How to Set Up a Home Office
How to Set Up a Home Office
More people than ever are making the choice to work from home, whether permanently or on a flexible basis. Working from home can boost productivity, promote creativity, and reduce stress. However, a lack of planning in regards to home workspaces can have the opposite effect. Taking a thoughtful and intentional approach to home office space planning has numerous benefits beyond aesthetics alone.
Choosing the Right Space for Your Home Office
It is important to consider your unique needs when selecting the right space for your home office. If you are someone that requires peace and quiet in order to be productive, try to find a space with little outside noise or with a door that can shut out distractions. Natural light can have a huge effect on motivation and energy levels, so try to set up your space near a window or in a well-lit room.
Here are some other things to consider when planning your home office:
- What kind of equipment do I need for my work? (laptop, second screen, printer, etc.)
- Will clients or colleagues ever visit the space?
- Will I make conference calls or video calls?
Your answers to these questions will highlight necessary features of the space, such as a good video call setup or guest seating. In general a dedicated room is ideal, though carving out space in a lesser-room works as well. To maintain a proper work/life balance, we recommend avoiding setting up your office in your bedroom.
Choosing the Right Furniture for Your Home Office
Don’t compromise on comfort just because you’re working from home. Investing in the right furniture for your home office will shape the flow of the space, including how you function within it. Set yourself up for success with an ergonomic chair that is comfortable, breathable, and supports good posture, such as the CoolMesh Pro Plus High Back Chair. Speaking of good posture, why not switch things up with a standing desk? Adjustable standing desks — whether manual or electric, like the Enhance Height Adjustable Desks — reduce body strain and add more movement to your workday, which helps you stay engaged. Storage is another important feature of your home office, and bookshelves offer much-needed organization and give you the opportunity to display certifications, awards, or motivational messages. Keep your papers in order with file cabinets and drawers so that your space does not become a source of unnecessary stress.
Adding Personal Touches to Your Home Office
Customize your space so that it truly reflects you and your working style. Your home office space should feel good to be in, something that goes beyond function alone. Add personal flair with a fresh coat of colourful paint to inspire creativity and lighten the mood. Or, choose a neutral paint colour that ties the room together, including your tech and furniture. Lighting is another important element for setting the tone for a productive day. This is especially important if you don’t have a window nearby or if you tend to work in the evening. Consider a task light or desk lamp that has different brightness settings and colour options to suit your needs on any given day, like the Vamp LED Desk Lamp. Plants are another great way to boost productivity and to add colour and freshness to your home office. Select a plant that will thrive indoors; for instance, succulents love lots of direct sunlight, whereas a spider plant prefers indirect natural light.
Necessary Tech, Equipment, and Supplies for Your Home Office
Tech, equipment, and office supplies are other important elements of your home workspace. For instance, a proper internet connection is essential to at-home productivity. With more meetings going virtual, a consistent high-speed internet connection will ensure you are present for every single detail. Hardware is another important consideration, though not always for performance (i.e. a computer with great specs). An ergonomic office goes beyond your office chair alone and you will want to make sure that your monitor height helps you retain good posture throughout the day. Software — such as digital presentation tools, word processors, and spreadsheet programs, to name a few — is another feature to keep in mind, though most workplaces will be able to grant you home access to these tools. Remember, no home office is complete without a stock of fresh supplies such as pens, post-it notes, printer paper, a stapler and staples, or a under desk wire management organizer.
Striking a Work/Life Balance at Your Home Office
Setting proper boundaries around work and the rest of life is even more essential when you work from home. To work from home in harmony, treat going to your home office just as you would any other workplace. Keep a routine that helps you feel mentally alert — such as taking a shower, making coffee, eating breakfast, or putting on makeup — so that when you sit down at your desk, you are ready to get started. Schedule a lunch break and make sure to get up from your desk and move around during that time, just like you would at the office. Keep distractions at bay with noise-cancelling headphones or by muting notifications so that you can stay focused. Remember to take breaks to stand or stretch throughout the day to avoid fatigue. Shut down for the day by powering down your tech, turning off the lights, and closing the door to signal to yourself (and anyone else at home) that you have finished work for the day.