Creating an office space at home doesn’t have to be hard, in fact, it can be enjoyable and even help you become more productive.
Working remotely is growing in popularity and the internet allows most people to be able to work from home in their own surroundings.
However, unless you have a nominated working space, the lines between the working day and home life can become blurred, so it is vital to get a space no matter how small and do your best to make it a working environment much like a traditional office.
Here are some tips:
Pick a space.
Decide on the area to put your desk into and consider how it feels to work in that area. Is it too busy? Is it away from the rest of the family if everyone is home? The office space needs to have some privacy especially if you are going to be making phone calls too. You might want a whiteboard too, to pop up notes on jobs and things to do. A spare room is obviously the best option, but this may not be available. If you are going to have clients enter your home, it may not be a good idea to have your office at the back of the house or upstairs if you don’t want them seeing the rest of the property. You may be able to put a screen around your office space in a corner of a room either if you don’t have extra space/rooms.
Get the bits you need.
There is no point in having an office space unless you have everything you need to put into it. So, get your pens, pencils, computer, printers and notepads together and invest in the space. Buy some cabinets, if needed and ensure the desk and chair are perfect for your build and needs. If you are spending a lot of time at your desk, you will need to be mindful of your back and posture so a good (and comfortable) chair is a great investment.
From the off, you should have a space that is fully functional and clean/tidy. Think of how to make the space more efficient. Have everything you need in one area and put filing cabinets or cupboards nearby to be able to dump all the paperwork away straight away. Otherwise, your desk may get filled up with lots of crap and that’s not ideal.
Get the lighting right.
In an ideal world, your desk will be right next to a window with tonnes of natural light. If this isn’t an option, pick some overhead lights that perfectly light up your work area. You might need a desk lamp too for the darker days and consider the glare off your computer screen, to avoid eyesight strain and migraines/headaches.
Separate your life.
This is important, and you should separate your life in terms of work and home. When you are at your desk, tell family not to disturb you. Ask for privacy and have clocking in and out times so you can work at designated times and not overdo it. Take your lunch break at a time that suits you and sit somewhere else in the house. At the end of the day, close the door and don’t be tempted to work for the evening.
Keep up the work processes.
Keeping up with your usual workload can be hard when you work from home but not if you keep up good habits and work processes. Act like you are still in a large office and stay on top of everything. Try not to get distracted by the washing, dishes or the kids. And keep at it! It will work out in the end.