When you walk into your home office, do you feel happy or do you feel like cowering under your desk with overwhelm and stress? Decorating your workplace won’t take away the deadlines or the hassles at work, but experts agree that creating your office environment can have a big impact on productivity, creativity, and stress levels.
How Can You Make Your Home Office More Relaxing?
According to productivity experts and interior design professionals, it only takes a few steps to turn your home office into something a little more calming:
1) Keep it streamlined.
Psychologist Barry Schwartz notes in his book, The Paradox of Choice: Why More Is Less, that having fewer options is actually less stressful and overwhelming. Having a few pens or reference books rather than stacks of them, for example, can be a better option. Eliminating what you don’t need from your office can also mean a tidier space and can make it easier for you to find what you need. When streamlining, don’t forget your computer. Having too many shortcuts, desktop icons, and computer programs can be as much of a hassle as too much clutter. Only keep what you need in your office.
2) Use colour effectively.
Colour expert Leatrice Eiseman notes that some colours – such as blue, green, and earth tones — have a soothing effect that can actually reduce stress. Avoid very bright hues and loud patterns.
3) Invest in ergonomic chairs and a good desk.
It’s not just emotional stress that zaps your energy at work. Physical stress can be just as draining – and if you sit at work a great deal you may be putting strain on your body. Your back, especially, will thank you if you invest in an ergonomic chair and a comfortable desk that is the proper height for you.
4) Introduce beauty into your work environment.
Beautiful art, plants, and even personal photos can make your home office your own and can give you something inspiring to focus on when you are working on a big project.
5) Take care of noise.
You may not have much control over noise outside your office, but that doesn’t mean you should just accept it. You can play soothing music while you work or invest in sound-proofing your walls if you have the budget. If all else fails, good headphones can block out the worst of it.
6) Get serious about your lighting choices.
Bright, full-spectrum lighting will not only soothe away stress but will also protect your eyes and ensure that you can get work done productively.
Where Can You Start?
Take a look around your home office and see where you can make improvements. If you constantly feel like tearing your hair out at work, a weekend spent cleaning up clutter and putting in some nice art and soothing music can help. Make a list of items you need for your home office to make your work days a little less upsetting. Maybe you won’t ever become completely Zen about your job, but having a workspace that doesn’t elevate your blood pressure first thing in the morning is a good place to start. If you’re looking for some inspiration, check out our furniture options and art work.
What have you tried in your home office to make your workspace less stressful?