Given the ongoing rise of work-from-home culture, creating a comfortable, well-equipped home office has never been more important. Whether you’ve always had a dedicated workspace or the pandemic forced you to create one, there are plenty of easy ways to give your home office an upgrade, starting with these practical ideas.
Let the rays in
Natural light is the world’s best productivity booster, considered so key to workers’ productivity and health and happiness that has become standard in most modern office buildings. Not only does it help to alleviate physical symptoms of screen-related strain, like headaches and blurred vision, but it also makes for a night of better sleep, leaving you well-rested and ready for the next working day. Fortunately, achieving the same perks from your home office is simple, especially if you already have plenty of windows, but even if you need to add a few, it will be a great investment in your office and add to the value of your home.
Invest in new equipment
As purchases go, digital equipment is as frustrating as it is exciting, because there are new versions of modern devices released every other day. If you’re fortunate enough to have a job that provides tech essentials like a laptop, you may find that you need other devices to make your workday easier and more convenient. Between environmentally-conscious options like refillable printers, which eliminate the need for printer cartridge waste, and sanity-preserving essentials like noise-cancelling headphones, there are plenty of ways to bring your office up to date and get more work done.
Paint the walls
When you’re looking for a change of scenery, a simple paint job is one of the simplest and most satisfying DIY jobs you could take on, and the right colour could even boost your productivity on the job. The primary colours are great for energy, concentration, and emotional balance, so choose a shade you like and soak up the benefits. This trick is popular in commercial offices the world over, and one you can replicate with just a tin of paint and a decent roller.
Unleash your inner decorator
A bare house does not a productive worker make, especially if your job requires you to pull creative inspiration out of thin air, so fill up the walls with colour! Studies have shown that art boosts office productivity and lifts the mood, which is a perfect excuse to add to your art collection, or start a brand new one! While you’re at it, why not invest in nature’s decorations and bring home a few houseplants? These are great for cleaning the air and boosting the mood in your home – but you’d better choose carefully, or else you’ll end up with a plant that doesn’t like your environment.
Upgrade the chairs
The right chair is one of the most important investments you can make for the home office space. Preventing back pain and other debilitating injuries has always been important, but as part of the working-from-home legislation, employers are required to make sure that all employees have a chair that offers effective support. If your trusty old chair is starting to droop or is slowly falling apart, make this your top priority for your home office.
Get an adjustable desk
While on the subject of seating arrangements, it is a good time to think about swapping out your old-fashioned desk for a more health-conscious alternative. These days, standing desks are becoming more commonplace in workplaces where ergonomics are a central focus, but the trend is yet to catch on in most home offices. The good news is that you can enjoy all the positives of a standing desk for just a few hundred dollars, and a manually-adjustable one for even less, so there’s no reason to lose hours to the afternoon slump.
Keep things organised
Tidying up may not be the most exciting thing on your to-do list for each working day, but it is a great productivity booster. Maintaining a clean, tidy work environment eliminates a range of potential distractions during your working hours, allowing you to give your full attention to the tasks at hand. If you have plenty of paper files or books hanging around your office, consider investing in a spacious desk, a set of shelves, or a filing system to maintain a sense of order.
There are so many relatively small ways to make your home office a better work environment, and, now that working from home seems like more than a passing phase, each one passes as a smart long-term investment. If you’re starting from scratch, go for the basic health and safety tweaks and build from there – before you know it, you will have fallen in love with working from home.