All posts by Steven

Legal Branding

Drunk Driving – The Worst Way to Mix Business and Pleasure

Alcohol consumption is ingrained in contemporary business culture. Movies like the Wolf of Wall Street glamorize the idea of mixing business with booze. However, socializing after work can have devastating consequences.

Could a DWI End Your Career?

According to Tyler Flood, Criminal Defense Attorney, many professionals aren’t aware of the seriousness of a DWI.

High profile corporate positions require employees to be outwardly reputable. DWI convictions reflect negatively on organizations. For this reason, high-profile positions are only tenable by employees who can pass rigorous background checks.

How To Behave When Mixing Business With Booze

Socializing after work shouldn’t be avoided entirely. Employees who remove themselves from social events, risk the stigma of ‘not being team players.’ All that employees need to remember, is not to let their hair down completely.

Rules for Surviving Boozy Office Socials

Drunk driving convictions can jeopardize the employability of even entry-level workers. The first rule of socializing is, therefore, to always leave car keys at home.

Consider Participating without Drinking

Office socials are a fantastic way to better connect with colleagues. However, socializing doesn’t have to include alcohol. Instead, consider choosing soft drink alternatives. Doing so will often command respect from peers and higher-ups.

Keep Your Professional Cool – Even if You Don’t Want To

Crossed communication wires are the number one reason behind alcohol-fueled altercations. In office contexts, there will always be someone with opposing views to your own. In this case, remember to project the same professional persona you do at work, during even informal get-togethers.

Like it or Not, Your Boss is Watching

There is always someone at the office Christmas party who takes things too far. You never want to be that person. Employers, clients, and supervisors will pick up on poor etiquette. As far as they are concerned, you still represent your company, even when not officially on duty.

What to do When Things Go Wrong

When mixing business with booze, you need to be on your best professional behavior. Sadly, other people around you might not be.

  • If you see a colleague who seems to be testing their limits, politely pull them aside and advise that they call time on the evening
  • Never stand for behavior which would be considered inappropriate in the workplace
  • If you find yourself at a DWI checkpoint after an office social, follow the advice of Tyler Flood, Criminal Defense Attorney, and know your full rights

Drunk Driving and Roadside Sobriety Tests

Intoxilyzer breathalizers used by police aren’t 100% accurate. Also, when submitting to chemical blood tests, drivers have the right to have independent tests performed within 2-hours of the original.

Even if you are sure you are under safe driving limits, police tests may show false positives. In this case, always seek professional legal advice immediately after a DWI charge.

SaaS Branding

How a Coworking Space Can Turbocharge Freelancer Branding Efforts

A coworking space is a virtual office space shared by groups of independent freelancers. Utilizing a virtual office gives freelance professionals an instant branding boost. Coworking spaces free freelancers from the high cost of renting and equipping independent office spaces.

What is Coworking & What are the Benefits?

This fall sees the official opening of The Ranch Office in Houston. However, The Ranch is a little different from neighboring offices occupied by top Houston designers and automotive insurers. This is because The Ranch Office is Houston’s hottest new coworking space.

Busy Ranch yes people don’t populate office desks and conference rooms. Instead, every inch of The Ranch is at the disposal of Houstons vibrant freelancer community.

Coworking & Virtual Office Benefits

Gone are the days of freelancers sitting behind dusty typewriters preparing submissions for Readers Digest.

As of 2018, almost 50% of millennial workers freelance professionally. Moreover, according to freelance marketplace UpWork, freelancers are set to become a workforce majority in the United States by 2025. There is just one problem.

  • Freelance clients increasingly prefer to work with individuals backed by a bonafide business address
  • Office set up costs are prohibitive for many freelancers
  • Working as a freelancer can also be socially and emotionally isolating

Coworking spaces like The Ranch, therefore, strive to offer freelancers a solution to each of the above concerns.

Coworking Spaces Boost Brand Visibility & Trust

Affordable coworking spaces like The Ranch, provide individuals and startups with a real-world business address. The result is an instant image boost. However, specialty coworking and virtual office spaces like The Ranch, also go one step further.

