Published by James Gallagher on .
This article takes approximately 5 minutes to read.
I have been redoing my desk over the last two or so weeks. There has always been a part of me that has reserved making changes to my workspace. When I get into a routine, I like to stick with it. That has been my attitude for a long time. If this year has taught me anything, it is that life is too short for me to delay things for the future. I’ve always said that I’ll redesign my desk at some point. I never got around to it.
In a sense, redesigning a desk has been my carpe diem. It’s been a way for me to do something that’s just about me and nobody else. I am the only person who works at my desk. I want to take pride in it and make sure that the place I look at for hours a day is to my liking. To that end, I have decided to make a number of changes to my setup.
I do not suffer from any technology-related injuries… yet. I am conscious of how the negative health effects of technology compound over time. In an effort to help reduce my exposure to certain risks inherent with working at a desk all day, I’ve been thinking a bit more about the ergonomics behind my work environment.
The top of a monitor should be at just about eye level. At that level, I don’t have to look too far up or too far down to see any part of my monitor. I have propped up my monitor with a copy of Ray Dalio’s Principles. The book is the perfect height. I am already starting to feel that my posture is improving. I am still slouching quite a bit but slouching has become almost instinctual in my chair. I’m working on it.
I have also turned on Night Mode on my Mac. This mode does not disable. Night Mode switches my Mac from emitting blue light to warm, yellow light. I am aware of how blue light impacts sleep. While I do not use my computer an hour before bed, I still think that it cannot hurt to use warmer light. It took a day or so to get adjusted to using yellow light on my monitor but now I am used to it. I like the yellow light. I may even prefer it.
I tidied my bedroom slash home office a few weeks ago. As part of that tidy up, I cleaned a lot of my desk. I threw out or recycled all of the unnecessary accessories on my desk or near my desk. I moved on. The only thing that was left for me to tidy is my drawers. Slowly but surely I am going through them and throwing out what I no longer need.
I feel better working in a tidy office space because there is not a lot of visual clutter around me. I now have two POP figurines on my desk which you could argue are distracting. Although I have not even had one of them for a day, they are quickly becoming my friends. The bigger ticket items, like the old monitor box and record storage unit, were the real problems. I could always see them with the corner of my eye.
I’m still exploring my visual style. I am going to visit a local craft shop and I hope to purchase a few nik-nacks for my desk and workspace.
My visual style right now is minimalistic. I have a plant on my desk. It’s artificial because I doubt I could keep a live plant. Maybe I should try to keep a live plant. I’m not sure if the environment of my room in the warmer months would be supportive of me having a plant. I have my Airpods on my desk. I have my keyboard, mouse, and Mac. There are a few other objects but there is not much else. I like to keep things simple.
I do want to add more character to my workspace. That’s why I am interested in buying a picture. I have not found one that I really like yet. When I do, I’ll need to upload a photo of the picture to this blog. I want a colorful photo that helps lighten up the room. For the most part, I have stuck with a gray color pallete. That changed when I purchased some colored coasters from a local craft shop and new colored bedding.
My Next Steps
I have decided that I am going to change my desk when inspiration catches my eye. I do have something of a to-do list of things that I want for my desk. I am not ready to go all out and purchase everything. I’m going to wait until I see something that I think will fit my work environment really well.
The inspiration behind this blog post was that I decided to ask my co-workers where they work. I’ve found desk setups fascinating for a while. Part of the reason I asked my co-workers this question was because I was looking for inspiration for my setup. I realized that everyone has their own preferences. I’m still trying to figure out what mine are. To my co-workers who sent photos of their desks, I thank you. It has been great to see the “behind the scenes” of where everyone works with whom I talk on a regular basis.
For those interested, here is my current desk setup: