5 Office Spring Cleaning Tips to Boost Productivity

5 Office Spring Cleaning Tips to Boost Productivity
5 Office Spring Cleaning Tips to Boost Productivity

The warmer weather and the longer days intensify our desire to clean and organize. While many people take the time to clean out their wardrobes and organize their homes, one area that is often neglected is an office or desk space. Since your work area is a place where you spend 8+ hours per day, it is important to take the time to clean out these spots, as well. Use these tips to get the most out of your spring cleaning and prepare yourself for the rest of the year.

1. Digital Declutter

Digital clutter slows down your computer over time and leaves you with little space to store your work files, which is why a routine e-cleanup is necessary for top performance. Start by going through your files and transferring ones you want to keep but don’t actively use to a server or an external hard drive. If there are files that you do not need at all, go ahead and delete them! After completing these steps, organize your desktop and folders to simplify your file search.

2. Clear the Unnecessary

Your desk should hold your most important items such as a computer, phone, notepad, and a reliable pen or mechanical pencil. If your desk has drawers, use them to sort any paperwork you have on the top surface away, to keep your surface clear and streamlined. The trick is to keep your most used items within arm’s reach. Being organized and having a clean slate can help you become more productive during the workday.

3. Wipe it Down

Now that your workspace is tidy and streamlined, it is time to clean it. Start by using a disinfectant wipe to sanitize your work tabletop and then move on to using a screen cleaner spray for any electronical surfaces like your computer and phone screens. One area you’ll want to make sure not to forget—your keyboard! Using a microfiber towel and cotton swabs can help you get into all the spaces between the keys. Try making cleaning part of your weekly routine to truly feel a difference.

4. New Supplies

Now that you have gotten rid of all the clutter, it is time to take inventory of your supplies and make a list of what you still need. At the top of that list should be new pens and mechanical pencils for the rest of the year. The Sarasa Grand Retractable Gel Pen comes in 6 aesthetically pleasing barrel colors and rapid drying gel ink for an effortless writing experience. For a mechanical pencil option, try out the DelGuard Mechanical Pencil. Its lead won’t break under pressure and is refillable.

5. Add Some Pizzazz

Finally, don’t forget to make the space your own by injecting your personality into it. Show off your style with a potted faux plant, sleek metal mousepad, or a few framed photographs. No matter how you do it, adding your own personality to your workspace is a great way to breathe in new life and help you (and your desk) feel refreshed.
Even if it isn’t spring, adding some personality to your newly cleaned and organized office can help you refocus and improve your productivity. We hope these tips help you organize, clean, and refresh your workspace.

All the supplies mentioned here are available from Penny Wise Office Products.
Call to Order – (800) 942-3311 or Shop Online www.penny-wise.com

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4 Wellness Activities for Your Work From Home Lunch Break

4 Wellness Activities for Your Work From Home Lunch Break
4 Wellness Activities for Your Work From

If Wellness in 2021 is your goal, we’ve got 4 great Work Day Wellness Activities for you, even if you are working from home.

Most of the work from home guides you may have read focus on productivity, with tips about how to concentrate on work and better utilize tech, such as external monitors or laptop docking stations. But productivity is just one half of the recipe for WFH success.

Wellness is also a crucial ingredient. After all, it’s not easy to perform at your best if you’re feeling unhealthy or stressed-out. There are some easy wellness activities that you can take advantage of during your lunch break to stay active and engaged.

Activity #1: Eat Lunch Somewhere Other Than Where You Work

When you work from home, time can seem very fluid, with no clear boundaries between work and leisure periods. Similarly, the lines between “workspace” and “leisure space” can become blurred.

But you still need clear differentiation as well as regular breaks to avoid long, uninterrupted periods of staring at a screen in the same spot, which can quickly put you into a lull. In other words: Don’t eat lunch in your WFH workspace, or deprioritize doing so just because you feel like you’re “in the zone.”

A survey from hygiene and health company Tork found that employees who regularly took lunch breaks felt more engaged on the job than those who did not. It might seem counterintuitive that people who work fewer hours overall, and do so more sporadically with interspersed breaks, are more productive than ones who just power through all day at their desk, but it makes sense in a way:

Leaving your workspace for a kitchen or patio table lets you switch contexts and can help recharge your mental energy.