  • In Houston, Ranch Office users can take advantage of for-purpose conference rooms
  • High-speed internet and basic IT infrastructure costs (copy, printing, etc) are bundled into monthly price plans
  • Coworking space areas can also host private events and freelancer exhibitions

Increased Productivity Benefits

Being a freelancer is hard. Individuals have to manage their workflow, client accounts, and product marketing 24/7. Thankfully, for-purpose co-working spaces alleviate some of these stresses. Specifically, by allowing freelancers to settle into a daily routine in a real-world office. 

Coworking Networking Benefits

As a freelancer, it can be easy to start living life exclusively via social media. Thankfully, coworking changes this by providing a one of a kind opportunity to network with other freelancers face to face. At the same time, freelancers can also build more meaningful client relationships. Specifically, by scheduling appointments and meeting with real-world clients in person.

Freelancer Bottom Line Benefits

Working from home can be rewarding. However, homeworking also has several limitations. Coworking spaces like The Ranch, therefore, allow freelancers to benefit from access to a centrally located real office. All without having to sign high-cost long-term lease agreements with regular office space providers.

Work From Anywhere

For those freelancers who starting a freelance business, that does decide to take their brand to the next level, coworking doesn’t have to come at the expense of surrendering their mobility. At present, coworking spaces can be found everywhere from the Azores to the furthest reaches of the Australian Outback. The only question, in this case, is where would you like to work today?

Yoast SEO Settings:

SEO Title: Coworking Spaces & How You Can Turbocharge Your Freelancer Branding

Slug: Coworking & Freelancer Branding Benefits

Meta Description: 

Focus Keywords: Coworking Space

Legal Branding

Houston Drink Driving Penalties – Protecting Your Reputation

Drink driving penalties in Houston vary in accordance with the severity of offenses. Repeat DUI charges are felonies punishable by fines and jail time. Because penalties are severe, it is important to seek legal counsel from a Houston DWI lawyer, as soon as charges are brought forward

Surviving a DWI – Civil & Reputation Consequences

Drink driving penalties in Texas are some of the toughest in the United States. As for why this is, the reason is simple. In 2017, 944 DWI drivers in Texas resulted in 1,018 avoidable road deaths. Those killed in fatal crashes include passengers, other road users, and children.

Legal Advice for a First Drunk Driving Offense

There is a misconception that drink driving penalties for a first DWI offense are minor. In reality, nothing could be further from the truth. In Texas, even a first offense DWI can result in up to 180 days jail time.

Drink Driving Penalties in Brief

  • First DWI offenses are punishable by $2,000 fines, accompanying jail time and license suspensions
  • Where intoxicated drivers have a blood alcohol content (BAC) of 0.15, fines start at $4,000. Jail time is often mandatory, and future driving restrictions may apply
  • Drunk driving while accompanied in a vehicle by a minor is a felony. Penalties include $10,000 fines and up to 2-years state jail time.

Hiring a Houston DWI lawyer is Not Optional

When charged with drunk driving, you need to hire a Houston DWI lawyer. Without legal representation, the civil and financial consequences of a DWI charge can be devastating.

  • Suspended licenses and jail time result in employment becoming untenable
  • Fines and jail time can devastate families and family finances
  • Many individuals charged with drunk driving, don’t realize what they are up against until it is too late

How a Houston DWI Lawyer can Help

How a Houston DWI lawyer can fight DWI charges, is always case specific. Where arresting officers can’t prove probable cause, DWI charges can be reduced or quashed. When making arrests, Houston police also need to issue sobriety tests following strict guidelines.

A Houston DWI lawyer will check to see that proper procedures have been followed. Lawyers also review evidence of medical conditions which may result in sobriety test false positives.

Can Road Users Decline Police Sobriety Tests?

It is possible for Houston road users to refuse sobriety tests. However, in Texas, implied consent to testing applies to all road users. When drivers refuse to comply with sobriety tests, fines and driving bans are, therefore, applicable.

