Success isn't just about working harder, it's also about creating a workspace that fosters creativity, motivation, and well-being.
As a Xolopreneur, I often switch up my work environment. Sometimes, I'll cozy up in an off-the-path café. Other times, I’ll find a quiet park bench where I can sit and sketch ideas in my notebook.
Constantly changing where I work has made me think hard about how my surroundings impact the quality of my work. Are there certain elements of my personality that I unconsciously bring to each temporary workstation I design? Should I be embracing the uniqueness of my surroundings to maximize my productivity while minimizing distractions? Or, should I strive to find an arrangement that works for me and replicate it everywhere I go?
As digital nomads who aren’t tethered to one office, Xolopreneurs understand that the perfect workstation can be a game changer. A workstation isn’t just somewhere to get things done, it is a hub for your creativity, productivity, and well-being. Being at peace with your surroundings can mean the difference between producing great versus mediocre work.
Here are two tips for setting up your workstation to see a boost in your productivity and work satisfaction.
As individuals who thrive on the freedom that digital nomadism offers, a traveling Xolopreneur may often find themselves in places that are not necessarily designed to be comfortable workspaces.
Whether you prefer a quiet café, a coworking space, or working outdoors at a park, it is essential to choose a workspace that aligns with your personality and work style.
To get started, ask yourself the following questions:
For some Xolopreneurs who are apart from their friends and family for extended periods of time, coworking spaces can fill the need for community and social interaction. A 2021 study suggests that a key reason why digital nomads are drawn to coworking spaces is that it offers them the opportunity to bond with others who are also passionate about the digital nomad lifestyle.
If you are someone who is social, extraverted, or otherwise inclined to network with like-minded individuals, a coworking situation may be the best option for you. However, if you are an introvert who prefers to work with minimal distractions, a coworking space may be too noisy, boisterous, or anxiety-inducing.
Be honest with yourself about the tasks you have lined up for the day, take stock of where your head is at, and ask yourself the questions I’ve listed above. This should give you a good idea of what you require from a workstation, and you can then go about designing a space that complements your unique needs for the day.
As a Xolopreneur, you have the freedom to work from anywhere with an internet connection. Of course, we all know how tempting it can be to just sit up in your bed, open up your laptop, and get to work.
However, it's crucial to remember the importance of natural light in your workspace. Exposure to sunlight has been shown to boost energy levels, mood, and productivity.
A 2022 study published in Cognition and Emotion points out that countries that receive more hours of sunlight exposure annually report higher levels of happiness. Researcher Satoshi Kanazawa explains that this is because "the natural response designed by evolution is to feel safe, secure, and happy when exposed to sunlight."
In contrast, a prolonged lack of natural light can lead to a variety of health issues, from mild sleep and performance issues to severe depression.
According to a classic study published in the International Journal of Industrial Ergonomics, our biological lighting demands are considerably different from our visual need for light. The study also found that the intensity of lighting we are used to in our offices is below the threshold of our physiological need for light.
If you have the luxury of working from anywhere, try to find a workspace that allows plenty of natural light. If that's not possible, invest in good-quality artificial lighting that mimics natural light. This will help you stay focused, energized, and productive throughout the day.
By choosing a workspace that resonates with your personality and using natural light to boost your energy levels, you can enhance your creativity, productivity, and overall satisfaction with your work. As you continue to embrace the digital nomad lifestyle, be sure to prioritize your work environments as it will be an essential component of your success.
Mark Travers, Ph.D., is an American Psychologist with degrees from Cornell University and the
University of Colorado Boulder. Xolo helps him run his online therapy practice, Awake Therapy, from whatever part of the world he is currently living in.
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