Working from home might be a dream come true for many. Eliminating the soul-destroying commute in peak-hour traffic is just one of the many benefits. When most people think about working from home, however, there’s a common misconception that you can work from anywhere – including your couch, yard, or even your bed. This is simply not true.
Most productive people working from home have a designated space to work – usually at a ‘proper’ workstation with a desk and chair. Having a home office presents an opportunity to get creative and optimize your work-from-home space.
No matter how you want to decorate your home office, here are seven expert tips to set you up for work-from-home success.
1. Find the Ideal Location
Some people are lucky enough to have a spare room in their home that they can repurpose into a home office. However, if you don’t have any free rooms in your house, you may have to get a bit creative.
If you don’t mind clearing and packing up all of your work before mealtimes, using the kitchen table as a work desk can work in a pinch. If the thought of moving before mealtimes bothers you, you may have to get creative with the space you have. Unused corners in larger rooms and places under the stairs can be converted into small office areas if you don’t have any other space.
2. Invest in Comfort
When creating a productive and professional home office environment, what you invest in it should be seen as an investment of yourself. To be productive, you must be comfortable.
As with everything, you usually get what you pay for. So, although it’s tempting to buy cheap office furniture, avoid low-quality desks and chairs. Think of it this way: you’ll be spending a minimum of 40 hours per week in your office chair. If you fall into the trap of buying bargain furniture, you’ll be uncomfortable and have to replace it in a year or two anyway.
Investing in the best home office chair in Australia will ensure you have the proper back support while working and avoid developing posture problems down the road. Again, investing in high-quality, ergonomic office furniture is investing in your own comfort and productivity.
3. Look After Your Neck and Eyes
Once you’ve picked out an ergonomic chair, don’t forget about your neck and eyes, too. Position your computer monitor in a spot that’s comfortable for you.
You may have to experiment with which placement is best for your neck and eyes – aim to have your spine in a neutral position, the top of your monitor at eye level, and your screen at least 20 inches from your face.
Although most monitors are slightly adjustable, you may need to prop it up on a monitor stand to find the perfect placement. If you don’t have a monitor stand, an old box or some books will also do the trick.
4. Choose the Right Desk
When you’re working at home, you’ll be spending hours at your desk every day. Choose a desk that accommodates your optimal workflow, space, and budget. Ideally, your desk should help you stay productive and comfortable all day.
If you suffer from aches and pains when you sit all day, consider an adjustable desk. With an adjustable desk, you can switch from a sitting position to standing to get your blood circulating and stretch your legs. According to studies, standing at your desk instead of sitting may also improve your long-term health.
5. Prioritize Lighting
Lighting is the most overlooked aspect of most home office spaces. Because we do most of our work on computers with backlights, we often don’t think about adequate lighting.
Although inadequate lighting in your home office won’t lead to blindness, it will cause eye strain. When you have continuous eye strain, you can get headaches, which can make you less productive. Choosing a place with plenty of natural light is best, but artificial lighting also works. However, avoid overhead lighting that will create a glare on your computer screen.
Task lights placed strategically on your desk can be helpful because they shine light where you need it. When selecting a task lamp for your desk, choose one with an opaque shade so it can focus its light down onto your desk.
6. Think About Storage Options
Although most people only consider their laptops when thinking about working remotely, your job may require other supplies like pens, paper, files, and other office supplies.
Storage options to house your personal items aren’t just good for your household; they are also good for storing your home office items – like stationery and files. Your storage solutions don’t have to be large filing cabinets that take up a lot of space – simple cubes, cubbies, or even plastic storage containers can work. Making space in your existing shelving units and dedicating it to your work items can bring organization to your home office.
7. Create Privacy
If you have an extra room you can convert into a home office, chances are that room is private because it has doors that can be closed and walls that seal it off from the rest of your home. However, if you’re not so lucky, finding a quiet and private area to separate your home life from work and get work done can be challenging.
If you’re using a corner of an existing room for your home office, consider adding a divider for privacy. This can be a traditional divider that rests on the floor, or you could hang a curtain from a curtain rod on the ceiling to enclose the space.
Curtains make excellent dividers because they are inexpensive, lightweight, and can be made from a fabric that easily blends in with the rest of your home decor.
As we’ve discussed, your home office can be anywhere you want. You can create a cozy corner for yourself in an existing room, or you can choose to spread your office throughout an entire spare room.
The possibilities are endless – the only limits are the available space in your home and your imagination!
Keep being AllDayChic!