Coffee, thou lovely, is not my best friend.
I love coffee/ I love tea/ I love the java jive/ and it loves me.
And I love to sing that song, obviously. In 5 part harmony. Ask me nicely and I'll sing it for you. Ooo-ah! Ooo-ah!
But coffee, the eternal symbol of what you need to stay awake and get things done, is not all it's cracked up to be. In fact, one of my old graphic design resources calls it "nerve poison."
And when I was back in school, I discovered that, indeed, coffee was *counter* productive to my creative output.
The second year, I had so many projects going at once that I literally had no time to fart around. Any time I had any small space of time, I had to decided which project I was going to neglect next in favor of another.
So there I went to the coffee dispenser for a little mocha latte-something to keep me awake and jumpstart my energy.
I discovered to my chagrin that the coffee was making it harder to concentrate.
When I had those bits of time when I needed to be accomplishing *some*thing on my overwhelming list, I could not concentrate. I could not get started. When I did get started, I shook and buzzed. My mind scampered about. My hands didn't know what to do with themselves. Lines were drawn crookedly and needed to be redrawn, mistakes were made. At the end of my afternoon or evening I had accomplished very little, and I was so frustrated I could have cried at the time wasted.
But after I got over my shock and dismay at coffee's negative effects, I swore off it for the rest of the year.
I drank water. I munched on trail mix. I took deep breathes and short walks. I spent timed bursts working on each thing on my plate. I got more done. Coffee got me home after fourteen hour days without running off the road, yes, but for anything productive, it was useless.
These days, I don't drink much of anything caffienated. It gives me nightmares. Bad ones. I don't miss the shaky hands, the heart palpitations. I do miss coffee, thou lovely. The bitter bite behind the sweetest drink. But I had to wake up and simply smell the coffee.