The need for a home office is expanding alongside the tidal wave of work-from-home jobs and self-employed individuals.
Optimise your home office organisation with these handy tips and hacks.
Organise Your Home Office in 7 Steps
A home office is a dedicated space for all your work-from-home needs. Having a home office allows you to immerse yourself into the right mindset for a day of working. It’s also important to create a space that boosts productivity, and you want to be in.
Eventually, you’re going to want to move away from the dining table and begin to feel like a proper professional with a desk, chair and some aesthetic décor. Although, if the dining table suits you well, that’s just fine.
Although, a home office does seem like a nice idea until you realise you have no space, too much stuff and zero organisational skills. That’s why you have landed here, to learn the basics of creating a well-organised home office.
1. Create a dedicated space
Before you can begin organising your office space, you need to choose a space.
The first step is to choose a dedicated work-from-home space. Yes, this can be your dining table, however, if you want to have a better mindset and attitude towards working, it’s best to choose a single location, otherwise you will find yourself working all around the house and never switching off.
Some of the best places to choose as your home office are;
- The spare room, if you have one. This could be upstairs or downstairs.
- An actual room for an office that you just haven’t used.
- A corner inside a room. For example, if you cannot dedicate an entire room, make an office corner.
Overall, it doesn’t really matter where it is, as long as you find a space that you know if your home office space. This space will become your own little spot to focus, be productive and get on with your work.
Next, let’s get into the tidying side of home organisation.
2. Minimise your space/declutter
Once you have chosen your home office space, it’s time to clear it out. You can clear out as much or as little as you want. Just make sure you will end up with a clean spot for just the things you need to work on. This means removing anything that will distract you.
Decluttering your space has this magic effect on your brain making you feel way more productive and creating tons more space in your head to focus on the task. I have a whole article written on Medium about decluttering your brain if you want to check it out.
Here are a few tips for decluttering quickly.
- You need to get rid of anything that doesn’t serve a purpose to you during your work day.
- Is there anything just collecting dust? If so you need to move it somewhere else and clean it too.
- If you have any drawers be sure to empty those too so you can create a fresh organisable space.
- Choose what needs to go in the bin, or what’s important from your pile of letters and paper.
Oh, and give your space a good clean too. Hey, you could even decorate if you’re feeling motivated, nothing feels better than giving a new space a lick of paint to really get you in the productive, and motivated mood for working.
Once you have tidied up, you need to think about the functionalities.
3. Multi-functional desk
Nest up is a desk, if that’s what you are going for moving away from the kitchen table. It’s also a good idea to move away from working in your bed, with your laptop on your lap, or even sitting on the floor. None of these things are doing anything for your posture, or your impending back pain.
You can opt for a standing desk like these from IKEA, these are super cool since they improve your posture, blood flow and all that healthy jazz. You can find desks that move up and down to allow you to sit, but also stand if you have had enough of sitting all day.
Some people even get a miniature treadmill to walk along while they work. *For multi-taskers only.* Or you can go with a traditional desk with a chair, just be sure to find one that is comfy, helps your posture, and enables you to sit comfortably without slouching all day.
Either way, you want to make sure your desk is functional, comfortable, and useful
When buying a desk look out for the following.
- Table space: Make sure you have enough tabletop space to add your computer/laptop and take notes or use other devices at the same time.
- Built-in organisation: Having built-in drawers is handy for storing any paperwork or desk clutter you want to shove in the drawer at the end of the day…
- Space for a proper desk chair: Your standard table might not have the space for an ergonomic desk chair. You don’t want an ugly chair but listen to your body on this one. You’ll want to fit under the table without slouching, your knees touching under the table, and so on.
You can sometimes do a trial of special office chairs to see if they work for you, this might give you some peace of mind when it comes to spending a big chunk on a chair.
Now to the fun part, the desktop organisation.
4. Desktop Organiser
Along with your desk’s built-in organisation, you’re probably going to want some desktop surface organisation in the form of shelving, boxes or even just a place for your pens. By using desk organisational products you can further boost productivity, and keep the space tidy.
