As I set up my new Mac Mini in my office last week, I ran into an interesting problem. Here’s a photo to help explain; please excuse the clutter.
I have a Thunderbolt display on it’s way but it’s not here yet. If I were to set up my new Mac where my old laptop (as pictured above) currently resides, the Thunderbolt will not fit under the bookcase above. It would be sitting about where my keyboard is currently set up. My face would be about 12-18 inches from the screen. I don’t know if that would help or hurt my eye strain levels but it’s not good.
With the lower footprint of the Mac Mini, my wife recommended that I try putting everything on my large desk. Since I’m at a point where I’d like to have both computers available “just in case,” I followed her suggestion. Here’s what my Mac set up looks like as a result; again, ignore the clutter:
The reduced footprint of the new Mac is nice; see it underneath my orange external HD. But, more importantly, compare the two views. With my old set up, I stared into a corner most of my day and I typed away on my laptop. If I were to look away from my screen, all there was to see was two beige walls and a small bulletin board with some inspiring words on it. With this new set up, I am able to enjoy the view into a small courtyard outside my window. Just to the right there is also a large plate glass patio door that lets in even more natural light. I could probably have some friends from Ascension help me put a bird feeder to attract wildlife every once in a while.
Even after 2 or 3 days I can notice a difference in my mood and productivity level. I catch myself glancing over the top of my monitor and out the window a lot more. I find that this creates opportunity to daydream and create and think.
That’s the myopia I’d really like to cure. My setup will continue to be on the desk, not because I’m worried about the strain on my eyes from having a huge monitor so close, but because I’m worried about the strain on my soul from sitting in a corner every day. While this was all facilitated by a change in computers, I could have and should have done this years ago. It’s amazing what a change in scenery can do for your heart.
What’s one small change you can make in your work area to help your soul?