6 Ways to Improve Your Work Space
If your professional home base is in an office, you could be spending up to 8 hours a day at your desk. That’s a big chunk of your day and your life. Your work space can be a big contributor to your motivation and productivity, from how comfortable you are to how inspired you feel. Make a few quick changes in your work space, and you can reap dividends in focus and outcome. These tips can also translate to your work or study space at home.
1. Check the lighting
Especially in the winter months, good lighting is a must. If you work from home, arrange your work space so that it benefits from as much natural light as possible. In an office environment, add an extra lamp or light therapy device if the space feels too dark. Brighter light levels are associated with analytical and evaluative thinking, and windows that afford views of natural landscape act to recharge the mind.
2. Open up the workspace
Crowded or cluttered spaces can cause stress and anxiety, so it’s worth making some effort to clear the room. That means decluttering the space of unnecessary paperwork and streamlining your storage as far as possible. If you have old cables or defunct technology lying around, get rid of that as well – not only will your space feel calmer and tidier, but there’ll be no more scrabbling around trying to find the right phone charger.
3. Re-examine your workspace configuration
Is your desk where you want it to be? We tend to think of the layout of an office as immutable, but physically re-arranging the things in our office can have huge flow-on benefits in terms of ergonomic workflow. Consider how you move through the room to get your job done, where the best spot for you is and what effect you’re going for, and start moving furniture around if you can or reach out to your HR department to discuss.
4. Add some greenery
Air quality is critical in ensuring good health, and you’ll feel more energised and productive in a workspace with good air flow and ventilation. Adding plants will give you the combined benefits of nature views and better quality air; anything will work, but some plants are particularly beneficial to have around.
5. Get some colour
Colour affects our mood in powerful ways. How we perceive colour is complex, so try and avoid a monochromatic colour scheme or confronting bright blocks of colour. Multi-coloured artworks, flowers or a nice stationery set can introduce little pops of interest that can energise you throughout the day.
6. Embrace the ergonomic
Sitting at a desk all day can take its toll on your health. If you don’t already have a chair and desk that have been optimised for you, now is the time to look into changing them. Ergonomic chairs will protect your back and help you maintain decent posture. Your desk should be at a height that means you’re not hunching over. Consider ergonomic keyboards and mouse technology as well – there’s plenty on the market, and it’s worth the investment for equipment you use for long hours every day.
We know it’s hard to take time out of your busy day to clear up and sort out, but it’s a great investment in your future work productivity. So schedule in a day now and earn yourself weeks of better working.
This article was written by Tanya Ashworth-Keppel on behalf of the Australian Institute of Business. All opinions are that of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the opinion of AIB. The following sources were used to compile this article: 99u, Entrepreneur, Lifehacker, Sage and Creative Boom.