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What Makes a Happy Work Space?

Happy work space

With so much of one’s life being spent working, it’s ideal for your work space to be one that makes you feel peaceful and happy. Of course, what makes a “happy” work space is completely subjective. Everything from paint colors to fabrics/textures to plants to pictures can make all the difference to your mood while you’re working.

So we asked doctors on Sermo, “What makes a happy work space for you? What do you (or would you) put into an office/work space to make you feel happy while you’re working?”

Below are some of their responses…

“I think you need natural light. My mood brightened a lot after I moved rooms to one with a huge window! Otherwise you just get Four Wall Syndrome.” – Pediatrician in Australia

“Natural colours, paintings on wall, comfortable chair desk, happy staff.” – General practitioner in Australia

“A happy workspace is one in which the staff work together, not as individuals but as a team.” – General practitioner in Canada

“For my happy workspace I would have big windows with lots of natural light, southern exposure preferred. I would have a Herman Miller chair to stay comfortable, wood floors, with light coloured walls and Persian rugs. I would have the windows open slightly to allow in fresh air and would have some pictures and art that would have sentimental value to me. I would also have a kettle/espresso maker for hot drinks!” – Family medicine doctor in Canada

“Growing up and going to the offices of various doctors, I always felt that they were ‘over-decorated’, lavish, ‘cold’, they made my middle-class self feel out of place and uncomfortable. My idea of the perfect office is one that is tastefully decorated but looks and feels like home. There should be ample space to comfortably sit in, bookcases with books to delve into, computers to surf the net or work on, as well as a separate space for infectious patients. But I don’t want my patients to feel like they’ve come to a rich person’s house and that they must walk on their tips and feel belittled. I don’t want them stunned, I want them to feel good about my place and me.” – Dermatologist in Greece

“If not natural light, then at least a view of outside to remain day-night orientated. An environment where cables and tubes are off the floor and not tangled (which they do themselves). It would help to have writing surfaces at a comfortable height. Minimal use of touch screen in an environment where contamination is a constant hazard and these devices are fussy to clean. A workplace where extraneous noise is actively minimised.” – Anesthesiologist in Australia

“My receptionist makes the office a happy place. She relaxes and cheers up patients waiting to see me. I hear a lot of laughter in my waiting room. There are a number of patients who will not come to the office when she is on vacation.” – General practitioner in Canada

“A happy workspace is vital to mental health! A comfy chair and a view to the outdoors is a must. Just watching the world go by and knowing that this will continue unabated, regardless of what is going on in your day, is soothing to the soul. It helps keep perspective on life.” – Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon in Canada

“Blomster,,, mye blomster.” (“Flowers… a lot of flowers.”) – Psychiatrist in Norway

“I used to have fluorescent light tubes in my examining rooms but recently changed to the 4000K LED lights. What a difference! I am happier, the skin tones are better and the staff and patients are happier. We got rid of the fish tank and replaced it with a terrarium. Now we have four red-eared turtles and they are very popular with the young patients.” – General practitioner in Canada

Are you a physician? Login or Join Sermo to join this conversation and let us know what makes a happy work space for you!