The new normal means that many people now work at least part of their week from home and they will probably continue to do so for the forseeable future. The pandemic saw a huge number of people working remotely. If you are one of them, you might benefit from updating your home office. In this guest post, Nick Acaster from Rugs Direct shares his design tips for transforming your work area into a calm and inspiring space.
As the normal working day has become more flexible since lives were changed by the pandemic in 2020, it's now more important than ever to have a place at home where you can work remotely. Whether you dedicate a whole area of your house or just one corner to your professional activities, you will benefit hugely by creating an inspiring place that allows you work to the best of your ability.
Bringing your job into your home can make it difficult to separate work and relaxation, so you might have noticed that its harder to switch off at the end of the day. Or, perhaps you feel more distracted while you're working and don't feel like you're performing at your usual level of efficiency as you would in an office environment.
The trick is to create a calming environment to work in that can keep you relaxed while boosting your mood — and maybe even your productivity. Below, I'll share my tips for doing just that.
Whether you're turning your spare room into an office or simply creating a remote working space in your bedroom, it's imperative that you have the right furniture to help you get the job done comfortably. You need to have a desk and adjustable desk chair that are at the right height for your body to facilitate good posture and spine health. Bad posture can contribute to headaches and affect your mental and physical wellbeing, so make sure your back is supported, feet are on the floor, and arms reach straight in front of you when using your keyboard, rather than bent at an angle.
Having adequate storage is important to control clutter on your desk and other surfaces. Mess can actually increase your heart rate and cause you to feel stressed, whereas a tidy environment could improve your productivity (Psychology Today). Plus, if you keep your stationery and documents organised, you'll be much more efficient at work too. So, it's worth taking the time to find a filing system that works for you and your space — whether that's boxes, filing cabinets, or something else.
Your surroundings can have a huge impact on your wellbeing, and the best thing you can do is try to pick a room or spot that gets plenty of mood-boosting natural light during the day. Positioning your desk next to a window can help you get the most sun, plus give you something to look at when your eyes are taking a break from your computer. Make sure you have a lamp for when the sun starts to set — daylight and SAD lamps can help you stay alert until it's time to log off.
It's a good idea to decorate your office area with inspiring colours. According to chromotherapy (colour therapy), green is the colour of balance and harmony, so if you want to create a motivating yet calming environment then this is a great tone to go for. Adding some additional greenery by way of houseplants can also have a range of benefits. As well as welcoming soothing nature into your home, many have air purifying and dehumidifying properties that are sure to keep your workspace fresh and free of pollutants.
Don't underestimate the effect that décor can have on your mood! Aesthetic features and ornaments can inspire you and boost your creativity. But, to keep clutter to a minimum, only select a few ornaments and look for wall hangings and artwork instead. Your workspace should be comfortable, too. So, consider adding soft furnishings to create a homely feel in your office. To do this, look to include lots of rugs, cushions, bean bags, and blankets to create a calm, quiet space.
Aim to design a work area in your home that makes you feel calm and inspired. Is it time your office enjoyed a makeover?