Tips to make your home office more productive

Tips to make your home office more productive

Many of us are now working from home. So why not make your workspace something that’s personal and productive? Create a space in your home that boosts creativity and stimulates work-flow.

1. Ensure you have a space that is only for work.

This doesn’t mean it needs to be a home office or a spare room. Build a space to call your own, that will influence good working habits. Ensure it is away from hindering distractions, and is in a space that inspires you. This could be a quiet room with a view out to the backyard, or perhaps a bench-seat on your balcony – It depends on the type of job you do and your home layout.

2. Add indoor plants.

Introducing plants into your home has great health benefits. Not only do indoor plants assist in purifying the air, but natural elements have been shown to evoke feelings of calm (1). This therefore creates an environment that is more productive and focused. Before buying house plants, look into what plants will thrive in your space, consider high vs low maintenance and examine what is suitable if you have pets.

 

3. Surround yourself with natural materials.

Many studies indicate natural textures and shapes are calming and have positive mental health benefits (2). Timber has a natural aesthetic and is available in neutral tones, and has been a favourite for designers and architects. The below interior uses Glosswood to create a mid-century nook. The vertical timber boards frame the space, with the Spotted Gum balancing the soft tones of this 70’s-influenced room.

4. Let the light in.

Keep the room light and bright to keep you on track, and also prevent eye-strain. Invest in a desk light, and ideally set up next to a window. There are strong links between bright sunlight and serotonin (the chemical that is believed to help regulate mood and memory). If you are in a dimly-lit room, there are a few small changes that can help, such as painting the walls a lighter colour and opting for curtains are thin and translucent to encourage more light.

5. Consider sound absorbing materials.

Absorbing noise is one strategy to increase productivity. It’s as simple as adding more porous materials; soft cushions, textured carpet or timber acoustic panels. The materials will assist in controlling noise by absorbing the sound-waves before they reverberate on a hard surface, like a window (3). The timber acoustic panels below are by Glosswood and offer design flexibility with colour and profile.

6. Add items that inspire you.

Whether its a collection of books, a photo of a personal achievement or a motto on your favourite mug. Add these momento’s, they will make a difference.

7. Look outside to nature & open the window.

Create a connection between yourself and the environment through natural elements, such as views out a window and natural ventilation. Having a visual connection with nature has a positive impact on mental health(1). If you have access, position your work space to look outside and allow natural air-flow by opening the window.

8. And the most important tip, ensure you have a comfortable chair!

If you will be using this space for a few hours each day, ensure you have a chair that is inviting. And while we are talking about seating, whatever you do – do not sit on the couch. Your work day will be as good as over.

 

While we navigate this new landscape of remote working, create a home office that invites creativity to flow and work to get done. Explore the above notions and develop your space over time.

References:
  1. Marcus, Clare Cooper. 2005. Healing Gardens in Hospitals. https://www.umcg.nl/SiteCol- lectionDocuments/UMCG/C1_Cooper_Marcus.ppt.pdf.
  2. Wallenius, Marjut. Wood Construction Reduces Stress and Offers a Healthy Living Environment, May 14 2014. https://www.woodproducts.fi/articles/wood-construction-reduces-stress-and-offers-a-healthy-living-environment
  3. “Reflection, diffusion and absorption of sound.” BUILD. Accessed February 14, 2018. https://build.com.au/reflection-diffusion-and-absorption-sound
Imagery:

Feature image: Clare Cousins Architects
1, 2, 4, 6, 7 and 9: Pinterest
3: Styled by Anna Flanders for the Mossenson Galleries & Art Collective WA
5: Styled by Meghan Plowman with photographer Gathering Light