Roadside Sobriety Tests are Never 100% Accurate

Contrary to what many believe, police issued sobriety tests are rarely 100% accurate. Drink driving penalties can, therefore, be challenged by lawyers, even when evidence seems stacked against defendants. The most important thing for defendants to remember is that legal advice should be sought as soon as possible after DWI charges levied by police.

Legal Branding

Why ICOs Need to Invest in Professional Legal Advice

Startups planning an initial coin offering, need to start investing in professional legal advice. As well as ICO regulation, startups planning an initial coin offering need to be aware of their full tax reporting requirements.

Legal counsel can help legitimize ICOs and increase fundraising success rates. Here’s how:

Tax Law & Legislation – What Do ICOs Need to Know?

Over the past five years, ICOs have transformed the startup business landscape. By using an initial coin offering to raise capital, startups free themselves from having to pitch ideas to conventional lenders. However, ICOs are coming under ever closer scrutiny by regulators.

Legal Challenges Faced by ICOs

There is a misconception that setting up an initial coin offering is easy. In the United States, there are no laws which explicitly ban ICOs. However, as cited by the likes of the ICO Law Group, ICOs are required to comply with U.S. Securities Law.

“It is generally unlawful to raise capital in exchange for your coins or tokens unless you comply with U.S. Securities Law.”

Why Stricter ICO Regulation is a Good Thing

In theory, anyone can set up an initial coin offering. However, as recently cited by Vitalik Buterin, the gold rush days of the cryptocurrency market are over.

“The blockchain space is getting to the point where there’s a ceiling in sight. There isn’t an opportunity for yet another 1,000-times growth in anything in the space anymore.”

As for why growth in the crypto space is slowing, the reason is simple.

In 2017, fewer than 20% of ICOs returned profits to investors. Some startups failed to use raised capital responsibly. Others were outright scams. As a result, all new ICOs are expected to register with the IRS just like regular startups. Much more importantly, if ICO coins can be considered securities, ICOs must register with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

Do You Need a Professional Business Attorney?

Does registering as a business seem like too much hassle? If so, you shouldn’t be running an initial coin offering.

When ICOs fail, they do so due to a lack of basic business acumen. Selling ERC20 tokens is easy. Putting funds to work and setting up a successful business, is an entirely different skillset. The good news, though, is that a professional business attorney can help.

  • Hiring a business attorney can help ICOs identify the best structure for their business
  • A business attorney can help startups get to grips with their true cryptocurrency tax reporting requirements
  • ICO specific legal advice can increase fundraising success rates by lending legitimacy to projects

ICO Laws Still Vary State to State

When setting up an initial coin offering, it is important to remember that ICO laws and regulations aren’t universal. Some U.S. States require a special license when engaging in altcoin activities. Others require startups to hold equivocal fiat cash deposits when issuing ERC20 tokens.

Penalties for Non-Compliance

To date, several individuals have been incarcerated in the United States. Specifically, for non-compliance with cryptocurrency specific anti-money laundering laws.

In May, 24-year old Eldon Stone Ross from Pensylvania found himself jailed for selling cryptocurrency without necessary licensing. Moreover, anyone identifiable as operating an ‘illegal money transmission business,’ is liable for prosecution.

Does the Term Illegal Money Transmission Business Apply to ICOs?

Anyone who raises funds via an initial coin offering without proper licensing can be charged under different State anti-money laundering laws. This being the case, never risk launching an initial coin offering, before understanding your full regulatory responsibilities. Moreover, when in doubt, always make sure to seek out ICO specific legal advise from groups like the aforementioned ICO Law Group.

Local Branding

Energy-Saving Tips For Businesses

By making a few simple changes, businesses can cut their energy usage by as much as 20%. Best of all, these changes either cost very little or cost nothing at all. A minor investment in energy-saving tools, technology, and techniques can have a big payoff for businesses.

Our goal is to help all of our commercial clients use energy more efficiently. To that end, we have put together a number of tips that are designed to help your company lower its energy expenses while at the same time improving sustainability.

