Have you ever noticed how sad a cubical can be? Ok I’m being nice, I should say “how sad most are”. It is really unfortunate! Considering that we spend around 1700 hours a year working, a large chunk of our lives are spent in our working environment (Check out this pie chart of the average American’s time). Ugh. That is quite a BIT of hours spent at your desk.
So many office environments are cubicles. Unless you have your own office, work from home, or have some other heaven-sent arrangement, you’re it. The lucky cube owner. But before you despair, there actually may be some fantastic remedies to the gray walls and mundane view. Read on.
The first trick to changing up that workspace is lighting. Ok hold on, we have to do this. You have to watch the movie, “Joe versus the Volcano”. Here is a clip of it (watch at least until 2:40. I recommend watching the whole movie if you can though, including the opening credits, especially if you’ve never seen it before.)
Hopefully no one has an environment this bad, but the reason I wanted you to watch it is obvious. As you can see, his environment is dim, with the dreaded fluorescent lights of doom. The lamp he pulls out is pretty symbolic. More on this movie later (I might do a whole post about it! I love that movie) but for now, it should be noted that lighting is very important.
When I had my last cube, I was given the opportunity a few months in to change location. There was a vacancy by the window. Now, honestly, who doesn’t love windows? One might even argue that they make a cube not a cube. Fantastic. I took the new desk even though I had to go through the hassle of hauling over all my stuff. Good move.
If you can add lighting to your cube, go for it! Otherwise lets move on to trick #2: color. My old cube was a pretty drab color. I mean, that is pretty standard right? But it also sucks the life out of you. So, if your facility manager allows, add some color! For mine, I put up a large map of the world. It fit perfectly, and I could easily move it since I used pushpins to hang it. It changed the entire feel of my space big time. I highly recommend even just this one step.
Trick #3, our last one, is personalized details. Most offices at least allow you to have photos on your desk. Choose pictures that make you smile. They don’t have to be the standard “family portraits” either, you can do snapshots from your vacation or anything that brings out a cherished memory. Other details include: artwork that you’ve designed, a clock, calendar, posters, plants, and books.
There’s MUCH more I can share about this so keep a lookout for future posts. But for now think about tricks 1,2, and 3 and try implementing them in your workspace if you haven’t already. It will make a big difference, I promise!