Studies have shown that where you work, your physical surroundings, has a significant impact on your focus and productivity. Whether you work from home or in a large company office, the design of your space matters. Here are five improvements you can make right now to create a better work environment:
Be in the Right Place
Make sure that you have space to complete "focus work" without distraction. Many open-concept office spaces are not private enough to support focus time and provide less opportunity for concentrated effort. Although working from home is gaining in popularity, at-home work stations can be very distracting. It's difficult to achieve maximum productivity when you're divided between work, your pet, and dirty dishes in the sink. Renting an office workstation away from home may be the best route if you find your productivity lagging. Changes to your workstation will not be helpful unless you're in a helpful space to start.
Add More Light
Good lighting can increase focus and inspire creativity, while bad lighting can cause fatigue, ill health effects, and even depression. If you own your workspace, you have control over your lighting system and can make needed changes. If you work in a company office or rented workstation, you can make a difference by opening windows and doors for natural light as well as bringing in lamps for added brightness.
Invest in a Better Chair
Many jobs require sitting for a large portion of the day, so a good chair is essential. If you find yourself uncomfortable halfway through work, it's time to invest in an adjustable chair with some decent padding. To ease pressure on your spine, your chair should slightly recline while leaving your feet on the floor. If you like sitting on an exercise ball, only use it for twenty minute intervals and then return to an ergonomic office chair. Make sure you move around at least every hour, whether it be a short walk or changing from sitting to standing for a few minutes.
Clean Up the Clutter
A few minutes at the start and end of your day can make a large difference in filing, organizing, and de-cluttering your workspace. Cluttered space can increase stress and anxiety, and even contribute to procrastination.
Reduce the Noise
Noise has a significant effect on how well you can stay on task. Wear noise-cancelling headphones or use music or white noise to improve your focus. Sometimes complete silence is just as detrimental as loud noise, so find the middle ground that works for you.
If you want to improve your productivity and focus at work, changing up your office workstation can work wonders. Try the above tips to see what works for you.