It’s been a year of many changes and one of the most significant is the shift toward working at home. More people than ever are having to find ways to get work done from their homes and the key is an ultimate home office. Here’s how you can create yours:
Perhaps the most difficult but also the most important step in creating a home office that works for you is choosing the right place to set up shop. Sure, you could just stick a desk in the corner of the living room and call it a home office but that isn’t a great way to ensure that you’re doing your best work every day. If you have a spare bedroom you can convert into a home office, that’s ideal. You can switch into work mode when you enter the room and turn that off when you leave. But even if you’re tight on space at home and can’t dedicate a whole room, it’s worthwhile to be mindful of where you place your home office. Try to find a place in your home that’s quiet with plenty of natural light and you’ll be off to a good start..
Once you’ve found the right space for your home office, you can begin to think about what equipment you’ll need. Do you want to work on a desktop or a laptop? Do you need multiple screens? Do you have all the speakers and headsets for the inevitable video call? Maybe consider upgrading your home internet to ensure it will be up to the task and not crash when you need it most.
Beyond deciding what types of equipment you want for your home office, you should also spend some time researching the products so that you know are reliable and worthy of the investment. The cheapest headset, for example, may be tempting at the time of purchase but when they break after only a few uses or you miss important information in a meeting because of poor audio quality you’ll kick yourself that you didn’t invest in better equipment.
Along the same lines, you shouldn’t be stingy when it comes to purchasing comfortable furniture for your home office. You could use a folding table and stray chair but working will probably go much faster if you’re comfortable. After eight hours at a desk in front of a computer, a comfortable and ergonomic chair will feel like a lifesaver. Your back will thank you later. If you’re going to cut corners on anything you buy for your new home office, don’t let it be your office chair. For those looking for a good bargain, a pre-owned desk or chair can be both comfortable and budget-friendly.
This piece of advice is certainly easier said than done but organization is always something to keep in mind. It’s hard to get work done when you’re buried under piles of stray paperwork. And when you need to find one of those papers, forget it. The good news is that there are plenty of options for organizing all of your work materials. A filing cabinet can help you get your papers in order. A cord organizer can get unsightly cords out of the way and even reduce the likelihood of a fire starting. The idea is to keep clutter out of sight so the things you see in front of you are just those you need to do your work.
In terms of decor, adding some houseplants can brighten up the room and make a real difference in the way you feel while you work. Beyond being nice to look at, plants help reduce anxiety and stress which makes them a great addition to your home office. If you don’t quite have the green thumb, some succulent options will survive even with the least savvy plant owner.
Even if you aren’t overly concerned with the design of your home office, thinking about a new coat of paint on the walls is worthwhile. Different colors are associated with different things and you never know if a thoughtful decision about paint color could make a difference later. For example, greens and purples are associated with success and wealth so you may want to paint with one of those color palettes if you’re going to be conducting a lot of business in your home office. On the other hand, if you’re going to do a significant amount of creative work, orange or yellow would be a better fit since they’re associated with positivity and creativity. Maybe colors aren’t your style but you can still freshen up the room with a new coat of white or neutral paint.
One of the nice things about working from home is that you have the ability to make the space your own and you should take full advantage. Now is your chance to create the kind of environment that helps you get work done and makes you feel at ease. Put up framed pictures of family, your favorite candle, maybe a poster, whatever helps motivate you and bring you joy. You can change these things out whenever you choose to keep the space feeling fresh and fun.
Follow these tips to create the home office of your dreams and make working at home a breeze. A great office could mean great work!