How to Stop Being Busy and Start Being Productive

busy vs productive

Stop me if you’ve heard this conversation before:

You: “Hey (friend), it’s been a while! How have you been?”
Friend: “Hi (friend), I’ve been great – super busy!”

Can someone please tell me when the American culture decided that busyness is synonymous with success? Many people will happily and proudly admit to being overworked and stressed out! Somewhere along the line, we learned that if you’re not up to your eyeballs in work, then you’re doing something wrong. However, the simple fact is; that’s simply not true. There’s a HUGE difference between being busy and being productive.

What does it mean to be busy?

Of course, accomplishing tasks is an amazing thing. But if we’re not careful, our productivity reaches a peak, and then rapidly begins to decline. As a culture, we tend to fill our lives with never-ending to-do lists, multi-tasking, and high-stress levels. But we love stress! We know that stress leads to success, so we gladly overfill our calendars and stress ourselves out because we know that success lies at the end of the road. We thrive on the idea of over-caffeinating ourselves, buckling down, and pushing ourselves to the limit. Quite literally, busyness is a drug!

 

What is Productivity, Anyway?

On the other hand, productivity is a bit more than looking busy. Productivity measures the actual success of your labor, which makes it much more valuable in the long-run. Productive people put a bit more thought and care into the tasks they are taking on. Maximizing productivity in your workplace can do wonders for your business’ success!

Stop Being Busy, Start Being Productive

Now that we’ve explored the differences between being busy and being productive, we can start to focus on what it means to actually become productive in our work. Here are a few tips that will help you maximize your productivity and minimize your stress!

1. Stop Multi-Tasking

Study after study has shown that multi-tasking is the biggest productivity killer of all. When you spread yourself too thin, you begin to sacrifice quality on all of your projects. There’s no such thing as a good multi-tasker. Focus on what is deserving of your immediate attention, and then devote your time to finishing that task before moving onto something else.

2. Start Saying No

Busy people love to take on new projects. The more projects, the better. Because of this mindset, busy people have a hard time saying no. The next time you are approached about taking on a new task, rather than blurting out “yes” right away, be sure to take some time to think about what this project entails. Don’t be afraid to say “Let me sleep on that.”

3. Remove Distractions

Besides multi-tasking, the second biggest productivity killer is distractions. Immediate distractions such as noises around your office space are only the beginning. Most people are also constantly fighting internal distractions like what you’re going to do after work, or worrying about other things on your to-do list. Figure out which distractions you struggle with and be intentional about removing them from your life! Only focus on one task at a time – those other tasks can wait.

4. Stay out of your emails

Checking your email every time you get the alert notification not only interrupts what you’re doing, but also forces you to change direction to another project that just appeared in your email. Instead, turn off the sound notification and only check emails after the completion of a project or no more than once every hour.

5. Don’t Do. Think.

This idea might be counter-intuitive to what you know about productivity, but the fact is: productive people take life a little slower. Rather than hurry through a task, stop and put together a plan of action that will help you complete the task not only quickly, but successfully. Have you ever been halfway through a task, only to realize that you made a mistake early on, and now you have to go back and do it all over again? People who take the time to do a job right never have to go back and start over.

Office Furniture & Productivity Specialists

At Workspace Solutions in Fort Wayne, Indiana our slogan is “We do more than sell office furniture.” We also take pride in our mission to help businesses increase productivity and efficiency. Along with selling office furniture, we also have a team of experienced office designers that can help you put together a workspace that maximizes efficiency and productivity each and every day!

Contact us today to discuss your office and learn how we can help your team increase their productivity.

Star Trek Office Supplies

Love Star Trek? Then you’ll love these Star Trek office supplies that will help you celebrate its 50th anniversary in style while dressing up your space… Check out some of our favorites that will take your office where no office has gone before!

star trek pens

What’s more logical in an office than pens? This Star Trek Floating Pen Set from ThinkGeek are perfect for jotting notes during less than thrilling office meetings and include the Star Trek 50th logo and comes in a 50th-anniversary tin.

