Upgrading live/work spaces may promote a more vibrant future for all
Remember when pointed toe pumps were en vogue? Well, I wore them for a spell and nearly hobbled myself off the dancefloor for good. There’s nothing sexy about crippling yourself. It doesn’t matter how good those shoes look when you strut in front of the mirror. Can you bump and grind and shuffle ball change to your destination? How do you feel the next day? Are you smiling? Two foot surgeries later, comfort always comes first now. It’s the only way I can shimmy and sway when the mood strikes. Movement is key. I’ve taken this concept and extended it into other aspects of my life.
For example, every facet of my workspace is meant to inspire creativity. I use a tall desk that stands approximately four feet with complimentary tall chairs. I can stand when I want to, or sit when necessary. I alternate between the two throughout the day. I use a large display, colored lighting, music and aromatherapy. A handful of live plants do the photosynthesis dance with me, enhancing air quality while beautifying my surroundings.
I have a juicer and Vitamix at the space as well, and use them both every day. I roll out a yoga mat a few times daily to stretch. I take walks. I breathe. I drink a lot of water. And now, thanks to Venn Design, I use my Venn Chair regularly as well. When I get writer’s block, I’ll bounce around until an idea shakes out or stretch until a thought appears. I’m grateful for this addition, and blessed to work in a space designed for active movement and ingenuity. It’s a far cry from the cubicle I spent ten years working in after graduating from college. Fluorescent lights combined with freezing cold air conditioning made my body cringe and my disposition sour.
As I travel around, I notice other workplaces mirror that cold cubicle devoid of comfort and inspiration. These soulless spaces are “ancient” byproducts of the first and second industrial revolutions. As we navigate the third industrial revolution, largely led by computer technology, there’s an opportunity for greater innovation in workplace and home ergonomics. Juicero, an innovative at-home, cold-press juicing system, is one example. Active sitting, another. As 3D printing and virtual reality are quickly becoming more readily accessible, new technologies help us realize more ergonomically-sound possibilities.
We’ve heard much about “future homes” or “workplaces of the future,” yet, where are they? Active-sitting, and wellness-promoting live and work environments, remain crucial aspects of life/art/commerce now. We should embrace this technology to enhance our workspaces and our living environments. It’s important to nurture our well-being and foster our creativity. We need healthy, relaxed, inspired people working within the public and private sectors of our planet.
At the very base of it, many studies have been conducted on the benefits of ergonomics. We simply need to be more mindful and put these ideas into practice for all people. Albeit an investment for employers whose spaces need upgrading, ergonomically-sound, activity and creativity promoting workplaces pay-off in the long-run.
After generations of restrictive clothing, footwear, office furniture and thinking, it’s time to design a world that promotes well being by rethinking the relationship between design and body.
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