The section below outlines some simple strategies that you can use to cut your energy usage. We also have officers available who can help you reduce the amount of energy that you use for everything from heating to lighting. Our experts can help you put together an effective plan for your business that will allow you to dramatically cut back on the amount of energy that you use.

Tips For How Small And Medium-Sized Businesses Can Save Energy

According to Josco Energy you should consider using motion sensors throughout your building to automatically turn off the lights in rooms that are not currently occupied. Motion sensors are particularly effective when they are used in restrooms, conference rooms, closets, or other spaces that are not continuously occupied.

During the day, try to use natural light as much as possible, turning off the lights if there is enough light coming in through the windows.

If you have the budget for it, consider investing in retrofit lamps. Alternatively, you can also make a larger investment in a full lighting refit. Although it costs a little bit more, it can result in dramatic energy savings, allowing you to recoup the cost relatively quickly.

Switch your current light bulbs out for energy-saving bulbs. If you have lights that use fluorescent tubes, replace them with slim-line tubes.

Check your electronic devices to make sure that any energy-saving features are turned on. Consider using timers to automatically turn off devices at the end of the day or over the weekend. Avoid leaving phone chargers or laptop chargers plugged in all of the time to keep them from drawing energy when they are not being used.

Assign the task of controlling the heat to a single person rather than allowing employees to adjust the thermostat on their own.

Depending on the size of your business, you may want to consider choosing someone to act as the lead in regards to your company’s energy usage. You may even want to put together a heating policy that lets employees know how warm or cool the building will be at specific times so that they can dress appropriately.

As a general rule of thumb, you should set your air conditioner to a temperature setting that falls somewhere in the 19 to 24°C range. This is cool enough to be comfortable but not so cool that the air conditioner has to run constantly.

Similarly, if you have a refrigerator in your workplace, avoid setting the temperature too low. Vending machines and beverage machines should be shut off at night or during the weekends when no one is around.

Takeaway

Finally, consider investing in a hot water dispenser rather than using a kettle to heat water.

Feel free to reach out to us for more energy-saving ideas. Our goal is to help you save as much energy as possible with your business, lowering your costs while at the same time doing something good for the environment.

Local Branding

Sign Advice for Businesses

We often are asked to help a business in making new shop signs for their advertising needs. Since this is the case, here is a list we have compiled at our headquarters in Mansfield that will help you get a great looking sign that attracts clients.

Give The Sign Some Life

You will want to make sure your sign has some life and will draw in people who are looking for your company. You probably have a lot of personality in your shop, but you need to make sure the sign you are using is going to reflect this personality as well. You just want to think about the impression you are going to make to your customers. Is the shop a fun place to be or is it one that has a more professional setting? No matter what, you will want to make sure the sign you are getting is going to give the visitors an idea on the type of things they can expect to see in the shop.

Remember: Good signs are going to tell the clients what they can see in the business and know what kind of line is in the brand.

Do Not Overdo It

You will want to make sure your signs are short and to the point. You just want to make sure your sign does not fail. You want o make sure you get your key point across quickly, not have multiple points on a single sign. By getting the main point listed, it will attract potential customers, but it will also make it easier for people to know more about what they can expect to see when they are here.

You will want to be to the point, but you need to remember that you can still be funny if you want to be.

Fonts

You will find that the first step is to find the best font for your sign – your sign company can help you here You will notice that quite a few sign shops have been ruined because they did not properly pick their logos. The shop sign is going to need to get the attention of people who are driving or walking by, so you need to make sure the letters are big and easy to see. Remember: People typically will not take the time out of their business to read what your handwritten script is going to say.

Colors

You will want to consider a variety of colors for your sign. Will they look good in the sunlight or when it is evening? What color pattern is going to make the shop sign look great and standout from the rest of the place. To really look at the colors you may want to look at the other signs in the area. You will think about the red ads in the paper, if it has other red ads it can be hard to see, but you will want to check out the how your sign can stand out. You will want to find colors that are going to look great, but also think about the people who have vision problems when looking at the sign and suffering from color blindness.

