Remote work is on the rise, with numerous studies showing that remote workers are both more productive and in many cases more effective than their office-bound counterparts. Some of the benefits of being a remote worker include no commute time and a far greater ability to set your own schedule. That doesn’t mean, however, that remote work doesn’t come with some challenges as well. One such challenge is creating clearly defined boundaries between your work and private life. Creating these boundaries is critical for a healthy work environment.
One of the most important aspects of working from home is to create a separate and dedicated space in which to work. If you have the ability to create a home office, it can be one of the most important things you can do. Whether you transform a guest bedroom or have a room or space remodeled entirely, creating a dedicated space just for work can go a long way towards helping you create distinct boundaries between your professional and private life. While remote workers on the whole are more productive than their office-bound counterparts, that doesn’t mean you aren’t more susceptible to any number of distractions. Having a separate office can help with that as well. Here are 3 things to consider when creating a healthy space where you can be your most productive.
Choose the Right Room
There are a number of things to take into consideration when choosing a room to convert into a home office. One of the first considerations is whether there is natural light. While there may be other rooms that would be more convenient to remodel, a room with natural light will actually help you be more productive. On the other hand, you may need more space to meet with clients or if you have an assistant. Ultimately, however, you want to stop and carefully consider your needs before choosing a room to turn into a home office. Remember, you will have to spend a large amount of your time there, so while a basement office might offer more space, you might want to squeeze into a smaller room with a large window or find a way to get some natural light into the basement.
Even if you choose a room with a large window or patio door, you will still want to carefully consider your indoor lighting options. Just like natural sunlight, the type of light that you choose will also have a direct impact not just on your productivity but also on your moods. You want to choose bright lighting and avoid fluorescent lights entirely. This is particularly true if you choose to remodel a basement room into a home office. You’ll also want to position your monitor so it is not affected by sunlight, and consider a desk lamp to shine light directly on paperwork, rather than relying solely on sunlight.
Keep in mind that you will most likely spend a significant amount of time in your office, generally working at your desk. That means you want the layout and design to be comfortable but also conducive to maximum productivity. A good ergonomic chair and adjustable desk are two key components of a healthy home office, but there are other considerations as well. For instance, rather than putting in a chair or sitting area, you might consider creating a small mediation, yoga or exercise area. Taking frequent breaks can actually help not only increase productivity, but improve overall health as well. If you can combine a break from work with a few minutes of micro exercise, all the better.
Creating a healthy home office can go a long way towards helping you separate your personal and professional lives. The most important thing is having the ability to completely shut off and shut away work at the end of a day. No amount of separation will help though, if you don’t also set a regular schedule for work and office hours and stick to it. Working from home can certainly offer a number of benefits, but not if you allow it to take over your life entirely. Creating a dedicated and healthy home office where all you do is work and can leave it behind when the day is over can definitely help.