With home working on the rise, it’s no surprise that employees are looking to spruce up their office spaces. Many find home working easier than being in the office, often finding that they have more motivation, knowing that they have no commute, don’t have to think about buying lunch out and there are no stresses about being late home from work. However, working from home can be more difficult rather than productive for some. Homeworking can be distracting for various reasons such as having children, pets or other tenants living with you, meaning it can be difficult to find a quiet space in which to focus.
How can you set up a space suitable for you?
Finding a suitable space to work from home can be difficult as it is dependent on your living situation and the space you have available. If you are lucky enough to have a separate room to work, it would be recommended to spend some time adjusting this room and make it suit you and your daily working routine. For example, choosing colours in the room, expanding on your office supplies to make sure everything is organised and choosing office furniture that will help to keep you motivated throughout the day.
If you find yourself stuck in one space of the house, with no available rooms to turn into an office, there are several things you can do to utilise the space around you, ensuring that the end goal will result in a creative, motivating space in which you can get your head down but also allow you the feeling that when you’ve stepped away from the desk, you’re switched off from work.
When home working, it is very important to make sure that you are keeping your work and personal life separate. It can be easy to overwork, as you don’t have to move anywhere to finish your working day. While many of us may not like communicating, it’s a great sign to tell us that our working day is complete, allowing us to switch off.
So, how can you ensure this happens at home?
When it comes to office design, it’s important to understand colours. Many colours can have different effects on the brain without us even knowing it. For example; your favourite dessert can taste better, or worse simply because of the colour. With this in mind, it makes you think about the other choices we make in life or are persuaded toward subconsciously simply because of its colour? Working out these colours could be the first step in the right direction towards your new working space.
Yellow – Representing optimism and friendliness, this colour is great for when creative work needs to flow. If you’re not keen on painting the walls yellow, look into adding yellow segments, such as cushions, accessories or even flowers.
Green – Known for representing nature, green has calming attributes that can be very important in a working environment. It is this reason as to why many medical professionals have a green uniform, offering you an instant calmness in testing situations, without even really knowing it. Pastel greens are becoming increasingly popular for wall colours, or alternatively house plants have been known to make one feel instantly calmer and more at home.
Blue – This is a great choice for any office environment. Helping to increase mental stimulation and focus. Blue is also a slightly easier colour to add into a working environment, with many fabrics available in a blue you will be able to find various types of furniture suitable for you.
Grey – Creating a neutral yet modern space, grey is becoming increasingly popular for offices. However, although this can create simplistic and clean areas, this colour should be used very carefully as it can often lead to low productivity and morale.
Utilising the spare room
Having a spare room whilst home working is a huge bonus. You will not only be able to shut yourself off from the rest of the house, but you’ll also be able to keep your work life and personal life separate. Knowing that this room is just for work, will help you to simply walk out and close the door, leaving work behind for the evening or weekend.
The unique part of having your own office space is being able to truly make it your own. Afterall, our normal office spaces aren’t chosen by us and can often be outdated, unmotivating and very ‘samey’. Whereas working from home enables you to create this space whichever way you want and in ways that you think the surrounding space will motivate you.
Taking into consideration the above colour choices, choose whether you would like to have a splash of colour on your walls, or whether you’d prefer to have just spots of colours added into small details. Either will create a space that represents you and what you’re aiming for.
Secondly, make sure to utilise the space around you, after all you’re lucky to have the space available. Office furniture can have a huge impact on how you work. With your space, invest in office storage, this will keep you organised in your day to day life and help to keep the office tidy. An untidy space can only lead to unmotivated days that can end up being quite chaotic.
It’s important to stick to this space with your new day to day life working from home, ensuring you stick to your own routine and giving you that work, life balance.
Utilising a makeshift office space
If, unfortunately you don’t have the room for a separate office, you can still create a space for yourself that allows you to separate yourself from your work.
If you’re having to work from your room, take some time to organise this space properly. It could be a great time to get rid of anything you don’t use anymore and just generally de-clutter, you’ll be surprised at the amount of space available once this is complete.
When organising, think of where you’d like to be placed, this could be in front of a window so you are always receiving natural daylight throughout the day, or possibly away from the door so you can have a little more peace. Once you’ve found your spot, measure out the area to judge whether new furniture can be bought, such as a new desk and chair.
Although you may not have the same amount of space as a separate office, it’s still important to take yourself to a certain spot each day that provides you with the quiet necessary for you to be able to concentrate. As tempting as it is to head over to the sofa or bed each day, it can become truly unmotivating and doesn’t allow you to separate yourself from your work and personal life.
New office supplies
Like many, you may not have a desk at home. So, now is a better time than any to invest in one.
There are many choices for office desks out there, choosing one can almost seem a bit daunting, however, when choosing your office desk, review the way you like to work. Do you often find yourself feeling unmotivated in an office chair? If so, a sit/stand desk could be a great fit for you and is a great alternative for smaller spaces. Or, if you do have less room around you, opt for a desk that comes with built in storage such as drawers, it will be a real lifesaver when space is a concern, yet allows you to stay organised and keeps the office area tidy.
A chair is never just a chair when it comes to office furniture. If you have a job where you’re sitting down for most of the day, it is crucial to invest in a chair that will support you. For many businesses these days, time and care is taken when investing in their office furniture, to allow support for each individual, promoting a healthy posture. If you have an uncomfortable chair, it will more than likely result in little or no motivation to stick to this office space, or to carry on with your work.
Ergonomic chairs, much like the Herman Miller Aeron Chair and Herman Miller Embody Chair, are great examples of the perfect office chair. Working with each sitter, these chairs are designed for you to be comfortable all day, every day, for life. With little mechanisms making it easy for any user to personalise it to their body, these chairs will give you the support you need each day.
Storage is a great solution for all spaces, whether you have plenty of it or hardly any, storage is a fix for all. If you have little space, look for under desk storage solutions, or dividers that can fit on top of your desk. If you’re lucky to have space around your desk, solutions such as cabinets and even storage walls are great ways to secure paperwork and keep your office tidy.
Whatever space is available to you, it’s important to utilise the area around you, to fit you and your day to your needs. Whether you work from a laptop or from a phone, there are many options out there that will suit you and your role. The best thing about home working is that you are in your own space and can finally add the parts you’ve always wanted when working within the office. So, take this time to enjoy it and create a great work, life balance from your own home.
Photo credits: eOffice