Working from home has become the norm for hundreds of thousands of people around the world. And with the current COVID-19 situation, this home office setup is unlikely to change anytime soon.
This new reality poses a significant challenge, especially since it’s very difficult to find the balance of working and living in our largely comfort-focused homes. Setting the right boundaries is crucial to maintaining a healthy environment for both your mind and body.
Looking to increase your productivity while working at home and give your workstation that much-needed makeover? What you need to do to set up an effective and healthy workstation depends on the work you do, your environment, and your individual needs.
Here are some tips and tricks to help you switch things up and design a home office that is safe, comfortable, easy to use, and empowers you to focus on beating those deadlines and finishing your most crucial work tasks.
1. Find your ideal spot
The first step to creating the ideal workspace is to find the perfect spot in your home that can accommodate everything you need to complete your daily work. Whether that’s a spare bedroom, an unused corner, or an entire attic, having a personal ‘cubicle’ for work encourages concentration and productivity and gives you the freedom of space you need.
Ideally, this workspace should be a low-traffic area away from distractions and free from trip hazards like spills and cords. It also helps if you could set up your workstation in a way that allows you to look out of a window or door to have a good view of the outdoors.
2. Declutter and jazz up your desk
The type of desk that will work best for you depends on your kind of space and work. The desk surface should be flat and large enough to fit all the items you require at a height that allows sufficient clearance for your legs to move.
Get creative and explore non-traditional desk options, especially if you don’t have much space. Smart storage solutions, like using hanging baskets or your walls for shelving, can help you keep your workspace organized and have everything you need nearby.
Adding some simple yet meaningful desk details such as beautiful family photos, lucky charms, or cards from loved ones will no doubt inspire you and boost your morale. Besides your desk, you also need to have a suitable work chair at home. Choosing ergonomic furniture not only protects your health but also makes you feel more comfortable and focus better.
3. Lighting is everything
From boosting your mood and concentration to ensuring that you don’t have eye strain and fatigue, proper lighting does wonders in your day-to-day productivity. There’s nothing quite like natural lighting to keep you feeling active and energized for work.
If it’s possible, position your desk near a window so you can make the most of natural daylight coming into the room. It’s best to avoid direct overhead lighting as it can be harsh over long periods.
Diffused lights, like adjustable lamps and wall lights, are best for those who want to change their lighting throughout the day and for those who need to work on close-up tasks.
4. Go green and bring the outdoors in
House plants will not only freshen up and rejuvenate your workspace, but they will also improve your home’s overall quality and exude a tranquil atmosphere that can lower stress levels during tough workdays.
Choose plants that will thrive and require minimal attention and maintenance in your home office setup. You can also go for faux plants if you’re not keen on maintaining greens in the long-term or are unsure about your ability to take care of plants effectively.
5. Play with the right designs and colors
Give your eyes some excitement for the workday through themes and color schemes that reflect your personality and address your comfort and efficiency needs. The right colors and designs can enhance your work station’s visual appeal, creating a positive impact on your physical and emotional responses while working.
Those who prefer cozy settings and soothing atmospheres, for example, may opt for darker hues. Others who choose to brighten up their workspace and make it livelier may feel more comfortable with lighter and more vibrant shades. Feature wallpapers and intricate artworks are also great ways to inject life and color into your blank walls.
6. Coffee breaks are worth it
It goes without saying that for many workers, taking coffee breaks gives them the much-needed boost to power through a midday slump. Plus, many studies have shown that drinking coffee stimulates the brain and gets those creative juices flowing.
Having a coffee brewing machine near your workstation at home is among those little yet valuable things that can make your home office feel more like your actual office. Don’t hesitate to explore practical finds for a coffee brewing machine and see the difference that a fresh cup of coffee makes to your overall work performance.
Bring these tips to life, and have fun setting up your workstation at home!