 

star fleet academy certificate

What lame school’s did your co-worker’s graduate from? Harvard? Yale? Big deal! They’ll all be jealous when they see this Starfleet Academy Graduate certificate proudly hung in your office. This certificate, exclusive to ThinkGeek is even signed by Captain Hikaru Sulu, Commandant, Starfleet Academy!

 

captains log notebook

This Captain’s Log mini notebook with charts and inspirational quotes is perfect for jotting down important notes and observations.

 

star trek badge holder

Add some style to your uniform with this Star Trek insignia ID badge holder.

 

star trek led light

This USB powered Star Trek Enterprise LED light is the perfect addition to any desk. Press the button to illuminate the ship in either red, green, blue, yellow, purple, teal, or white. Beam me up, Scotty!

 

star trek paper clips

Keep all of your Starfleet Directives neat and tidy with these Star Trek Paper Clips featuring the NCC-1701 and the Delta Shield.

5 Tips for a Fun and Effective Workplace

creating a fun office environment

Employees who enjoy going to work undoubtedly have better morale, are more likely to stay longer at their jobs, and to really give it their all. A positive work environment — including making room for some fun — also goes a long way in attracting new talent. Of course, fun aside, work has to continue to get done in a productive manner. Here are some tips on how to create a fun and efficient office environment.

  1. Plan and allow time for fun
    Encourage small break times for employees to disconnect and refresh their minds allow a few minutes at team meetings for employees to get to know each other organize a recurring happy hour. Have an office-wide, family-friendly event: an outing to a ballgame or day at the zoo reward goals being met with department- or company-wide parties, like a Friday afternoon ice-cream social or a Monday morning donut spread.
  2. Have a space to “reboot” 
    Make the lounge space or coffee bar area more appealing with comfortable chairs and furniture that can easily be moved around and reconfigured. If you have outdoor access, set up chairs, tables, and umbrellas to encourage spending break time outside (fresh air does wonders for an overworked brain!)
  3. Allow workspaces to be personalized
    Encourage employees to decorate their space to make it their own. Help them be more comfortable in their workspace by offering ergonomically adjustable chairs, footrests, desks, add-on keyboard trays, task-specific light fixtures, a variety of filing systems, etc.
  4. Encourage interaction and collaboration
    Design (or redesign) the office layout to encourage movement and collaboration. Reconfigure team spaces to allow for better sharing of space and technology and encourage meetings in common office space.
  5. Support work/life balance
    Allow for flexible schedules or occasional telecommuting. Provide access to healthy snacks and encourage physical activity (maybe a FitBit “steps” contest?)

Happy and appreciated employees are more dedicated to their jobs and more encouraging to each other. Additionally, a cooperative and fun office environment has been proven to generate fresh ideas and encourage more creative thinking. If these ideas appeal to your goals for your workplace, visit our office furniture store in Fort Wayne or Warsaw. We also have office furniture specialists in Indianapolis. We are experts in office design, layout, and furnishings and offer the latest in products to support a more efficient (and fun!) work space.

How to Make the Most of Summer When You’re Stuck at Work

ways to make the most of summer

Can you believe it’s already August? The Summer has gone by so fast that we still haven’t done all of those Summer activities we planned to do back in May. Fortunately, we still have some great weeks ahead of us, and even though we’re stuck indoors at the office, we can still make the most of the last few weeks of Summer.

Bike to Work

One way to take advantage of this beautiful season is to bike to work. This is a great way to maximize your outdoor time, and get some great exercise in! This is especially easy if you work in Downtown Fort Wayne. Most of downtown is very bike-friendly. Bike lanes line most of the streets and a bike rack is never too far.

Take Breaks

Even if your job requires you to be tied to your desk most of the day, it’s not too hard to make an excuse to go outside. Be sure to take short breaks every couple of hours to get up and walk around. This will help you be more productive and avoid Dormant Butt Syndrome. Use this time to walk around the parking lot. Even if it’s just for a few minutes at a time, GET OUTSIDE!

Eat your Lunch Outside

Another great time to be outside is your lunch break! If you typically pack your lunch, take it outside! If your workplace doesn’t have outdoor seating, then drive to the nearest park and enjoy some quality outdoor time there! Bring a co-worker and enjoy a quick game of frisbee.

