Change Your Setting to Increase Productivity
Whether you work out of an office or from your kitchen table, where you work will affect how you work. There is a large body of research that tells us that the sights, sounds and routines of the daily work environment directly influence our productivity. If you want to increase your productiveness, then try playing with your work setting.
A Change of Color
For several decades now, scientists have been looking at color’s effect on human behavior. Some research shows that pastel colors lead to calming thoughts and that bold reds and blues can positively affect the rate of work of a subject. To increase your work productivity, try experimenting with different colors in your office space. You do not need to paint and re-paint the walls. Hangings and artwork with a defined color scheme will do the trick.
Let There Be Light
The amount and source of light in the office has a direct impact on work behavior and mood. Most people know anecdotally that soft, artificial lighting lends itself to a sleepy surrounding. Bright lights can influence behavior, making a person more awake, but also anxious and unfocused. Strong, natural light seems to be the best mix for productivity. To moderate the intensity of the light in the office, use light-filtering roller shades and blinds that will allow just the right amount of sun into the workspace. The aesthetic nature of the light filter will also increase positive work judgement, helping you to want to spend time in the office.
The Green Effect
Bring a fern into the office. Research shows that green plants in the office space increase the quality of the living area, the worker’s well-being and overall productivity. Green life in the office lowers heart rate, increases respirations and helps with blood flow to the extremities. The type of plant is a factor in this, too. Green, small plants that have a slight scent seemed to have the greatest positive effect on the workspace.
Change Your View
The exposure to nature is a strong factor in human well-being. Just the sight of a lake, forest or mountain can lower heart rates and drive a person into a state of relaxation. If you have the option, re-configure your office space so that you are facing an exterior window. The view does not need to be magnificent, but even a cloud or pigeon can increase your productivity. If this is not an option, then frame nature photos and use them as your office décor.
Take a Walk
Physical activity is shown to decrease work absences from illness and increase work productiveness. Every 40 minutes or so, get up and do some type of physical activity. Depending on your level of fitness, this can be anything from a little walk around the office to a set of push-ups. Some people have begun using desk treadmills where you can walk at a leisurely pace while still working at your desk. These devices let you keep the blood flowing even during a long, busy work day.