How to Optimize your Workspace for Success
A quality, organized workspace leads to a healthier, less stressful, and more productive atmosphere. You will be able to produce your best work in an environment that makes you comfortable. Whether you’re a student or working a full-time desk job, here are 5 tips on how you can optimize your workspace for success.
Get a calendar
A calendar can offer a friendly, daily reminder of the tasks you have coming up. You can hang a calendar on your wall or even get a larger calendar to place on top of your desk. If you prefer technology, calendars are also available on your devices or on various platforms such as “Google Calendar”. Writing out your upcoming responsibilities on a calendar will allow you to separate your duties into different days. This allows you to alleviate stress while preventing yourself from becoming overwhelmed. Of course, don’t forget to schedule in some relaxing activities and time for family and friends.
Organize your files
Whether for school or work, you should always have your files easily accessible for whenever you need them. Nothing is more stressful that searching through mounds of files scattered across your desktop. It is genuinely like searching for a needle in a haystack! Make your search process easy by organizing your files into folders. You can use a folder/file system such as Google Drove or Evernote, which will allow you to access your documents even if you’re not at home or on your personal computer. You can also simply save multiple folders to your Desktop. Make sure to avoid generic file names – you should be able to identify exactly what document you need based on its title!
Keep your workspace clean
A study from Harvard University found that students who worked in a clutter-free workspace were able to work steadily for 7.5 minutes longer than students attempting to do the same task in a cluttered workspace. Keeping your area clean is a great way to keep your mind sharp and focused. It is easier to concentrate on your responsibilities when you are not distracted by messy surroundings! One small task you can do to ensure an organized workspace is organize your papers into file folders. This will free up so much space on your desk and allow you to easily access papers according to your needs. Other tips include regularly cleaning your keyboard and screen, dust your desk, and to remove clutter as soon as it presents itself.
Keep light snacks and water on your desk
In order to stay energized while accomplishing your tasks, try keeping light snacks and water on your desk. This will prevent you from getting up throughout the day and wasting time by aimlessly searching through the kitchen. Some energizing and healthy snacks you can easily keep with you at your desk include nuts, fruit, granola, and more!
Keep your area colorful
Color can affect people’s mood and outlook in a subtle but noticeable way. Bright colors such as yellow are known for waking people up and putting them in better moods. Other colors such as blue are known to be calming colors that help you relax, while green reflects balance and harmony. Some ideas to brighten your workspace with color include hanging bright pictures or paintings around you and/or adding a small plant to your desk. You also want to make sure you have a good source of lighting (even better if it is natural light!) Proper lighting can keep you alert and focused while also influencing productivity and creativity.
These are just some examples of the small things you can do to your workspace in order to make a huge difference. As always, people have different preferences. You should try all of these tips and even research more on your own to figure out how to optimize your workspace best for you.
Harvard Business Review. (2015.). Retrieved from hbr.org: