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Right! Now that you have factored in some breaks and activities, how can you make sure that your working environment helps you and your wellbeing?
We all know that our surroundings can affect our mood but may not really be aware of this on a conscious level. We probably don’t even think about our working environment and how it impacts on our focus, productivity and wellbeing and so end up working in a negative environment and wonder why we are not feeling so great or working to our optimum. But making just a few small changes, can have a big impact. Here are just a few ideas:
- Get some plants – I could write a whole blog about this (maybe I will) but as well as looking nice, plants can help remove harmful pollutants and improve air quality as well as stabilise humidity levels. They have also been proven to reduce stress, increase productivity and creativity, and decrease sickness rates!
- Get the right furniture – you’re going to be sat in it a long time so make sure that you have the correct sort of chair. Make sure that it is adjusted correctly otherwise this will make working at your desk uncomfortable and give you back/neck issues – check out this buying guide for more detail. Also make sure that your desk is big enough and that all of your paperwork and equipment are not squeezed on there.
- Don’t chase the mouse – when we use a computer mouse, we often hold our arm forward so try and bring your elbow back so that you aren’t reaching forwards ti help reduce shoulder and muscle issues.
- Space – make sure that you have enough space and aren’t cramped – if you have to put paperwork on the floor to look at, you probably need more space
- Declutter – try and keep your office tidy. Being surrounded by clutter makes for a stressful and unproductive environment.
- Get as much natural light as possible – I am lucky to have three windows in my office and have blocked off the light sensor, but natural light has been shown to improve sleep quality, reduce eyestrain, decrease the frequency of headaches, improve mood, and increase productivity.
- Temperature – unless you have air conditioning this might be a tricky one but a temperature of 20-22 degrees is seen as the ideal office temperature.
- Music - this is personal preference and depends on the level of distraction it causes you, but it can drown out external noise, boost morale, improve mood, and make boring and mundane tasks more bearable. I’ve got the radio on whilst writing this, but if I was really having to focus on completing some coursework or research, I’d probably turn it off.
- Fresh air – I am unable to open my office windows, which is one of the few negatives of my serviced office, but being able to open the window and let some fresh air in can help you think better, improve productivity and your health…so if you can open the window, do!
- Air diffuser/oils – if you cannot open the window, getting an electric room diffuser and some essential oils can refresh the environment as well as help you to feel more alert, Tisserand recommend 4 drops of lemon, 3 drops of peppermint and 1 drop of eucalyptus to help you feel more alert whilst working from home, and it also makes your room smell nice!
As with my other home office posts, these can equally apply to commercial/rented offices as well.
Hopefully by implementing some, if not all of the above, you can help to improve your working environment, making you more productive, contributing to your wellbeing, and helping you to combat burnout.
Annalise Kirk is a professional hypnotherapist based in Basingstoke, Hampshire. Annalise has been a qualified, full-time hypnotherapist since 2010 and has helped hundreds of clients achieve their goals and overcome personal issues using hypnosis, CBT and NLP techniques.Follow me on TwitterConnect on LinkedInLike me on Facebook
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