Today’s economic climate means that an increasing number of people have no option other than to become self employed and/or work from home. If you are in this position then life is a lot more pleasant if you have a space that you can turn into the perfect home office for your needs.
It may take a while for you to assess the things that you require from a home office. The first thing you need to work out is where in the house you are going to work. If you have a spare room that’s great, but a large number of people who work from home have to make do with a space in the kitchen or dining room.
Once you have an allocated work space you need to make a list of the things that you regard as essential to your work. Everyone’s needs are different. Some of us are happy to work in the midst of noise and the comings and goings of a household, while others need peace and quiet. Take time to note down anything that you think you want in your home office space.
If the room or space that you have chosen is cluttered with things that aren’t on your list of working needs, then move them. Sort things into piles, one for keeping, one to give away and another to throw away. Once your space is cleared of clutter it will be easier to see whether you will have space for a desk or whether you’ll have to content yourself with a corner of the table.
Clean Your Space
Before you get to work with a paint brush or start accumulating the things you have listed for your home office, be sure to give the space a good clean. When your working space is clean and tidy from the get-go, you are more likely to keep things that way. If space is limited then you can’t afford not to be tidy when working from home.
One of the things that all of us need to keep us well-balanced and in the mood for work is natural light. Make sure that you are working close to a source of natural light if you don’t want to become depressed and unmotivated. You should also check that there are appropriate power sources close to your work space for connecting up computer, printer etc.
Are You Sitting Comfortably?
If you are going to be sat in front of a computer for much of the day you will need a chair that gives you the support that your back needs. People who feel uncomfortable or suffer from back problems because their seating is not adequate and up to the task will find working from home difficult. Spend as much as you can afford on your office chair; if there’s one part of your office set-up you shouldn’t be scrimping on, it’s this.
A Place for Everything
Your home office set-up is a good time to start recycling old furniture. Unused bookcase or set of draws? A lick of paint could be all it takes to transform them. If you are setting up a home office on a budget then get some cheap office tray sets to keep track of paper documents.
- Where is your computer monitor positioned? Ideally your eyes should be level with the centre of the screen. If it’s too high, lower your chair. Too low? Either buy yourself a stand or knock one together with a few pieces of wood.
- Where will the sun hit the room? Avoid positioning your monitor where the sun will land on the screen – being blinded by the sun might make working a little more difficult.