Starbucks Writing #1

This may be the beginning of a series I write at Starbucks. Let me know what you think about it in the comments, and I may continue to write more like this, throwing my music knowledge in as well.

Starbucks tends to have a deep amount of inspiration for me. One of the main reasons I haven’t visited one in so long is because of a lack of money. But every once in a while I’ve got an extra $5 to throw into a caramel macchiato or a chai and spend an hour at the place. I’ve tended to only go out if I’m with people, just to avoid that feeling of being alone. But in the past few months that feeling has changed. I’ve been keeping to myself more, watching what I say, and reflecting inward.

Sometimes I give so much to a relationship with someone and don’t get nearly the amount I gave back, and at the end of the day, I feel drained. Somehow, Starbucks brings some of that inspiration to grow, to reflect, back to me. It’s not the coffee. It’s not the money I’m spending. It’s not even the American demand. It’s the atmosphere. Most of the time, when you visit a Starbucks, you’ll find people working diligently on homework, reading essays, studying for exams, or in business professional mode. While many times you’ll also see the people who are starved for attention (the occasional youth group, believe it or not), or the people who only go out when they’re with people (calling myself out here), for the most part, people are getting work done.

In his book, The Executive and The Elephant, Richard L. Daft talks about managing your inner elephant. The inner elephant is that feeling inside that makes you not want to do your work, or the to-do list you set out for yourself. It is that want to play video games, sleep, or watch TV instead of doing your work. The inner executive is the side of you that wants to get those tasks done. Constantly, we are in a battle between the two. We get upset when we’ve wasted time doing other tasks than the one we set out to do at the beginning of the day. This is where Starbucks comes in.

One of Daft’s main points is to put yourself around people who, in some way or another, have it figured out. At Starbucks, those people working diligently on their tasks can actually push you to get your own work done. Now I’m not writing this in a way to get more people to pour money into Starbucks. They’re big enough as they are, and don’t need my help with their marketing plans. But what I am saying is, if you’re at a point where you can’t focus on the work you must do, and you can do your work remotely, try going to Starbucks a few times a week. You don’t need to even buy anything. Just take your work and sit there. If there are people there who are working on their tasks, the mood will become contagious.

Listening to: Florence + The Machine, “Lungs”

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