Office Space

7 Ways to Make Your Office a Sanctuary

7 Ways to Make Your Office a Sanctuary
Image credit: Juhan Sonin | Flickr

After a busy workday, there's nothing better than to come home to your comfortable surroundings, including a happy family and your cherished treasures. If you’re like most people, however, you probably spend more waking time in your office than you do at home. Imagine if you could look forward to the comforts of your office like you do the comforts of your home. It's possible. With a few simple tweaks, you can create an appealing space for yourself.

Here are seven tips to make your office a more peaceful and inviting place to work.

1. Live clean and clutter-free.

Clutter and dirt can create distractions, or white noise, and can take your mind away from the task at hand. Clear surfaces, walls and floors of extraneous items. Only display what you consciously choose. Clean up your space every evening so that you return to a pleasant office each morning.

Related: Your Office Isn't Big Enough for Clutter and Productivity

2. Think of aesthetics.

Create harmony with matching furnishings, draperies and colors that please your eye rather than distract it. Invest in a comfortable, yet functional, office chair. Add personal touches that make the office feel homey rather than institutional, like a decorative pillow, picture or lamp. Get rid of broken, dirty, or marred items.

3. Create and use systems.

Put systems in place to help reduce clutter and anxiety. Create color-coded files and folders to hold information. Establish a routine for when to check email, take breaks, block work time, and return telephone calls. Get rid of paper clutter by using a “touch it once” system. In other words, when you pick up a file or piece of paper, decide what to do with it, such as shred it, toss it, file it, or trash it. The "touch it once" system is designed to help you move paperwork to the next stage instead of endlessly moving it back and forth across your desk.

4. Add some personality.

Personal artifacts such as photographs, souvenirs, and decorative items are what make your home comfortable. Display items in your office that make you smile and remind you of loved ones and cherished memories. Place items or messages that inspire you within sight. Create an inspiration board containing pictures or images that represent whatever you want to be, do, or achieve in your life.

Related: 5 Painless Steps to Eliminate Your Desktop Clutter

5. Bring nature inside.

Living plants, fresh orchids, a unique stone or seashell, or even an aquarium filled with colorful fish will add a touch of nature and bring the freshness of outside inside.

6. Brighten your space.

Proper lighting can make a dramatic difference in your mood, behavior, productivity and hormonal balance. Use natural light to your advantage whenever possible, or showcase your personality and enhance your aesthetics with interesting and functional light fixtures.

7. Nourish your body and soul.

Create a healthy snack bar in your office and stock it with some of your favorite items to eat, including mixed nuts, protein bars and fresh fruit. Drink your coffee from a special mug, tea from a china cup, and water from a decorative water bottle. Keep your favorite music on hand to elevate your mood or help you concentrate.

These little touches will be sure to turn an ordinary workspace into an extraordinary workspace.

Related: 10 Questions to Ask When Designing Your Office