However, be warned, it is very easy to go crazy buying cute office supplies, you won’t need them all, and you’re crossing a fine line of clutter too. Think about what it is you actually need on your desk that assists with your daily work.
This is the fun part because you can buy some really aesthetic things that improve your organisation and productivity and make you feel professional too. Just keep in mind if you really need a rainbow of sticky notes and a huge letter organisation folder.
Next up is book storage, because books make you feel motivated, right?
If you have room for some bookshelves, get them. This is coming from someone who loves books and reading, but also feels like books add an aesthetic that makes you feel professional and want to get more work done. Do you feel me?
You can find tons of different book shelving options to level up your home office space. Bookshelves don’t have to be full of books if you aren’t a reader, you can store files, boxes, your printer, spare paper and so on inside the shelving too.
6. Filing Cabinet
If you have tons of important paperwork that needs organising and keeping safe, a filing cabinet is what you need. You can even buy them with a lock to keep everyone else out.
Ideally choose a cabinet that can be stored under your desk, or even on wheels so it can be easily accessible. Granted, a filing cabinet seems really super boring, but you will need some space to organise all the adult life paperwork.
7. Productive Atmosphere
It’s all about the vibe, isn’t it?
Creating a productive atmosphere within your home office is key for getting in the right headspace and the right mood for working, being productive and getting everything done. Without the right vibe, you might feel overwhelmed, tired,
You can easily create the right atmosphere/ambience inside your new home office space by removing clutter, adding soft lighting to save your eyes from all the blue light, add motivational art prints and plants.
Here are some other little tips for creating a home office vibe you want to be in;
- Turn off the big light, and sit near a window with natural lighting.
- Make sure you have some fresh air coming in. A stuffy room will make you feel tired.
- Choose or create your own focus music playlist. I personally love piano or coffee shop vibes.
- Add little bits of fun with wall art, colourful pens, and anything that makes it less clinical.
- Get a lamp, preferably a Lumie lamp with SAD light therapy. This helps boost your mood!
To be honest, just create a space you enjoy being in, that makes you feel good, and allows you to enjoy working from home.
Extra Home Office Hacks
New to working from home? Here are some productivity hacks to implement into your new home office routine.
- Use a Productivity App
It’s fair to say that working from home eventually gets on top of you. A to-do list for the day and a calendar on the fridge aren’t enough. There are tons of great productivity apps to help you plan your day, week, month and even year.
Keep all your notes and everything you need within an app to improve your productivity and boost motivation.
- Plan Your Day
Whether you’re planning your day on an app or with some paper, it’s good to have a visual on the things you need to get done. Time block your tasks to stay on track, and always complete the most important (or boring) tasks first.
- Use a To-Do List
I know I just said don’t use a to-do list, however, if this is the way you work, keep using them! Have your to-do list on your desk and tick off things you have completed throughout the day.
- Get Out Often
Your mental health is important, and although your home office is now the perfect space, you cannot thrive there forever.
Get out of the house or even your office space whenever you take a break.
Taking a walk at midday can help reset your mind to finish off any pending tasks, it’s also a good idea to get some real daylight into your brain to help you sleep better at night after a day of looking at artificial lighting.
- Keep Your Space Tidy
You knew I would say this. Don’t let old habits back into your home office space. If anything, this should be the one room you keep spotless.
- Organise Your Emails
No doubt you’re going to have a flooded mailbox within a week once, or you already have one. (Because who organises their mailbox?)
This is a habit you’re going to want to create to stay on top of important emails and reduce any email-inflicting stress.
You can download an app to help with this or spend some dedicated time sorting your mail.
- Use an Ergonomic Desk chair
Ah, you want it to be cool or pretty within your home office. Cool and pretty doesn’t stand once your back is killing and your posture starts to give you a hunch back.
Invest in a good ergonomic desk chair and thank me later.
Thanks for reading all about how to create the perfect home office, I hope you enjoyed these hacks!
Comment below if you have any other great tips and tricks, or if you’ve tried any from this article.
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