I am writing this blog from Panera Bread. I call it my “other office.” When I come into Panera I can just sit down and crank out work. I also like to do this at Starbucks, though I can do work even longer if I can have an actual meal.
When I go to one of these places, I can just get in the zone. I have the ability to be creative and work hard there. An hour at Panera is like 2 or 3 in my office or 4 or 5 at home. Something about that space triggers my brain to go into work mode. It also clears my head of stress and worries when I sit down there (most of the time).
Space is important. We cannot help as people but to be influenced by what is around us. I think this is why Jesus goes to gardens so much in the Gospels. I think He found them to be good spaces to think and to pray.
It is not good to use this space all the time. Not only is it expensive but it also has diminishing returns. If you use the space too much it becomes less special and more ordinary. That is why I have several spots I like. (My third spot is Taco Bell. I love their breakfast and very few people come in and sit down. Everybody uses the drive thru.)
I especially love to go to Panera on Sunday morning before I preach. I find that reviewing my sermon there helps me to really remember it and preach it with deeper emotions.
What is your Panera Bread? What is your creative space?