Innovative ways to make you happier and more productive at work

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It’s official, as a nation, we occupy a lot of time at our desks, with the average Brit spending roughly 37 hours a week at work.

As we spend so much time at the office, the team at The Lighting Superstore thought we’d put together a list of sure-fire hacks to brighten up your working day.

Plant the seed of productivity

Research shows employees who work in offices with greenery are roughly 15 per cent more productive. That’s because plants can help us to feel more psychologically engaged, which helps us to work better.

Succulents are low maintenance and widely available, but they require lots of sunlight. Better low-light options include snake plants and peace lilies.

Make it personal

Personalising your workspace is a great way to make your area cosier and more intimate. If visualising helps you learn and remember things, bulletin boards are great little additions to throw into your cubicle as a fun way to stay on top of things.

If you’re in a particularly confined space, adding a mirror can make your desk space appear roomier and more like a home away from home.

Brighten up your office supplies

If your workspace is looking particularly bare, why not lighten the atmosphere with colourful office supplies?

Bright colours play an important part in boosting your mood, so think about ways you can inject a bit of colour into your workday!

From multi-coloured pencils to vibrant filing folders, a small splash of colour can make a big difference in improving worker morale.

See the light

Natural light is important for our overall health; helping to regulate our physical and mental function.

If you’re able to hot-desk or are a remote worker, try to sit near a south-facing window where sunlight can stream in from late morning to mid-afternoon.

However, if fluorescent office lighting is your only option, it’s time to invest in a nice, high-quality desk light to add more warmth and mood lighting to your space.

There is anecdotal evidence to suggest LED lighting can mimic the positive effects of daylight, so if you want to boost your output and spruce up your desk at the same time, it could be a worthwhile investment.

Use essential oils

Using scents and essential oils can stimulate your brain and make you more productive. Peppermint, in particular, has been found to enhance cognitive performance.

Try applying a few small drops to your temples and on the back of your neck at the beginning of the day.

Look after your back

Even if your monitor is at the right height, you need to support the curvature of your back.

Setting the height of your chair is key and it’s worth considering a footrest too.

These adjustments will mean your lap is horizontal and that there’s a proper blood supply to your legs and your back is aligned.

You can also buy lumbar supports made of memory foam to support the arch of your spine.

Cut those cords

You probably have cords for your computer, keyboard, phone, mobile phone charger – the list could be endless… It might seem silly, but that amount of desk clutter can be distracting.

Wrap up or replace cords that are too long and label them so you know what they’re all for and can keep them in the best place.

Ditch the DJ

Daniel Levitin, a cognitive neuroscientist says music hinders your productivity unless you’re working on repetitive tasks.

Instead, you should listen to music for 10 to 15 minutes before you get down to serious work tasks to enjoy the feel-good neurotransmitters music triggers.

Gaze into the distance

To avoid fatigue, optometrists recommend looking away from your screen every 20 minutes at something that is 20 feet away for 20 seconds.

Pick an object in the distance and look at it when your eyes feel strained.