The perfect workspace is hard to come by. Whether you work from home or in a shared office, there’s probably something about your work environment that is less than ideal. And with the holiday season upon us, it’s likely that the distractions are only mounting up. Whether those work distractions have caused you to miss deadlines or just tested your temper, one thing’s for sure: your work environment heavily impacts productivity.
But the good news is that with the help of productivity tools like Freedom, you can hack your office setup to create a productive workspace. Certain environmental factors help or hurt productivity but with a few intentional adjustments, you’ll level up your workspace productivity skills in no time!
The Science of a Distracting Work Environment
First thing first: stop beating yourself up about being easily distracted – our brains were designed for that. Seriously!
The thing is that our brains process unpleasant inputs faster than positive ones and directs our attention to that stimuli. It makes sense — smelling fire, tasting poisonous substances, or hearing ambulance sirens are all unpleasant experiences that do warn of danger. But clutter, drafty AC, or the ping of messaging apps? Not so much. Still, we mentally flag it, and suddenly, our productivity is virtually non-existent.
6 Environmental Factors That Your Ability to Affect Focus
You’re probably already annoyed by some distracting sensations, but you may not even be aware that others are impairing your concentration.
After you notice how your working conditions affect you, you can start to create a more productive environment. Check out these five workplace distractions and consider how they impact your office setup:
Uncomfortable working positions are clear distractions to productivity. How can you focus when you’re constantly in pain? Most people don’t consider ergonomics when choosing their office setup, but overlooking this can be harmful in the long term. Give yourself the gift of comfort by investing in ergonomic furniture — and boost workspace productivity while you’re at it.
Cold winter day in the office? Saving those extra dollars by refusing to turn up the heat may cost you in other ways. Your body spends more energy regulating your temperature whenever you’re too warm or too cool, so an uncomfortable heat level is both distracting and exhausting.
Some people’s most productive workspace is filled with background noise while others prefer complete silence. Excess noise impairs cognitive function, and chronic exposure can increase your risk of developing depression or neurodegenerative disorders.
Ambient sound mimics natural background audio while drowning out startling noise and enhancing concentration and cognitive function. Why not try Freedom Focus Sounds which have been specifically designed to help you stay productive? Using components of musical theory to keep you powering through your tasks, Focus Sounds are available for free to all Freedom users.
What kind of lighting is in your office setting? While natural sunlight is ideal for creating a productive environment, most working conditions lack sufficient windows. Artificial light may be the solution, but it has its own problems.
Artificial lighting disrupts our hormones, lowering stress tolerance, energy levels, and overall concentration, and can contribute to eye strain, fatigue, headaches, and irritation. If you can’t access any windows, bright lights that mimic sunlight are the next best thing.
We already know the impact of clutter on a workspace, but other forms of visual stimulus matter too. Color psychology tells us that blues and greens are best for a productive workspace, helping to calm the mind and aid relaxation while adding yellow to your work environment can get those creative juices flowing. Don’t be afraid to hang some art; this enhances creativity!
Don’t forget about digital clutter either – you spend the majority of your workday looking at that screen, so take care of that crowded desktop. It’s time to move icons into folders, close those inactive windows, and block distracting websites and notifications using Freedom. While you’re at it, take a moment to free up your mind, too, with mindfulness and meditation practices.
Scent is an incredibly powerful sense that highly impacts emotions and memory. There’s a reason aromatherapy has been around so long! We often associate scents with certain situations, so a good-smelling office setting can get us into a working mode. And since our response to fragrance is so strong, using energy-inducing or creativity-boosting scents can aid cognitive function, alertness, and relaxation, among others. Try putting an energy-boosting citrus-scented candle on your gift list if you want to be more productive in 2023!
Enhance Workspace Productivity and Find Freedom
Our senses are incredibly powerful and can influence our moods, energy levels, and concentration in ways we don’t even realize. Customize your atmosphere as much as possible by investing in your space, and let Freedom take care of filtering out online distractions and background noise. Start transforming your work environment today, and find Freedom!
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