June '23

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5 2 G R A P H I C S P R O • J U N E 2 0 2 3 G R A P H I C S - P R O. C O M S T A R T H E R E under my desk, and footwear similar to Ugg boots for really, really cold days. Catch me in a few months, and I'll tell you about the air conditioner in my attic and the fans in the window that blow in fresh air. e workspace should always be the perfect temperature. Sometimes that is 76, sometimes it is 64. Be warm. Be cool. Be comfortable. Chair — Now that you are warm (or cool), it's time to look at your workspace. Your tush had better feel like it is in the best place on Earth. If not, get a new chair. You sit too much to be uncom- fortable. Adjust for your back and neck, too! Concerned about the cost? You are likely going to be in that chair at least four hours a day. at's pennies per day assum- ing you will have it for at least five years. Splurge. Your hindquarters are worth it! Snacks — Basic comforts are now in place, and after all that hard work, it is time for a snack. I know you want to reach for Twinkies, but resist the urge to stock them. Trail mix and fresh fruit are some of my favorites. Try to eat healthy, but keep chocolate in your desk just in case the day takes a turn for the worse. Declutter — Clear your desk of anything that you don't touch at least once a month. If you can be ruth- less, remove anything you don't touch at least weekly. is decluttering includes the mug-pencil-holder. Remove dry pens, stumpy pencils, and whatever else is in the cup that prevents implements from slid- ing in and out easily. Consolidate those post-it notes around your computer screen and admit to yourself that you are never going to get to that project that has been staring at you from the corner for years. Away it goes. Simplify. 3 4 Cat — Now that you have made space, the cat can more easily sit on your lap, on the desk, or wherever he chooses. Similarly, the dog can lay at your feet. Have a shop cat or dog. I have two cats. ey are calming and keep me warm in the winter. Customers enjoy pet- ting them. If you have a dog, you can take a break and get some fresh air by taking the pup for a walk. are: Settings>General>Keyboard>Text Replacement. Touch + to add new). For example, I have very specific directions that I send to anyone coming to the shop. I can bring the entire long paragraph up just by typing "dir." Typing "PPP" yields the message "You're engraving is complete and ready for pickup. Please let me know a specific date and time you would like to pick it up. I accept Venmo, PayPal, cash, or check." I would go crazy if I had to type that every time I finished a job. Bluetooth headset or EarPods — Free up your hands and have adjustable volume. You will be able to hear texts and phone calls over the din of your machines. e people at the other end of your phone calls will be able to hear you. You can also pipe through your favorite music or podcast. You can hear the phone ring over your machines. Your phone can stay in one place, charging, and not get lost. If you get noise-canceling head- phones, the ambient cacophony will be greatly reduced. Your ears will stay warm and happy. Tidy up — Clean up before you leave for the day. at way, in the morning, you come into a clean shop and can hit the ground running. Nothing puts a crimp in my day like having to clean up before I even start working. "No" — Finally, it's OK to say no. It's OK to refer people. It's OK to work with other shops. It's OK to say that you cannot fit in another job this week. Life's too short to always work. It's also OK to let a customer go. If their aggravation is not worth the money they bring in, then you have no obligation to make your own life more difficult. Yes, you can fire customers. You spend a lot of time in your place of business. Distractions are inevitable, and unexpected emergencies pop up like crit- ters in a whack-a-mole game. To balance with these inconveniences, shouldn't your workplace offer solace? Take the time to bring comfort, convenience, and control into your environment. It will help keep you and your worker bees buzzing. GP Take breaks — Get out of your comf y chair and get some fresh air. Walk around the block. Walk to the store and get more chocolate. Take a stroll around the parking lot and notice how many cars are messier than yours. Yes, I want to work every minute possible, but I know I work more efficiently when I take occasional five-minute breaks. Stretch a bit. You will return refreshed and work more efficiently. Take vacations — Guess what? You are never going to get caught up. Ever. Really. For the same reason that you go for a walk outside at least once a day, you should get away at least once a year for a week. An additional long week- end would be a good idea, too. It's amaz- ing how customers can seem like min- ions of the underworld before vacation, but one week later, they are just regular human beings. Auto message — Your real-world comforts are aligned, and now it is time to make your electronic devices work for you. If there are texts that you regularly send to people, you can save them and call them up with just a few keystrokes (On an Apple phone, those 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12

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