Design

You will notice that one thing that is going to really bring the sign together is the brand that you are going to present with the sign and how everything is tied together. You do not want to change things simply because you can, but you will want to make sure you have a uniform brand across the platform. Remember when you are launching your business you want to make sure it is going to look great and have an amazing feel.

Materials

Now that you have a great design in mind, you should know how to bring your signs to life. When are you going to be opening and what time frame as well? Are you going to need to have lights installed on the sign to make it easier for you to see the sign? Is the brand more of a high end location or a mass market place? What types of materials would you need to get to reach your target area? You want the sign to look great and not make your customers think you are cheap.

You will find that you have multiple choices of materials, which is why you need to find a material that will suit you best.

Size

You will want to know more about the amount of space you have available for the sign and how you can use this space properly. You will notice that signs can go on brick, hang out front, or even be above the windows to draw in attention. So you will want to know more about how to use the most of the space to get the attention you need to have.

SaaS Branding

5 Tips To Trick Out Your Office

1. Plants

When you bring the outdoors indoors you bring a part of nature to your office. Plants can help to keep the air clean and pure and they can give you a much-needed change of pace. They are appealing visually and they help to add an ambiance to the area.

The best plants to incorporate into an office atmosphere include the Spider or Airplane plant. This plant is easy to grow and will help to purify the air and it will send off babies that are called airplanes or spiders to create more plants. You can also opt for the Peace Lily that is easy to care for and cleanse the air or the English Ivy. These grow well and can help to reduce mold. Water features are now also available for indoors and these from Soothing Company are excellent options.

2. Freshen-Up

There are many great personalized desk accessories and one of them is plants. If you can’t pain, you can readily use storage boxes or magazine holders to create your own personal ambiance.

One way is to use blackboard paint over a storage box and you can then use the outside of the box to make memos or notes of the contents or just to personalize your space.

3. Alternate Lighting

You can also decorate your office with alternate lighting. Change the tone and light up darker areas of your office with mini lamps or LED mason jars. This can give a clearer working area and help to set the pace.

4. Tidy Up

Be a little bit OCD about tidying your desk. Use accessories to keep things neat and tidy such as mason jars or simple boxes. A bit of decor that is all in the same theme can brighten your mood and tidy your desk nicely.

A clean desk makes you more productive and it helps you to focus more on the tasks at hand during your workday.

5. Post It Art

Everyone has seen pixel art. Why not try some post-it art? A man in San Francisco gave his desk a makeover with some creative post-it art. He used just over 8000 post its to create a floor to ceiling portrait of a superhero. Entire office teams can join in and have fun with this sort of project. The best part is that it can be moved around and changed at whim without damaging anything. No need to paint, remove walls or adjust anything just use post-it notes and have fun as an office.

SaaS Branding

How To Stay Focused And Energized At Work

Do you need to stay focused and energised at work – these tips will help you do just that.

Good Sleep

Get a good night’s rest before you go to work. The best way to achieve this is to have a comfortable sleep setup and this can be achieved with a great mattress. The mattress one mattress is meant to be great and can really be the foundation of better sleep and more energy.

Workout In The Morning Before Heading To Work

Taking on regular body workouts moments after waking up does more than warm you up. It helps keep the blood pumping making you feel refreshed. Just remember to take a shower and a good breakfast to push you through the day.

Take A Power Nap (20-Minute Nap)

While sleeping on a job isn’t recommended, studies show that taking a 20-minute power nap helps to rejuvenate body processes for the rest of the day. The power nap enables brain muscles to relax thus improving your concentration – especially in the afternoon.

Don’t Hold Grudges

Anger and emotions can affect your performance and output at work. Holding grudges with coworkers and even people outside the workplace takes up lots of energy in the process, and can be distracting as well. Most people only mask the emotional baggage they have on their coworkers, a habit that only drains their energy even farther. The best way to remove personal grudge is by reconciling with the persons you have wronged (or vice versa). This eases pressure on your mind.

