More people than ever have been working from home during the last few years. Remote work has proven to be a game-changer for both businesses and individuals since it gives people more flexibility to manage both their personal and professional lives. While working from home has so many good things about it, one drawback is that sometimes the line gets blurred between home and workplace. Creating a home office or designated workspace is one way to help solve this problem.
It's not a bad idea to freshen up your home office every now and then to keep it feeling professional and help you boost productivity. If you don’t have one, you might be wondering how to make a home office in a small space, or how to get started putting together a designated workspace in general. With a little organization and home improvement, it’s actually easier than you might think. Here are a few ideas to get you started.
If you don’t already have one, the first thing that you need to do is choose an area that you’re going to dedicate just to working. This should be a space that’s as free from distractions as possible and allows you to separate your work life from your home life. Avoid setting up in your bedroom, if you can, as this blurs the line between where you’re supposed to work and where you relax and unwind. One common misconception is that your workspace needs to be an entire room. It can be as easy as finding a corner where you can set up a workstation with a table or desk and an office chair.
If you already have an office, start off by organizing and de-cluttering. Go through your items and get rid of old papers, broken staplers, or anything else that is taking up space in your desk drawers. You’ll be surprised by how good it feels to start out fresh.
Office workers often top their desks with personal mementos, photos, or other items that give them some personality. There’s no reason why you can’t do this at home, too. If you can, paint or wallpaper your home office so that it’s different from the rest of your home. This makes it even more distinguishable and gives you the chance to be a little creative with your space.
Next, pick out furniture that not only appeals to your personal style, but that is functional, too. Start with your office chair. An ergonomic chair is comfy and supportive, which is key when you plan to sit in it for several hours a day. In fact, a comfy work chair is shown to boost productivity and keep you on task.
Finding desks or shelving with enough storage space can also be important, depending on your line of work. To get started, browse online to get a sense of the vibe you’re going for when it comes to décor. Then, look at the technical details to make sure each piece meets your specifications and needs.
Experts agree that natural sunlight can help boost your productivity. If you can, set up your workspace near a window to increase the area’s natural lighting. Another bonus is that you can open the window to let in some fresh air. Studies show that sunlight and fresh air have benefits like better decision-making and improved information processing while working.
Many workers spend hours on end staring at a computer monitor or other screens. This can be straining on the eyes over time. To help prevent problems like headaches, eyestrain, and dips in mood, invest in good lighting. Interior design gurus say that lighting should be added in layers to avoid harsh glare or dark shadows. This means starting with something like a floor lamp or overhead lighting as the main source, followed by a desk or table lamp. Placing them in different areas of your workspace keeps the light even and will help your eyes in the long run.
While it might seem obvious, getting organized is an easy way to freshen up your workspace. For starters, don’t underestimate the power of your vertical space. If you’re working with a small area to begin with, adding items like shelving or corkboards on the walls can alleviate some of the clutter on and around your desk. Mounted cabinets are also a good solution that looks professional and is very functional.
You’ll also want to find a way to keep all of your cords, gadgets, and chargers organized. Invest in a power strip or docking station that allows you to charge what you need while using fewer outlets and less space overall.
One way to keep the creative juices flowing is to add some greenery. Plants purify the air around you while helping to reduce stress and boost productivity. Studies show that plants help people to concentrate better and improve moods. If you're limited on space, try putting a small succulent on your desk, or go for a hanging plant that doesn’t take up any surface space at all.
Using plants as décor also allows you to change things up once in a while. You can buy seasonal flowers or greenery that go with the time of year or holiday to add an extra layer of cheer to your home office.
Creating a home office or freshening one up is an excellent way to help you find balance when considering your home and work life. Just as the rest of your home is decorated and styled to your liking, your home work area should reflect your personality, too. As you can see, carving out a space doesn’t have to be difficult, but it can be the perfect chance to get your creative juices flowing.
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