Keep the following home office designs in mind whether you’re adding a new home office or simply modifying an existing space.
Pay careful attention to the lighting in your home office as it is among the most important factors in the ability to be productive.
Bad lighting can cause eye strain, fatigue and headaches. It can also impact your mood, making it difficult to focus.
Natural lighting works best. So open those blinds and let the sun shine in. For additional lighting needs use task lights such as a desk lamp. And if your office has additional seating such as a chair, place a floor lamp next to it for those times you want to unwind with a good book.
Generally speaking, to avoid glare natural light sources should be either in front of or adjacent to work surfaces and computer screens. This will also maximize views of the outdoors. Use solar shades to reduce the heat without getting in the way of the natural lighting.
Note: Use LED lighting for your task lighting needs as it won’t generate a lot of heat.
If you find yourself adjusting and shifting in your seat while at your desk you could be negatively impacting your ability to focus and be productive. Bottom line, a comfortable desk and chair are a critical component of a home office that supports productivity.
Let ergonomics be your guide when selecting furniture for your home office. Or when you need to address what may be wrong with your current desk and chair.
- ⬥Your eyes should be 24 to 36 inches from your computer screen.
- ⬥Your monitor needs to be below or at eye-level.
- ⬥Your feet should be either on the floor or on a footrest.
- ⬥A chair that is slightly reclined can reduce pressure on your spine, minimizing lower back pain.
If your chair doesn’t fit the bill before tossing it and buying another one, try adding a few pillows to make it more comfortable. This can also help if your desk is too high.
If your desk is too low, a cheap fix is to add leg risers to the table legs. (Your local hardware store should have them.) And books stacked under your computer can raise the screen.
If you’re finding you have repetitive wrist strain an ergonomic keyboard could be all you need to prevent injury and improve your productivity.
Use floating shelves and open storage options whenever possible to increase the feeling of spaciousness.
3. Room Color
Colors are said to subtly and subconsciously impact our moods and the way we think. So you would think it would be smart to find the color that evokes the right emotion and go from there, right?
It’s not as simple as that.
Do you like the color? If, for example, you hate blue and it’s the one that every expert says is correlated with productivity does that mean you paint everything blue and deal with it?
Not at all.
You can paint your home office whatever color you want…or even leave it the way it is and add little splashes of color throughout for a visually appealing effect.
The important thing to understand is that you don’t have to paint everything the same color to enjoy its positive effects.
Depending upon your needs – and the room you have – an investment in whiteboards, chalkboards, desk organizers and file cabinets is a good place to start.
An organized home office will lend itself to productivity. Who can get anything done when they’re constantly searching for an important document or information that’s needed to complete a task?
However, before optimizing your storage and organization needs focus on where your office furniture will be positioned in the room. Depending upon the size of your room and your furniture, think about where you can place your desk and chair to take advantage of natural lighting.
Also, think about noise…if your home office is a corner of the main living area of your home, position yourself as far away from the “action” as you can to minimise any noisy distractions that can impact your productivity.
If you don’t have room for a lot of storage, add white or pale wood floating shelves to help keep clutter off of your workspace. Include decorative elements such as books or art in addition to your work things to personalize your work area.
Note: Don’t feel you have to place your desk at right angles to the walls in the room. Try positioning it diagonally to help the room feel more spacious.
Unless you’re an artist or other creative, you might be surprised at the impact style can have on productivity. A beautiful space – whether it’s an entire room or simply a corner space, can lift your spirits, calm your mood and help you feel more relaxed.
Use inspirational artwork and accessories that make you smile. Functional accents like colorful paperweights in bright colors can boost your creativity and help your productivity levels soar.
Artwork in your office can be positioned where you’ll be able to enjoy it while sitting, e.g. 6 to 9 inches above your desk. Other objects such as your lamp, containers, knick-knacks, candles, etc can be positioned in front of the artwork to help create visual layers.
Your home office should be both functional and beautiful, but above all it should be some place that you love coming to time and again.
Bottom line…if you find yourself drawn to your home office, even when you don’t need to get work done, you’ll know you’ve got it right.