how to make your cubicle a relaxing place


You spend 8 hours a day, five days a week in your cubicle or work station. You might as well make it a pleasant place—especially since a lot of our mood is affected by our environment. Here are some simple ways to decorate your cubicle. No, you won’t need paint (your human resource department won’t take too well to that) and you won’t even spend a fortune. But you’ll see a real difference, and feel a lot better knowing that you’ve made your cubicle or work station a bit more personal and calming.

Use color to your advantage

Research in color psychology shows that our moods and even mental performance are affected by the colors. Yellow tends to make people feel happy and creative; beige and soft shades of pink are relaxing.(Read our article on how colors can boost mood and image.) Then use those to create a dominant color scheme. For example, use a bright yellow mug to hold your pencils, and add other touches of colors too: pin a print of Van Gogh’s Sunflowers painting on your cubicle wall, use a light-toned wooden frame (which has yellow undertones) for your favorite family picture.

Let the eyes rest

A cluttered table—whether it’s filled with paperwork or knick knacks—can make you feel cramped in and overstimulated. Clear the desk, storing papers in filing cabinets or folders, and take down unnecessary items. Choose a monochromatic color scheme for your accessories and accentuate with a second or third color for variety (for example, different shades of yellow with touches of metal, or a deep red with touches of white).

Get multi-purpose accessories

If you don’t have that many drawers, one way to keep your tabletop uncluttered is to get multi purpose accessories. For example, get a memo pad holder that also has a frame where you can insert a photo. Or, instead of several small photo frames, get one large one where you can put several photos, or a digital frame that flashes different photos.

Post a symbol or motto

What makes you feel happy and motivated? Is it the house you’re saving up for, or the kids waiting for you at home, or the dream that one day you’ll be able to use all your experience in sales to set up your own business? Find a quote or a symbolic photo that will remind you, at a glance, of what makes this job worthwhile.

Add a plant

It’s good feng shui and can also clean the air of harmful pollutants (too bad it won’t make that annoying guy from Finance disappear).

Get a lamp

If you suffer from headaches and eye strain, a direct lamp or a natural light bulb can help provide more efficient and more soothing lighting.

Add treats

A bowl of chocolates and candy can help ‘sweeten’ a meeting or welcome a co-worker who’s dropped by to say hello.

Create a ‘de-stress’ kit

Everyone goes through Monday dread or those hellish weeks where everything goes wrong. Be prepared! Keep instant comfort within arm’s reach by storing a ‘de-stress’ kit in your drawer. It can carry temple balm, a CD of relaxing music (in case you didn’t bring your MP3 player), a small book with inspiring or humorous quotations, an aromatherapy candle or burner, etc.)

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