It also spares you from literal multitasking – for example, trying to eat and respond to emails simultaneously – that taxes the brain and decreases the quality of any attempted work.

By really focusing on your lunch, within a non-workspace, you can also avoid the tendency to overeat, which is a common effect of distracted eating.

Activity #2: Take a Walk or Do Other Exercise During Your Break

Going for a walk offers multiple benefits to productivity, health, and wellness.

First, like eating lunch somewhere else, it provides a clear break from sitting in front of your computer. That’s important for resetting your mind. Walking helps sharpen the senses and improve key brain functions for memory, learning, and cognition.

Second, if you can walk outside, you can give your immune system a boost. Georgetown University researchers once found that sunlight boosts T-cell activity.

Third, it’s good for keeping up with a formal health and wellness program or regimen, if you follow one. Specific requirements of these programs – such as getting in a sufficient number of steps each day or achieving a certain heart rate – can be more easily met with some lunchtime physical activity.

If walking isn’t your favorite thing, you can still do some other beneficial exercises with minimal setup:

Bodyweight exercises like squats, lunges, and pushups require nothing but a little space and can pay dividends right away in how physically and mentally alert you feel.

Consider getting a pair of dumbbells and a yoga mat to add more challenge and create a more comfortable surface, respectively.

Track your time so that the exercise routine doesn’t run too long or make it more difficult to fulfill your work-related commitments.

Activity #3: Eat a Prepared Meal

Activity 3 Eat a Prepared Meal

Switching from a commute-based job to working remotely can dramatically change your eating habits, and not necessarily for the better. Since snacks might be readily available from your WFH workspace, it can be easy to eat junk food throughout the day. On top of the risks already present from sitting for too long (like higher blood pressure), there are possible downsides for your health.

Planning your meals is one way to avoid falling into this trap of impulsive and stress-induced snacking (plus, it’s good dietary advice in general). Enjoy a meal that was prepped in advance, like you might have done before if you packed your own lunch for the office. This helps instill structure in your workday, too, helping avoid the boundary-less work-life muddle discussed earlier.

Consistent hydration is also important, so keep a water bottle nearby as well as grab your favorite drink of choice at the beginning of each workday. Making these kinds of preparations benefits your health as well as your productivity, since they reduce the time you spend on tasks such as getting up from your desk to get a drink.

That said, do take breaks as needed, perhaps on a schedule aligned with a time management technique like the Pomodoro Technique. This particular technique entails intentionally breaking the workday down into 25-minute increments, with frequent 5-minute breaks and less frequent 15- to 30-minute ones.

Activity #4: Listen to Music or Look at Art

Every lunch break is an opportunity to do something positive for your health and wellness – and that “something” doesn’t have to be physically strenuous.

If you don’t listen to music while working (maybe because it’s disruptive to others at home, or has to be paused/stopped frequently for meetings), try doing so during a break to give yourself a boost of endorphins that elevate your mood. Music may be good for productivity because of its mood-enhancing effects. A study of software engineers found that programmers who listened to music while working felt better and produced higher-quality code.

Likewise, looking at art or – better yet – creating it is a proven health and wellness activity. Even a 10-minute art break with just a pencil and some paper can get the creative juices flowing, with a spillover effect on your productivity and your overall wellbeing.

Check out all our Work From Home Products for Improved Productivity and Comfort at www.penny-wise.com

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Scientists Agree: The Airborne Transmission of COVID19 is a Real Risk

Scientists Agree: The Airborne Transmission of COVID19 is a Real Risk
Scientists Agree

Recent news on COVID-19 airborne threat

Until now, there have been conflicting messages related to the risk of the airborne transmission of COVID-19. A group of 239 scientists in 32 countries have published their open letter to global health community to present the evidence.

In their letter, the highly qualified group state:

Multiple studies “have demonstrated beyond any reasonable doubt that viruses are released during exhalation, talking, and coughing in microdoplets small enough to remain aloft in the air”.

These microdroplets “pose a risk of exposure at distances beyond [3 to 6 feet] from an infected individual”.

“we are advocating for the use of preventive measures to mitigate this route of airborne transmission.”