Or, eat outside at one of our local restaurants. Here is a guide to some of the best places to dine al fresco in Fort Wayne.

Being outside for even an hour a day can dramatically improve your overall attitude and well-being. Plus, it’s the best way to make sure you make the most out of your summer!

Open a Window

There’s nothing worse than being stuck inside your office on a beautiful day – especially if your desk is right next to a window. Staring out at the gorgeous, blue skies can be torture. Next time you’re stuck inside the office, open the window and let the warm weather in for a few minutes! Feeling the warmth on your skin and hearing the birds chirping is a surefire pick-me-up.

Work Outside

Have you ever heard the saying, “if you can’t beat them, join them?” Well, the best way to make the most out of your summer is by getting outside. If you can, bring your laptop and work outside! Go to a local park, coffee shop or restaurant and take advantage of their outdoor dining. (Most places even offer free WiFi!)

Just because you’re stuck inside doesn’t mean you can’t find ways to enjoy your Summer and make the most out of summer while it lasts!

Make Your Butt Smile

Vion Office Chairs by Global

comfortable office chairs

You spend approximately 40 hours a week sitting at the office on your butt. That’s 2,400 minutes or 144,000 seconds sitting in your office chair. If you’re going to be sitting on your butt all day, make sure it’s happy!

With Global’s new line of Vion office chairs, your butt will be sitting like a king with exceptional comfort adjustments and mid and high back models with mesh or upholstered backs with ergonomic features that will make backs happy too! Vion offers an expansive seating series with over 24 models to address multiple applications including:

  • task chairs
  • management chairs
  • conference chairs
  • guest seating
  • heavy duty 24-7 seats
  • guest seating, heavy duty 24-7 seats
  • drafting stools

Vion is no ordinary office chair. Its unique back provides
exceptional comfort throughout the workday. Add the optional lumbar support and optional memory foam seat and you just might never leave your workplace.

Custom Office Chairs

What’s best is that Vion lets you customize your office chairs. Choose from over 25 different models:

vion office chair models

Then make it yours with by choosing from 5 different mechanisms, arm options, back and seat options, frame finishes, and base options. You can also choose from unlimited color options to match your brand and your style.

vion chair color options

Environmentally-Friendly Chairs

And, Vion is Level 3 and Greenguard Gold certified. They’re manufactured in an ISO 14001 facility and backed by Global’s Lifetime Warranty. Good environmental
management is included with every Vion. Can you say win-win?

Vion Office Chairs in Fort Wayne

A custom office chair that is environmentally-friendly, offers ergonomic adjustments, and is easy on your bottom line will put a smile on your face while its comfort will make your butt happy! Visit Workspace Solutions today to learn more about the Vion chair by Global – an excellent choice for any butt!

5 Ways to Maximize Office Productivity this Summer

boost office productivity in summer

Don’t Let the Nice Weather Ruin Your Workplace Performance

“Summertime and the living’s easy…” A little too easy I’d say. While the temperature outside is rising, productivity is declining. Did you know that workplace productivity drops by 20% during the summer? Furthermore, attendance is down 19%, and employees are 45% more distracted! This might not come as a surprise to some of you. I mean, are there any among us who wouldn’t rather be outside enjoying the nice weather rather than indoors working?

So, what can you do to help reduce the Summer productivity slump and make the most of Summer?

1. Switch up your Routine

Sometimes the summer productivity slump is just the result of too much structure. Switching up your routine, even a little bit, can improve your attitude and productivity. For example, get up a little earlier and go for a walk before work or ride your bike to work if possible. Get some outside time before heading in to the office.

2. Make up for lost time

One of the biggest productivity killers in the Summer is leaving early. As great as it is to get a jumpstart on your weekend, you also need to keep in mind that people are depending on you to do your job first. If you know you’re going to be leaving a little early, be sure to come in early or stay later the previous night.

It might not even be a bad idea to consider a four-day work week schedule during the Summer season. Working four ten-hour days with Fridays off can boost company morale more than anything!

