Is your office set up for success? Did you know that the environment you're in can effect how focused you are, how well you thrive and your stress levels. What does your office look like? Is it dark and cluttered? Is there too much artificial light? Do you have photo's and plants around? I have come up with a few ideas that will set you up for great success no matter what you use your office for.
Do you have a green thumb or are you more of a plant killer? Either way, there is a plant for you! There are plants that help improve the air quality, resulting in the the quality of oxygen in the room because you probably can't have an outdoor office. A snake plant is extremely hard to kill, and you can buy it at your local garden store for under $20. They don't need a lot of love, so they are perfect if you are forgetful or just beginning to learn how to care for a plant. Another idea is a bamboo plant, does well in a shady environment and is known to bring good luck! They come in all sizes so you can get a bigger floor plant or a smaller desk one. Aloe plants can be beneficial for the air and for the aloe. And i'm a huge fan of the weeping fig, it's just such a fun looking guy! They thrive in a sunny area, and are really hard to kill. Aside from these ideas, there are many ferns, succulents and ivy's that you can get! Please just do your research on what is safe around your 4 legged friends.
How's the lighting in the office? Do you have nasty florescent lighting, natural lighting or something in between? Maybe you like florescent lighting, but i know it really affects my work because it directly penetrates my brain giving me headaches. If you're unable to get new overhead lighting, try getting some more natural feeling lights lamps and keeping the windows open for some natural light. You don't want the room too dark, especially if you are on screen or reading something. There is also a lamp out there you can get on amazon.com for under $50 that projects UV and vitamin d , because it simulates outdoor light.
What does your office smell like? Does it smell like lunchroom microwaved fish, or flowers? Sense of smell can really effect your focus. If something smells like garbage and you're trying to finish a project you're going to be more concerned about what that smell is and when it's going away. What is your favorite smell? Mine is lavender and I love putting vanilla with it, it's a very relaxing and sweet scent that brings me much relaxation. Get fresh lavender and vanilla, flowers, candles, even room spray! Have a different scent for different times of day, days of week or switch it every few weeks. Do you have snacks? Our bodies tend to get hungry every once in a while believe it or not! Have a little basket or a drawer with a few snacks, just in case your tummy decides to scream at you mid day! Get some healthy snacks, that won't make you have a sugar crash later in the afternoon. I know I find it a little more challenging to focus when my stomach sounds like a bear, and I'm sure my co-workers don't enjoy the sounds I make either. It's also nice to have snacks for them in case they need it too!
Display something personal. Whether it be photo's of fun places, loved ones or fun knick nacks that mean something to you and bring you joy. Maybe even something that makes you laugh, because what's life without laughing a little bit every day? Not a life I want to live in that's for sure. Having your things on display will make the environment seem like it's all yours and have a more home-like feel.
What does your office background noise sound like? Do you hear traffic or maybe the ocean? I hope it's more towards the ocean part and less at screaming cars down the highway. If there is not a natural sound provided that you enjoy, then find your own. Listen to the radio at a low level, find some nature sounds on youtube.com (ocean, rain, birds), or listen to some classical music. Something that will keep you in a zen mood and keep your stress levels low and your happiness levels high.
Lastly make sure you like the room temperature. Do you tend to have a cold draft or more of a desert kind of feel. Adjust your day to it, and know hot to prepare. in my office, it's always left up for a surprise and sometimes I never know what I'll be stepping into. I always wear layers, have a blanket and a fan as well. It's important to know your environment and a better effort at keeping your body temperature at a comfortable level. Keep an extra fan or a small blanket at your desk just in case you forget layers one day! Drinking something hot or cold can help you too!
I hope that all of these bring you great success and you find more joy and zen in your office once you start incorporating some if not all of these attributes into your zone. Good luck and if you have any new ideas, for my office please share!