You may not need a lot of space when setting up a home office, but you do need a lot of discipline and great design ideas. Pearl Mathias tells you what to keep in mind when decorating your home office
Whether you’re looking to build a space in which you’re going to settle down and work for most part of the day or simply a station to sort out bills and your daily or weekly tasks, a home office is essential to help you get work done, in an organised manner. However, there’s more to designing a workspace at home than simply trying to replicate a few ideas you came across on Pinterest. Of course, an ebony work desk that houses gorgeous vintage stationery sets nestled beside a French window is everyone’s dream. But, when you’re staring at a humble, empty space trying to figure out which way you should place your desk in order to get started, you’ll need a helping hand. Physically yes, but also with how you should decorate the space. So, here’s what you need to know.
HOME IS WHERE THE OFFICE IS
When you’re formulating designs and thinking up ideas for your workspace at home, remember this: as charming as you may want it to look, you need to keep it practical as well. Here are a few tips to brighten up your home office.
What environment do you function best in? Do you like to be in the thick of a conversation to get your creative juices flowing or do you prefer being away from the happenings of the house in order to get some work done? Whatever you decide, keep in mind the nature of your work. If you’re going to have clients over, you’ll have to make space to seat them as well. So, choose a spot accordingly.
Get a view
A blank wall may work well for some people, but it’s always nice to put up a piece of art or a motivational quote if you’re stationed in a windowless space. Try to position your workstation in an area that receives natural light or one that has an interesting view.
Personalisation is key
If there is anything at all that appeals to your creativity, don’t hesitate to add it to your workstation. Turn your childhood mug into a pen stand or string together Polaroids of your memories — both make a good addition to your workspace. Gather all the stationery you need — to-do lists, memo notes, sticky notes, highlighters, tape — so that you won’t have to move around once you get to business.
Unless you’ve got a spare room that you managed to convert into a home office, we’re normally left with minimal space to create a station. In such a case, it’s important to use your space wisely, and this is where practicality merges with décor. Put up hanging shelves to store your files and folders or get a storage rack to pile up your stuff.
Pick bright colours
By now, you must have realised that the great thing about having a home office is that you can style it any way you want. And, by this we mean that you can even pick the colour you want. Don’t restrict yourself to standard office colours such as beige or white, or even the colour of the rest of your house. Pick colours that boost your mood, but which won’t distract you from your work.
Being productive at home
There’s no ignoring the comfort and convenience that working from home brings, but this isn’t necessarily the best thing for an office. So, here are a few ways to stay productive, even when you’re working at home.
Put your game face on: You’ll need a few distractions during your timely breaks, so keep brain teasers, a game application on your phone or a Rubik’s cube handy for when the need strikes. This helps keep your mind active and ensures that you don’t turn to pointless social media feeds, which will distract you to no end.
Don’t get too homely: Even if you’re still at home, don’t get too comfortable in the area designated for work. A bean bag isn’t the best option for a work seat. Since you will be spending a majority of your time at this desk, invest in a good chair to avoid posture issues from cropping up. Accessories like an anti-glare screen film also help.
Clear up the mess regularly: Whether you declutter your home in a timely manner or not, it’s important to keep your workspace clutter-free. Every couple of months, rummage through old files and papers, and get rid of or replace things that aren’t being utilised or which are outdated.
Set ground rules: In order to get serious work done at home, it’s important to disengage with people and set some boundaries. You don’t need to be the one who answers the doorbell or phone every time. Set work hours for yourself and politely make yourself unavailable for home chores during those hours.
Cultivate work culture: It’s easy to wake up in the morning, brew yourself a cup of coffee and get started at your computer. But, working from home needs some discipline as well. Train yourself to wake up as you normally would to get to office and dress up in casual work wear that will instantly put you in the mood to get things done.