Laugh

Laughing at anything funny, jokes included, helps the body produce endorphins. Endorphins are feel-good hormones that make someone happy and have a jovial mood.  You can either look for friends to crack jokes and have fun conversations with or even make YouTube your friend. There are plenty of humorous and funny video clips on YouTube that can make you laugh even if you are not in the mood to. Consider having your dose of laughter a few minutes after lunchtime when everyone goes into the afternoon slumber mode.

Take A 15-Minute Brief Walk

Taking some time away from your station/office can be a great way to re energize. Take a few minutes’ walk outside, in the streets, or even the park to breathe the fresh air. Don’t bring your smartphone along, as this could be distracting. A 5-minute walk outside the workplace is good for your heart and helps keep the blood moving. Doing this keeps you feeling energized and sharp through the remaining hours at work.

Have a Good Read

Reading an exciting novel or even a storybook not only helps clear the mind but resets your energy as well. Reading one story or a chapter after lunch gives you a sense of completion is entertaining, and helps bring the confidence and drive you had in the morning. If you however aren’t sure where to start, you could try Rudyard Kipling or even Mark Twain for inspiration.

Resolve Disagreements with Colleagues or the Boss

Running away from conflicts and disagreements will only put more weight on your shoulders, which can be tiring at times. Instead of running away, confront any issues you might have head-on, but in a diplomatic, empathetic and open manner. How you approach some of these disagreements will determine how well you will relate with the colleague or the boss. Some of the strongest relationships and friendships out there started out with a challenge or a disagreement.

Lend a Hand or Ear to Someone or Even a Colleague

Although most people walk with their heads held high, many of these are hurting inside. Lending a listening ear or a helping hand can help put a smile on their faces. Positive energy can be transmitted from one person to another, doing something nice for a friend, colleague, or even your boss will not only light up their hearts but also give you a gratifying feeling. This trick works wonders in helping you remain focused and energized through the day.

Legal Branding

VAT Tips for Small Online Businesses

If your taxable turnover exceeds £85,000 you are required to register for VAT. If your turnover is less than this amount, you can voluntarily register for VAT. Sales relating to goods and services that are not VAT exempt are referred to as taxable turnover. Health services, postage, and insurance are some of the exempt supplies. 

It’s important for you to think about the schedule of your VAT quarters before registering for VAT. Lining up the end of your VAT quarter to be on the same date as your year-end will make your accountant’s work much easier.   

Since there are several VAT schemes available, you need to take the time to pick the perfect fit for your business:

  • Standard VAT
  • Flat Rate Scheme
  • Cash Accounting Scheme
  • Annual Accounting Scheme

The cash accounting scheme may be better suited to your cash flow if your customers take longer to pay invoices.  In this scheme, you are only required to pay VAT after customers pay the invoices; while you reclaim VAT after you pay your suppliers.

Businesses with an annual sales turnover under £150, 000 a simplified scheme, flat rate accounting, is a better match. You are only required to cover a flat Value Added Tax rate on the market sector you operate in. However, you do not qualify for any VAT reclaim.

After VAT registration

It’s upon you to maintain accurate purchases and sales records. Investing in a computerized might be worthwhile for you if you have a huge number of transactions to process. You may be charged with a penalty by the HMRC if they find that your records are lacking when they carry out a routine inspection at your business. 

It’s upon you to ensure that each sales invoice you issue should have a unique number. Furthermore, each invoice should come with your VAT number.

You are also required to maintain VAT return copies and proof to back it up. In the event of an inspection, these documents will be checked according to VATGlobal.

If you have any purchases that you will be claiming VAT on, be sure to request for VAT receipts on them. However, you may not be able to claim VAT on some businesses as they might not be registered.

It’s worth noting that you have to abide by a set of special rules for determining the amount of VAT to be reclaimed on staff travel and motor vehicle expenditure, in addition to the fact that you cannot claim VAT entertainment-related expenses.

