Create a space at home that helps you do your best work
Working from home has its challenges. Whether your kids are around during the day or you’re still adjusting to working remotely, staying productive is important. It may feel like work-life balance is out of reach when your work and your personal life exist in the same space.
That’s why your home office can make a difference in the way you work. When things seem chaotic, creating order and routine in your workspace makes you more efficient throughout the day. Unleash the benefits of a home office, whether it’s through setting up a cloffice or at a kitchen table. With some simple tips, you’ll be amazed at how your home office can make you more productive and inspired.
1. Keep Your Space Clean
When creating a home office, the simplest way to manage the chaos is to maintain a clean space. Things can pile up on your desk as you go through your day, making it challenging to keep your mind clear as you work.
It’s as simple as cleaning the coffee stains from your desk, carrying the dishes to the sink, and putting pens and sticky notes back in place. If you find that you’re having trouble getting tasks done in the middle of the day, use a quick cleaning to refresh your mind: Decluttering your desk is an effective way to declutter your brain.
Designate a place for everything in your office and spend less time cleaning. With simple organizing storage solutions like desktop organizers, storage drawers, and shelves, maintaining a tidy space is effortless.
2. Limit Work to Your Home Office
Make your home office the only space you work in so you’ll become more productive and enjoy a greater work-life balance. Working from home often brings up issues like having work leak into your personal life, so having a physical space dedicated to your job makes a noticeable difference. It’s similar to going to an actual workplace; the only difference is that you have no commute.
Once you make your office the only space you work in, stick to it. Take unexpected calls or meetings in your designated workspace. Leave work materials and paperwork in your office. You’ll focus more easily while completing your to-do list and fully relax in all other parts of your home.
3. Create a Routine
Set a daily routine to transition into work by waking up and getting dressed as you would for an in-person workplace. You may even want to brew a cup of tea or coffee to bring to your home office. Having a regular routine signals your brain that it’s time to be productive.
Also, try creating a routine for the day — decide regular hours to clock in and out and uphold those work hours as you would at a physical office. Have a set time for lunch and take your full lunch break. It helps you operate more efficiently since you know how much time you spend working.
You also maintain work-life balance because you avoid staying at your desk around the clock. Even if you set regular hours for work, you can still include some flexibility in your schedule. After all, you’re working from the comfort of your home.
4. Have a Brightly Lit Workspace
Bright lighting is important for an optimal home office. If your home office is filled with natural light, open the blinds during the day to get an energy boost. Sunlight is known to keep your mood up during the day by helping the body create serotonin. It also creates a warm atmosphere so you can get more done with ease.
If your space doesn’t have much natural lighting, get a desk or floor lamp to illuminate your office. You can even enjoy the feeling of sunshine in your space by choosing the right lighting. There are lightbulbs that mimic daylight and give the same soft, warm glow of the sun.
A brightly lit space reduces eyestrain by making it easier to see your computer screen. Making simple changes to your lighting can vastly improve your productivity and enhance your home office.
5. Make Your Space Comfortable
Turn your workspace into a place you like and reap the benefits. A comfortable office helps you look forward to work and gives you a performance boost. It’s important to have an office you enjoy because you spend a lot of time there.
Try painting the walls a soothing color, like a light blue or blush pink. Have houseplants, like succulents or bamboo, near your desk. Place some scented candles at your desk to create an ambient mood during the day. You may even want to consider refreshing or replacing some of your office furniture—a comfy chair in the corner can make your space more pleasurable.
Fill your office with things that will brighten your day: hang up works of art you like, place pictures of loved ones at your desk, or put up a poster of a quote that inspires you.
You might even consider home office design ideas, like a bold accent wall or door, to add personality and inspiration to your space.
6. Schedule Breaks Outside Your Office
Setting aside time to leave your office can make you more efficient. Block out periods of time in your calendar for breaks and make them into pockets of time you enjoy.
Use these as chances to step outside, take a walk, and get your mind off your day’s tasks. You can even schedule short trips outside your home, such as grabbing coffee or picking up lunch. This prevents you from feeling trapped in your home office and refreshes you so your home office is a sanctuary for your work. Once you’re back, you’ll be ready to tackle more tasks.
7. Switch Positions for Different Tasks
To get out of the midday slump, try engaging your body differently when you do new tasks. It adds variety to your day so completing your to-do lists is more interesting. For instance, if you have a standing desk, complete one task while standing up and another while standing down.
You can also sit on a regular office chair for one task and an exercise ball for the next. These small changes can make a big difference, especially if you’re doing work that is more tedious.