If you’re thinking of transitioning to a home office for work, then you’re hardly alone. The COVID-19 pandemic saw remote work become more common in the United States than ever, and many were surprised to learn that it can actually be more productive than working in a traditional office. There are many potential reasons for this, such as the time saved during commutes and the fact that an office with coworkers can actually be more distracting than a quiet office at home.
Regardless of the opinions on the matter, you may find that your workspace is one of the many that’s continuing remote work or at least a hybrid solution. Naturally, if you’re planning on using a home office space for an extended period, you’ll want to optimize it as well as possible for both productivity and comfort. Here are some ways to do that.
Take your furnishings seriously
If you’ve been getting by for now by locking yourself in the basement and keeping your laptop on your workbench with your power tools, or some equally makeshift setting, it’s time to get serious about your home office. Firstly, you need to close off an entire room to work as your base of operations. This should be a quiet room that’s kept relatively free of distractions during your work hours, and it should also look like an office to put your brain into “work mode.” An attic could work well, as long as there’s proper ventilation, or you could set up in a guest room.
This means that you’ll need a proper desk, for starters. If you don’t actually have one, you can always make one using something like a long plank on crates, or you could even repurpose a coffee table. You’ll need a comfortable chair as well, so check out some of the best desk chair models of 2021. The best way to stay productive is to make your home office feel as much like a traditional office as possible.
Decorate with a purpose.
While it’s certainly fine to decorate your home office with items that show off your personality, you can’t afford to have it become a place of distractions. Most of your home office decor should be chosen carefully to either boost your productivity or help you feel better in the workspace. Here are just a few ideas for how to decorate a home office.
Having plants nearby is proven to boost your mood, and they’re also an excellent source of fresh air. It’s also a good idea to rely on natural light whenever you can since it’s known to boost productivity. Another great way to decorate is by considering color psychology. The color red is known to evoke excitement and energy, so if you’re someone who needs an energy boost when working, red may be a good choice for decoration. If you prefer to stay more relaxed at work, then blue and green are likely your best bets.
Keep the office comfortable
It’s always hard to focus on work if you’re too hot or too cold, so you’ll want to make sure that your HVAC system is in great working order. Beyond remembering to replace your air filter every month, you’ll want to keep an eye on your thermostat and energy bill. If you see unexplained spikes in your bill, or you don’t believe your actual temperature matches what your thermostat says, these are signs that you should consider installing a new thermostat in your home.
With a smart thermostat, you’ll be able to control the temperature right from your home office, and a new thermostat will always complete full air conditioning cycles, so you won’t have to worry about the temperature being inaccurate. For days when you do have to return to the traditional office, a programmable thermostat even makes it possible to set temperatures away from home, so your home office will be the perfect temperature when you return.