Things have completely changed from 10 years ago, many people are now working from home full time and part time. Many home offices are squeezed into a small bedrooms, or a corner of the living room or kitchen. The office furniture that was used then was often bony old kitchen chairs, and tables, which is simply not adequate these days to accommodate computers printers filing etc etc.
Now that more people are working from home they tend to work longer hours as they save time on the commute down the stairs. A comfortable work environment is now essential such as an ergonomic chair such as the Ergohuman Mesh Chair or the Enjoy Mesh Chair. These chairs are excellent value and very comfortable giving you a better posture. The desk is also so important and these days a Computer Workstation is useful to facilitate all of your home office essentials such as computers, printers, scanners, media storage and filing. The Computer Hideaway does all that the workstation does but closes up into a cupboard when you are done for the day.
Not sure how to pronounce it? You’re not alone. Some may argue that Feng Shui is just non sense and ancient superstition, other will have a natural respect and mild curiosity without going to the extend of putting any Feng Shui rules into practice – the common excuse being I don’t know enough about it. There seems to be a great deal of mystery surrounding Feng Shui, when many of the basic rules are only common sense. It is primarily based on being in control of the situation whether at home or at work. Position your bed or chair so that you feel secure and cannot be taken by surprise by someone bursting into the room. Avoid positioning furniture in straight lines along the walls. Be organic, nature is all curves, not angles, think ergonomic.
The same rules apply to the office environment. An office worker will not give his best performance with his back turned to the door, or a stream of collegues passing by or coming up on him from behind. He would feel hastled and nervous and would have to constantly watch his back. Any of us would naturally feel uneasy in such a position. Additionally being trapped in a cubicle with no view will not make the employees happy. Without adding chimes, mirrors and money plants everywhere, great benefits can still be added to the workplace by applying some of the main Feng Shui rules. Ideally it is best to first draw up a plan of your office, superimpose the Pa Kwa map and see where each area falls. Areas such as rest, wealth, friendship, health and pleasure need to be used wisely – the wealth area being ideal for the shop’s till while the friendship area could be used by the sales-team to enhance relationships with clients. Understandably, this may not always be possible as office space is often at a premium. However small changes will improve the workforce happiness and should have an immediate and long-term impact on sales, creativity and staff retention.
In Japan, it is not uncommon for employees to refuse working in bad Feng Shui positions; these rules are indeed taken very seriously. Pillars have to be moved and office partitioning has to be rearranged to create a positive working environment for all employees. To maximise the space in my home office I actually confess that I have my back to the door. But all is not lost, as Feng Shui offers a range of remedies. In this case I just have to hang a mirror on the wall to alert me of an intruder! I see this as a temporary solution and I am quite keen to apply most of the Feng Shui rules as soon as I buy a new office desk and matching filing cabinets.
Imagine you’re sitting in a perfect office: somewhere where you have to go but you’re also pleased to be. Everyone’s idea will be slightly different, though all will contain the essentials.
A perfect ergonomic office will be light and inviting. If there’s a window close to you, the natural light will make the office feel fresh and alive. If this isn’t happening for you, then you need to invite light into the room. A standard lamp may add a touch of homeliness and you can also use angle poise lamps, to direct the light to your office desk, making reading easy, particularly on those long winter days when everything seems to be overcast. Don’t forget that view from the window. Maybe it’s beautiful, maybe it’s not, so why not hang a scenic picture on the wall in front of you, or frame a smaller version for your desk: it might not be a desk toy but it will still make you feel good.
If your office is small, make it feel bigger. This can be done by using glass office furniture, as the light passing through that beautiful crystal gives an illusion of space. However, if you’re one of those people that hoards a lot of stuff under your office desk, you’re now going to have to tidy up your act. This in itself is a good thing, as we are always being told to de-clutter our lives and getting rid of unnecessary paper will again create space. It will also make work more pleasurable, as you have now become more organised.
So, the place looks bigger, brighter and inviting. The next step is to get that office chair right. Right for you, as you’re the one who is going to be sitting in it. It’s not only the seat pad that is important, although sitting on something soft is better than something that has no flexibility. You want that best office chair to be supporting you in all the right places. The lower back of the chair matches your lower back: it’s giving support and taking some of the weight of your upper body off your own frame. Its adjustable arm rests, its swivel action and its seat pad height mechanism make sitting a more natural action, rather than an expected pose. While all of this happening, your body is relaxing and encouraging your thoughts to be in the same frame of mind. So what type of office chair? Well considering all of the above it has to be an ergonomic office chair.
For many of us, even the journey to work can be stressful, so the last thing you want is to carry this edginess through the day. Getting that ergonomic office right for you will reflect itself in the quality of your work and the quantity and that can’t be a bad thing, can it?