Read the full text of the letter: It is Time to Address Airborne Transmission of COVID-19

What we know about COVID-19

As discussed above, the highly qualified group of 239 scientists highlight in their open letter that multiple studies:

“have demonstrated beyond any reasonable doubt that viruses are released during exhalation, talking, and coughing in microdoplets small enough to remain aloft in the air”

 

Surfaces and COVID-19

While it’s believed that COVID-19 spreads from person-to-person contact, officials haven’t ruled out surface contact as a potential source of contagion. It’s just too early to tell.

In fact, recent tests on the coronavirus COVID-19 showed it can stay active on various surfaces. Researchers found viable coronavirus samples could live for up to:

24 hours on cardboard

four hours on copper surfaces

two to three days on plastic and stainless steel.

During tests, the researchers also found the coronavirus could be detected in the air up to three hours after emission, making it vital that people clean the air.

The importance of cleaning

While the majority of COVID-19 cases are derived from person-to-person contact, we can’t overemphasize the importance of proper room cleaning.

So, while many people have stressing surface and hand cleaning, the addition of cleaning the air will undoubtedly help manage enclosed spaces. AeraMax Professional’s four-stage system, with True HEPA filtration, can effectively and efficiently build on the hand and surface cleaning routines.

 

Where AeraMax Professional can help

We do know that AeraMax Professional air purifiers can mitigate additional pathogens in the air where people are infected, removing pollutants from air and reducing risks for people already infected.

AeraMax Professional air purifiers:

Are certified to be effective in reducing airborne concentrations of influenza A (H1N1) aerosol in a test chamber, reaching 99.9% airborne virus reduction within the first 35 minutes of operation.

Are certified to capture 99.97% of pollutants at 0.3 microns.

Can capture more than 97.8% of pollutants at 0.1-0.15 microns, via IBR Laboratories test data.

 

What’s more, an AeraMax Professional III with PureView Technology can sense when airborne contamination is present in a room, automatically adjusting cleaning to remove the offending particles from the air. This is ideal for places like assisted living facilities, where residents already have compromised immune and respiratory systems.

AeraMax Professional Air Purifiers are available at Penny Wise Office Products www.penny-wise.com

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How to Minimize the Threat of COVID-19 Spread in Your Workplace

How to Minimize the Threat of COVID-19 Spread in Your Workplace
healthy workplace

This month’s blog post comes to us from our friends at ECI. We found their suggestions for a safe and healthy workplace very helpful, and believe you will too.

As of September 14, 2020, there have been 6.7 million cases of COVID-19 in the U.S. and nearly 200,000 deaths. A recent poll shows that 54% of U.S. employees say they are worried about exposure to the virus at their job. But, the good news is that 71% of employees have confidence their employers can manage workplace environments safely. Fortunately, there are several ways to minimize the threat of spread in your workplace.

1. Keep employees, customers, and visitors informed

Stay in constant communication with your employees, customers, and visitors to inform them about your risk mitigation plans. Use snail mail, email, loudspeaker messaging, and signage to provide information about these measures and enforce mask-wearing, frequent hand washing, and proper 6-feet distancing. Ensure that employees understand the importance of mask-wearing; masks help to prevent a person who is sick from spreading the virus to others by keeping respiratory droplets contained and from reaching other people. COVID-19 spreads mainly among people who are in close contact with one another (within about 6 feet), so the use of masks is particularly important in settings where people are close to each other or where social distancing is difficult to maintain, according to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC).

Provide training for putting on and taking off masks properly, and even for fully washing hands, caution employees against touching their faces or their masks, and install hand sanitizer stations to further minimize the risk of spread through touching objects. You should also keep a supply of either surgical or N-95 masks if employees’ mask straps break.

Continually keep employees apprised of all new developments. Inform them that risk assessments are taking place, and instruct on what they should do if they are feeling symptoms or if they notice other employees that are exhibiting symptoms.

Disseminate your sick policy digitally and in paper form concerning a possible outbreak to your employees, along with resources from the CDC for learning more about what they can do to protect themselves (see step 3 below).

2. Have a work-from-home Plan B in case of a local outbreak

Hot spots continue to pop up all over the country, and your region may be affected sooner or later.

Should this occur in your area, you’ll need a contingency plan allowing as many workers as possible to work from home. Make sure there are enough laptops, VPN devices, printers, and any other role-specific technologies (such as phone systems for receptionists and customer support staff) to support work for all of your units that must remain operational. Account for your “bring your own device” (BYOD) policy and the handling of sensitive data, so that an outbreak doesn’t lead to a data security disaster.

