Okay, so working from home has a bunch of positives. There is no rush hour commute to start your day off in the worst way possible. There is no office politics. No having to stay at the office until 6.30pm even though you finished your workload at 4 pm. There is no having to try and avoid your boss who got out of bed on the wrong side. The list goes on and on and on. However, saying all that, working from home isn’t automatically ideal.
There are distractions everywhere. There is the absolute procrastination machine we call the internet and no one to stop us exploring it, you could have kids that love you enough to not leave you alone etcetera. Basically, working from home can often be unproductive.
But how do you change this? How can you make your home office a haven for efficiency, make it a place of comfort and somewhere you can immediately find the right state of mind to crack on with that day’s workload.
Well, we’ve put together a list of ways in which you can improve that little home office of yours and give it everything you need to get done early and enjoy the day.
Spending 30 minutes trying to find that print out with all that key information on it can be worse than just wa waste of valuable time. It can be stressful, and stress can affect your productivity as much as anything. So make sure you place is as organized as possible. Buy a filing cabinet and store all your necessary files in alphabetical order according to your client’s names. Log onto your computer and organize your downloads folder, which, let’s be honest, is an abyss of files in no particular order. But don’t stop there. Stand back from your desk and decide what you need and don’t need, clear up all the clutter that has amassed on your desk and around your desk and make sure the place is tidy. Tidiness tends to mean space and maximizing space allows your freedom to move.
The benefit of most office blocks is that they offer plenty of natural light, which boosts productivity, so mimic this in your home office. Set up in a place that has plenty of natural light. It doesn’t have to be a wall of floor to ceiling windows in front of your desk that allows you to stare out at the world and soak up brilliant new ideas through some sort of osmosis. No. It could just be that you have a skylight behind you that floods the place with gorgeous light. If his isn’t possible, however, then make sure you maximize your lighting options. Let’s say your office is in the basement. Well, use a combination of overhead lights and lamps, but make sure it suits you. Too bright and that will make working hard. Too dark and gloomy and you are not going to be creating a place that helps your mood, or urges you to get on and be efficient. So make sure you are comfortable when it comes to lighting.
You are going to need a decent internet connection, that is a must. What’s more, you don’t want to rely on an ethernet cable, given that a lot of the time you may want to maximize your productivity by using a combination of desktop computer, tablet, and smartphone. That is why having a decent wireless router is crucial to your success. If you don’t know where to start when it comes to WiFi routers, this guide is highly informative. The reason this is so important to get right is simple; most people’s working lives are no longer a matter of simply sending and receiving emails. You will want to download files, watch informative videos and browse with speed, all while your teenage son plays Call of Duty on multiplayer mode for 8 hours straight. So, get yourself a decent internet router that will keep everyone happy and let you get on.
We don’t mean get the paint pots out (although a dash of paint could do your office wonders). What we mean is, make your office a place that will help you come up with creative ideas, thrive and utilize your incredible brain. That means getting an easy to maintain house plant to breath some life back into your place. It means investing in some artwork that will let you escape, or help you laugh or mimic your personality a bit. Offices are known for their bog standard motivational posters that say things like creativity is at the heart of everything. So why not get some art that plays on this but in a humorous way, perhaps some art that coughs up some completely random facts that will allow you to smile as your fingers tap away furiously on the keyboard.
Get a decent desk, one that you like, and then pair it with a chair, one that is really comfortable. This is your workplace and you deserve to have the perfect little pod. Get a desk that you fall in love with, whether that be a minimalist desk with tripod stands or an old mahogany desk that reminds you of your old man. When it comes to the chair, though, make sure you have one that you can sit in for hours at a time and not become uncomfortable, and that means one that is adjustable in every way, from height to arms to back support. But don’t stop there. Why not get a comfy couch or arm chair, somewhere you can go and put your feet up while you read through a new business contract or an NDA or legal agreement between you and a potentially huge client. Don’t limit yourself to just your desk, that will do you more harm than good over the course of a day, week, month or year. So have alternatives and use them. When you need to think, go and lie on the sofa and close your eyes for a minute. Or when you need to make a call, flop back in your arm chair; it will relax you and that will help you speak with more control.