As the pandemic era is hopefully ending, the remote working setup will become part of the norm. For better or worse, the home office is here to stay.
However, working from home may be challenging for people who are foreign to a remote-first culture. With family members running around and the familiar setting killing your productive vibe, it is vital to have a designated workstation.
With the current trends continuing well into 2022, 26% of the American workforce will keep needing the home office. And while temporary solutions may be great for a one-time emergency, they breed frustration and inconvenience in the long run. The home office is essential for everyone working remotely at least 20 percent of the week.
The principles below address necessity with pragmatism. They work well, regardless of your square footage and budget. So let’s take a look and set you up for success.
Decide where to install your workstation.
Many homeowners, especially those in the south, enjoy what seems to be unlimited space. Often, luxury homes have designated office space or at least one bedroom to spare.
However, creativity is another asset to rely on, especially if you live in a townhome or smaller apartment. Choosing a place may be difficult, but remember that you only need 25 square feet.
Remember that you’ll need a less frequented part of the home or something visually separated from the rest of the living space. Secluded is excellent as long as it doesn’t feel boxed.
Flexible is fine!
Suppose you need to work around limitations. In that case, try and implement some of the ideas below.
You can easily carve a nook among wardrobes and have your office space ready in no time. Even flexible workstations can look good, so why not fold the desk or rely on a pullout work surface that neatly tucks away once you sign off for the day?
Another creative solution to a lack of space is to utilize a corner of your room. You can move a cabinet away from the wall, pull up a folding surface from the side, and have your desk with drawers ready for use.
Pay attention to lighting.
Strong daylight can do wonders for your eyesight, especially when you spend hours in front of a screen. Dim spaces can significantly contribute to eye strain and fatigue, so it is vital to have plenty of daylight or an adequate substitute.
However, relying solely on daylight is not enough, especially if you live up north. Therefore, ensure that your office space can benefit from wall-mounted lighting. Don’t be afraid to install a pungent bulb on the white temperature spectrum.
A basic setup is enough.
When the space is limited, desks and chairs should have a singular purpose. The most important thing is to ensure that the height is adequate and that you have enough room for your legs. You can arrange everything else later.
Desk space, for example, is easily replaced with shelves and other types of hanging storage. Making use of vertical space is much more convenient and far less cluttered.
Play with color
Regardless of your setup size, you can introduce complementing or contrasting palates. Playing with color is a proven method of highlighting details or changing the visual perception of the space.
Moreover, color can affect mood and showcase personality. White and teal, for example, are soothing and uncluttered. In contrast, vibrant yellow and orange, in combination with a darker backdrop, feel sophisticated.
Use texture as well
While color can bring life to your space, playing with texture can further emphasize your design narrative.
Installing wooden paneling on finished drywall makes for a strong accent. Still, you can use wallpapers for a similar effect with less effort. Exposed bricks can be a perfect solution if you want to get your hands dirty.
Your office space may look dull if you rely solely on vertical storage containers for décor. Therefore, it is vital to embrace your creative side by hanging up a poster, a painting, or any artifact that blends in with the overall design concept.
Sitting at your desk and looking at your wall décor can serve as a visual cue that boosts your mood and puts you in a productive state of mind.
Many world-class professionals personalize their productive space with décor that reflects their values. Your decorative element may be a painting with some symbolism. Similarly, it may be a neatly presented quote or a cute artifact that speaks loudly of who you are as a person and what you value the most.