3. Mandate that symptomatic employees stay home

Once employees show symptoms of fever or acute respiratory illness, the CDC recommends that they should know your company wants them to stay home until they are free of symptoms for at least 24 hours, without the use of fever and symptom-reducing medicines.

If an employee presents symptoms at work, such as shortness of breath, nasal drip, muscle aches, chills, sore throat, or coughing, they should be separated and sent home immediately.

If an employee is not sick or showing symptoms, but has a family member at home diagnosed with COVID-19, notify their supervisor and refer to CDC guidance for conducting a risk assessment of their potential exposure.

Finally, if an employee tests positive, employers should inform employees of their possible exposure to COVID-19 in the workplace while maintaining the confidentiality required by the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Employees exposed to a co-worker with confirmed COVID-19 should refer to CDC guidance on conducting a risk assessment of their potential exposure.

4. Keep the facilities clean

The CDC recommends routine cleaning of all frequently touched surfaces in the workplace. If your cleaning staff cleans bathrooms and common areas, but workers maintain their workstations, communicate that they should sanitize their areas (including doorknobs, keyboards, and desks) frequently, and provide disposable wipes for the purpose. The CDC offers a comprehensive set of instructions for cleaning and disinfecting your facility.

5. Avoid workers coming in for financial reasons

Given many Americans are living paycheck to paycheck, a scenario to avoid is sick workers evading testing or coming in for fear of not getting paid. Just one employee making an ill-advised decision could be catastrophic for other employees and the organization. Employers are not legally obligated to pay self-isolating workers who may not be sick or, in some cases, sick. But it makes sense to reward conscientious hourly employees by offering to keep their paychecks coming if they need to take time off because of illness or exposure.

Places of employment, as well as schools, have a significant role to play in the prevention of COVID-19 spread. Following these measures is the social (and in some cases, legal) obligation of every employer until the end of the pandemic.

Penny Wise Office Products offers a large selection of PPE and cleaning products to keep your office safe and healthy.

Content comes from them: https://www.ecisolutions.com/blog/how-to-minimize-the-threat-of-covid-19-spread-in-your-workplace

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Organizing Everything With Lists

Organizing Everything With Lists

How lists make productivity skyrocket.

Why do lists seem to magically help get everything in order? According to The Guardian, people perform better when they have written down what they need to do.

It’s usually easier to remember what you need to get done at work when you write (or type) it out – even if you’re not actively looking at it. That concept can apply to nearly every facet of your life. Here are some tips to make the simple list, an effective professional productivity tool for you.

 

Organizing-Everything
Master List

Your master list should be a broad brain dump of short and long term goals you want to accomplish in your professional life. Don’t over-complicate this list. It can be messy and updated whenever you want.

Weekly List

This is where you start to break down your to-do’s into more manageable chunks. First, collect all the items you want to achieve this week. Include small and big accomplishments like “respond to emails” or “complete part 1 of X project.”

Daily List

Now you’re ready to make a daily list. This list should be very specific and can be broken down chronologically or you can assign priority to each item. Start with higher priority projects and leave the smaller stuff for later in the day. If you don’t get to the lower priority items, just be sure to add them to tomorrow’s daily list.

Go Digital

Going old school and writing down your lists on a piece of paper is effective (and feels great when you get to check them off). But papers often get lost in the busy shuffle. Consider using a digital tool to keep track of your short and long-term goals. Many phones already have a list app built–in – and you can refer to them any time!

Include Yourself

Lastly, make sure you schedule some time for YOU. Ideas include: coffee breaks, a 15-minute walk, or stretch, and video chats with your career mentor.

Penny Wise Office Products has a huge selection of List Trackers and Notebooks.
Visit us at www.penny-wise.com or call 1-800-942-3311. We’re happy to help!

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Cleaning And Disinfecting Your Home

Cleaning And Disinfecting Your Home
Cleaning And Disinfecting Your Home

This month’s blog comes straight from the CDC, which we thought would be helpful during these uncertain times. Do you know the difference between cleaning and disinfecting? This is a good time to reevaluate the steps we take to stay safe and healthy.

