“Your surroundings matter. You create a world, and people are invited to that world” in offices, studios, and stores says Ryan Murphy during an interview with Vogue’s Hamish Bowles (May 2021).
Stop. Look at your surroundings. Is your workspace working for you or against you?
“But I’m STILL working from home” you say. Or, “nothing has changed in our physical workspace despite the year we’ve had.” Either way, it’s time to stop, take a look around and determine what could make your workspace better support your work. Things to consider include:
- Wall colors – a color change can add to productivity. Find a color that brings energy to your space AND to you.
- Furniture – desks have been hard to come by this year. Chairs, tables, file cabinets, bookshelves, storage cabinets, and shelving all can have a role in office-buildings and in home-offices. What furniture and arrangements make you most productive?
- Sound – music in headphones; doors to block out family sounds; music playlists from your phone or computer; talks or classes playing while you work; or sound compression headphones; or a better headset for all the phone calls you take. Everyone is productive with a different volume and set of sounds. Find yours!
- Access to tools and supplies – are the things you need every hour of the workday closest to your reach? If not, reorganize. Get the needed things close-by and the less-used things further away. Every time you get up to stroll through the house or office, you are losing focus for positive work accomplishments.
- All things that help you to be productive. Build your personal productivity list of things you need in your surroundings.
Surroundings matter. And surroundings include people. The people we surround ourselves with also matter. Negative people “I haven’t gotten anything done” or similar downer-speaking people tend to wear those around them out. If you have a negative person in your life, consider what positives they might also be bringing to your life – if there are no positives, well, you’ve got choices about whom you surround yourself with.
Positive people on the other hand, cheer, support, and uplift those around them. Who are the uplifting and positive people in your life? If you’ve just discovered you don’t have any positive people in your life, take a look in the mirror because you may be contributing to the group of people around you being negative. It’s hard to hear, take a hard look.
The people and things surrounding us daily matter, really matter. Choose wisely.
“Building Community in Buildings” is one of Jana’s two co-authored books. Looking to improve your workplace surroundings? Contact Jana: 208-367-1701
As the author of seven books, in seven languages, Jana has been interviewed by U.S., Canadian, and European programs, and magazines. Her presentations have been seen in the United States and India by international audience members.
Workplace – the Blog: Managing the moments of our day-to-day business lives takes work. Together, let’s explore what issues and activities affect us every day (or some days) that we go to work. Together we can find working solutions.