3. Take a Vacation

You can’t do your work if you’re busy daydreaming about the beach. One of the best things to do for your productivity is to take a vacation. Whether you go anywhere or not, some time off will allow you to come back, refreshed, ready to dig in and do some work! Plus, in the weeks leading up to your vacation, you’ll be more willing to put in the extra effort now, knowing that you will be taking some time off.

A week or two before your planned vacation, make a list of everything you need to get done before you leave. This will keep you motivated to push through up to the very end!

4. Get Out

 

Take your breaks outside. Go for a walk, have a picnic lunch, sit outside at your favorite lunch spot. Enjoy the fresh air and reset before heading back into the office.

5. Take your Work Outside

If the beautiful weather is just too much temptation to handle, don’t be afraid to take your work outside! Got a meeting planned? Go outside and grab a picnic table. Allowing yourself some much-needed rays can do wonders for your productivity.

By following any of these five tips, you can be sure that your office productivity and morale is kept at an all time high this summer! From all of us at Workspace Solutions, we hope you have a great summer!

Caution: Your Job Could Be Harmful to Your Butt

dormant butt syndrome

By now you’ve heard of sitting disease, the ill-effects of an overly sedentary lifestyle. Now, there’s another condition affecting office workers and other sedentary people – Dormant Butt Syndrome. Yes, it is a real condition! No, we’re not making it up.

Despite the funny name, Dormant Butt Syndrome is a serious condition that could be the cause of your back pain, knee pain, or hip pain.

What is Dormant Butt Syndrome

Dormant Butt Syndrome (DBS) is a condition caused by sitting for extended periods of time. Most Americans have a job that includes sitting most of the day in an office chair. Add to that the time spent driving to and from work and even more time sitting to watch TV, play games, lounge, or read, and that’s almost a whole day of sitting on your butt. In total, the average American sits about 13 hours a day. It’s no wonder our butts now have their own condition.

Dr. Chris Kolba of Ohio State coined the phrase Dormant Butt Syndrome (also known as Dead Butt Syndrome). It’s the physical deterioration of the gluteal muscle due to sitting for prolonged periods of time. Remember the saying, “If you don’t use it, you’ll lose it?” Well, that’s what’s happening to our gluteal muscles. They’re deteriorating due to lack of use. And although that doesn’t sound like much of an issue, it can lead to some serious pain!

Fort Wayne Chiropractor, Dr. Richard Busch says, “Our clinic treats people every day who suffer from pain for one reason or another. An increasing number of our patients have sedentary lifestyles which are causing them a great amount of joint pain. Sitting for extended periods of time can cause the muscles in the butt to break down. If your gluteal muscles are weak, it can put additional strain on other joints resulting in knee pain, back pain, or hip pain.”

“In addition to joint pain, prolonged inactivity can also lead to a number of other chronic health conditions including diabetes and heart disease,” adds Dr. Davis, Chiropractor in The Villages® community.

How to Prevent Dormant Butt Syndrome

Most of us can’t just quit our jobs in lieu of a more active position. So what can you do to prevent DBS and other chronic health conditions while working? Simple, get off your butt!

  1. Get active. Take short breaks every hour to walk around and do a few exercises to strengthen your glutes such as lunges or squats. (You’ll not only help prevent Dormant Butt Syndrome, but your butt will look great in your favorite jeans!)
  2. Get up. Stand while talking on the phone or to your co-workers.
  3. Sit-to-Stand. Adjustable sit-to-stand desks are a great way to combat inactivity by letting you easily go from a seated position to a standing working position. There are even new seats that work great with standing-height desks to help take pressure off your joints.
  4. Get out. Instead of eating at your desk, go for a walk at lunch. The fresh air and exercise will do you some good too!

There you have it… 4 easy ways to help your butt, back, knees, and hips and to combat Dormant Butt Syndrome. Are you standing yet?

Introducing Focal Upright Furniture

Seats for Standing-Height Desks

focal upright seats

As we mentioned in our last article, many Americans today are suffering from “Sitting Disease” due to a highly sedentary lifestyle. Striving to become more active on the job, many workers have tried sitting on exercise balls, using treadmill desks, and standing-height desks.

