With cooler temperatures right around the corner, it is time to start thinking about how to stay warm in the office. Most employers have started turning the thermostat down thanks to rising energy costs. If your office was already drafty and chilly, this doesn’t help create an environment conducive to working.
Whining will only get you so far, so here are some other ideas to help keep you warm in the office during the cooler months.
If your company allows it, bring in a space heater. A heater works great if you typically stay in one area. Be prepared to get a sudden chill every time you move away from the blasting warmth of the heater. It is important to remember not to plug a space heater into a shared cubicle power source. Space heaters use up a ton of power and will knock out the power in a row of cubicles at the blink of an eye!
Layer your clothes or even consider wearing a comfortable pair of long johns under your clothing. Choose your style of long underwear, traditional thermal or silky!
Keep an extra pair of shoes in the office that haven’t touched the cold ground outside. I have been known to keep an extra pair of slippers under my desk that can be worn only while my feet are under the desk.
If you wear socks with your shoes, change into a warm pair when you reach the office in the morning. If you wear boots, you can always double up on the socks since no one can see what is under that leather!
Buy fingerless gloves to keep your fingers warm when typing or writing. It’s hard to type accurately when your fingers are freezing and numb!
Use hand and foot warmers that will provide warmth for several hours once exposed to air. You can find them in little packages at most sporting goods stores.
Keep ready to use packages of hot tea, hot chocolate or coffee in your desk drawer. Sipping on a warm beverage will warm you from the inside out.
Exercise whenever possible. Keep yourself moving as much as you can. You can take the stairs instead of the elevator or find simple exercises to do in your cubicle, private office or break room.
Being cold is more than uncomfortable, it is bad for your immune system. It has to work extra hard trying to warm you up, when it should be focusing all of its energy fighting germs that come its way.
Working in a cold environment can also cause stiff joints, poor circulation and even hand pain. Uncomfortably cold working conditions can lead to lower work efficiency and higher accident rates. Cold impairs the performance of tasks because the sensitivity and dexterity of fingers are reduced in the cold. At low temperatures, the cold affects the deeper muscles resulting in reduced muscular strength and stiffened joints. Mental alertness is also reduced due to cold related discomfort. For all of these reasons, accidents are more likely to happen in cold working conditions.