7 Ultimate Desk setup hacks for work productivity

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work productivity

Working from home has become increasingly popular, and with its numerous benefits comes a unique set of challenges that can hinder work productivity. With household chores, family members, and pets competing for your attention, staying focused and efficient can be a real struggle. However, there are several simple and effective work productivity hacks that you can adopt to overcome these distractions and maximize your work-from-home setup.

In this article, we’ve compiled a list of seven work productivity hacks that have been proven to increase efficiency and help you achieve your goals. From optimizing your workspace ergonomics to implementing the Pomodoro Technique, these hacks are easy to implement and can make a significant difference in your daily routine. So, whether you’re a seasoned remote worker or new to the game, keep reading to discover how you can boost your work productivity and get more done in less time.

1. Use a task management system for work productivity:

In today’s fast-paced world, managing our workload is crucial to staying productive and reducing stress. With numerous responsibilities and deadlines, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed and lose track of priorities. Fortunately, task management systems provide a solution. By using a to-do list or project management tool, we can track our tasks and deadlines and remain organized and focused throughout the day.

The Pomodoro technique is our favourite technique in that it’s simple to implement and very easy to reduce distractions. We have a comprehensive guide on the Pomodoro technique if you’re interested. It gives you a good balance between working and resting. The default working and resting intervals for a pomodoro is 25 minutes of work followed by 5 minutes of rest and you repeat that. See diagram below

Building MDS, task and time was the system we used to focus down on our daily work and really drive focus to the key tasks while helping us identify hours in the day that we could really use to smash out big tasks that needed to be done. It’s worth a look.

Task management systems also help us stay organized by keeping all our tasks in one central location. Notion, a versatile productivity tool, combines note-taking, task management, and project organization features into one platform. With its flexibility, we can create custom pages for different types of tasks or projects and easily move items around to reorganize our to-do list. Notion allows us to create sub-tasks, set deadlines, and add reminders for important deadlines. It also integrates with other tools like Google Drive, Trello, and Slack, enabling us to bring in information from various sources and keep everything in one place.

In addition to these benefits, task management systems can also help us improve productivity by using techniques like the Pareto Principle and the Pomodoro Technique. The Pareto Principle states that 80% of our results come from 20% of our efforts. By prioritizing the most important tasks and completing them first, we can maximize our productivity and achieve our goals more quickly.

Whether we’re busy professionals or a student with a heavy workload, using a task management system can help us stay on top of our responsibilities and achieve our goals. By prioritizing, organizing, and holding ourselves accountable, we can reduce stress and take control of our workday, making the most of our time.

2. Use a second monitor or a bigger monitor:

Having a second monitor is an excellent way to increase your productivity when working from home. With a second screen, you can easily switch between tasks and have multiple windows open simultaneously, which makes it easier to stay organized and focused throughout the day.

One significant advantage of using a second monitor is the ability to work more efficiently. You can have all the necessary tools and documents readily available on different screens, which eliminates the need to switch between applications or minimize and maximize windows. For instance, you can have your email open on one screen while working on a project on the other screen. This enables you to reference information and multitask, resulting in completing more work in less time.

Another option is to opt for a bigger monitor. A larger screen can have a positive impact on work productivity. You can fit more windows and applications side by side, allowing you to see more information at once without the need to switch between different tabs or windows. This can be particularly useful if you work on multiple projects or tasks simultaneously.

Moving from a 27-inch to a 34-inch monitor can provide you with an additional 7 inches of screen, which can be a significant increase. With a larger monitor, you can also increase the font size of text on the screen, reducing eye strain and making it easier to read.

Another advantage of a bigger monitor is that it can reduce the need for scrolling, which can be a significant source of distraction and slow down your workflow. With more information visible on the screen at once, you can quickly scan and locate the information you need.

However, it’s important to keep in mind that a larger monitor may not be suitable for everyone. Depending on your workspace and the layout of your desk, a larger monitor may not fit comfortably or may require you to adjust your seating position or the height of your desk. You should also consider the cost of purchasing a larger monitor and whether it’s a justifiable expense for your specific needs and circumstances.

Upgrading to a larger monitor can be a smart investment that can improve your work productivity and overall work experience, especially if you have the available space and resources.

3. Reduce distractions:

Distractions can come in many forms, from the constant pinging of your phone to the lure of social media and the internet. In today’s hyper-connected world, it can be challenging to stay focused and resist the temptation to check your email or browse social media during work hours.

