Whether you are working at home temporarily or permanently having a productive work space is one of the most important elements to successfully working from home.
Your home office or work space regardless of where it is in your home can really set the tune for your productivity and how you feel overall while working from home.
Thankfully you can easily find and convert a space in your home into a fantastic work space that allows you to be an efficient employee while you are working at your house!
For a total and ultimate guide on working from home check out: The Ultimate Guide to Working From Home.
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Step 1) Choose your work space location wisely
The location of where you work in your home matters a lot for having productive work days.
If you are trying to work on your bed or the couch it is absolutely going to decrease your daily productivity while you are working from home.
If you are able to either permanently or temporarily buy or use a desk in a more secluded part of your home that is ideal! Tip: I have had some friends convert their makeup vanity into their home office desk temporarily!
If you do have to use the kitchen table try to at least corner off part of it so that you can leave your work supplies there to save yourself the time from repeatedly setting everything up and taking it down.
If you have a quiet part of your home but no desk then it’s worth considering buying a desk for it. If you know you are working from home temporarily then you can get a cheap one like this one that is only $39.
Step 2) Invest in the right tools
This is especially important if you are going to be working from home for more than a moth but investing in tools for success will help you have a more productive work from home experience.
Your company should provide you with a laptop if you are working from home but if it isn’t your normal laptop or if you normally hook up to a monitor and keyboard you may want to invest in getting a larger monitor and keyboard for your home office.
Another thing that is completely worth investing in is a good, ergonomic desk chair. This is the one that we ended up getting for the 2nd desk in our spare room that we converted into an office for both of us. And we both agree that it is a great chair and it’s currently only $80!
Step 3) Create a distraction free area
Distractions are one of the biggest things that can stop you from accomplishing all of your work tasks every day.
Here are a couple helpful tips for creating this distraction free work space:
- Only listen to background noise that is calm and not distracting. In general the best is music without lyrics. Try to avoid listening to TV shows or lyric heavy music.
- Put your phone out of your reach. If you have to stand up only when you are getting a phone call your phone will be less likely to be distracting to you.
- If others are home with you and you are able to close the door to the room you are working in then close it.
For more tips then head over here for more tips and details: How To Minimize Distractions.
Step 4) Keep the area organized
If you let your work space get cluttered, messy, or disorganized it will hurt your productivity.
If you have a lot of papers and notebooks that are cluttering up your work space then you have to get an organization system in place for them. There is so many paper organizers out there but just make sure to get one that works for you. If you have a lot of different stacks of paper consider getting an accordion folder!
I find that if you take a lot of notes while working/in meetings it is helpful to get notebooks with subject tabs to help keep you organized.
Even if your work is primarily digital it is still important to stay organized. Keep your digital documents organized in files and keep your phone/emails organized.
Regardless, it is important to keep your immediate work area clean. Don’t let dishes or wrappers pile up, keep a trash can and recycling bin within arms reach of your desk. Make sure to wipe everything down and do a quick clean up at least once a week to make sure the area feels clean too.
Step 5) Only use the space for work
The final step for creating a productive work space at home is to put effort into ensuring you only use the space for work.
If you close your work laptop and then open up your personal laptop to shop or play games in the same location it will be harder for you to mentally differentiate that as a work space within your home. So if at all possible only use that work space and area for working. This will significantly help your productivity while working remote.
Working from home can be a strange transition but it is completely possible to be productive and efficient while you are working from home!