearing.  Even from home, no reminders that I better get my roof inspected, or that that some of the carpeting should be replaced, or that the house needs cleaning and painting, or that my property taxes are going through the roof, or the endless list of things that are in the back of my mind all the time. I did handle realities about life here also by taking calls during my 'coffee shop work session,' but I was able to calmly focus and not get lost in my world of stress.  It’s almost time for the phone call stating that the car is ready.  I’m not looking forward to it. 

No wonder J. K. Rowling wrote Harry Potter in a coffee shop...and look at her life now.

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  1. I hear ya! I love doing homework at coffee shops. More productive.

  2. Yes, I need to find a way to do this more often. I feel so much better working there.