CDC

How to clean and disinfect

Clean
Clean

  Wear reusable or disposable gloves for routine cleaning and disinfection.
  Clean surfaces using soap and water, then use disinfectant.
  Cleaning with soap and water reduces number of germs, dirt and impurities on the surface. Disinfecting kills germs on surfaces.
  Practice routine cleaning of frequently touched surfaces. High touch surfaces include:
      Tables, doorknobs, light switches, countertops, handles, desks, phones, keyboards, toilets, faucets, sinks, etc.

Disinfect
Disinfect

  Recommend proper use of disinfectants, as listed below.

Many products recommend:

  Keeping surface wet for a period of time (see product label)
  Precautions such as wearing gloves and making sure you have good ventilation during use of the product

Always read and follow the directions on the label to ensure safe and effective use.

  Wear skin protection and consider eye protection for potential splash hazards
  Ensure adequate ventilation
  Use no more than the amount recommended on the label
  Use water at room temperature for dilution (unless stated otherwise on the label)
  Avoid mixing chemical products
  Label diluted cleaning solutions
  Store and use chemicals out of the reach of children and pets

You should never eat, drink, breathe or inject these products into your body or apply directly to your skin as they can cause serious harm. Do not wipe or bathe pets with these products or any other products that are not approved for animal use.

Diluted household bleach solutions may also be used if appropriate for the surface.

      Check the label to see if your bleach is intended for disinfection and has a sodium hypochlorite concentration of 5%–6%. Ensure the product is not past its expiration date. Some bleaches, such as those designed for safe use on colored clothing or for whitening, may not be suitable for disinfection.

      Unexpired household bleach will be effective against coronaviruses when properly diluted.
Follow manufacturer’s instructions for application and proper ventilation. Never mix household bleach with ammonia or any other cleanser. Leave solution on the surface for at least 1 minute.

  To make a bleach solution, mix:
      5 tablespoons (1/3rd cup) bleach per gallon of room temperature water
OR
  4 teaspoons bleach per quart of room temperature water
  Bleach solutions will be effective for disinfection up to 24 hours.
  Alcohol solutions with at least 70% alcohol may also be used.

Soft surfaces

For soft surfaces such as carpeted floor, rugs, and drapes.

  Clean the surface using soap and water or with cleaners appropriate for use on these surfaces.
  Launder items (if possible) according to the manufacturer’s instructions.Use the warmest appropriate water setting and dry items completely.
OR
  Disinfect with an EPA-registered household disinfectant. Use disinfectants that meet the EPA’s criteria for use against COVID-19.
  Vacuum as usual.

Electronics

For electronics, such as tablets, touch screens, keyboards, and remote controls.
 Consider putting a wipeable cover on electronics.
 Follow manufacturer’s instruction for cleaning and disinfecting.
      If no guidance, use alcohol-based wipes or sprays containing at least 70% alcohol. Dry surface thoroughly.

Laundry

For clothing, towels, linens and other items.

  Launder items according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Use the warmest appropriate water setting and dry items completely.
  Wear disposable gloves when handling dirty laundry from a person who is sick.
  Dirty laundry from a person who is sick can be washed with other people’s items.
  Do not shake dirty laundry.
  Clean and disinfect clothes hampers according to guidance above for surfaces.
  Remove gloves, and wash hands right away.

Clean hands often
Clean hands often

  Key times to clean hands
      Immediately after removing gloves and after contact with a person who is sick.
      After blowing one’s nose, coughing, or sneezing
      After using the restroom
      Before eating or preparing food
      After contact with animals or pets
      Before and after providing routine care for another person who needs assistance (e.g. a child)

  Wash your hands often with soap and water for 20 seconds.
  Hand sanitizer: If soap and water are not readily available and hands are not visibly dirty, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol. However, if hands are visibly dirty, always wash hands with soap and water.

Always read and follow the directions on the label to ensure safe and effective use.

  Keep hand sanitizers away from fire or flame
  For children under six years of age, hand sanitizer should be used with adult supervision
  Always store hand sanitizer out of reach of children and pets
  Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.

When someone is sick

Bedroom and bathroom
Bedroom and bathroom

Keep separate bedroom and bathroom for a person who is sick (if possible).

  The person who is sick should stay separated from other people in the home (as much as possible).

  If you have a separate bedroom and bathroom: Wear disposable gloves and only clean the area around the person who is sick when needed, such as when the area is soiled. This will help limit your contact with the person who is sick.

