Ergonomic Office Advice For My Twenty-Something Self
I can remember when the ergonomic adviser would stop by my office cubicle when I was a pain-free, bright-eyed twenty-something. Being the rebel, I would feign interest and then resume the unadvised positions as soon as they were out of sight. After many…many years in an office chair and at a desk, there is one critical ergonomic tip I would like to tell my impetuous younger self. A terrible habit she should avoid at all costs and the tools to help prevent any future pains.
If I could go back, shake my twenty-something’s young pain-free shoulders and share one bit of ergonomic advice, it would be STOP LEANING ON YOUR ELBOWS! This sage bit of wisdom would have saved me from the following:
- Aching neck and shoulders
- Sharp pain in shoulder blades
- Cubital Tunnel
- Herniated discs
- Chiropractor fees to fix all of the above
In my fantasy, the younger me would then promptly create an ergonomic sanctuary which prevents such elbow, back and shoulder abuse. She would ask the ergonomic adviser for a monitor arm to raise the computer monitor up to eye level and position the computer monitor directly in front so there is no neck twisting throughout the work day. In addition, the computer monitor would be at a legible distance in order to prevent the need to lean in to view. Older me sees this happen everywhere in an office environment. It’s as if our brains short circuit and no one thinks to bring the monitor closer. Rather, we tend to lean in on those delicate elbows.
“They” say that with age comes wisdom and I am pacified that my current older self has wised up and is currently using a monitor arm along with a comfortable and supportive office task chair. I am also happy to report that when I look at the ergonomic office set up image at right, my working form is pretty close to identical. What’s even better? No aches and pains!
I doubt my twenty-something self would have even listened to old me had I the opportunity to visit. But, I hope young professionals working at their desk today will read this and take action. If your company won’t’ purchase a monitor arm, then grab a paper box and lift it up. Do whatever you need to protect your physical wellbeing. That is all. You’re welcome!