Your home should be a comfortable haven where you can rest and recover, but when you work at home, it also needs to be a place where your focus is high. Is it possible to reach both of these goals? The good news is that it is possible to balance relaxation and efficiency. Deliberately creating a work from home office setup that is exclusively for getting work done, can even increase your productivity.
Physical Separation and Boundaries
The first step is creating a distinct separation between your workspace and the rest of the home. The layout and décor in your office should be focused on your work goals. According to productivity experts, just stepping into your office should put you into a constructive frame of mind. Even if you don’t have an entire room to dedicate to work, use the same philosophy when sectioning off an area of a room.
The second step is designing each environment with its purpose in mind. For example, choose stimulating décor for your office space and relaxing paint colors and embellishments for the rest of the home:
- Choose office furnishings based on functionality, such as storage and organization, as well as using accessories that prompt creativity.
- Consider the ergonomics of your office supplies and furniture.
- Pick lighting that is bright with cool colors for your office space and warmer lighting for the bedroom and other rooms where you relax.
- Cut down on clutter throughout the home. This will make your home feel less chaotic.
Design each room with goals in mind. Gather the tools for washing clothes in the laundry room. Store family activities in the family room. Choosing the right furnishings for each room encourages the appropriate mindset for the work done in that area. You can also designate a specific space for personal wellness, such as an exercise room or a place for meditation.
Rules and Habits for Productivity
The third step is establishing rules and habits for your workspace. When working at home, it is easy to become distracted by household chores, children, pets, and other home-based attractions. Avoid disrupting your productive flow state by clearly communicating that you must not be disturbed:
- Work in an area of the home that is least likely to be noisy.
- Close a door between your workspace and the rest of the home.
- Hang up a sign that you are working.
- Wear headphones that cancel out background noise.
- Keep a calendar and timer handy. It’s easier to stay on task when you have a concrete start and stop time.
- Don’t store distractions in your office. Some gadgets pull your attention away from work.
It’s equally important to maintain rules about the rest of your home, such as not answering work texts and emails when you’re not in the office. Be as clear about boundaries with your co-workers as you are with your family.
Your fourth step is preventing overflow from one space to the other. This does not imply you can’t have a cohesive decorating plan. Artwork, plants, flowers, and furnishings can follow an overall theme. Instead, this means that you don’t carry your work from the office into the rest of your home, and you don’t take laundry into the office. Even if your workspace is a corner of the kitchen, keep dishes and meal prep away from your designated office space.
Working from home offers many benefits, and it is possible to have a productive workspace while creating a relaxing environment in the rest of your home. With physical divisions, rules about disruptions, and clear boundaries separating work and home, you can enjoy productivity and peace by moving from one part of the home to another.