Building a Productive Home Office
Being able to work in your home office can be both a blessing and a curse. On the one hand, it offers flexibility, comfort, and convenience. On the other hand, it can be hard to focus and hard to close up shop at the end of the day. When you're creating your home office space, here are some tips to ensure that it's working hard for you, too.
Find the Perfect Spot
Some of us prefer to work in a noisy environment, while some need peace, quiet, and removal from family hubbub. Choose a spot in your home that meets your needs for both traffic and noise level. If you're looking for a quieter spot, consider an attic office, or utilizing a space away from bedrooms, game rooms, and play areas.
Most minds are more productive when work areas are clean and organized. But this extends far beyond the obvious. Though it's important to have your office space clean, if your office sight line falls on a messy hallway area or an untidy room, it can serve as a distraction.
The human eye finds symmetry appealing and easy to take in. The brain doesn't have to do much work to assess a symmetrical space. If you're looking to create a relaxing and stress-free environment, creating a mirrored look for your home office can help. Balance your space by putting your office in the middle of the room with shelves on either side.
Tivka Morrow at The Muse writes, "A desk or floor plant is a great way to add a breath of fresh air to your workspace and create some visual variety when your eyes need a break from the screen." Bringing live plants into your office space can lower your stress and purify the air. Check out this article from Earth 911 on the best plants for productivity.
Give Your Eyes A Break
Especially when you're working at a computer all day, eye strain can be a big problem. Digital screen protection glasses are available with or without prescription lenses (here are a few stylish options). The slightly yellow tint of the lenses can help reduce the straining effect of blue light digital screens on your eyes. If nothing else, reduce eye strain by following the 20-20-20 rule. After 20 minutes of screen time, stare at something 20 yards away for 20 seconds to give your eyes a little workout.
When working from home, whether it's for a day or for the year, it can be hard to prioritize your personal and family needs. There will always be more work to do, no matter how hard you try to get ahead. Try giving yourself the first hour of the day to exercise, organize your space, eat a healthy meal, etc. If you put off your "me time" until the end of the work day, you're likely to skip it so you can get more done at work. By moving it to the first hour of the day, you're promising yourself the time and self-care you need.