Setting up the Home Office
The kind of décor that you choose will play a big role in the kind of environment you want to create for your home office. The objects you choose don’t have to be expensive pieces; make sure décor reflects you and your professional aspirations.
Different kinds of objects can create diverse effects, from inducing increased creativity to bringing about a sense of comfort as you work. Before you pick the items for your home office, ask yourself this: Do you want to maintain a traditional office set up with minimal décor with just a desk and chair, or would you like your workspace to be bright and quirky, quite atypical of a work-from-home set up, but still something that reflects the individual who is working there. Studies have shown that the more a person associates personally with the kind of space they work out of, the more they would be interested in returning there every day to work.
The great thing about working from home is that you are at complete liberty to personalize your office with a whole wall of photos to remind you of your loved ones. It’s a chance for you to arrange them in creative ways that weren’t possible at a shared office.
Framed photos can be all the wall decor you need, and if you have children, hanging up your children’s drawings can also give your office a personal touch. Alternatively, a classic photo on the desk can also do the trick nicely.
Organize your space
Organize your system to work best for you. What tools will you be using all the time? If all your work takes place on the computer, a desk that is near an outlet and a very comfortable and supportive desk chair are key. If you have to print and file a lot of documents, consider investing in a sturdy filing cabinet. Keep spares on hand such as power cords, printer cartridges or your profession-specific equipment.
Distraction is a huge detriment to someone working out of a home office. So, as mentioned in the last tip, if you are keen on setting up a personalised home office, do so with more work-related paraphernalia. While a minimalist approach can certainly save you time and money spent on figuring out what to do with such a large area, it can also leave the room feeling empty.
You can even set up separate focus areas so that you can switch places during the day rather than working at your desk all the time.
Home plants fuel productivity
Even if you don’t have massive French windows that look over rolling hills or an all-encompassing view of nature, a bit of green in your office can provide you with peace and better performance while you work by relieving stress and increasing focus. A study from Exeter University has found that people who had plants in their offices were 15% more productive and showed better memory retention.
A house plant can work wonders. Of course, it’s not necessary to line up the entire room with plants. Pick your favourite houseplant, get a vase of flowers for your desk or, if you’re feeling more inspired, set up an eclectic design of wall plants to help you focus at work and relieve stress.
Collectables add personalization, Inspire Creativity
Your propensity for having quirky collectibles around can also shine at your home office without inviting comments from your curious colleagues. Putting unusual objects around your workspace can even help to spark unconventional ideas.
From arcade machines to display pieces from your favourite pop culture franchise, anything is game for your office — as long as they don’t become a source of distraction. If you’re out of ideas, think back to the toys you used to collect when you were a child or any arts and crafts you’re into currently that can be great sources of out-of-the-ordinary décor.
Colours can influence your mood and output
The primary colours that you choose for your room can have an immense effect on your productivity. Don’t believe us? Research conducted at the University of Texas with a group of volunteers to measure productivity revealed that a white office space led to more errors at work for most people while other colours created different responses, mostly positive and enriching. Fortunately, you no longer have to stick to a colour palette that makes you unproductive or lethargic.
Stimulating colours can help with focus. Painting the walls red might seem a little extreme, but it can work if you frequently have to pay attention to detail. As one of the more stimulating colours, it can raise blood pressure and boost motivation.
If you love the idea of red in your office, experiment with a lighter shade or use other objects like curtains to stimulate the balance space without overwhelming the space.
Natural colours like blue and green can induce a sense of calm. If your tasks require a more calm and creative approach, shades of blue and green are a better choice, which is known to have stabling effects on people and even act as a stressbuster. Brown is another colour that comes from nature and has quite a serene effect on individuals because of its association with the earth.
Find your inspiration from your favourite kind of nature — mountains, sea or the earth — to give you some peace and calm as you work.
Bright colours should be used in moderation. Colours like yellow, orange and purple can induce different effects for men and women and are best used in moderation. Though yellow can inspire enthusiasm, it has also been linked to irritability, while another study has suggested that purple tended to have a more depressing effect for men. Use your favourite colours in moderation to serve as mood boosters.
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