How Your Home Office Can Affect Your Mood & Health
Many of us did not cater for a workspace in our homes, because let’s face it, who would’ve thought that we’d end up working from home permanently due to a global pandemic? While there are definitely upsides to working from our comfy couches and beds, they aren’t the most conducive for not just productivity but your health as well. Our environment, both living and working, has a huge impact on our mood and health. For example, a messy home office can increase your stress levels, while a cramped one can leave your creativity being stifled. With working from home in some capacity becoming the new normal, here are some ways you can change up your home office to make it more conducive for your mood, health and productivity.
Fengshui is the practice of arranging the elements of your living space to create balance with the natural world. The goal is to establish harmony between you and your environment. It is very important to have adequate air and space flow in your living space to ensure peace and calm.
Having a dedicated room solely for work is the ideal work-from-home setup. It allows you to step away physically and mentally from work at the end of the day. However, if you don’t have one, setting up your workspace in an open, airy space that fits in well with the rest of the elements in your home will allow you feel good and leave your mind at rest. Boxing your desk in between your TV and shelves might make you subconsciously feel trapped.
It is best not to keep your home office in your bedroom. Avoid bringing in the stress of work into your bedroom and let it be just for sleep. This has shown to improve your sleep quality and in turn your overall well-being.
Light influences your overall mood and health in a major way. Having too little or too much of the wrong type of light can tire your eyes out, leading to eye strains, migraines and even depression in the long run. Your sleep pattern can also be affected by this, especially if you’re the type to use your phone or work till bedtime.
Natural light is most ideal light for our eyes and body. Ensure that there’s enough natural light around your workspace, without it interfering with your screen visibility. Take regular eye breaks by looking at green spaces or actually heading out to get some fresh air and that sweet vitamin D.
Where you sit is as important as how you sit. Slouching on your sofa and bed might be fun for a while, but you’ll notice your neck and back protesting in pain soon enough. Same goes for dining chairs and tables; they were not made to sit at for long stretches of time.
Invest in high-quality ergonomic chairs and desks that allow you to have good posture while working – your back will thank you in the long run. Ensure that your chair gives your back and neck adequate support, and that your desk is at the right height for you to look and type at your computers comfortably. Carpal tunnel and body strains are extremely painful and will affect your overall mood and health negatively if you’re not careful about your home office furniture.
Personalise Your Workspace
Having a clean and neat home office ensure that your mind also stays clutter-free. Use corkboards or whiteboards to pin up timetables and reminders for important deadlines. Place only essential items on the desk in front of you, that you will have immediate need for, and keep away the rest.
Clutter-free doesn’t mean sterile, though. Cheer up your workspace by putting some cute photos of your loved ones, inspirational quotes and décor that can lift your mood, in case of bad meetings or stressful deadlines. Having a little table plant can also help you feel refreshed as you look after it, and perhaps even inspire some creativity when you need it.
All in all, your home office should allow you to do the best work you can. Whether it looks like a rainbow vomited on it, or a completely minimalist dream with just a single device and a pen, it should speak to how you approach your work. Happy decorating!