“Standing-height desks are great,” says Mike Hunter of Workspace Solutions. Because sitting all day is bad for your health while standing all day is hard on your joints. Adjustible standing-height desks allow you to easily go from sitting to standing. But, some users still need a little extra support.” The solution? Focal Upright Furniture which gives workers a third option that balances the active benefits of standing with the comfort of sitting.

Focal Upright Furniture is a seat of sorts that is designed to work with standing-height desks. However, you don’t sit on the seat, you lean on it which takes pressure off of your joints and has many health benefits including:

  • improved posture
  • promotes neutral neck position
  • takes stress off the spine
  • engages the core
  • promotes active leg movement

focal upright seats - problem solution

There are four models to choose from.

standing height office chairs

Visit the Workspace Solutions office furniture store in Fort Wayne to try them out for yourself and see which one works best for you.

 

Do You Suffer From Sitting Disease

sitting disease and your health

Is Your Desk Job Bad For Your Health?

If you are like most Americans, you are likely suffering from a disease you maybe didn’t even know existed. What experts now call “sitting disease”. This disease afflicts many people who work in traditional work environments where many hours are spent seated at a desk or in front of a computer.

How many hours do you spend each day sitting at work? Add on the hours you spend driving, eating meals, using technology, or watching TV. The Mayo Clinic says that 50-70% of Americans spend 6 or more hours every day just sitting down!

Sitting Disease and Your Health

“ A highly sedentary lifestyle can wreak havoc on your system and has serious negative effects on our health,” states Dr. Busch of Busch Chiropractic in Fort Wayne. Sitting for extended periods puts extra stress on your spine and increases your risk for back injuries. In order to stay healthy, our joints, muscles, and other tissues need to move. Over time, reduced activity can not only limit your range of motion and cause back problems but contributes to many health issues and significantly shorten your lifespan.”

These health risks include:

  • increased risk of chronic back and neck pain
  • a proclivity for herniated discs
  • shorter life expectancy
  • increased risk for Type 2 diabetes
  • increased risk for heart disease and some cancers

Reduce the Risks of Sitting Disease

How can you ward off the dangerous risks of sitting disease? Fortunately, even a moderate increase in physical activity is proven to effectively fight these health risks.

Moving more:

  • burns more calories
  • reduces body fat
  • improves circulation
  • strengthens muscles
  • increases insulin sensitivity
  • improves mood
  • reduces load on spine

How to Increase Activity at Work

Here are some tips from Dr. Busch to use at the office (or home, as well) to keep sitting disease and its health risks at bay:

  • walk while you are talking on the phone
  • set a timer to remind yourself to get up at least once an hour
  • use a pedometer or Fitbit to track (and increase) your daily number of steps
  • take the stairs, instead of the elevator, up one floor or down two
  • every time you cross something off your to-do list, stand up for a stretching break
  • don’t sit for one-on-one meetings — have a walking meeting around the block or around the building
  • park further away from your office building, the restaurants you go to for lunch, the grocery store, etc.

Sit-to-Stand Desks:

You may also consider a standing-height desk or a “sit-to-stand” adjustable desk. Researchers say that the almost undetectable muscle movement that occurs while standing is as good as, or better, for our bodies than bouts of exercise between long periods of being sedentary. Studies show that people who stand while working move around more and get the important health benefits needed to combat sitting disease.

The positive effects of becoming more active can be profound. According to a Stanford University study, workers who used sit-to-stand desks were 78% more likely to report a pain-free day.

Visit the Workspace Solutions office furniture campus in Fort Wayne to talk to our furniture experts to learn more about healthier ways to work and avoid the dreaded sitting disease!

Ash Skyline Plaza

Ash Skyline Plaza Office Furniture

It’s furniture moving day! After months of work on the Ash Skyline Plaza in Fort Wayne, the day is finally here that we start moving in office furniture. We’re out at the new building unloading trucks full of office furniture. We will be installing furniture for Ash Brokerage on the 7th and 8th floor. We’re very excited to be a part of this project that’s been months in the making. Check back to see the progress on the building and the creative use of furniture and office spaces.