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Suggestions for a more productive home office

2021-02-17

Working from home hasn’t turned out to be the short-term trend that people expected after the coronavirus hit and many are realising their current situation isn’t sustainable. If this sounds like you, you are not alone. While working at the kitchen table or on the sofa was okay (and kind of nice) for a little while, it’s certainly not a long-term solution and isn’t conducive to productivity. For those whose output when working at home isn’t as high as it could be, this guide provides suggestions for making a home office more productive. There are lots of little things that can be done to make remote working easier and your home office a great place to operate, no matter how long you need to use it for.

Declutter your office

Tidy Home Office

You will need plenty of storage for an effective working environment, but this will be hard to implement if your office is full of clutter. Take a look around the room and see what you can get rid of. Things that can just be thrown out should go first and then see if there are bits and pieces that can just be moved to another room.

Home organisation expert Helena, from the blog A Personal Organizer, says that “purging” your office is a helpful step to take: “It’s important to plan for what you have/can keep. Skipping this step leads to higher costs (you buy more storage than you need) and frustration. Take the time to go through your books and learning materials. Can you let go of anything here?”

Once this is done, you can store the useful things away, creating a neat and calming environment for you to walk into each day. You will more easily find what you need to get your work done and you won’t’ be distracted by random objects that have little to do with your job.

Reduce distractions

Speaking of distractions, taking further efforts to reduce them will be crucial to creating that productive workspace you need. Beyond decluttering, you can consider using a separate computer for work and putting your personal mobile out of reach, so you won’t be tempted to check it every five minutes.

Privacy and quiet are big factors in maintaining productivity and you can take achieving them as far as you like. From ‘do not disturb’ signs and attic conversions to UK home lifts that only lead to your office, there are lots of options available. Finding a quiet work area is something that Rachel from the lifestyle blog Home in the Pastures recommended as her top tip when speaking to us, offering a couple of great ideas:

“Setting up a home office can be exciting – your space to get creative. My tip would be to find a space in the house that is the quietest for you to work in peace. It might not be possible to have a whole room for your workspace, so finding a quiet corner away from the TV and the kids might be a challenge. But if you have a conservatory or even space for a garden office it would pay off in the long run.”

READ ALSO: Home additions you never thought of having

Create a comfortable environment

Comfortable Home Office

You won’t be very productive if you are constantly trying to get comfortable because your seating arrangement is causing you backache. Creating a work environment which you can happily sit at all day is one of the most important things you can do when looking to up your productivity. First things first, find a suitable chair, preferably one designed for offices with back support. That kitchen chair just isn’t going to cut it for long. This is something that Laura, from the lifestyle blog Elle Blonde, shared with us as one of her home office tips:

“My one tip of advice for creating a productive office space would be to invest in an ergonomic office chair. Suffering from a bad back most of my life I now realise just how incredibly fundamental the correlation between comfort and productivity is. Choose a high backed and well-padded office chair which will support your back and have enough padding to stop your bottom from getting pins and needles after sitting for long periods of time and that will take away the fidgeting, which will allow you to concentrate for longer periods of time.”

As Laura says, making that investment will be worth it in the end; your body will thank you and so will your work. Having a comfortable work environment also means having things like an appropriate desk, a monitor that is level with your eye line to prevent strain, and some way that you can regulate the temperature. If you are comfortable, you will be able to work for longer and increase your output. It is as simple as that.

READ ALSO: The benefits of a luxury home office

Be organised

Needing to run around the house or tear a room apart to find what you need for work isn’t a good recipe for productivity. Save yourself time and energy by becoming more organised. If you have everything you need to do your job in your home office, stored away in its proper place where you can find it quickly, your productivity will receive a significant boost. No longer will you lose precious time trying to find that file or get stressed before a meeting because your notebook isn’t where you left it in the kitchen. Keep work stuff in the office, set up storage space to put it in, and get yourself a desk with plenty of drawers so you can keep those items you use every day right within arm’s reach.

Be near a window

Home Office With Window

Some might think having your workstation near a window would be distracting but it can actually be a big benefit thanks to the natural light that you will be exposed to. Alice, from the midlife blog Fairy Blog Mother, has shared her home office productivity advice and champions the benefits of a window seat:

“Research suggests that natural light helps improve mood and alertness, decreases stress and increases productivity. Looking out of the window every 20 minutes can give your eyes a break away from the computer screens.”

Invest in better internet

Slow or inconsistent internet is annoying at any time but when you rely on it to do your job, it can be incredibly frustrating. Poor internet will certainly impede your productivity when working at home so making sure your home office has access to a solid and quick connection is certainly something to tackle. You may have been happy to make do with what was adequate when all you used your broadband for was surfing the net in the evenings, but now you are working from home, you might need to make a bigger investment. So do an internet speed test and talk to your current provider about upgrading to something a little faster. You can also see what other deals there are and which broadband companies operate in your area as they may be able to give you more bang for your buck.

READ ALSO: Tips for working from home

How to make a more productive home office

  • Declutter your office
  • Reduce distractions
  • Create a comfortable environment
  • Be organised
  • Be near a window
  • Invest in better internet

We hope the above tips prove helpful and give you the inspiration you need to make your home office a bastion of productivity. With a little change here and there, your office can be a much more viable work environment and not just a temporary solution.

For more tips and advice, make sure to visit our news page.

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