      Caregivers can provide personal cleaning supplies to the person who is sick (if appropriate). Supplies include tissues, paper towels, cleaners, and disinfectants. If they feel up to it, the person who is sick can clean their own space.

  If shared bathroom: The person who is sick should clean and disinfect after each use. If this is not possible, the caregiver should wait as long as possible before cleaning and disinfecting.

Food

  Stay separated: The person who is sick should eat (or be fed) in their room if possible.

  Wash dishes and utensils using disposable gloves and hot water: Handle any used dishes, cups/glasses, or silverware with gloves. Wash them with soap and hot water or in a dishwasher.

  Clean hands after taking off gloves or handling used items.

Trash
Trash

  Dedicated, lined trash can: If possible, dedicate a lined trash can for the person who is sick. Use disposable gloves when removing garbage bags, and handling and disposing of trash. Wash hands afterwards.

Penny Wise is here to provide you with all the cleaning and disinfectant supplies you need to stay healthy. Call us today for fast, free delivery.

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5 Ways to Maintain Sustainability Indoors

5 Ways to Maintain Sustainability Indoors
5 Ways to Maintain Sustainability Indoors

The coronavirus epidemic has impacted the entire world, with many people working from home and being told to leave the house as little as possible. In times where we must stay at home as much as we can, it can be tough to remember that the world is also facing an environmental crisis. Fortunately, there are opportunities to help the environment, even while working from home and staying indoors. Here are five considerations from our friends at Double A Paper to be sustainable indoors.

Limiting Purchases

Learning to live a more minimalist lifestyle can help you save money and aid the environment. Shopping online and placing orders for new products may be fun, and at times it can even be necessary, but limiting your purchases will cut down on the amount of money you spend while also cutting down on the amount of fuel used for shipping and the amount of materials used for production. It can help you learn to better appreciate things you have at home as well. Take time to consider what you truly need. If you do require something, there may be ways to make it or obtain it sustainably. Be mindful of the buyerarchy of needs before you place an order.

Limiting Energy Usage

You’re at home, so of course you’ll need to use your computer to work. But how much energy do you require on any given day? Make sure the lights around your house are off unless they’re needed, and as tempting as it may be, don’t use things like a TV for background noise while you work. The amount of energy you conserve will be noticeable, and you’ll appreciate it when your next utility bill comes in. The extra time you save without having a commute could also be dedicated to conserving energy. It can be tough, but with the right effort, you can make hand washing your dishes more efficient than running your dishwasher.

Consolidate Errands to Minimize Need to Leave Your House

There are times where you’ll have to leave your house – such as obtaining groceries. If this is the case, keep a list of things you need to leave the house for (medicine, food, other necessities, etc.). Make a plan to buy only essential items and minimize the amount of time you spend at each location and travelling between them. This will help to keep you safe and reduce the amount of fuel consumed for travel.

Regulate Your Home Temperature Conservatively

As the temperatures outside increase and summer approaches, you may be tempted to stay cool by using air conditioning to a high degree. Consider the alternative ways to keep your home cool, such as sunlight-blocking curtains, in order to save energy while keeping your home cool. Remember, you can also open your window to let in some fresh air and listen to the sounds of the outside world.

Stay Informed and Do Research

New methods of being environmentally conscious are being discovered all the time, and every day, people are coming up with inventive and unique ways to be sustainable and protect the environment. In your downtime, do research into new ideas and developments around sustainability, and what you can do from home. For more ideas on practicing sustainability, by yourself, in your home office, or with your family, subscribe to our blog and get more updates and fresh content!

 

Stay Informed and Do Research

 

People all across the world need to work together to make a major difference, both for our own health and for the Earth. There are times where that can be a challenge, but we must remember that our planet should always be a priority.

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Increase Company Mindfulness in 5 Steps

Increase Company Mindfulness in 5 Steps

This month’s blog comes to us from our friends at Double A Paper

How we see the world around us impacts our lives and how we relate to others. Understanding your own emotions can be a powerful tool when interacting with the world, both personally and professionally. By learning how to cultivate company mindfulness, you can increase team interaction, employee productivity, and the bottom line.

What is Mindfulness

Mindfulness is a concept centered around self-awareness. Mindfulness is about being in the moment and experiencing your environment with no distractions. While being mindful, you pay close attention to your thoughts and emotions without judgment.

