Coffee & Creativity


Photo by Danielle MacInnes on Unsplash

I’m all for a perfect setting when I sit down to write. It seems to enhance my drive to be creative.

I enjoy lit candles, preferably a light scent of wafting vanilla sitting adjacent to my computer slightly in view with a nice cup of tea.  To aid in my creative process of evoking “preparedness” I don myself in an over-sized sweatshirt and unbelievably comfortable sweatpants or leggings and then I feel prepared to conquer the day with my words. It’s all very hygge-like in my opinion and even in the middle of a Mississippi summer, I will sit inside with a hot cup of tea and a sweatshirt to write.

Some days this process is interrupted when I’ve run out of candles, my favorite sweatshirt isn’t clean, and my hygge-like atmosphere becomes more akin to telling myself “just sit down and write something today instead of watching Netflix.” I will make numerous cups of tea (sometimes coffee, sometimes matcha) and make do with what I have.

I say all this to debunk the myth that in order to create, you have to have the perfect space. Don’t get me wrong, I have Pinterest boards and mental lists of what my writing room and reading nook will look like one day, but currently, my ideal space doesn’t exist. Not down to every single detail, yet.

Although finding a space that pushes your creativity and allows for the generation of ideas to flow is important, one should never allow for the lack of the desired space to prohibit creativity.

There were moments during my internship where spaces for creativity didn’t exist so I would go to coffee shops with my sister or with other interns whenever I could. I literally can spend hours in a room filled with the scent of coffee, the quiet humming of computers and soft acoustic music being streamed from Spotify.

The key is to seek out what works for you and aids your flow of creativity without hindering or disrupting anyone else’s (if you live in spaces occupied with other people.)

I know the question for some may be, what can you do if you don’t have the “perfect” space yet?

At the moment you may find yourself in a position of not being able to go out to the nearest Ikea or Target to buy a new desk and comfy chair to sit and create in with inspirational quotes plastered artistically on the wall in front of you.

For some you may not be able to go to a coffee shop whenever you want to create, so I’ve put together a tiny list of what can help in pushing creativity until you get the creative space you desire.

Here’s a list of some of the things I did to spruce up my space in order to feel motivated to create:

– I looked at what I did have: a table and chair, and I added what inspired me in that space. (For me this was hanging up a sketch of Audry Hepburn my twin drew for me, setting up a candle or two for when I sit down to write and adding sticky notes of ideas I want to start. Sticky notes always make me feel productive and I don’t mind the bright colors.


Audrey Hepburn – Octavia D. Mason

– I surveyed what could be taken away from my desk to allow for clarity both visibly and mentally. (Clutter causes confusion and disorganization in ungodly ways. When my desk is clear and my notebooks and pens are in order, I feel better prepared to create.) A little organization can go a long way.

– I make tea, place it next to my laptop, and pull out my pens and notebook even if it isn’t Instagram worthy. (Even the smallest detail of a cup of tea and a favorite pen can add a tiny spark of inspiration needed to write that page, that poem, or blog post. I’ve come to know not to underestimate the power of a hot beverage.)

I know this list may seem menial to some, but it is so very important to remember that making do with what you have until you have what you want matters. Creativity doesn’t come when one gets a desk and chair outfitted in the room of your dreams,  it exists inside and outside of perfection, in the moments wrapped within the beauty doing something because you feel you have no other choice but to create for the sake of creating.