With so many jobs transitioning into the digital realm, countless employees are switching from working in an office to a fully remote work life. There are many easy ways to transform a part of your home into a highly productive space, from picking the right office supplies to making your atmosphere more mentally stimulating. Here are our top easy home office ideas to make sure your work space transformation is practical and effective, without requiring too much effort.
Choosing the Best Space
One issue many people face when working from home is not being able to separate their work and living space. It’s important to make sure your work space isn’t overlapping with your typical de-stressing space. For example, you shouldn’t work where you sleep or eat. People are much more productive when they can get into a high-functioning headspace, and that’s hard to achieve from bed.
If you don’t have a study or an entire room dedicated to a home office, that’s okay! Choose the room or area with the least amount of distractions and section it off to separate the work space and the recreation space. Add a desk to your bedroom or living room and keep all distractions out of reach.
Unfortunately, working a digital job can promote a sedentary lifestyle. There are plenty of products out there that help remote workers stay fit and active even when working from 9-5. Invest in a standing desk, or an elevated platform for your laptop, and try standing while you work for a couple hours a day.
There are also bike/desk hybrids for those who prefer to type while sitting, but still want to burn some calories. Replacing your chair with a yoga ball is also great for your core and promotes movement throughout your day.
A work space can feel dark and gloomy if it’s not spruced up with a little life. Adding small plants or flowers can make your desk so much brighter and healthier. Don’t have a green thumb? Pop a small cactus or succulent on your windowsill or even opt for faux plants. Try a plant that will add a fresh scent to your room, or stick with something that is easy to care for. Of all the easy home office ideas, this is one that everyone should do for an instant boost in a positive work space.
The sound of rowdy kids, daytime TV, or your partner on constant phone calls in the next room can take you out of your productive headspace. Noise proofing your home office can be simple and effective. Adding rugs and plush furniture can help decrease noisy echoes. Invest in some affordable soundproofing foam, acoustic panels, or rubber sound barriers to most effectively tune out unwanted outside noise. To drown out sounds inside of your space, you can opt for turning on a fan, throwing on some headphones, or playing white noise on a sound machine.
Natural lighting is key for all remote workers looking to feel better, work better, and sleep better. A 2011 study at the University of Oregon revealed that the amount of natural light a person gets, plus the quality of views from their desk, directly correlated with the amount of sick time they take. Natural light promotes productivity and an overall better work environment. Try to make sure your home office space is near a window or in a room with a lot of natural light, rather than hard fluorescents or yellow lighting.
Try not to overflow your home office space with things you don’t need. Organize your space to only include the items you absolutely need on your desk to be productive on a daily basis. Too many items scattered about will cause unnecessary distractions, so try to limit decorations, gadgets, and office supplies to only the essentials.
Limit the amount of time you spend looking for items you need by giving each material its own assigned space before you begin working for the day. Keep a couple snacks in a drawer and fill up a big water bottle to avoid heading to the kitchen too often.
Create an Appropriate Background
Zoom and video calls are the backbone of remote working, so employees should make sure their background is appropriate for work. Make sure the space behind you is clean, tidy, and doesn’t show anything too personal. Or try placing your desk so that all that is behind you is a blank wall, a bookcase full of books, or hung-up artwork. A messy, distracting work space in the background of your video calls can give a bad impression to your coworkers and boss!
All your five senses can influence how efficient you work, including your sense of smell. You can easily elevate your home office space by adding a candle, essential oil diffuser, or incense burners. Scents that decrease fatigue and increase focus include peppermint, sweet orange, lemon, spearmint, and rosemary. Don’t forget to always monitor an open flame.
Night Owl Set-Ups
Not everyone works a typical 9-5 job, so getting the benefits of natural light isn’t always an option. Those who work in the evenings or at night can upgrade their home office through specific artificial light. Make sure the space is bright enough to increase productivity without using any uncomfortable yellow lights.
Such small and simple additions or changes to your work space can instantly boost your mood and positively affect how you work. Try these easy home office ideas and you’ll instantly feel more awake, productive, and ready to conquer the day.