However, distractions can have a significant impact on your work productivity, disrupting your workflow and causing you to lose valuable time and energy. To reduce distractions and improve your focus, here are a few strategies you can try:

Turn off notifications: One of the biggest sources of distractions is your phone, which can be a constant source of notifications and alerts. To minimize distractions, turn off notifications for non-essential apps and set your phone to “Do Not Disturb” mode during work hours.

Close unnecessary tabs: Another common source of distraction is the internet, which can be a bottomless rabbit hole of information and entertainment. To avoid getting sidetracked, close unnecessary tabs and limit your browsing to specific times of the day.

Use noise-cancelling headphones: Noise can also be a major distraction, especially if you work in a noisy environment or share your workspace with others. Invest in a good pair of noise-cancelling headphones to block out background noise and create a more conducive work environment.

Set boundaries: If you work from home, it can be challenging to separate work and personal life, leading to distractions from household chores or family members. Set clear boundaries and communicate your work schedule with others to minimize interruptions and distractions.

By reducing distractions and improving your focus, you can improve your productivity and achieve your goals more efficiently. Experiment with different strategies to find what works best for you, and don’t be afraid to adjust your approach as needed. With a little discipline and effort, you can create a more focused and productive work environment.

4. Set up your workspace ergonomically:

When you work from home, your workspace can have a significant impact on your physical health and overall well-being. Whether you’re a freelancer, entrepreneur, or remote employee, it’s important to set up your workspace ergonomically to avoid physical discomfort and fatigue.

To create a comfortable and productive workspace, select an ergonomic chair that provides proper lumbar support and can be adjusted to your height. Your feet should be able to rest flat on the floor, and your knees should be level with your hips. When sitting, keep your back straight and avoid slouching or leaning forward.

Your desk setup is also critical to your ergonomic workspace. Position your monitor directly in front of you at eye level to reduce eye strain and fatigue. A monitor light bar can also improve your lighting setup and prevent eye strain, especially if you work long hours on a computer.  You can find tips here on finding the best lighting for your setup.

Investing in an ergonomic keyboard and mouse can also make a significant difference in your comfort and productivity. These tools promote a neutral wrist position and reduce strain on your hands and arms, which can prevent repetitive strain injuries.

Aside from these ergonomic tips, consider taking breaks to stretch and move around throughout the day. Sitting for extended periods can be harmful to your health, so taking short breaks to walk or do some light exercises can help improve your physical well-being.

By setting up your workspace ergonomically, you can reduce the risk of physical discomfort and fatigue, which can ultimately improve your productivity and well-being. So take the time to invest in your workspace and make it a comfortable and ergonomic environment that supports your health and work needs.

If you want more tips on how to set up your minimalist desk space, check this out:

5. Keep your desk clutter-free:

Cluttered surroundings can have a negative impact on your ability to get things done. A messy desk, in particular, can leave you feeling overwhelmed and stressed, making it challenging to focus on your work. If you’re looking for a way to keep your office space organized without breaking the bank, here are three easy tricks to transform your workspace into a polished and productive area:

  1. Keep only the essentials on your desk, and use drawers; the best drawer we recommend at the moment is the IKEA TROTTEN which is a simple and affordable drawer unit that can be used for various storage needs. It has a timeless design and is available in different colours to match any room style. The drawer has a smooth-running drawer with a stop, which helps keep the drawer in place when fully opened. Additionally, the drawer is made of renewable materials, which makes it a sustainable choice. Overall, the IKEA TROTTEN can be a great option for those looking for an affordable and functional storage solution. 
  2. Invest in a desk pad or mat. These mats are designed to keep your workspace clean and provide a comfortable surface for writing and mouse movement. Learn more about our desk pad
  3. Take a few minutes each day to tidy up your workspace before you start working. This will help you stay focused and minimize distractions throughout the day.

By implementing these simple tricks, you can create an organized workspace that fosters work productivity and enables you to get things done efficiently.

6. Take breaks, stand up, and move around:

In today’s fast-paced world, we often find ourselves sitting for long periods, whether it’s at work, at home, or while commuting. Unfortunately, prolonged sitting has been linked to a host of health problems, including obesity, heart disease, and poor posture. That’s why it’s essential to take frequent breaks, stand up, and move around throughout the day.

