home sweet work

Have you ever thought of your workplace as cozy? Yes, I know, for some occupations, that might be a stretch. If you're on the road working from your car, working in retail or with food, you might not have as much of an opportunity to create a personalized and welcoming space for yourself.

But if you do work in an office or have some sort of station to call your own each day, the quality of this area can play a big role in your mood and productivity. While you may not be able to control some factors such as wall color, furniture or feng shui, you can usually control the amount of clutter, cleanliness, lighting and personal flair. All of which can either encourage or discourage productivity.

My own little diorama.
I'm blessed to work in a an office that was already pretty homey well before I came along. Each of us has our own little area that we lovingly refer to as our dioramas. Opening on one side to huge windows and high ceilings, our dioramas don't look or feel like cubicles.

View of 3 dioramas.
But regardless of your staring point, there might be something you can do to improve your space. Here are some simple ideas for making your office feel a little less officey:

  • Keep it clean and functional. Whether your office is in your car, at a desk or from your home, buy some organizers if needed and make an effort to keep things where they should be.
Clean and clutter-free workspace. Don't forget to actually clean your desk, mouse and keyboard often with a disinfectant; otherwise, they can literally harbor more germs than a public restroom!

  • Have a space for snacks. You might be mocked for having a snack locker, cupboard or drawer, but guess where co-workers come crying when they're in need? Who doesn't want tea or chocolate on a bad day? Knowing that I have a backup for a forgotten lunch or healthy snacks available throughout my busy day is comforting and helps keep me focused and on task.
My lovely snack locker at work.

  • Add personal flair. Once you get settled in to your office, it's easy to overlook bringing in decorations or things from home. If you don't have anything other than the necessities, try adding a few photos, plants or nick-knacks that make you smile and boost your mood.
Little things from home like a favorite mug can make a huge difference in your mood.
  • Dress comfortably. While staying within the requirements of your dress-code, consider more loose-fitting clothes, comfortable shoes and breathable fabrics. No one has to know if you're wearing luxurious fluffy socks, but you'll thank yourself later. I also like to keep a few backup things in my locker like a spare sweatshirt and an extra pair of socks for a soggy-footed rainy day.
  • Bring an adorable dog with you. I know, I know. I'm spoiled and animals are definitely not possible for many offices. If you work in an environment where it might be a possibility every once in a while or if you've never asked, what are you waiting for?
If you can't bring a dog to work, consider a fish. They're cool too.
 Next time you're in your office, take a look around. If you absolutely cannot improve what you've got, maybe it's time to work on changing your mindset. Make the best of it because either way, you'll surely be spending a lot of time there! :P