Working from home (continued)
Here are more tips and tricks for turning your home office into a space that is inviting and pleasant to work in. As you know, the body, just like the mind, can get exhausted from working too hard and/or long hours. Your eyes can also tire and take strain; especially when we are looking at a computer screen or cell phone screen, for hours on end. Taking a break from looking at your screen all the time and just looking up, away at something else, will instantly relax your eyes. Eyestrain is one of the many complaints that people complain about today. Your eyes’ muscles also get tired, so make sure to take a break every 30 minutes – 1 hour. When you start to see double or your eyes are red and/or painful, then stop working! Taking care of your eyes are vital; instead of overworking both your eyes and mind, stop, put off the laptop and rest. This is also important for children, as their eyes are still growing and, too much time spent on a phone or tablet, can cause eye problems. Teach them to take regular breaks as well. Remember; tomorrow is another day.
Electromagnetic radiation (EMR) is part of the modern world. Already in 2011 radio frequency wireless radiation was classified as a Class 2B carcinogen by the International Agency for Research on Cancer. What to do? First option is to create a distance between yourself and the device(s); second option is not to spend hours and hours in front of the computer or on your phone – easier said than done, you might think! A great advice, given by an internet expert, was to keep the wi-fi (wireless rooter) in another room; far away from you. When you go to bed at night, put it off, as the rooter still emits dangerous radiation-levels. The same goes for your mobile phone. Instead of keeping it next to your bed, place it either in the room next door or on a table/chair standing quite far away from your bed. Even when you put your phone on silence, it is still emitting radiation that can interfere with your sleeping pattern. Luckily today there are many shielded boxes, filters, covers and so forth, on the market, that will help minimize the radiation. Using certain crystals placed around your laptop can also help a lot.
The blue-spectrum light of your phones and computers has been associated with insomnia, hormone imbalances, eye damage and other health problems. Switch your phone’s blue-spectrum light to an anti-blue screen filter, swap your kindle for a notebook or workbook or, better yet, read an “old-fashioned” book instead. For those of you who do not get enough sunlight or go out into the sun enough, make sure to take vitamin D as a supplement. It is vital for your immune system and keeps depression at bay! Fluorescent lights are not the best choice for an office. Rather opt for natural light (if possible) or use incandescent-lights, like standing lights, desk lamps, and so on.
Colour is magic and can make or break the mood and production-levels in the office. Green is a wonderful colour to incorporate into your office. Not only is it the colour of nature, fresh air and plant life, but it is also correlated to broader thinking and creativity. Soft green, like pink, is very calming, while wood tones and blues can reduce anxiety and promote balance. Green is also “easy on the eyes,” thus wonderful for tired eyes! According to Feng Shui, red, orange and yellow are great options in an office, as it keeps you activated, energized and increases mental alertness. However, as with all colours, having too much of a specific colour in a room, can make you agitated and irritable more than usual, so make sure not to use bold, warm colours in excess. A pop here and there is quite alright, but one doesn’t want to leave the office feeling you are unable to “switch off” either.
Just a last note on colour. A study found that a soft yellow-colour is great if you feel stressed or socially isolated. Blue is great for creative-jobs. The famous French painter, Claude Monet, painted his workspace yellow and furnished it with different accents of blue. When he was asked why, he replied that yellow stimulated his mind and blue helped him to stay calm and focused.
Room temperature plays a huge role in productivity. When a room is too hot or too cold, you tend to either be easily distracted or not very productive. Your normal, internal body temperature ranges between 20 – 24 °C (68 – 75.2 F), so keeping the air conditioning on 22 °C (71.6 F) is the best option. Even if your work becomes mundane (as routines do), having a space that is inviting and beautiful to look at, then work becomes pleasant and productivity soars. Even just a small change, like a new cushion or chair, can change the whole atmosphere of a room. Enjoy your space and happy work days!