My Starbucks Office
When I was in University (a long, long, long time ago), I could not study in the library to save my life. The quiet distracted me. The quiet made me restless and unfocused; the quiet made me tired and sleepy. No matter how hard I tried, the library did more harm than good to the mark returned on my test or essay. I used the library for their books (pre-internet days) and then I got the heck out of there. It took me awhile to realize this fact about myself. I initially resisted, knowing that the library really was the best place to study and to do work. I mean, everyone else was doing it so why couldn't I?
One day while riding the city bus and reading a course required book (one of the hundreds that year- yikes!), I realized that all of the bus 'chatter' was easier to tune out than concentrating in silence. My marks increased with this discovery and I'm still not sure why I never knew this about myself already? Looking back, even in high-school I had a tendency to study or do homework with music or the television on. I do not recall actually participating in the music or watching the TV, but I know that 'noise' was always on as I did my homework.
The city bus became my place to do all of my required reading. Highlighter in hand and four different buses per day. When I had regular homework to do I went to the cafeteria at noon, taking a seat among the thousands of loud students. I could have studied at home in front of the television, but a few of my school days were 12 hours long with a few breaks. I needed to use the time productively doing homework or studying, as I also carried an almost full time job. One semester, I ate dinner and did homework in a campus restaurant (as I waited for my 7pm class) while other students drank beer and played pool. And some of those times I watched a Salsa club dance away, whilst sipping a draft and writing essays (by hand). I also recall one of those dancing students being 'Scooter' from the Degrassi series. For real.
Moving on to present day. These past few years have seen a lot of writing return into my life. Now with two young kids, I can't say there are a lot of quiet moments. Writing should come easy-- just tune the kids out and spill a thousand words on the page, right? Nope.
Someone always has to be talking to me, or needing something. I cannot seem to tune the little rugrats out. Ever. So I end up writing at Starbucks before deadlines when my kids overlap in school, because if I returned home to do my 'work', the house would be empty and quiet and I'd be sidetracked by other 'home' work. *sigh*
Besides, Starbucks serves up Americano and wi-fi.
What does it take for you to be Work-at-Home productive?
Complete silence? Procrastination?