Your office layout could be adding to your work stress
Building an office entails more than just functional desks
Apr 3, 2017
What surrounds you at work can change your health habits. For most people, the office isn’t exactly the first place you head to when you’re feeling under the weather. No matter what the job is—a thriving career in an investment firm, a boring desk job at a cubicle farm, or even a passion-inspiring start-up that you’re working on at home—work tends to be a source of stress, even for the most dedicated worker. And while there are certain factors at your place of work that simply cannot be changed, like an impossible client or the growing pile of unchecked papers on your desk, there are elements that can get you out of the stress zone. The physical work environment can do a lot for the way you approach your work. A dismal, fluorescent-lit workspace with no natural daylight where you have to sit for eight hours a day can leave you feeling uninspired, drained and void of energy to see you through a whole work week. On the other hand, a functional desk with enough cubbies and drawers to keep staying organized easy and a work area with space for personal items so you can own your private nook can help you stay motivated, allowing your perspective on stress to shift and become more positive.
Large companies are now finding new, fun ways to keep employees happy not just with their paychecks but with the wealth of inspiration and wellness they find at work. Google’s offices are well known for their creativity-sparking spaces: smaller than usual mini-golf areas, billiards rooms, themed conference rooms, secret areas, and even a dining space that offers fresh, healthy meals. More and more, top execs are realizing that getting their employees out of their desks and into a fitness room a few times each week increases productivity as well, helping them gain more energy, let out steam and get out of the drone of a 24/7-work mindset.
Even an office designed to get you walking from one end to the next instead of staying in your seat all day can make for better health habits. Common areas like a common bar that can be used to brainstorm encourages interaction and socialization—another key factor in keeping your head and health above water when at the work place. Atriums that allow natural light to flood in and pocket gardens that introduce greenery in a sea of desks and computers can lighten the mood and offer some tranquility amidst a stressful environment.
Everything adds up when it comes to a workspace designed to help for people to stay healthy. Whether you’re decorating your desk or building an office from the ground up, considering fun and not just function can help alleviate stress better and get you happy and healthy enough to head to work each day.
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