🐈 Cats on conference calls, a dining chair turned office chair (turned back problem), pairing pajama pants with a blazer… it's been a year for many of us!
Here at Instinct, we’ve been committed to building a distributed company from day one. So when much of the working world—including veterinary teams—were forced to do more remote work this year, we decided to start sharing some of our expertise.
One of our most popular articles in the entire Pick the Brain archive is from June, when our teammate Ross shared some of the team’s favorite work from home gear.
Now that we've been at it for almost a year, we have some new gear to share! And no, other than your gratitude, we get no compensation for any of these recommendations.
1. Topo Standing Mat 🧍♀️
Standing desks are all the rage (we agree), and some on our team swear by this anti-fatigue standing mat.
What’s so great about it? It’s designed to give you several different standing positions to improve your movement and encourage longer standing desk sessions.
You can find more about it here.
2. The reMarkable 2 📜
This is hands down my new favorite work item these days.
Despite my technology tendencies, I’ve always been an advocate of taking notes on paper, and research seems to agree. So until recently, I would lug around a normal pad and pen with stacks of notes and drawings from my Instinct meetings.
The reMarkable 2 is a digital notebook built by a Norwegian tech company that started in 2013 with a crowdfunding campaign. They recently released their most refined new product, built on e-ink technology.
What's so special? Very different from any other tablet you’ve tried, the reMarkable is designed to give you the feel and focus of plain old paper (something I love). But it rids me of something I despise: scanning notes for archiving.
I got my reMarkable a few weeks ago and haven’t looked back. In fact, I love it so much that writing on paper with a normal pen now feels wrong to me.
You can find more about it here.
3. A Desk Lamp 💡
You laugh. But I’m not kidding. If you don’t currently have a lamp at your desk, this one simple thing may change your work life.
My family calls it my motivational lamp because I’ve found that having a desk lamp makes my work spot feel inviting, calm, and productive in a way that isn’t easy to describe. Having a lamp behind or near your computer also helps with eye strain and improves your lighting on video calls!
I’ve tried a few. Here’s what to look for:
- 360-degree light, rather than a spotlight
- A shade that lets the right amount of light through—not too little, and definitely not too much directly into your eyes
- The right height for your space
Oh, and the bulb matters a lot.
4. Saddle Chair 🎠
Check out this posture-improving take on an office chair, recommended by one of Instinct’s newest teammates, Polaris. She shared that her former-veterinary-hospital-nurse-back-pain is greatly helped by this little guy.
Plus, it’s a fun way to zip around the office.
You can find it here on Amazon.
5. Odds and Ends
The team had a few other suggestions to amp up your productivity in your home office.
🔥 Melissa recommended a scented candle for calming. If you’re looking for a good brand, Homesick makes soy candles in enticing scents like Holiday Stroll (notes of red currants, sugarplums, and sandalwood), Grandma’s Kitchen (sugar, spice, and everything nice), and many more.
🎅 Kate has been helping us be a more social team (from afar). This year the Instinct squad is doing a fun online gift exchange. Elfster is great for this!
🚲 And finally, we have several teammates who love to spin while working and during breaks. Any stationary bike will do with a good desk that can be raised, but a few of us are eyeing this bike, built specifically for this use.
We hope these tips help your work life! Happy early holidays from Team Instinct. 🎁