Working from home is more popular than ever. You’re saving money on fuel and travel expenses, you’ve got more time now that you’re not commuting, and you can work at your desk in your favorite pair of lounge pants.
But staying focused on your to-do list might be more difficult for some, especially if the TV is blaring, the kids are running around, or the laundry basket is overflowing and calling your name.
If your home office lacks certain elements designed to keep you on task, you might be easily tempted to stray and compromise productivity. Your work environment should motivate you.
For a home office that’s conducive to getting the job done, consider incorporating these seven key elements:
Set the tone
A workstation that overlooks a lake, mountain or other great view may not be possible. But there are ways to create a space that invokes calm, sparks creativity, or inspires your imagination. Paint your focal wall a serene shade of green, which experts say is great for productivity. Whether your workspace is in the kitchen or a bedroom, position your desk near a window to capture the natural light and enable you to peer out occasionally at trees, plants, or birds.
Not able to utilize a window near your desk? Bring the outdoors in with the placement of a plant on the corner of your desk or a small fountain on a shelf so you can enjoy the soothing sounds of trickling water.
Aim for comfort
If your workspace is uncomfortable, you’ll be more apt to wander away from it more often than your employer would prefer. To work comfortably, invest in an ergonomic chair. Your lower back and shoulders will thank you for it! Peering at a computer screen for hours on end can also lead to eye strain. Be gentler on the peepers by equipping your computer with an anti-glare screen.
Lighting is important
To keep you from nodding off, avoid working in a dark space. If possible, infuse your space with natural light for better mental clarity. Supplemental lighting like a desk lamp or floor lamp not only adds ambience but provides another source of illumination to reduce eye strain.
When you’re installing bulbs, choose cool light as opposed to warm light to keep you alert and focused.
Build in short breaks
Taking short breaks are encouraged to help you reset and recharge. Sitting at a desk for hours on end can make you stiff and lead to daydreaming. Allow yourself short breaks throughout the workday. Go for a walk, spend a few minutes with your current novel or sip coffee or tea while you enjoy your favorite music.
Strive for organization
A cluttered desk and a messy office can increase your stress level, interfere with productivity, and compel you to want to escape to another room. Make it a point to put things in their proper places so they don’t encroach on your workspace. Return books to their shelves, resist storing boxes of stuff in your office, and carry coffee mugs back to the kitchen.
Keep office supplies organized in a file cabinet, bins, or other storage solution. A well-designed home office will keep you organized and stress-free.
Create a daily to-do list
Start each day with a mission mindset. Create a list of tasks to be done and post it where it can be seen. Once you’ve accomplished a task, don’t just make a mental note that you’ve completed it. Physically cross it off the list with a pen, which can be a big motivator for staying on track.
If you’re someone who works well with background noise like soft music or the sounds of nature, by all means take advantage of it. But turning on the TV is not the best source for background noise. It can certainly steal your attention and steer you away from work.
Your home office should be a place where some of your best ideas are birthed, goals are accomplished, and productivity is paramount. At Vista Developers, we offer custom floor plans that make it easy for someone who works from home to carve out the perfect workspace.