HMRC payments covering PAYE, Corporation Tax, NIC, and VAT as well as staff wages are all outside the scope of the VAT. As such, they should be excluded from your VAT return form. Other expenses that should not be in the VAT return include MOT costs, road tax, loan repayments, rates, dividends and drawings paid. 

A C79 form will be sent to you on a monthly basis if you are involved in the importation of goods from a country outside the EU and hire the services of an agent when it comes to handling import duty, VAT payments, and declarations. The form captures the VAT paid on the imports, on a monthly basis, that should be included in the VAT return. These forms are used as proof during VAT reclaim and must, therefore, be maintained.

The VAT return form can be used to record purchase and sales figures when it comes to dealing with goods moving within the EU.

Digital Branding

Office Tips for a More Relaxing Atmosphere

For a lot of people in America, the office is an iconic place. Most people actually spend more waking time there than in their homes, but only a handful take the time to make the space that they work in work for them.

Today, there are many workers that work virtually, but there are still millions that come to an office each working day. While work can be stressful, the office needn’t be. Creating an oasis of calmness in your immediate workspace has the potential to make your entire life healthier: here is how.

1. Declutter the Immediate Work Space

Surprisingly, some people find things much better in a mess, but if you are always pushing things aside to find your keyboard or balancing your keyboard on your lap due to the lack of space on your desk, you need to take a few minutes of your time to clear out that stuff. The area 6 inches to the side as well as in front of your computer should be clear to allow for comfortable movement.

The small aggravation of being unable to move freely can greatly add to your mental stress. The same goes for the chair, which should freely move in and out so that you never feel “chained” to your workstation or desk. People organize their paperwork in different ways, and that’s okay, but you always should have enough space for moving and working.

2. Hang an Inspiring/Beautiful Image in Your Direct Line of Sight

The eyes need regular breaks from whatever work you are doing. A simple painting, photograph, print, or any other image that strongly resonates with you should go up in your line of sight, so that you can daydream a bit (which is great for productivity) and take eye-strain breaks too.

If your job is a means to an end, you must never forget what that end is and an image can do a great job of reminding you. Avoid pictures of family since your everyday stresses with them can become triggered if you use them as your focus image.

For instance, if you are working a job to provide for your family, your focus image should be one of places that you wish to vacation with them or even a home that you would love to live in with them.

3. Bring in a Plant or Add Water Features

You can find numerous plants capable of surviving and even thriving in office environments. Greenery has been shown to lower both stress and blood-pressure levels as well as clean the air. A plant will also give you something to tend/water when you need a break rather than hitting the snack bar or coffee machine again. A lot of people like a water feature in their space too, it provides a relaxing feel like a plant. The water fountains at the Soothing Company are a very popular addition as they add a stylish and relaxing touch to the area.

4. Install a Sound Blocker/Muffler

The noise from your fellow workers can be quite distracting. The clattering of the Xerox machine, the loud phone chatter, and the squeak of office chairs are quite bothersome.

A small desk fan can provide a layer of white noise and a nice breeze while a small water feature can be turned on whenever you wish to concentrate. The sound of water flowing is both meditative and relaxing, and has the potential to screen out other sounds.

5. Keep a Large Bottle or Glass Full of Water at Your Desk

Sip from this bottle or glass all day. Dehydration can be incredibly stressful for the body. It stresses the kidneys and liver, amps up existent irritations, all which lead to you feeling sluggish.

Everyone’s been there: Coffee for breakfast, juice with lunch, and it is now 4 p.m. and you feel crummy, have a headache, and your feel tired too and its all because you never had enough water throughout the day. Then you drink several large glasses and you have to use the bathroom 4 times before the end of the day.

If you drink water throughout the day, you will feel better and will not have to use the bathroom so many times in succession.

The final piece of advice is that you need to take a look at your office and your life there. What things do you find more aggravating on a day-to-day basis? Can you do anything to change or modify them? Perhaps there’s a simple solution to something that’s been bothering you.