Productivity isn’t just the result of your expertise, talent, and willpower to push through deadlines. Productivity is greatly influenced by your surroundings, and being in the wrong environment can negatively impact your output.
If you work from home, you spend a lot of time in your home office, whether it’s a corner of your bedroom or a separate room. Do you struggle to be productive at times? If so, it’s time to change up your décor and make your working environment more supportive of your goals.
If you’re not sure where to start, here are some ideas.
1. Fix your fireplace
For those who work from a corner in the living room or the kitchen table, the entirety of your home will affect your productivity. This includes your fireplace. If you can see it, even from the corner of your eye, it’s going to affect you – even if only subconsciously.
Has it been years since you’ve used your fireplace? Does it look abandoned, or is it broken? Consider getting a fireplace insert. A fireplace insert is a closed-combustion firebox that fits into your existing fireplace and makes it more efficient. Not only will it make your fireplace look better, but it will make it usable again.
A beautiful fireplace can also serve as direct inspiration for your work. When you’re surrounded by beautiful décor, you’ll think more clearly and your brain will work better.
2. Ditch the clutter
Clutter is hard to eliminate. No matter how hard you try to keep it at bay, it’s only a matter of time before papers and coffee mugs pile up on your desk. You might even start a collection of boxes and paperwork on the floor next to your desk.
If you’re used to working in a cluttered environment, you might not realize how much of a difference it makes to de-clutter. When you’re surrounded by piles of stuff, your brain works harder to process and then ignore that stimuli. Removing the clutter will help you think better because you’ll have more brain power available to use.
When you declutter your work area, you’ll have an easier time identifying your priorities. You won’t randomly get distracted without knowing why. You also won’t have to sift through piles of papers to find an important document.
3. Play some music
Music can greatly enhance your ability to concentrate and produce results. Music has the power to influence your mood, but it can also clear your mind. The best kind of music to listen to is instrumental, without words. Words are distracting to the brain. You might be able to listen to music with lyrics in a foreign language if it doesn’t make you wonder what’s being said.
Look for a variety of music playlists and try them out to see what works best for you. For instance, there’s a wonderful 8-hour trance mix from Delta Notch on Vimeo and close to four hours of Baroque classical music on YouTube. These are just two examples of countless playlists out there.
You also might like some house music, but it all depends on your personal preferences.
4. Make your office space comfortable
Have you noticed how hard it is to concentrate when you’re uncomfortable? Maybe your chair leans to the side, or your desk isn’t at the proper height. Or, perhaps the lighting is bad in your office and you struggle to see your papers.
It’s hard to be productive when you’re uncomfortable. Your focus is mostly on the discomfort, leaving you little energy to think through important tasks.
To make your office space more comfortable, look into getting ergonomic furniture. It’s literally built to support the human body in the most ideal ways possible.
For instance, there are ergonomic chairs that support the lower and upper back, wrist pads to make typing easier, and now you can even get a vertical mouse to relieve the strain that causes carpal tunnel syndrome.
If you’re on a tight budget and you can only make one change to your workspace, get a vertical mouse. Twisting your wrist to use a standard mouse strains the carpal tunnel nerve that connects your forearm and hand. Over time, the pain can become progressively worse, causing painful carpal tunnel syndrome.
Upgrade your space, raise your productivity
If you struggle with productivity, start upgrading your space with your full attention on aesthetics. Creating a beautiful, organized, comfortable space will help you reach your productivity goals.