What Is Your Favorite Position? (for working)

Biddy works best while sitting on or in boxes.

Biddy works best while sitting on or in boxes.

Recently I noticed something about the way I work: I prefer doing different types of work in different positions.

  1. Creative work (writing, prototyping, future planning): Sitting down at my desk.
  2. Logistical work (spreadsheeting, Skyping): Standing up at my desk (it’s a sit/stand desk).
  3. Brainstorming (game design/development): Turning off my computer and sitting at a separate table with pencil and paper (while trying to keep Biddy from sitting directly on the paper I’m writing on).

Occasionally when I’m stuck on an idea, I’ll lay down to think about it. That often results in me falling asleep, so I avoid it if possible.

All of this came to mind this weekend when I was listening to a game design podcast. The designers were talking about the impact of their environment on the quality of their work.

One of the designers, Dirk, mentioned that he had recently expanded his office, giving him the luxury of creating little environments within the same space. He did this because he’s realized over time that he does his best work in different positions. So he now has furniture that facilitates all of those positions.

I thought this was really clever, kind of like having different glasses for different types of alcohol. If you do your best brainstorming in a beanbag chair, why not get a beanbag chair? Then when you’re ready to send e-mails, if you’re best at that at a cocktail table, why not get a cocktail table?

Have you found this to be true for the way you work? Do you do distinctly better work in different positions?