Whether you’re a freelancer, someone who works from home, or you just need a home work space to get some weekend work done, creating a home office can improve your productivity. Here are my top tips for creating the perfect home office set up.
Not so comfortable you’re napping more than working, mind you. But it’s awfully hard to be a focused, productive person when you’re constantly straining to see your computer screen or rubbing your aching back.
Invest in a good office chair and make sure you’re sitting in an ergonomically correct position at your desk. If you get really uncomfortable sitting too long, try a standing desk in one corner of the room. I don’t particularly enjoy them, but some people swear by it.
Little things like an anti-glare screen for your computer can seriously up your comfort level, allowing to focus on getting your work done.
FastCompany suggests adding a dedicated comfy chair (separate from your work chair) in the home office for breaks.
Natural light is often touted as a way to improve productivity and concentration. If you tend to work later on in the day or you can’t set up your home office by a window, consider getting a daylight lamp.
If you decide a daylight lamp isn’t for you, make sure you adjust your lighting at home so that it isn’t so dark as to make you drowsy and cause strain on your eyes, but also not so bright that it’s off-putting and likely to give you a headache.
If you’ve ever worked from home before, you’ll know how easy it is to get distracted. There’s always laundry that needs doing, a dog that needs walking or something else niggling at you when you’re trying to work.
If you’re lucky enough to have your home office in a separate room, then it’s easy to close the door and focus on your work. It’s much more difficult if you tend to wander around or like to sit on a sofa.
Calming music can help if you have pets, children or even a partner who might prove distracting otherwise. If you know which room you’re going to be working in, see if you can tidy it ahead of your working day – that way, you won’t start doing it when you’re faced with an inbox full of unopened emails.
SEPARATE WORK FROM HOME LIFE
When you’re working at home, this can be a tricky one to master. If you’re able to dedicate a separate space to work, then compartmentalising work becomes much easier to do. But if you’re tight on space, there are still plenty of other things you can try.
Establish a daily routine — ideally one where you start and end your day with exercise. Even if it’s just a 15 minute walk around the block, it means you’re creating a buffer between your work and your life at home. It can be easy to get sucked into a never-ending pile of paperwork, so schedule in regular breaks and eat lunch at a normal time. Not only will you keep your energy levels up, but you’ll feel more productive afterwards.