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A Guide to Help You Create a Stylish Workplace in the Time of Coronavirus

If you want productive and happy employees, then it's essential to cultivate a work environment that is stylish and safe. However, following on from the coronavirus outbreak, changes must be made to offices to ensure they're following new regulations on social distancing. This is going to drastically alter the layout of workspaces. The cosy environment you worked so hard to create could end up looking and feeling a lot more austere. This might well affect your staff's productivity, too, as the environment has been proven to affect mood and creativity.

Is there anything business owners can do to help their office become more social-distance friendly without also making the space look clinical and devoid? The good news is that there is. Here's our guide to creating a stylish workplace that's also safe during the coronavirus pandemic.

Inject Color

As we mentioned before, a person's environment can influence their mood and creativity. Colour schemes particularly affect emotions and mental wellbeing, leading to the psychological concept of colour theory. For instance, it has been discovered that purple can stimulate creativity and spirituality; blues or greens can create a nurturing and relaxing environment; whilst red can inspire excitement and agitation. Considering the coronavirus pandemic has caused people to become more depressed and anxious, you'll want to paint your work environment with colours that mitigate these emotions, so your employees feel more productive and positive when returning to work. Also, splashing a bit of colour can make any room look instantly brighter. This is one of our top tips for creating a stylish workplace that staff can happily return to following the outbreak.

Decluttering

What better way is there to improve your workspace than giving it a good old spring clean? Tidy house, tidy mind; organised office, organised employees. Have you ever noticed how after cleaning your house, everything just looks better? While it's obvious how decluttering can help on the stylish front, more importantly, it will make your office safer when it comes to social distancing. The less clutter in your workplace, the more space is opened up. This means you can rearrange the furniture more freely to optimise social distancing. For example, removing a shelving unit that isn't being used can allow employee desks to be pushed further apart, so they're now more than a two-metre distance from one another. If you're looking for somewhere to store your spare office furniture whilst social distancing regulations are in place, then it's worthwhile investing in business lockups. You're able to rent these storage units for as long as you need because their contracts are designed to be flexible.

Plants and Windows

Understandably, nobody is going to be able to splash loads of cash on new office furnishings during a pandemic. It's also unnecessary because you can make a much bigger difference simply by using natural assets like plants and lighting. Any interior designer will tell you the same. So, when rearranging the office, move your workstations towards the windows and add plants throughout the room. Light will brighten the workplace (which is good for both mental and physical wellbeing), whilst plants promote a more nurturing environment as they grow alongside you. They're also both good for air quality, which is now more important than ever. Coronavirus is known to thrive in stagnant air, so ventilation from the window will help to dispel the pathogen.

These are some easy but essential ways to create a safer, more stylish workplace amid the coronavirus outbreak. It's important to cultivate a nurturing environment so your employees remain upbeat and healthy during these challenging times.

How to Learn Much More From the Books You Read

It is one thing to read and another thing to understand what you are reading. Not only do you want to understand, but also remember what you've read. Otherwise, we can safely say that if we're not gaining anything from what we read, then it's a big waste of time.

Whatever you read, there are ways to do so in a more effective manner to help you understand better. Whether you are reading by choice, for an upcoming test, or work-related material, here are a few ways to help you improve your reading skills and retain that information.

Read with a Purpose

Never has there been a shortage of great books. So, someone recommended a great cookbook for you. You start going through it, but your mind is wandering. This doesn't mean the cookbook was an awful recommendation, but it does mean it doesn't suit nor fulfill your current needs or curiosity.

Maybe your purpose is more about launching a business. Maybe you're a busy mom and can't keep office hours, but there's something you can do from home to help bring in more money, so you want information about that. At that point, you won't benefit from a cookbook, but you could gain a lot of insight and find details here on how-to books about working from home. During this unprecedented year, millions have had to make the transition to work from home, and millions more are deciding to do that. Either way, it's not a transition that comes automatically or easily, but reading about it will inform you about what working from home entails.

Pre-Read

When you pre-read it primes your brain when it's time to go over the full text. We pre-read by going over the subheadings, for instance, the table of contents, and skimming through some pages. This is especially useful when you have formal types of academic books. Pre-reading is a sort of warm-up exercise for your brain. It prepares your brain for the rest of the information that will come about and allows your brain to be better able to pick the most essential pieces of information you need from your chosen text.

Highlight

Highlighting essential sentences or paragraphs is extremely helpful for retaining information. The problem, however, with highlighting is that we wind up highlighting way too much. This happens because we tend to highlight before we begin to understand. Before your pages become a neon of colored highlights, make sure that you only highlight what is essential to improve your understanding and not highlight the whole page.

Speed Read

You might think there have been no new ways to read, but even the ancient skill of reading comes up with innovative ways; enter speed reading. The standard slow process shouldn't affect your understanding, but it does kill your enthusiasm. The average adult goes through around 200 to 250 words per minute. A college student can read around 450 words, while a professor averages about 650 words per minute, to mention a few examples. The average speed reader can manage 1,500 words; quite a difference! Of course, the argument arises between quality and quantity. For avid readers, they want both quantity and quality, which leads us to the next point.

Quality Reading

Life is too short to expect to gain knowledge from just one type of genre. Some basic outcomes of reading are to expand your mind, perceive situations and events differently, expose yourself to other viewpoints, and more. If you only stick to one author and one type of material, you are missing out on a great opportunity to learn new things.

Having said that, if there's a book you are simply not enjoying, remember that life is also too short to continue reading it. Simply, close it, put it away and maybe give it another go later on, or give it away. There is no shame or guilt in not liking a book; even if it's from a favorite author. It's pretty much clear that you won't gain anything from a book that you don't even enjoy, let alone expect to learn something from it.

Summarize

If you're able to summarize what you have read, then you have understood. When you summarize, you are bringing up all the major points that enhance your understanding. You can easily do so chapter by chapter.

Take a good look at your life and what's going on in it. Accordingly, you'll choose the material that is much more suitable for your situation and circumstances. When you read a piece of information that you find beneficial, look for a way to apply it to your life. Knowledge for the sake of knowledge isn't all that beneficial. But the application of knowledge from a helpful book is what will help you and make your life more interesting and more meaningful.