Many people dream of working from home. They think they’ll enjoy all the creature comforts of home while they do their work in peace and quiet. They believe they’ll be more productive without their colleagues making a noise or their boss peering over their shoulder while they type. This sounds amazing to so many people.
But once you actually start working from home, it’s completely different. You’ll find that you’re easily distracted by the laundry that needs to be done or that series you just want to watch one more episode of. Working from home can be a lot more difficult than many people start out thinking. Which is why, if you’ve decided to make the move to work from home, you need to have a home office.
The thing is, your home office can’t simply be any place in your home. Just because you set your laptop up in the living room, that doesn’t mean it’s now your office. You need a specific area of your home that is dedicated to work. Even though it’s situated in your home and you’re only a few steps from the kitchen, this room should feel like an office. And that’s why you need to kit it out in a certain way. Here are a few helpful tips.
Choose a room with loads of natural light if possible
Since you no longer have the commute to work to mentally prepare you for the day, you need to find a way to feel awake and prepared when you enter your home office. And natural light is one way to do that. Daylight streaming in through your windows will remind you that’s daytime and you should be working as if you’re at the office from nine to five. Choosing a room with large windows or a glass sliding door will make all the difference.
You’ll find that natural light will also improve your mood, making you more productive. A dark room may make you feel gloomy and depressed, which will encourage you to leave your office to find something to cheer you up. When you work in an office filled with people, there’s always a buzz and you can chat to a colleague when you’re feeling down. Obviously, at home you don’t have that option unless your housemate or partner also works from home.
It’s also important that you have light curtains. At certain points during the day, the sun may be too harsh and even reflect on your screen. You don’t want to have to move positions every few hours. Shop for specifically lightweight curtains and look for something that fits with the aesthetic in your office.
Make sure you’re comfortable… but not too comfortable
There are two items of furniture you need to focus on when kitting out your home office: a desk and a chair. While you may think you’re happiest working on a comfy couch, that’s not a long-term solution. It could cause serious back problems. And, after a while, you’ll find that you’ve run out of comfortable positions to shift into. A proper office chair is important, something with good back support. It’s definitely worth investing in a quality chair, especially since you’ll be spending long hours sitting in it.
And of course, your desk should be specific to what you need to use it for. For example, if you’re an architect, you’re going to need a large area of space. However, if you only need a notepad and a laptop, a smaller desk will do. Check the height of the desk before you purchase one so you know it won’t be too high or too low. If you’re a health-concerned person, many people these days are opting for standing desks.
Invest in tech and high-speed internet, you won’t regret it
Your home is now your office. Slow internet and the laptop you bought second-hand three years ago will no longer be okay. You need to have a machine you know you can count on and internet that will never let you down. If you have a Skype conference with important clients, you can’t excuse yourself while you buy more data. And you don’t want a blurry connection where you can’t hear each other properly. It’s 2017 and we use the internet for almost everything. So, make sure your internet provider is reliable and you invest in a good laptop.
Working from home can be great. But it can also be difficult at times. Make it as easy and productive as possible by kitting out your home office the right way.