Multi-tasking has become integral to our lives in the 21st century – freelancing for those who manage their families, part-time jobs after college or just the flexibility of working from home to beat the traffic. We bring to you 9 steps to set up and adjust to an office space right at home!
Where’s the space?
Once you’ve made a decision to work from home, start by giving the space some thought.
What to look for?
- A quiet corner of the house with minimal distractions
- A possible window for natural light
- A place for a desk
- Space on the wall to put shelves and cabinets
- Space for a waste bin
- Electric points for computers and allied gadgets
It could be a whole room, a deep niche in the wall, or a space behind a screen that can be pulled out whenever you need to disconnect from your home – whatever works for you and can be converted with minimal effort.
Desk space – size, height, and finish
All workspaces need a desk – but thankfully you get to decide what kind. A chest-of-drawers with storage space, a simple pull out from the wall or an old-fashioned classic rosewood table are all lovely work companions. Of course, depending on the kind of work you do there are always options of slanting floor tables and set-ups for desktop computers and technological advances as well.
Your desk can set the tone for your décor as well – ranging from classic or minimal to an extravagant display of colours and textures to keep your mind ticking and alert.
Next, in accordance with the desk you’ve chosen to buy, there comes that object of functionality, pleasure and comfort all rolled into one – the perfect chair. Height is the foremost aspect to be looked at, in fact, a chair that allows for height adjustments would be a definite plus.
The key is to make the seating just comfortable enough – not restful and snug, but something that you can sit on for hours without having to shuffle and stifle a yawn.
Storage – cabinets, bookshelves, filing space and drawers
Granted that some people thrive in clutter, but considering your home and workspaces are going to overlap, it is essential to have storage that is designated solely for work related papers, books, files, and stationary.
Categorize according to books, loose paper, daily-use stationary, wire and cables, and lastly things that you need at arms-length but not frequently. That will easily allow you to decide how many shelves, drawers, storage boxes and cabinets you’re going to need. HINT: Make sure you make a few extra – things pile up faster than the blink of an eye.
As we continually stress on modern-day spaces, the necessity for a laptop or desktop, fast WiFi, and virtual storage devices cannot be overseen. The world is moving towards virtual communication with such speed that these could make or break your system of work.
Simple, minimal and sophisticated way to keep your things in order and in the line of sight. Diaries and phone calendars are well and good, but the convenience of having post-its, printed dates and a space to pin up important resources is unmatched when it comes to a pin-up board.
If you don’t have enough electrical points to connect all your appliances, you could use an extension cord but do note that this is only a temporary solution. Work out a permanent solution if the need is a permanent one.
Cover up those cords and cables
It’s no fun having to clean and dust nooks and crannies every day, and the only way to guard against it is to minimize the nooks. While all the storage space is accounted for, modern day work spaces are more often than not crowded with an array of wires. Ideally, create a wall box or running wire covers to keep them out of the way. If space doesn’t allow for it, then there is always the option of using tape and fastening brackets to keep them together.
Appropriate lighting – natural or otherwise
No one wants to fall into the trap of constant headaches and eyesight issues all because of a badly lit workspace. Ideally, there should be a focus light on your work table, alongside ambient but not too bright light in the rest of the space. Make sure the light fitting casts no unwanted shadows.
Accessories, perks, and personal knick-knacks
It’s not all about the work – you have to realize that the space needs to be your own; you’re working from home, exploit the luxuries!
One of the ideal additions to a workspace is a basic kettle and a few tea bags or coffee sachets – whichever is your poison. Granted that there is a kitchen just a couple of rooms away, but having a workspace that is comprehensive cuts you out from all the cleaning and errand-running you will itch for the minute you walk out that door.
Another good idea would be to balance the formal aspects of the space with a couch or a couple of poufs – it’s nice to have a change of pace once in a while without having to move very far.
Noisy home with children running around or neighbours being loud? Invest in a set of headphones. I can say from experience, that extra money will be very well spent when you slip them on and drown out the noise with instrumental jazz, classical symphonies or Hindustani Taranas!
Colours help the brain juices flow
Even though the space is an office, colour never did anybody any harm. All the restraint that you showed around the house can be finally let go – take a large tub of Prussian blue or Gamboge yellow, a couple of rollers and paint the wall! Even if the house allows only for a small space to convert into an office, making it your own and giving it a fresh new coat of vibrancy will boost your energy levels!
Go on. Create your own Home Office. Do let us know how it goes. And for more ideas, there is always Houzify. Download the app now!