Do you find that you are stressed while at work? It turns out, according to, that there are several ways employers can create work environments that reduce office stress. This, in turn, can actually increase productivity.

Christopher Jan Benitez writes that half of all lost work days a year are due to issues related to stress. Considering this adds up to about 275 million days a year, companies need to be creative about how they create a stress-free environment.

One idea suggested by Benitez is to give more breaks more often. A 15-minute break every 4-6 hours just doesn’t cut it, leaving employees tired and unproductive. Consider these ideas:

  • Have 15-minute breaks during long meetings.
  • Take 30-minute breaks after 90-minute “bursts.”
  • Schedule several break times that are 20-30 minutes each.

Another idea is to follow the lead of recent tech startups and have more amenities in the office. Things such as gaming consoles or massage chairs can help the mind to unplug from work. These allow the creative juices to flow. The trick is to make sure that these work perks don’t become distractions from work.

Businesses can help create a calming work environment by doing simple things, like painting the walls certain colors. Walls devoid of color can be a source of stress. On the other hand, blue and green are more calming. Also, having at least one indoor plant per every three workers can be helpful. They contribute to a calming workspace and they filter out carbon dioxide in the air. CO2 contributes to feeling tired and lack of concentration.

Aquariums are another trick employers can have to promote a relaxed workplace. They are soothing, can contribute to having a better mood, and are nice observe.

Finally, employers can make sure that workspaces are clean and neat. Excess clutter and trash hinder a calm work space.

Want to know more about how to make work more calming?