How to organise your home office space to help boost productivity
What do you need in a home office?
Whether we liked it or not, 2020 has made us all very familiar with the concept of remote working. However, while having a reliable laptop and stable Wi-Fi connection can, in theory, turn any domestic space into a study, having a dedicated office space in which to work increases focus, productivity, and helps you achieve a healthy work and life balance at home.
We are all familiar with the basic components that make up a study: some storage, a desk, a chair, and a lamp are the essential items on the checklist. Yet setting up a study space is deceptively simple; it’s not just about having these pieces, it’s also about how you use them.
Use our top tips below to give your remote working space a new lease of life for 2021.
Top 5 tips for home office spaces
Allocate your space
The two main options when allocating a space for a home office are having a single dedicated room, or using an area of a larger room. Both options have their benefits and drawbacks.
Separating your work life from your home life with four walls will help you to stay focused and remove distraction. There is also a therapeutic lockdown project to be found in repurposing a neglected box room which may have served as a playroom, drying room for washing, or guest bedroom at one point in time, which has been left to gather dust and clutter. However, working alone in a room could increase feelings of isolation that are already heightened in lockdown.
Of course, many have a spare corner as opposed to a spare room. This allows you to create visual interest in a previously redundant corner of a bedroom or living room, as well as being able to keep an eye on children or pets as you work. However, this can also prove distracting, and could produce unwanted domestic background noise on video calls.
Choose and position your desk
Desk positioning is important whether you have a separate or integrated home office space. When using an area of a larger room, it’s important to visually, as well as physically, zone your study space into its own area. Acquiring a corner desk, such as our Chester computer desk, can help with this. It creates more of a structured area by taking up two sides as opposed to one, whereas a regular desk may help you feel less claustrophobic in a dedicated office room.
In either case, try to position your desk near a window. Having your desk facing a window means clear, bright lighting for video calls, and can provide fresh air (in warmer months!) and some much needed vitamin D year-round. If the view outside becomes distracting, put up some sheer curtains.
Make it appealing
Getting motivated during lockdown is difficult enough as it is, so make it easier for yourself by making your study space as comfortable and appealing to work in as possible. A new pair of furnishings, such as our Vola desk and sideboard or our Phoenix desk and bookshelf, can help streamline organisation and make working more agreeable. Even a small new addition like our Morom desk lamp can help get you enthused about your space. Don’t shy away from adding some small indulgences to keep you inspired, such as a relaxing scented candle or some houseplants. Lighting a candle or watering plants has the potential to become integrated into your pre-work routine, in turn helping to lead you gently into your working day.
Keep it tidy
In a similar vein, try to make tidying your office space a habit at the end of each day. Keeping clutter at bay will help you feel less overwhelmed, and if your study is part of another room, it will keep you relaxed while using the space for its primary function instead of the sight of your office space filling you with unease at other times of the day. Treating yourself to a new storage unit such as our Dakota open shelf unit to keep files and stationery in order could help with this.
Take realistic screen breaks
While it's convenient to use your computer for everything you need, keeping an analogue clock, handwritten to-do list, or other non-screen amenity close by can help you take brief but consistent screen breaks over the course of your day. Manually crossing items off or checking the time also helps to ground you away from technology.