“Your workspace should inspire you to do your best work everyday. Add something of inspiration and your personality. After all, you’ll likely spending most of your income producing hours there!”
Now that you’ve cleared and organized your office, it’s time to put your own personality into the space. Make one improvement to reflect the “New, Organized You!” Whether it’s a full office, home office, or a cubicle, this is your space. Your home away from home. Make it tasteful, professional, and inspiring!
Although your office is clear and organized, you have the opportunity to add your own personality and creating an inspiring workspace. How much you can put of your personality depends if you are working in a corporate office or for yourself. Less personal items if it’s corporate but no less professional if it’s your own business.
The result of an inviting and inspiring workspace is that you feel focused and ready to work when you sit down. If you find yourself sighing and dreading to work each day, some simple changes to “own” your space can change your outlook. Especially if they include things that touch you emotionally in a positive way.
5 Elements to Create an Inspiring Workspace
Your favorite color, photos, personal objects, visual reminders, lighting, wall or bulletin board hangings, inspiration photo, magazine or online photo, your personal decorating, style. In organizing hundreds of offices and workspaces, I’ve discovered these 5 elements that can make for an inspiring environment.
1. Pick Your Focal Point and Set the Tone
The main focal point of your workspace is important. This is likely both the wall above your desk which you look at every day, plus the wall you see when you walk into your workspace. It should be inspiring and calming, not some boring framed artwork from ages ago.
Pick the focal point by observing of what you see first when you walk into your workspace. This should have a focal point picture that sets the tone in style and color for your whole office, whether it’s a canvas print from a store or a framed landscape that means something to you, or simply a poster on your cubicle space.
Visual space sets the tone for your mental energy for your work. Make it clean and clear. Have other similar frames or photos around your workspace that repeat that image theme of landscape or your favorite vacation spot.
2. Lighting Directs Your Attention
So often I see people working in a very limited space on their desk all because of lighting. The lighting from above should be directly over your clear workspace to help you focus, and not find yourself crouched under an overhead shelving unit with a fluorescent light.
If you meet with clients or want a warmer touch, add a lamp with a shade to soften and accessorize what could be an otherwise sterile work space. Pick a lamp base with wood, metal, or a color that you like.
3. Inspiring Motivation
Motivational inspiration can be anything from a poster to framed family or friends’ photos. Frame your family and friends photos in similar frames to the contemporary or traditional style of your office. Be sure to have a photo of your family that is no more than six months old for a conversation piece where you don’t have to explain away how outdated the photo is.
Posters small or large with a positive message and an inspiring message are always welcome. If it’s corny or comical, put it behind a door so only you can enjoy it.
4. Personal Items Should Be Tasteful
Like social media, what you put in your workspace becomes public and coworkers make a judgment about you. It’s completely acceptable to include inspiring elements with a special possession that reflects your passions, a framed photo of a favorite vacation, a saying that always inspires you, or if you have children’s artwork, put that on the side where only you can see it. Questionable calendar photos should also be out of sight as well. Sports memorabilia is nice but, too, should be limited to tasteful. What is tasteful? What both your boss and mother would approve of!
5. Goals and Visions Boards
At a business place of work, posting framed company mission statements and awards you earned are entirely in line. In a cubicle you can post your personal goals for work and personal where you can see them and be inspired.
Today there are so many Affirmation statements that are art worthy and attractive that you could also include one of those, especially on treating customers and clients well. People will appreciate this softer touch of humanity you display.
- Be selective about what goes in your workspace and make it uplifting now that you are organized.
- Stay current by replacing something old with some new items to create a warm and inviting space.
- Spruce up your surroundings with color, visual interest and inspiration to set you up for success at work. It’s easier than you think.
An office can be functional AND Fantastic! Choose the basics that are hardest to acquire first, such as patterned fabric for furniture or drapery, plain carpet next, and paint last. Flat surfaces in the room can be softened by texture and tapestries, such as a wool wall hanging, a stone sculpture, or a succulent plant to brighten a bare corner.
The wood finishes of the bookcase, desk, flooring, or blinds must either be repeated in more than one piece, or complement one another (a lighter grain contrasting a darker shade, similar tones highlighting the same color). It’s best to incorporate no more than two choices of wood grains so it won’t detract from the harmony of the room.
Complete your work area with elements that inspire: a photo of a mentor, a plaque inscribed with your favorite proverb, a framed thank-you note, or a favorite possession that reflects your passions.
Step back and take another two photos of your office currently. One is the big picture now with the desk, walls and surrounding space PLUS the four walls around it. Do you feel inspired when you walk into the space?