Remote work used to be a luxury, now it’s basically a given. If you worked an office job before the pandemic and you’ve been deemed a non-essential worker, odds are, your home is your new work area.
You’ve probably dealt with the unique frustrations of working from home (children running around, no pressing reason to change out of your pajama bottoms, et al). After all, what’s work and what’s home when it all happens in the same place?
To maintain a little bit of distance from your home life during work hours, it’s a good idea to create a productive workspace where you can find the inspiration to get down to business.
Stay out of the bedroom
Try to reserve your bedroom for sleeping and relaxing. Who wants to sleep at the office? If you blur the mental barrier between the place where you sleep and the place where you work, it could lead to elevated stress levels and sleeplessness.
Find a quiet space
Not everyone is fortunate enough to have a designated office in their home. However, when you’re choosing an area for your home office space, try to choose the quietest place possible. For instance, try to steer clear of the kitchen table or other places that see a lot of traffic and action in your household. An old playroom, a spare room, or a quiet corner of a dining room might do the trick.
The quieter the space, the less likely you are to get distracted from your work.
Work behind a door
Again, this is not a luxury afforded to everyone, especially people in apartments or condos. But if you have the opportunity to work behind a closed door — do it!
Not only does a closed door help you mentally and physically separate your work life from your home life, it also helps indicate to the other people in your household when you’re working, which will (hopefully) make them less likely to interrupt you.
Buy office furniture
Having the right office furniture is essential when it comes to creating a productive workspace. Working on a couch or a bed may not only put you to sleep, it could also cause significant damage to your neck and back. Make sure you have an office chair that has armrests and adequate back support.
Clear the clutter
A messy space = a messy mind. It’s hard to work effectively if you can’t find anything. Consider purchasing some file cabinets and office supplies for your new dedicated workspace. A little organization can make a big impact on your everyday productivity. Not to mention, it will keep your office from expanding outwards and potentially claiming many other rooms in your home.
Reserve your workspace for work. If you start eating, watching TV, and online shopping at your desk, it ruins the sanctity of your workspace, which can make it harder for you to get in and out of a “work zone.” Getting up for a short walk to the kitchen at lunchtime is good for your neck. Not to mention, nobody likes crumbs in their keyboard.
Find natural light
What’s a workspace without a window to longingly stare out of? Try to pick a workspace with natural light. There are countless benefits associated with getting the right amount of natural light, including, better moods and sleep.
Learn to love plants
Plants are a great addition to a home office. Whether you have a green thumb or need something a little less needy like a cactus, a bit of green can provide a visual break. If you don’t want to bring the green inside, consider situating your workspace by a window with a garden view.
Follow these tips and you’ll be on your way to carving out a productive workspace in your home. Remember, when it comes to remote work, a little division between your home life and your workspace goes a long way. Happy working!