For most people having a good working environment is key to success, whether it's something we realize or not. Our mood, thoughts and productivity are all affected by our environment. For each person, their ideal environment can be different.
Having a workspace that is functional, practical and does not obstruct your workflow, should be your number one priority. Take a look at your workflow and determine how you can improve it. For me I have a lot of ideas and tasks floating around in my head, so I decided to get a Galant Glass Desk from IKEA. This allows me to easily whiteboard my ideas with Retractable Dry Erase Markers, on the desk itself. This makes it easy to keep work-related tasks where they belong, at my work desk.
I found myself getting up to get water far too often, while this may be a good way to stretch your legs, it can be interruptive when you're trying to focus. Getting a good water bottle can certainly help you out there, I opted for the Square Water Bottle by CleanBottle.
I also found myself needing to adjust the volume of my music far too often, this was a nuisance for me, as the mechanical keyboard that I use has no media keys. I remedied this by purchasing the PowerMate by Griffin Technology, it's a small usb knob for PC and Mac that sits on your desk and allows you control various programs, you can program the device to do anything you want, including adjusting the computer's volume.
One other problem I encountered with having multiple monitors is that it's a pain to turn all of the monitors on and off each time you get to the desk and leave the desk. To fix that problem I decided to purchase this Power Strip with a Remote Switch. It allows me to turn all 3 of my monitors and my LED Light Stripe for the desk on and off with the press of a button.
Appearance is important to a good environment, something that is atheistically pleasing is much more desired than the reverse. Surrounding yourself with things that you find beautiful or pleasing is a good trick to promote happiness in your workspace. Whether it's paintings, posters, action figures or LED Light Stripes to light up your desk. You can create a look that works for you. Something else to keep in mind is that more often than not a dirty desk piled up with papers and other junk can cause ongoing stress. So it's important not to go overboard, try to keep your environment clean, so you can focus on what's important.
Colors play a big factor into our mood, however unlike most of might us believe, there isn't one schematic to how colors affect us. Colors affect everyone differently, which is why if you were to do a search for how colors affect on our moods, you'd find very mixed results. However, there is a bit of a general consensus, but the fine details of how colors affect us our variable. The best thing to do is experiment and discover which colors invoke the desired emotions and responses in yourself. Some colors might promote productivity, some anger and anxiety, others might promote relaxation. There's a pretty good article about colors affecting our moods over at eHow.
It's known that having background noise of 70 decibels is about the sweet spot for increasing productivity. But a higher level of 85 dBs can hurt productivity. For comparison, a whisper is about 20 dBs and a live rock concert is about 108 - 114. A little bit higher up, at about 150 dBs your eardrums will rupture, which explains why it's possible to have hearing damage after a concert. You can learn more about background noise and how it affects us over at lifehacker.
Create an environment that promotes success, one that makes you want to be there and doesn't restrict your work. I hope that I have given some insight for success and a few ideas for your next workspace. Feel free to let me know what cool workspaces you come up with!