Mindfulness cultivates emotional intelligence and provides the skills needed to ignore impulsive, emotional reactions. Teaching your office how to be more mindful has the potential to increase the happiness of your work environment.

Why Company Mindfulness is Important

More companies are focusing on the wellbeing of their staff due to the increasing cost of an unhealthy workforce. Employees who are dissatisfied with their workplace tend to call out, resist work, and look for other opportunities. This could potentially leave companies with high turnover and a toxic culture.

The number of sick days used for mental health has increased exponentially over the past five years, causing mental health to be the number one reason for employees to call in sick.

Mindfulness can lower blood pressure, increase focus, and reduce anxiety and depression in employees. In fact, when employees practice mindfulness, they are more likely to be resilient in the face of stressful situations. Resilience and adaptability to stress play a key role in wellbeing.

When employees feel confident in handling stress, they are more likely to make good decisions for the business. A mindful employee is more likely to focus on productivity, reduce waste, and be conscientious. This will support the planet and your bottom line!

Teach Your Employees to be More Mindful

Educating your employees is the first step to increasing company mindfulness. It begins with establishing an open dialogue. Be open to discussing your employees’ emotional stance with the company and allow everyone to share what they love about their job and which areas need improvement.

Make sure you let them know that this conversation is a safe place designed to enhance their work experience. Teach them about mindfulness and why it is important. Some of your employees may be practicing mindfulness on their own. Encourage them to share their strategies.

Allow everyone to discuss any concerns and tackle their anxieties head-on. Allow an open flow of conversation and practice empathy and understanding.

Brainstorm ways to incorporate mindfulness into the workweek. Let your employees be a part of this shift in the company culture. This will allow them to feel valued and heard.

Incorporate Mindfulness into Remote Work

Many employees are now working from home to stay healthy and safe. It is more important than ever to incorporate mindfulness into your company’s work-from-home culture.

Stay accountable by touching base with your team. Make sure they are taking the time to be mindful while away from the office. Remind them to get fresh air, clear their mind, and make time for short movement breaks during the day.

During this uncertain time, it is essential that your employees feel as if they are part of the team. Take time at the end of video meetings to have everyone discuss their mindfulness practice. Prompt them to explain how mindfulness has impacted their new work environment.

Lead by Example

It is essential to lead by example when implementing mindfulness at your company. The first step is to make mindful decisions for the company.

For example, you could start a mindfulness accountability group. Gathering a team of dedicated, mindful employees could create a domino effect for the rest of the company. Before you know it, mindfulness will be ingrained in your work culture.

Manage with Emotional Intelligence

Emotional Intelligence (EI) is the ability to understand, perceive, and manage your own emotions. When you manage with emotional intelligence, you use empathy, understanding, and self-awareness to communicate with your team.

Mindfulness is a powerful component of emotional intelligence. Managers with high EI communicate their message better because they understand who their audience is. Managers with high emotional intelligence are more persuasive and inspiring to their employees.

Practicing EI will allow you to gauge and control your employees’ reactions to difficult situations. With this in mind, you will see the efficiency of your team increase.

Allow Mindfulness Breaks During the Day

Creating space in the day for your employees to practice mindfulness is essential to increasing company mindfulness. Allowing time between meetings for self-awareness is a great solution.

By the end of a meeting, most employees have checked out. They are already mentally preparing for their next meeting. This train of thought can continue all day, leaving your employees feeling burned out.

Providing time between appointments will allow them to decompress and focus on themselves for a moment before focusing on their next obligation. Let your employees know this time is for mindfulness.

Encourage them to step outside, do some deep breathing, or reflect on how they are feeling. You will have more focused, productive meetings when you allow your team opportunities to be mindful.

Schedule Movement Breaks

Most office workers have minimal amounts of movement during the workday. This time can increase if employees are working from home. Sitting for long amounts of time has been reported to be as unhealthy as smoking. Schedule a five-minute movement break for your team.

During this time, they can get up, stretch, and walk around. Remind them that this is a part of their mindfulness practice. Encourage them to focus on the sensation of moving after sitting for so long. This will allow your employees to energize themselves by breaking away from their responsibilities and moving their bodies.

Mindfulness comes in many shapes and sizes. Regardless of how you increase company mindfulness, you will be rewarded with a happier, more effective workforce. For more tips on building a healthy work environment and personal fulfillment, subscribe to our blog.

