Watching the film Inception this past weekend (for the second time), got me thinking about the origin of big ideas.

I’m not talking about the kind of "big ideas" that Michael Scott and Kevin Malone of "The Office" are known for:

Michael Scott: That’s what the United States was built on, big ideas, blue jeans, the Grand Canyon. Come, come up with some big ideas.

Pam Beesly: Bigger than the Grand Canyon?

Kevin: Ooh, an antacid that you take once a week!

Michael Scott: Okay, once-a-week antacid is the thing to beat!

Kevin: An antacid you take once every six months!

Stanley: Why not go for the whole year?

Kevin: That would be too big a pill to swallow.

No, I’m talking much bigger, of course! TWSS:)

Seth Godin is no stranger to really big ideas, and he recently wrote a post entitled "The space matters," and it reminded me of one I’ve been meaning to write for some time.

Godin writes: "I think we can train ourselves to associate certain places with certain outcomes." Godin concludes: "Pick your place, on purpose."

Long before being able to enjoy one of the important evolutionary benefits of raising four children in a loud and busy household, to focus on work that mattered, I needed silence — that was probably more important than the place per se. In fact, years before having children, I recall sitting in the top row of my law school’s auditorium for final exams, wearing sound-proof ear protectors — the kind you might use in the shooting range to avoid going deaf. Those ear muffs are long gone now.

It’s amazing to me how we evolve over time. Indeed, mastering chaos has a way of making the previously annoying coughs, sniffles, and page turning, blend into the silence of a focused and purposeful mind.

Having said that, if I were to choose the ideal spot for me, based on past success, the place I "pick on purpose" when searching for the big idea, is my 104 degree outdoor hot tub, especially effective in the middle of a frigid and snowy winter in Minnesota.

Where do you choose to be when searching for your next big idea?