Much has been written lately about what influences our work. Is it what we eat, how we organize our workspace, or is it more about where we work? As it turns out, our work environment influences not only our well-being, but also our productivity. Employers that offer their employees a "biophic-designed" work space...spaces that offer humans the opportunity to merge with other living systems...will see as much as a 13% increase in employee well-being and an 8% increase in productivity. Bringing elements of nature into the workplace has a long-lasting effect on employees. A recent Gallop poll shows that a much as one-third of all Americn workers are "disengaged and unhappy at work." Having exposure to natural sunlight, and other natural elements, report having better moods, greater job satisfaction, and more committment to their employer. It's been proven that nature helps to reduce stress. And this isn't only true for worker-types. Kids do better in school when they are exposed to more natural surroundings. And patients in hospitals have shown a significant improvement in healing time after surgery, when the hospital offers more natural elements and isn't as "sterile-looking."
If you work at home, there are lots of things that you can do to improve your workspace; put in a small garden just outside your office window, for example. Or paint your walls in the colors of nature. (Hint: beige isn't one of those colors...) But what happens when you work in an office building where you don't have the ability to change your workspace very much? There are still many things you can do to "perk up" the area; like adding a desk-top water fountain, a vase of beautiful fresh flowers, or by hanging photos, or prints, of naturen on your walls.
It's important too, I think, to get outside as often as you can. Instead of having another cup of stale coffee in the noisy breakroom, try enjoying a bottle of refreshing water outside. Even a few minutes of sunshine will make you feel instantly better. And, a couple of times a week, try skipping the crowded and rushed restaurants at lunchtime. A bag-lunch enjoyed outside at the local park will boost your mood, as well as your creativity!
I do realize how lucky I am to work in the beauty of nature every single day. Nature makes us better. Nature is my home. Perhaps it's time for you to incorporate more of it into your daily life,too.
As the famous architect Frank Lloyd Wright once said, "Study nature, love narure, stay close to nature; it'll never fail you." And that's a beautiful feeling!