August 21, 2016
· 1.3k Views
You spend a lot of time in your workspace. More than anything, it has a direct impact on your level of productivity. You want it to be a place that is organized, clean, and stimulates thinking. There comes a point when an evaluation of your work environment and how you feel in it is necessary. Whether you can’t seem to get anything done lately, or just want to refresh the space, here are 8 ways to improve your workspace and optimize productivity.
Creating a more productive workspace may require some storage units. Check out our coupon pages for The Container Store, IKEA, Bed Bath & Beyond, and World Market for great decorating and storage ideas on a budget.
- Get rid of clutter. As a noun, clutter is defined as both “a disorderly heap or assemblage” and “a state or condition of confusion.” Either way, you do not what this anywhere near your workspace. A disorganized desk or virtual work place littered with things you don’t need to work is going to be distracting and have a negative impact on your productivity. Start by getting rid of old papers, receipts, magazines, and any other items that have accumulated on your desk. Then purge your computer desktop, work folders, etc. of excess files. You can even apply this strategy to your Internet habits by closing browsers and streamlining social media activity (edit the people you follow) if you use it for work.
- Find out if you are left or right-brained. Left-brained people tend to excel at tasks that involve logic, language, and analytical thinking. Studies show that they are more productive in clean and minimalist environments. On the other hand, right-brained people excel at expressive and creative tasks. Colorful environments built around aesthetic and personal décor and items stimulate their productivity. To read more about investing in your work environment to increase productivity, check out the book Work Simply by Carson Tate.
- Find places that inspire you. Natural light is known to stimulate productivity. If you work from home, try setting up your workspace by a window where natural light pours in during the work hours. If you work in an office and don’t have the option to move your desk, take a walk outside when you hit a wall or have lunch at an airy and spacious restaurant.
- Identify obstacles. Do you constantly find yourself looking at your phone while working? To stay focused, turn it off or put it in a place that is completely out of view. While working online, minimize the number of browsers you have opened to avoid distractions. And avoid all social media during the workday unless it is part of your job.
If social media is part of your job, check out our tips on how to make these platforms work better for you:
13 Facebook Features You Didn't Know Existed
8 Tips You Want to Know About Instagram
8 Secrets to Mastering Twitter
12 Easy Ways to Make Your LinkedIn Profile Attractive
7 Tips to Increase Your YouTube Knowledge
- Structure your workspace around what your job requires of you. A writer will want books and magazines at close range. An architect will want drafting tools, pencils, and paper in their workspace. While an assistant to an executive will want to have a close eye on everything from paper clips and a stapler to a hard copy of the company’s portfolio. Improve your workspace by making sure there is adequate and smart storage for everything you need.
- Decorate for success. Few have the luxury of a large office with a window view. If you are stuck in a small cubicle, think about ways to make it a space that works best for you. Hang artwork, photographs, or quotes on the wall that inspire you. Bring in a small illuminating light and listen to music (if it does not distract you) on headphones to create a welcoming atmosphere.
- Be comfortable. Most of your workday is spent sitting at your desk. Any physical discomfort you are experiencing is going to have a negative impact on your level of productivity. If you work at home, invest in a quality chair and add pillows if it feels better. If your office did not provide you with an adjustable chair, ask for one. Feet should rest comfortably on the floor. And you also want to make sure the top of your computer monitor is at eye level.
- Stay fueled. Hunger and thirst will zap your productive output. You are not alone if sugary and salty snacks are the first things you grab for a quick pick me up. Unfortunately, this will only lead to an energy crash later on. Keep focus sharp by stocking your desk with healthy options such as nuts, fruit, veggies and hummus, and unsweetened yogurt topped with berries. Stay hydrated with a bottle of water spiked with orange slices.