When we think of the most peaceful places we have experienced, we may think of a favorite spa, a vacation resort, a mountaintop hiking trail, or a beautiful garden. Unfortunately, many of us don’t (yet) spend the majority of our time on mountains or in gardens; instead, we spend our days (and some nights) at the office, in our chairs, at our computers.
However, our workplace can also be a source of clarity and peaceful inspiration. Just follow these ideas to transform your environment, transform your outlook, and transform your results.
The first step to setting up a tranquil workplace that nurtures you to create your best work is to get rid of the clutter. Your space should be guided by intention and should include only the items necessary for your work and your well-being.
Purge everything else. Put it away or throw it away. A clear space fosters a clear mind.
2. Lighten Up
Harsh lighting can make peaceful spaces feel overwhelming. Opt for lighting that supports the tranquil environment and bright outlook you deserve. Add task lighting for working and reading. This light is a great fit for any size desk.
3. Get comfortable
Consider the temperature in your workplace. Are you too warm or too cold? Is the space suffocating? Create air flow and temperature norms that are inviting so that you (and possibly others) will want to spend more time there.
4. Clean your access to the outdoors
If your office has windows, keep them always clean and bright (the screens too!). This will add clarity to your day. If natural scenes come to you by way of your desktop wallpaper, make sure your monitor screen is clean and clear
5. Color ahead
Painting at least one wall of your workplace will bring a fresh perspective. Choose a color that is soothing or inspiring. Before you paint, in pencil, write some affirmations on your walls. Something like “I am nurtured and at peace,” or “my thinking is clear and focused.”
As you continue writing the affirmations in pencil, more will come to you. Don’t be afraid to write big and cover the entire wall. Even after you paint over it (since you used pencil, it will not bleed through; no one will know it was there but you), it will have an amazingly nurturing effect on your environment
6. Feng Shui
Using the principles of Feng Shui to harmonize yourself with your environment, position plants, mirrors, water features, and calming photos around your workplace.
7. Leg Room
Make sure your desk is height-adjustable and offers plenty of workspace above and legroom beneath. Having the right height whether you are sitting or standing will create harmony in your body. Rearrange (or get rid of!) anything stored beneath the desks or any wires or boxes that make you twist your body.
8. Relaxing Work Chairs
Invest in an ergonomic chair that fits your body and can adjust from a reclined to an upright working posture easily.
9. Placement of Tools
Set up your space so that the tools you use daily are all within reach (18-20”) and less important tools are a little further away. Organize the things that are critical to your work in a way that you can find them easily when you need them.
10. Music for the Soul
Whether it is peaceful music or the sounds of a waterfall, surround yourself with the sounds that relax and empower you.
Enjoy your new space. By following these 10 tips, you should now have a space with a great “Ah factor.” You will be impressed what a supportive atmosphere can do for your work and contribute to your daily harmony.
About Karen Burke
Karen is the founder and president of Kare Products, specializing in active ergonomic solutions. She has 30 years experience in ergonomic product design and consulting.