Two years into the pandemic, it’s abundantly clear that we need to reevaluate the way we organise and interact with our spaces. Celebrity architect and interior designer Ashiesh Shah agrees and says, “With the pandemic, there has been a definite shift in preference with an appreciation for objects and processes that are local. People are acknowledging and celebrating the notion of ‘Make in India’.” Shah goes on to add, “This is coupled with a desire and preference for brands that ensure sustainability, ones devoted to the practice of upcycling and contributing responsibly to the environment.” According to Shah, people are now looking beyond mere aesthetics and are incredibly conscious about the maker, the locale, and the processes involved.
Aside from an increased appreciation and awareness of the space we occupy, the pandemic has also made a new normal of working from home. While there are many benefits to this, mainly being able to attend Zoom meetings in sweatpants, it can get hard to immerse yourself into a ‘working’ mindset when you’re not actually present in an office. Shah firmly believes in the importance of a dedicated workspace in your home as it’s “absolutely indispensable” in today’s time. “(We should) foster a working environment of no distractions that can cater to building efficiency whilst working from home,” he says.
Here are a few tips suggested by the decor expert to ensure that your work-from-home space works for you…
Choosing The Right Furniture
Research has shown a direct relation between our productivity and stress levels and the clutter in our environment. Shah’s first tip is to pick the right furniture that can help you declutter your space and organise it more efficiently. “(Your workspace) should constitute a spacious table and chair with great ergonomics paired with adequate storage cabinets,” he says.
Flood it with Natural Light
Letting natural light into your space is a great way to increase productivity, according to this study, as it helps regulate sleep patterns and improves your mood. Shah calls the presence of natural light in your workspace a “characteristic of calm and quiet” and stresses the fact that this space should be flooded with natural light.
A Dash of Green goes a Long Way
“Plants accompanied with their earthen pots are a great addition to your environment,” says Shah. According to him, adding green to your workspace helps foster a calmer work environment that goes on to help increase your efficiency. You can introduce low-on-maintenance indoor plants, like Pothos or Spider Plant, to your workspace and see how it transforms your space in no time. Studies have shown that the inclusion of plants in your environment can reduce stress and improve productivity.
Regulate the Presence of Artificial Light
Shah is an advocate for natural light but acknowledges that escaping the presence of artificial lighting in your workspace is impossible. “You must adjust the artificial lighting within your interior environment to maximise comfort and productivity,” says Shah. There have been studies that have shown an increase in productivity levels because of the presence of blue-toned lights, as opposed to warmer yellows. Shah suggests balancing the presence of artificial and natural light in your workspace to create a better environment.