Try out these simple ideas to make your private workspaces more comfortable.
There is a reason why productivity experts advocate an organised home office; such places would be optimised for minimal wasted motion so that every movement has a purpose.
To take productivity up another notch, it’s often recommended to beautify one’s office such that it’s mentally stimulating for the individual. This means taking ownership of the entire organising process and adding a little of your personal preferences into the beautification. In fact, a 2010 study by Craig Knight and S. Alexander Haslam (University of Exeter) involving 47 office workers in London revealed that workers who were given an opportunity to decorate a small office with as many plants and pictures they wanted reported increased productivity up to 32 percent. The workers are also better able to identify with their employers, which showed that the workers were more committed to their team—leading to increased efficiency as a result. While you cannot afford to go too far with the personalisation at the office, you can definitely bring it up a notch at home as long as it doesn’t distract you too much from your work. What are the top ways to beautify your office? We bring you
four easy-to-follow steps:
1) Invest in a plant
A little green is good, especially when you’re always staring at the computer. It doesn’t have to be a huge plant; just a low maintenance one like one of those mini plants that is supposed to absorb radiation. After all, plants can help reduce stress and add a soothing vibe to your workstation. Just don’t turn the table or office into an untamed forest.
2. Lighten Up
A room that is well-lit by sunlight is much better than working under artificial lights that may strain your eyes. If your home office is unfortunately situated where the light doesn’t shine, then invest in task lights that won’t give you an eye-strain. Don’t just stick with a single light either, design a layered lighting plan where you can get the full benefit from task lights for focus, ambient lights to relax by and overhead lights to fill in the gaps the other lights cannot shine in. Oh, and avoid positioning your computer where it gets a lot of glare from the windows or direct and bright light sources. Either get a glare screen for your monitor or put ambient lights behind your screen to reduce the glare. You can also cut down on the eye-strain by turning off the bright overhead lights or close the blinds of your window.
3) Bank on colours
When designing your office, choose your colour theme wisely especially if you work from home. Depending on what your job is, the colour can often affect your productivity and behaviour. As such, it’s important to choose a colour that will have a positive impact on you. Here is a simple colour guide to get you going:
Blue: According to research, people are generally more productive in a blue room – which results in better work performance overall.
Yellow: Widely considered to be an optimistic colour that encourages new ideas, yellow may be too bright to paint the entire room. Reserve the bright colour to accessories or furniture accents.
White: Clean and easy to match with anything, white is a popular colour that can brighten your mood.
Red: One of the most emotionally stimulating colours, red is best used sparingly as accents or key furniture pieces.
Green: Evocative of nature, this soothing colour is easy on the eyes and has the ability to calm frayed nerves. There is a reason why hospitals are usually associated with this colour.
4) Personal touches
Your office doesn’t have to be sterile and boring just because you’re working from home.
Introduce some of your favourite elements by picking up a few art prints or oil paintings. Even family portraits or pictures of your last trip can encourage positive feelings that will make you feel happier when working. Window and floor treatments such as curtains and carpets can also go a long way to making your home office feel cosier. You might even want to add a comfy chair so you can take a break from time to time. The key here is to create a place where you feel inspired and not dread spending many hours of the day.
If you don’t have enough space at home for an office, then you might want to carve out a little corner to house the tools of your trade. It doesn’t have to be very big, just enough space for a small table and some storage. You can then distinguish the space with wallpaper on the wall of your home office, raised flooring, divider, curtains, pony wall or even plants.
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