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Earth Day is finally here! Learn 5 Ways You Can Celebrate Earth Day!

Earth Day is finally here! Learn 5 Ways You Can Celebrate Earth Day!

5 Ways to Celebrate Earth Day 2020

 

5 Ways to Celebrate Earth Day 2020

 

Earth Day 2020 will be the 50th anniversary of Earth Day! Our friends at DoubleA Paper have provided several great ways for you to celebrate Earth Day this year.

Earth Day represents our responsibility to the planet and the importance of conserving nature. Since Earth Day began in 1970, we have seen increased concern for our planet and a rise in conservation efforts.

The years preceding the introduction of Earth Day were riddled with air pollution from inefficient vehicles and booming industrial trade. It was common for companies to expel large amounts of fossil fuels with no concern for the environment.

In 1969, a US senator named Gaylor Nelson witnessed a major oil spill in Santa Barbara, California. After experiencing the devastation of such an act, Nelson decided to fuse the energy of activism with conservation efforts. This pushed the importance of the environment into the national agenda. April 22, 1970, was declared the first official Earth Day. People from all walks of life joined in on the festivities and organized programs to support and promote environmentally friendly actions.

Celebrating Earth Day is a great chance to consider how you can help the environment. This sustainable holiday serves as a reminder of how we influence the planet. It encourages us to implement conservation efforts in our everyday lives and support environmental sustainability.

In honor of Earth Day, we gathered five ways to celebrate its 50th anniversary. Take a look at the sustainable activities below!

1. Plant a Tree for Earth Day 2020

Trees are among the most important organisms on our planet. They provide clean air for us to breathe, and provide homes for a multitude of wildlife. Trees have the amazing ability to improve our atmosphere over time by absorbing CO2 and converting it into breathable oxygen.

Trees also cool our planet by reducing pollutants from fossil fuels and other harmful chemicals.

Without trees, those harmful substances would stay in our atmosphere, heating our planet. For Earth Day 2020, plant a tree in your yard or with a local organization!

2. Start a Garden

Starting a garden is a great way to reduce your carbon footprint and celebrate Earth Day. They are transported from factory farms to grocery stores, polluting the planet. Not to mention, most of them are packaged in plastic!

Planting your own garden will reduce the amount of fossil fuels used in transportation and decrease the production of waste. Gardens are also a great way to support the ecosystem in your community – they will encourage birds, insects, and other wildlife to visit!

3. Use Green or Reusable Products

Take a look at your home and notice opportunities to use more sustainable products. Many companies have taken action to create green products, in everything from clothing to utensils.

Consider switching out household goods with their more sustainable counterparts, and notice how easy it is to live a more eco-friendly lifestyle and support environmentally friendly companies.

4. Fundraise for a Sustainable Cause

Fundraising is a great way to give back to our planet, and there are so many amazing organizations working to better our environment. Some of these include the Environmental Defense Fund, The Nature Conservancy, and The Natural Resource Defense Council.

Fundraising can be daunting, but there are plenty of sustainable products and services to sell for a good cause. You could sell reusable shopping bags to promote waste reduction. You could sell items such as organic seeds, fair trade coffee, or household conservation products like LED lights and reusable water bottles.

The possibilities are endless when it comes to fundraising. Make sure to let everyone know the proceeds are going to a good cause, and make sure to use sustainable paper for any fliers.

5. Join a Roots and Shoots Campaign

The Roots and Shoots program was created by Jane Goodall to bring generations together for conservation efforts. The organization has local chapters in over 140 countries with 8,000 groups globally. Members of the groups work on environmental issues within their community.
There is an entire curriculum that teaches you how to start a Roots and Shoots campaign for
free online.

Earth Day 2020 is the perfect opportunity to serve the environment. Many organizations and
communities come together to celebrate on April 22nd, but your efforts shouldn’t stop there.
Implementing sustainable action into your life is the best way to honor the Earth all year!

Environmentally friendly Double a Paper is available here Penny Wise

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Printable Checklist for Simplifying Your Life

Printable Checklist for Simplifying Your Life

While we are all staying at home and slowing down, this may be a good time for you to plan future ways to simplify your normally busy, chaotic life.

Please use this Printable Checklist as a helpful guide, from your friends at Penny Wise Office Products.

PrintableTips_to_Simplify_YourLife_PennyWiseOfficeProducts

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