Don’t worry, folks. Even though we’ve now finished the shopping extravaganza surrounding Black Friday and Cyber Monday, it’s not too late to add a few products to your holiday giving (or receiving!) plans.
When we published our Office Gear Recommendations for Your Holiday Wish List last December, I don’t think any of us imagined that we would still be facing unknowns surrounding new coronavirus variants and global supply chain disruptions a year later. But here we are.
Our team at Instinct has been working remotely with a purposefully distributed model since the pre-pandemic days. But even work-from-home pros face a variety of challenges when designing efficient work environments at home.
So without further ado, I hope you’ll check out some of our favorite products that helped us do our best work from home in 2021. We’re not repeating previously recommended products, so don’t miss software engineer Ross’s amazing post from early COVID, Veterinary Work From Home Gear Guide.
1. DUEX Plus Portable Side Monitor 🖥
Are you addicted to your dual-screen or supersized display setup? Can’t bear the idea of working from a single measly laptop screen when on the road? We have several colleagues who swear by these dual-screen portable laptop monitors. It’s a simple plug-and-play solution that just works.
2. MacBook Docking Station 🔌
We have a lot of MacBook fans here at Instinct. But one frequent complaint is the limited number (and type) of ports that come with many of them. This simple, low-profile docking station (like others from similar brands) can meet those needs and facilitate multiple monitors, accessories, and charging.
3. Blue Light Blocking Glasses 👓
Somehow I missed the memo on blue light blocking/filtering glasses. Apparently many others have not, given the immense number of reviews for this product on Amazon. Those thousands plus some of our Instinct team members have almost convinced me that perhaps I should be filtering out blue light in an effort to reduce eye strain and protect healthy sleep.
4. Flexible Webcam Holder 🤳
I’ve been assuming that the camera on my MacBook is sufficient for all the Zooming I’ve been doing over the last year, but now I’m not quite so sure. This flexible clamp holder works with the Wirecutter’s top webcam recommendation for 2021, but there are a lot of options out there for all types of cameras and settings. You may also want to check out the Camo app to utilize the high-quality camera in your smartphone before purchasing something else.
5. EasyPlant Live Indoor Plants 🪴
I was totally going to recommend some nice fake plants, but Caleb one-upped me here. Although I do have a decent green-thumb when it comes to outdoor gardening, I haven’t been as successful with the indoor variety. This plant service for the 21st century isn’t cheap, but apparently they do what they promise: provide “beautiful, live, indoor plants, potted in our simple, self-watering ceramic pots.”
6. Airthings Air Quality Monitors 🌬
You’d be surprised how many of us are living with poor indoor air quality. This company is out to change that with easy-to-use air quality monitors that alert you to everything from mold risk and excess humidity to radon and CO2.
Of course, being a veterinary software company, we also had a few team member recommendations for products that make living and working alongside our animal companions more fun and fulfilling. These included a snuffle feeding mat, a cat puzzle feeder, a dog ball launcher, and the Furbo treat-tossing camera, for all our colleagues who may not get to spend quite as much time at home.
So there you have it! We hope you find some helpful items here to make your work life (from home or otherwise) more effective and efficient. Happy early holiday season from Team Instinct! 🎁