Making Your Home Office Conducive to Work

Most of us know that we need to think carefully about office design if we’re going to work at home productively. But what many people don’t realize, is that it’s not just the furniture in the home office that can support or hinder your attempts to work hard. Factors that influence your physiology can also have a big effect.

Light

For instance, it’s crucial that you keep your rooms light enough if you want to be able to see what you’re doing and to feel like you have space and air in the room. There are few things that make you feel less productive than being in a claustrophobic room.

At the same time, this also has an impact on our mood. A dark room has the tendency to make us feel tired, whereas light helps stimulate cortisol and wakefulness hormones. One great investment for a home office therefore is a daylight lamp, which creates light with a similar wavelength to the sun. It can combat SAD and it also improves productivity.

Distractions

At the same time you need to remove distractions – but not to the point where the room is so bland that you completely lose inspiration. Plants and colors can help to keep you feeling creative, but something like a TV is just begging for you to not work. Remember to put anything else you buy for your home office on your expense account!

Separation

Treat this room in your house like a real office too. Don’t go in there when you’re not working and make sure you take regular breaks to sit outside with a cup of tea or to just grab lunch.

Doing this will help to create an association between work and the office space – thus walking into the office will put you in a more productive headspace that will help you work longer and better.

Temperature

Even the temperature of your room has an impact on productivity. Ideally, this space should be lightly cool. This will help you to feel more awake and avoid drowsiness. Did you know that many theaters maintain a cool ambient temperature in order to keep the audience engaged with the stage show?

Smell and More

Even the smell has an effect! The right essential oils can stimulate the production of positive hormones that stimulate creativity and productivity, conversely, a bad odor floating in from outside can have a very negative impact.

Air quality is important too.

In short, do everything you can to make your office a space that nurtures and protects your productive instincts!

Reasons Why You Should Consider Becoming A Virtual Assistant

In this year and age, everything is related to the internet. From shopping, banking, bills payment, social interaction, communication and every bit of actions we humans do nowadays was somehow linked to the use of the internet. For several years I had been working a very traditional job in retail. However, personal circumstances made me re-think my current situation. A part of me always feels that traditional jobs here in the Philippines are very time-consuming. With a standard 48-hour work and a 1-day off per week, quality time with family and peers seems unlikely. So if work schedules are eating much of our time, is it after all worth it? This question bugged me for a lot of months. Then one day I came across KOM Academy’s Facebook posting for a free seminar on “How to be a Virtual Assistant.” Curious, I immediately inquired and pre-registered for this event. That’s when I realized that there are a lot of opportunities outside the traditional work environment.

What is a Virtual Assistant by the way? These are smart individuals offering administrative, creative and technical skills to remote clients. So what made me think this virtual job is kick-ass better than my old job? Reason number 1, “I am my boss”! As VA, as they call it, you work as an independent contractor to the client. Which means that you don’t work for a company or an employer, but instead they outsource you to render them the services they require. About this, you are not limited to work for a single client. Hence, the second reason – more clients, more income. By this I mean you can are not limiting yourself to only one source of income. You have the control to expand your financial gains as you deem fit. The third reason, it is home-based. What is not to love working at the comforts of your space? No hassle from commuting, dealing with worsening traffic situation of the city, increased transportation expenses, annoying amnesiac office mates who always borrow your things but never bothers to return them are just a few to mention.

If there is a convenience in the environment, work schedule is something that is flexible as well in this industry. That is the fourth reason why I considered engaging into this business. The chance to be given a schedule that is favorable to your liking is something that is highly unheard of in traditional jobs. Often you must be employed a full-time job to get a decent salary. Whereas in VA, even part-time jobs can still get you good pay. Mainly because you are paid based on the quality of your work output and not just merely on the number of hours you spent. Furthermore, output-based jobs present more opportunity for workers to get promoted as evaluation is real-time.

The fifth reason I seriously consider is that this job is never boring. As mentioned earlier, VAs provide different service from administrative, to creative and even technical for those highly-skilled individuals like the programmers. Thus, this job can present you wide range of tasks that you can explore and hone your skills.

These things cited above are just a few of the factors why I considered becoming a Virtual Assistant. To have the convenience of time and place in your hands is a privilege that an ordinary worker won’t be able to experience in a traditional work setting. As I go along my journey into this business, I am looking forward to discovering more things to love and enjoy.

Why Ride-Share Driving Is The Greatest Video Game of All Time

As someone from the video game generation, I have played my share of games. Back in the 1980’s, games were very binary with only a few colors on the screen. But, there I would find myself, staring at the screen for hours. Games progressed over the years and the consoles and graphics got better. Now games seem to incorporate the real world around you by using cameras on your cell phones and GPS location.

Very recently, I started driving for a ride-share company. Right from the start, I began to notice similarities between these new augmented reality video games and my driving app. The app shows an actual map, and when a ride request comes up, the phone screen lights up pink with the person’s name and a 10 second timer to accept the ride. The experience is absolutely exhilarating. From the moment the request comes in, there is a sense that you are playing a level in a game and that there is a goal to accomplish. My adrenaline pumps the entire time I’m driving.

Technically, the app software itself resembles a role-playing game. You have a profile that shows you stats like earnings, distance, time driven, miles, power zones, prime time, and peak areas. The map feature is constantly lighting up pink to dark pink to show where the heaviest requests are. If you didn’t realize that these places correspond with places in the real world, then you would probably think that you are actually playing a game. So similar to role-playing games, if you don’t accept a ride request, then you receive a negative on your acceptance rate. This is just like losing health in a game. Also, your ultimate score comes at the end of every ride when you receive payment for the trip.

The one scarier similarity to me is that there is an inherent addictive nature to the ride-sharing app. It reminds me of the same level of addiction I feel to certain video games when I play them. It feels as though when you are driving that you just want to keep going. Like you just want to get that one more ride before calling it a night. Only to find yourself giving five more rides. Just like in a video game where you keep playing telling yourself only one more level, just one more. Then the next thing you know is that the sun is coming up, you played all night, and you have to get to work!