How Your Workspace Affects Your Work-Life Balance

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We often forget how important a comfortable workspace is. With remote work, the number of people noticing a blurring between their work and professional lives has increased significantly. Along with this, reduced productivity, aversion to work, and job burnout became more prevalent. 

Add to that vision and posture problems, which often affect employees who spend a lot of time at computer workstations. Good organization and adaptation of workspaces can help minimize the risk of these ailments. It can also contribute to more efficient work and greater satisfaction with both professional and personal life. 

Read on to learn the most important factors in workspace organization and find simple solutions. They can be applied to your workstation whether it’s at a regular office or in your own at home.

We use it all the time, yet forget its importance - air

Air quality in the office can prove to be a real game changer when it comes to employee health and thus affect productivity. A recent study revealed an 11% increase in productivity just by providing fresh air and reducing pollution at workstations. Many factors affect air quality in the workplace. Here are some of the ways you can improve it:

  • Invest in an air purifier
  • Introduce a smoking policy in certain areas away from the working area
  • Maintain healthy humidity levels
  • Add plants to the space
  • Open windows

Light can be the enemy or the friend

Another study proved that workers sitting less than 10 feet from a window could experience a variety of health problems. In fact, an 84% decrease in symptoms of eye fatigue, headaches, and blurred vision was reported. 

By the same token, desks at inadequate distances from windows generate concentration problems and long-term vision deterioration. Here are some ways to ensure good lighting in your workspace: 

  • Control glare and be sure it doesn't fall into screens
  • Make the most of natural lighting
  • Move large, bulky furniture that blocks sunlight 
  • Ensure there are no flickering lights
  • Use different types of lighting in the workplace, such as ambient lighting and task lighting - additional office lights

Keep calm & drink water

Drinking water regularly helps improve sleep quality and energy levels. It is also an indicating factor for the workings of the mind - the ability to concentrate, awareness, and creativity. And moreover, it helps us be more productive and efficient at work. Making sure your workspace is conducive to increased water consumption proves to be helpful. Here are some ways you can take care of this:

  • Provide unlimited access to potable water
  • Invest in a water cooler or ice cube maker
  • Have an adequate supply of glasses
  • Educate employees and encourage them to drink water

Workspace is not just about the desk

photograph of a remote worker in front of a laptop at a home office workstation facing a window with a view of greenery
Image Source: Unsplash

Our minds and bodies perceive the workplace holistically. The room's layout, access to the garden, or open space arrangement also matters for well-being while working. Many offices are not adapted to meet those needs. It creates a situation where 49% of employees worry that returning to the office could hurt their work-life balance. When arranging an office, it's worth thinking about:

  • Creating places to collaborate, as well as places to relax and de-stress.
  • Adding greenery: potted plants, living walls, or flower gardens
  • Opting for outdoor spaces (rooftop patio or employee garden)
  • Taking care of the color balance in the workplace

Little details, big changes

The way of arranging a workstation so that working at it has the least possible impact on the employee's health lies in the details. First and foremost - the workstations must be arranged ergonomically. It is necessary to maintain the proper distance between:

  • monitors (60 centimeters)
  • the employee and the back of the neighboring monitor (at least 80 centimeters)
  • the employee and his monitor (at least 40 centimeters).

The monitor itself should be large enough and equipped with an anti-reflection layer or filter. It should also be positioned so that light coming from the window is not reflecting - preferably at an angle to it. Following these recommendations reduces the harmful effects of monitor radiation on vision.

The computer desk should also meet certain standards. Its height must allow you to adopt a relaxed position and provide an appropriate angle for viewing the monitor. Moreover, the employee's knees must not reach the tabletop. Some companies offer ergonomic computer desks with height adjustment. It is an excellent solution, allowing the workstation to adapt to the individual's needs.

The right chair is also necessary: on wheels, stable, capable of rotation, with adjustable seat height and back tilt. The seat and backrest should be properly contoured. When a chair provides adequate support for the back, it reduces the risk of back problems. Such small improvements can have a significant impact on the employee's work and, moreover - on the success of the business


The workspace has a huge impact on employees. It is worth remembering to adjust specific elements in such a way as to ensure comfort and health at work. An ergonomic workstation and proper behavior of employees themselves can reduce many health problems and positively impact productivity. 

Huge potential for improvement lies in human-centered design and respect for individual needs. By being mindful of relaxation areas and taking comfort into account, you can easily improve the habitat in the office. After all, in the long run - a good workspace is a friend to employee well-being.

Featured Image Source: Photo by Copernico on Unsplash

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