Using a Standing Desk
It was an offhand comment, many years ago, in either college or university, about some author who wrote — exclusively — standing up. I conceived, designed, and had one of my buddies build my own stand-up desk. I’ve carted it around for years, 20 years or more, using it sporadically, but more often it’s seen use as a resting spot for tech, back-ups, rather than as useful desk.
I wrote my first novel-length manuscript on that desk, as an exercise. Forgot about that one.
This year? Cold winter, then a long, bitterly cold spring thus far, and it shifted a few things around. I started to use my stand up desk, and I like it.
Some place along the way, I saw images of those “ultimate” desk, minimalist style — a computer, a screen, an iPad, wireless keyboard. Very zen. Totally unlikely, too. While I have minimalist setup, with a single box, and an iPad hanging off to one side, that iPad setup as a systems monitor, that kind of super zen look and style? Too neat. Un-lived in looking. Missing the sticky notes. Pens, pencils, reading glasses. Scraps of paper with scribbled notes, pointers, leads, and cues. Half-empty coffee cup. Maybe a water bottle. Maybe a large, diet coke.
The transition was easy, for me, as my stand up desk has followed me around. What I noticed was increased output, and while I’m tired, I am standing bare foot on a nice, somewhat soft throw rug. Kind of four-by-six floor diaper.
Because, in my prime, I was used to six-plus miles a day, walking, and even, these days, I’m used to walking. The standing part is weird, but I balance on one foot, then the other. I fidget, which, standing up, is OK. Chase myself into the kitchen for coffee, and back again.
The workflow is more erratic, conversely, I can focus easier on smaller tasks. Not sure that captures it, but at the stand-up desk, I tend to work more and partake of less idle miscellany.