Working at home can be fun and also help increase your efficiency and make you more productive. However, this means that you need to design your home office in such a way that it promotes productivity and efficiency. If you are going to be distracted by your regular household routine, working at home will no longer be fun or exciting. While it is easy to make your office at home casual and an extension of your living space, this may lower your productivity. So ensure that your home office looks and feels like an office, so that you are not distracted or interrupted even while working from home.
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Planning Your Home Office
Before you start the actual design, it is necessary to list down things you will be doing in your home office. The kind of work you will be doing and whether you will be having meetings will dictate how you design and organize your office. Even the equipment you have in the office should be based on your requirements.
It is best to jot down these things, so that you go about designing your home office in a planned and organized manner. Once you have this ready, it is time to shift to the space. Check your home and see which is the best place to have your office. It can be the garage, a guest room or a room that is not used by the family. If using the garage, you should ensure there is adequate lighting, ventilation and heating so that you are comfortable regardless of the weather. Also, the area should be away from the normal interruptions that you could face while working from home.
Setting Up Your Home Office
There are a few things that you need and this should be part and parcel of your home office design.
Storage: Many people forget that home offices require adequate and planned storage space. Try to use the room vertically, so that you have sufficient place to keep your files, documents and other paperwork. Also, this will ensure that there is enough room for the next important thing in a home office – equipment.
Equipment: Things like Internet connectivity, laptop or computer, printer and a telephone are important for working efficiently. Try to get the best possible package for your Internet and telephone, so that you do not spend a bomb. Also, having a laptop and Wi-Fi connection means that you have the freedom of working away from your desk or chair. Be sure to insure the equipment, so that you are covered if you suffer a loss due to natural disaster or theft.
Privacy: When you are setting up a home office, the last thing you need is your family disturbing you. So ensure that the space you choose is away from all the family humdrum. Use portable screens to limit the distraction you may face from activities in the surroundings. Alternatively, you can use bookcases that will offer you privacy and also function as a great storage space.
Lighting: Good lighting is important in any workplace and a home office is no different. Try to get in as much natural light as possible and for areas that are dark, use white light. Make sure the lighting is a perfect blend of task and general light. Use LED lighting to save money on your electricity and make your home office more energy efficient. While installing the fixtures, make sure there is none over your computer screen, as it will cause a glare. Also, do not place your computer in front of a window or other light source.
Organizing the Layout
Perhaps the most important thing is organizing and planning the layout. You should plan your home office in such a way that you can access all areas easily and comfortably. Also, try to keep little things together for easy access. For instance, you can keep all writing materials, such as note pads, paper and pens together. Be sure your desk is comfortably place with a comfortable chair. Focus on the ergonomics, so that you reduce the stress on your body and enjoy working in your newly designed home office. Also keep 2-3 extra chairs to receive people who may come to visit you.
Try to go for subtle wall and curtain colors, so that you do not feel down or depressed. Usually, shades of blue and green can motivate and keep energy levels high, especially when working long hours.
Follow these tips and you should have a beautifully and well-designed home office where you will enjoy spending time and being productive.
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