Tight deadlines, long days, a stacked workload—even if you love what you do, the daily grind at work can sometimes seem daunting and take a toll on you. Consider a few of the following creative ideas to help boost productivity and ease the strain of your workday.
Set the Stage. If you’re having trouble focusing during long days, consider setting up your space to promote a smoother workflow. Make sure your desktop is free of clutter. Include a visual cue that brings you joy, such as fresh-cut flowers or a piece of art you love, and consider changing the lighting to something more soothing.
Add a Smell. Numerous studies have shown that certain scents can improve productivity. Among the common boosters are lavender, lemon, jasmine, rosemary, cinnamon and peppermint. Consider grabbing an essential oil and dabbing your wrists before you begin work, or burning a candle when you’re struggling to focus—just make sure your office-mates don’t mind!
Create a Ritual. Incorporating a ritual into your workday is a great way to stay on top of things. Start your day with a 10-minute meditation, a short chapter from an inspirational book or any other idea that moves you. If possible, consider scheduling a 15-minute break or two into your day when you’re free to sip your favorite tea and peruse the news, make a call, or walk around the block.
Change Spaces. A great way to alert your body and mind of the task at hand is to create separate workstations for tasks. This may be easier for those who work at home and can move from the office to the dining room or kitchen table, but even if you work in an office, consider how you can break your space up. It may even be as simple as opening or closing blinds during specific tasks, or re-angling your laptop and chair to face a different direction.
Reward Yourself. Take 15 minutes to half an hour at the end of each workday to reward your daily accomplishments. Sink that time into completing a passion project, writing a journal entry, calling a friend or popping on a favorite podcast.