The Pomodoro Technique is also another technique that can help improve work productivity and focus by breaking down work into 25-minute intervals, called pomodoros, with 5-minute breaks in between. This technique can be effective in preventing burnout and improving concentration during work sessions.

Adding movement and stretching breaks to the Pomodoro Technique can further enhance its benefits. Sitting for prolonged periods can cause fatigue and discomfort, which can negatively affectwork productivity and health. Incorporating movement and stretching breaks can help reduce these negative effects and increase energy levels.

During the 5-minute break, you can engage in physical activities like stretching, walking, or even doing some light exercises. This can help improve circulation, relieve muscle tension, and increase mental alertness.

Another way to combat the negative effects of sitting is by incorporating a standing desk into your workspace. Standing desks have gained popularity in recent years because they provide a way to work while standing up, which can help improve your posture and reduce the risk of back, neck, and shoulder pain.

But the benefits of using a standing desk don’t stop there. Studies have shown that standing can increase blood flow and oxygen to the brain, which can improve focus, alertness, and work productivity. Standing desks also allow for more movement throughout the day, which can help prevent the stiffness and discomfort that come with prolonged sitting.

Additionally, standing desks come in a range of styles and sizes, allowing you to customize your setup to fit your needs. Some desks are adjustable, making it easy to switch between standing and sitting as needed.

While standing desks can be a great addition to your workspace, it’s important to use them in moderation. Standing for extended periods can also cause discomfort and fatigue, so it’s crucial to take frequent breaks and switch between sitting and standing throughout the day.

To read more about standing desk and its health benefits, check out this article:

7. Keep healthy snacks nearby:

In today’s fast-paced world, it’s easy to get caught up in our busy schedules and forget to prioritize our health. One of the most neglected aspects of our daily routine is snacking. Often, we grab the first thing that’s convenient or readily available, regardless of its nutritional value. Unfortunately, these unhealthy snack choices can lead to a decrease in work productivity, energy crashes, and even weight gain over time.

That’s why it’s important to keep healthy snacks nearby, no matter where you are. Whether you’re at work, at home, or on the go, having healthy snacks within reach can help you maintain a balanced and nutritious diet. In this blog post, we’ll explore the benefits of keeping healthy snacks nearby and share some ideas for healthy snack options.

Benefits of Keeping Healthy Snacks Nearby

Increased energy and work productivity: Choosing healthy snacks that are high in protein and complex carbohydrates can provide a sustained source of energy throughout the day. This can help you stay focused and alert, leading to increased productivity.

Improved mood: Eating unhealthy snacks can lead to spikes in blood sugar levels, which can cause mood swings and irritability. On the other hand, eating healthy snacks can help stabilize blood sugar levels and improve your overall mood.

Weight management: Snacking on unhealthy foods can contribute to weight gain over time. By choosing healthy snacks that are lower in calories and higher in nutrients, you can help maintain a healthy weight.

Improved digestion: Choosing snacks that are high in fibre can help improve digestion and promote feelings of fullness. This can help prevent overeating and promote healthy bowel movements.

Healthy Snack Options

Nuts: Nuts are an excellent source of protein and healthy fats. They’re also portable and easy to store, making them a great snack option to keep on hand.

Fruit: Fresh fruit is a great source of fibre, vitamins, and minerals. Choose fruits that are in season for the best flavour and nutritional value.

Whole-grain crackers: Whole-grain crackers are a good source of complex carbohydrates and fiber. Pair them with hummus or cheese for added protein.

Greek yogurt: Greek yogurt is high in protein and low in sugar. Add fresh fruit or nuts for extra flavor and nutrients.

Vegetables: Raw vegetables, such as carrots, celery, and bell peppers, are low in calories and high in fiber. Pair them with a healthy dip, such as hummus or guacamole, for added flavor.

In conclusion:

In summary, creating a productive workspace is about finding the balance between optimizing your environment and optimizing your habits. By incorporating the tips and tricks mentioned in this article, you can set yourself up for success and achieve your goals while working from home. 

  1. Use a task management system
  2. Use a second monitor or a bigger monitor
  3. Reduce distractions
  4. Set up your workspace ergonomically
  5. Keep your desk clutter-free
  6. Take breaks, stand up, and move around
  7.  Keep healthy snacks nearby

Remember, productivity is not just about working harder but also about working smarter. So, take the time to invest in your workspace and habits, and you’ll reap the rewards of increased productivity, efficiency, and overall well-being.

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