Ways to Make Your Space More Productive (And Realistic) for Remote Work
Did you realize that working from home might help you be more productive? According to research, having a sense of customization in your workspace can improve your happiness and job satisfaction, resulting in you being more productive.
But keep in mind that just because your workstation is in your home doesn’t mean it’s personalized. To put this idea into action, think about how you’ll set up and decorate your home office. Your space won’t feel like yours if you’re crammed into a corner of the living room or surrounded by your kids’ schoolwork.
Designate a workplace (or two) in your home and set it up in a way that inspires you. Think family photos, a vision board, or a print from an artist you admire on the wall—it doesn’t have to be difficult. Choose objects that you will love looking at daily, even if they are functional. This could be a lovely lamp, a vase filled with your favorite flowers, or a collection of bright office supplies.
Separate your work and play areas.
Work-life balance is one of the most difficult aspects of remote work. You’ll need clear boundaries about where and when work takes place to save your sanity. Otherwise, you risk falling into a frustrating and distressing situation in which you are never totally present at work, but also never fully clocked out—truly the worst of both worlds!
To be efficient while working from home, you must limit distractions. Even though it’s difficult, you should make this a priority: research shows that privacy and distraction-free work are critical for productivity and avoiding burnout.
You can carve out your place even if you’re working with minimal resources. If you don’t have the luxury of commandeering a whole room, arrange your desk and chair in a way that emphasizes separation, and be aware of potential sources of distraction in your home.
You’ll have to get a little more innovative if you’re short on space. Consider your options in terms of time—what hours can you set apart when you’re most likely to find solitude and quiet? The above-mentioned customizing tip is also applicable here. Employees who worked in low-privacy workstations experienced the highest levels of emotional tiredness, according to one study—but only if the settings were generic and impersonal.
Create a work environment that is conducive to productivity.
Now it’s time to have fun! You can increase your satisfaction and productivity by being creative with your home. The impact of your work environment on your mental health and productivity is well documented, yet many employers are just now beginning to recognize the value of smart office design. When you work from home, you have complete control over your situation!
Make Your Life Shine
It’s all about the light. If you’ve ever been stuck in a fluorescent-lit, windowless office, you know what I’m talking about. You may already have an intuitive sense of how much better natural light feels when working, but evidence backs you up. Natural light reduces eye strain by 51%, drowsiness by 56%, and headaches by 63%, according to one study—all important factors to feeling your best and performing your best work.
The amount of natural light in your home will vary, but unless you’re working from a subterranean dungeon, you should be able to get some. It’s worth it to feel happy and healthy where you spend so much of your time, even if you have to rearrange your furniture to work near a window. If you have access to a patio or other outdoor place, take advantage of it while the weather permits for a boost in creativity and productivity!
It’s All About the Look
You may modify your environment to productivity and even customize it to the type of job you do by employing some psychological tactics! When compared to objects with sharp edges and corners, rounded, curving furniture has been demonstrated to create sensations of relaxation and calm—so you might want to reconsider those trendy, super-modern office chairs!
Surprisingly, ceiling height can also be beneficial to certain sorts of employment. Low ceilings can help with quantitative, analytical processes, whereas high ceilings encourage creative, free-associative thinking. On a practical level, this could mean going to a specific working area, such as underneath a loft bed, when you need to crunch some figures, or visiting an airy and well-designed coffee shop when you need to get creative.
Bring Nature into Your Home
Bringing nature into your daily life, whether it’s through indoor plants or a gorgeous view, is a great method to reduce stress and increase productivity. Participants with plants in their workspaces had lower blood pressure readings and a 12 percent faster reaction time, according to a study conducted by Washington State University.
Bringing plants indoors is a no-brainer—and while you probably won’t be able to do much to improve the view out your window, there are even easier methods to tap into nature’s power. Try hanging gorgeous landscape photographs in your home office or using them as your desktop background. Although it isn’t quite the same as taking a walk in the woods, research has shown that looking at photos of nature may be both calming and motivating.
Make Me Productive with Colors
The colors you surround yourself with can alter the way you think, similar to what we’ve discovered regarding ceiling height. According to new research, different hues can help with different types of work, with red enhancing careful, detail-oriented jobs and blues supporting creativity.
These discoveries might assist you in deciding how to personalize your environment. If you can’t decide between a seaside painting and a field of poppies, use your job description as a guide.
There may also be portions of your home where a particular hue is already dominant. Why not decorate your home office with red fixtures for studying data and preparing reports, then head to the desk in your tranquil blue loft when you need to write?
Eliminate Your Clutter
While a cluttered workstation is never a good thing, different people benefit from different organizational techniques. You may like a hyper-organized workspace or one that is more flexible without being dirty, depending on your job and working style. Some creatives, in particular, thrive from a degree of controlled chaos in their workspaces.
Test it out if you’re not sure which end of the spectrum you’re on. Do you feel more motivated when you’re surrounded by the physical features of the projects you’re working on (a.k.a. huge piles of paper and a few sticky notes), or do you prefer a clean desk? Do you require a rigid, stable organizational system, or do you prefer to go with the flow?
Staying consistent, regardless of the sort of structure you choose, is essential. Get ahead of the clutter by having a location for all of your often-used items, such as a cable storage box and a jar for wayward pens. Overly complex systems should also be avoided, as they can end up taking more time to manage than they’re worth. Simple solutions, such as a two-tray file system, are frequently sufficient.
Productivity is boosted by healthy environments.
While it may seem self-evident, healthy persons perform better at work. Whether you’re at home or work, your surroundings have a significant impact on your health, happiness, and overall productivity.
Let’s begin with the fundamentals: air and water. To keep alert and active, open a window if the airflow in your residence isn’t optimum. Keep a pitcher of water or a pot of herbal tea on your desk so you may stay hydrated without disrupting your concentration before reaching for that third cup of coffee when you start to feel weary. You’ll stay focused, energized, and clear-headed if you make it simple to give your body what it requires.
If your back is hurting from that uncomfortable workplace chair, it’s time to switch things up. If you’re continually shifting around, trying to relax your tight arms and shoulders, you won’t be able to perform at your best. Instead of getting in the way of your concentration, your desk and chair should be comfy enough that you don’t even notice them.
Consider using a standing desk or simply working at your kitchen counter for a half-hour now and then to prevent sitting for too long. To maintain your computer at a comfortable height, use a box or stack of books, as well as a separate keyboard if it feels better for your neck and wrists. Remember that comfortable places are healthy areas, which means that they are more productive.