There are very tempting benefits to working from home: zero commute, less money spent and more time with the family. Still, it can be a challenge to be productive in a place where you sleep, relax, cook and bond. That’s why it’s so important to have a space dedicated just for your office tasks. Whether you have an entire room or just a single desk, these tips will help you create a beautiful and functional work space in the comfort of your own home.
Distractions can ruin a perfectly good work day, so make sure your home office is away from the many distractions around the house. Choose a dedicated area for the office, ideally a quiet spot that’s relatively private from roommates or children. A charming view can also be great to break the monotony of work.
Dim lighting may be perfect for cozy bedrooms, but it could make you sleepy or lethargic for work – not to mention reading or writing in the dark could damage your eyes. Instead, position your desk by the window to enjoy the benefits of natural light. If there are no windows available, make sure you have table lamps to add to the often inadequate overhead light.
You’ll be spending hours upon hours on this chair, so make it a comfy one. Don’t be scared to splurge on an office chair that is easy on the rear and back. If you entertain clients or a business partner, get an extra one or even a couch.
Spending so much time in the office – whether at home or elsewhere – can put a lot of strain in the body, so build your work space thoughtfully for maximum comfort. The feet should rest firmly on either the floor or a footrest. Keyboards should be positioned so the forearms are parallel to the floor, and the top of the computer or laptop screen should be at eye level.
Even if your workplace is relegated to a tiny corner of the house, there are ways to find the extra space you need. No room for a bookshelf? Floating shelves will offer loads of extra storage to keep the clutter off the desk. Tuck a filing cabinet underneath for documents, plus a basket or an extra drawer for mail and the rest of your “to-do” pile.
Not only is it uninspiring to work amidst clutter, but important documents can get lost in the chaos. Keep your desk free of all non-essentials and file the papers in their proper places once you’re finished with them.
Wires can make an otherwise clean work area seem cluttered when it gets out of hand. Avoid the eyesore and keep it out of sight by placing the equipment near the outlets. Another option is to get an extension cord, place it at the back or underneath of your desk, and plug everything there. Use a wire organizer or winders to keep annoying tangles from happening. Or if you can, go wireless and avoid the cords altogether.
Working at home means you have to buy all your office necessities yourself. If your house isn’t near a bookstore or a mall, it can be a chore when you suddenly run out of ink while printing. Make sure you’re always well-stocked with all the essentials: paper, printer ink, pens, staple wire, stamps and more.
Design your office not just to enable you to work, but to inspire you to! Dress up the wall with beautiful paintings or photos, and personalize the shelves to display charming travel knick-knacks. This is your space, so fill it with things that make you happy and motivate you to keep going.
Plants are known to boost productivity and reduce stress, so bring a little green into your home office. Plus, they look pretty and brighten up the room. Not everyone has a green thumb though, so if you’re wary try buying something low-maintenance first such as a cactus. Find out other ways to spruce up your living space with greenery: 6 ways to incorporate plants for the home.