Work has gotten a little extra stressful for everyone in 2020. Whether you are working from home suddenly with your kids and dog in tow, or you are back at the office socially distanced from your co-worker, it’s no doubt the work world will not look the same any time soon.
So make your office a zen space for a stress-free environment. With some simple tweaks to decor and environment, you can make your workspace feel like an escape from all the madness.
How to Create a Zen Space
When you begin thinking about the changes you will make to your workspace to make it into a zen space, think about the entire environment.
How can you please your senses? How can you help your body feel better? What encourages organization and concentration for you?
Consider each of these questions as you add decor and functional items to your soon-to-be tranquil environment.
Your office is, primarily, for work. It’s important to make it be an intentional space that keeps you focused, and thus relaxed, on the task at hand.
Incorporating organizational office decor is a great way to keep encouraging yourself throughout the day.
A large whiteboard calendar that you can update is a great piece that can be both fun and functional. Get a board with a beautiful frame that matches your decor. Opt for markers (or chalk on a blackboard version) in colors that make you happy.
Put a timer on your desk. This can be an hourglass, kitchen timer, or alarm clock. Use this for a short burst of creative energy throughout the day.
When you flip the hourglass, it’s go time. Useful and a pretty desktop accessory, the hourglass has the added benefit of no harsh alarm at the end. Instead, there is just the silence of no more sand falling.
Comfortable Chair and Desk
Humans were not meant to spend all day sitting. Ask any doctor or physical therapist – sitting is bad for your spine, muscle tone, weight, and biological processes. It’s important to get movement in your day at least every 30 minutes.
In the meantime, get an ergonomic chair. These might be an adjustable office chair with fit-to-you lumbar, neck, and arm support.
Or check out a kneeling chair, which takes all the pressure off your spine by putting your body in a more ergonomic position. These also force you into better posture because there is nothing to lean back against.
Standing desks can encourage healthy habits in your office by keeping active and physically engaged in otherwise sedentary work. Pair a standing desk with a walking pad to get some steps in while working to kill two birds with one stone.
Privacy chairs are ideal for open-concept office spaces or turning part of your studio apartment into an office. The extra high-backed chairs create a cubby-like experience, blocking out some sound and a lot of light so that you are sequestered in your own relaxed work environment.
Gain the peace and tranquility of this mini-cubicle. Though this is a slightly pricier item (coming in around $500 from many retailers) it can transform a space you would not otherwise have privacy into a desirable office location.
If you can’t guarantee a quiet location, you can guarantee noise-canceling headphones. Whether in an office building or at home, noise-canceling headphones are essential. Use active noise canceling just for some quiet, or attach to your device to stream high-quality music or podcasts that keep you alert.
You don’t have to go all out. Some great noise-canceling headphones can be found under $20. Shop used for an even better deal. You’ll thank yourself when you slip them on and descend into your own little world.
Aromatherapy for Concentration
We all know that aromatherapy can be a great mood booster. Some scents are even said to encourage relaxation or encourage concentration.
Why not add some scent sticks or a diffuser to your zen space? Choose vibrant scents like sweet orange and peppermint to aid in stress-free work.
Remember, if you are still in an office setting, ask your cube-mates if it’s ok with them before you start diffusing. Some people are very sensitive to smells.
Temperature extremes are terrible for concentration, relaxation, and focus. Why is this? Because your body has to divert energy to keep you in homeostasis, whether that be warming you up or cooling you down.
Luckily, if the room you are in has a difficult to control climate, there are special products made just for desks.
A four-inch desk fan can be surprisingly effective. Get one that is adjustable so that you can aim it right at your face.
These also only cost a few bucks. Make a dramatic difference in your climate control without spending a lot.
Small heaters are also available. For less than $20 you can get a desktop heater. Like the fan, position it to heat your face or perhaps your hands if they get cold while typing.
Alternatively, place a slightly larger space heater under your desk. These can help warm up your lower half without blasting your face with heat. Many find these to be a good compromise in an office-like setting.
Want to have a cool drink to keep you going? Mini fridges that fit from one to six drinks are available for desktops.
Alternatively, get a desktop water dispenser. Getting up to get a drink can be a great way to take a break. It can also be a great excuse to stop working. Don’t let yourself get away with that and keep water on hand nearby to stay calm and focused during your work hours.
Now Is the Time to Make Your Zen Space
Don’t wait to make your space better. Turn your workspace into your zen space. You’ll find that you are more relaxed and productive.
Look for more helpful workspace tips on BusinesstoMark and get inspired.