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How to Set Up Your Work-from-Home Office

One of the silver linings of the COVID-19 pandemic was the acceptance of work-from-home options as a viable lifestyle. Before you can get to work, you need to create a professional work-from-home office. 

Here are a few tips to get you started.

Choose the Best Location

If you are lucky, you may already have a natural home office that you can use when you make the decision to telecommute. However, you are going to need to choose an alternative space if you do not already have this dedicated office area. Perhaps you have a guest room that may be better repurposed as a home office?

There are plenty of nooks and crannies that you can convert into an office space if you do not have a specific room. Good ideas include walk-in closets, unused corners of larger rooms that you can block off, or even areas under the stairs. Get creative and see what you can come up with.

Make Comfort a Priority

It is imperative that you prioritize comfort if working from home is a long-term solution. While many workers were able to get away with grabbing a chair from the kitchen table for their temporary office during the pandemic, you are going to want to invest in more suitable items if telecommuting is a permanent situation. Sitting at a desk without the proper support can lead to significant back and posture problems, making it important that you go with an ergonomic office chair if this is a concern for you.

When it comes to comfort, you also want to consider the design and decor of your room. Do not feel guilty for spending the time and money to create a space where you will want to spend eight hours a day.

Consider the Details

Once you have the major furniture pieces in place, you will want to consider the small details of your office space. An office chair mat for carpet floors (if you have carpet floors) will make it easier for you to slide to reach necessary files and other items that you need to conduct business.

Technology is another important piece of the puzzle when designing your home office. Be sure to devise an organizational system for all of these pesky cords and charging cables. You will also want to outfit your office with a cubby system or small bins if you have a significant amount of odds and ends that may clutter up your space.

Do Not Neglect Lighting

Do not make the mistake of overlooking lighting as you set up your workspace. Poor lighting will cause unnecessary eye strain that could trigger headaches and vision problems. While natural light is the most ideal, you can invest in the appropriate lamps if this is not possible.

If you know that you are going to be spending a good amount of time on video conference calls, it is important that you have the proper backlighting so that you do not appear too dark on the screen. With the rapid increase in these types of work calls has come a rise in the number of lighting options specifically designed for this purpose. You may need to experiment with a few different lighting products to find the right brightness for your space.

Minimize Distractions

Lastly, you are going to want your home office to be free of distractions. You cannot expect to get work done if you are constantly tempted by interruptions. This means choosing a space that will limit these distractions. For instance, if you have kids coming in and out of your house each day, you may want to avoid using the kitchen as your home office.

Minimizing distractions also means that you need to limit extraneous noise. A white noise machine may be helpful in shutting out this distraction. It is up to you how you want to protect your time at work. Hanging a sign outside the office that indicates if you are available has been a helpful strategy for many professionals working at home with family around.

Conclusion

Following these proven tips will ensure that you create a space that is equally comfortable as it is professional. The goal is to design a home office that you enjoy working in and that is conducive to business.