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It’s one of the little pleasures in life, creating a place of solitude away from everything. However, this is an article about building an office in your home, which is just as useful if you need to get away from the family to do some work, especially if you are self-employed, or run your own business from home. You need a place that is yours so you can be productive, as it is very difficult to be productive in the kitchen or in the living room with children bouncing around you! Here is how to craft a perfect home office that you can get stuff done in!
A lot of people may complain about the fact that they don’t have enough space to make a home office. With the amount of times that I have moved house, I have come to realize the importance of finding an area that is secluded enough to be productive. But with the issue of not having enough space, the one thing I have learnt is to make the most of every little corner. It may sound exaggerated, but you can make a useful office space out of your home’s nooks and crannies. There are people who manage to fit an office in the closet, so there’s no excuse. And while you may have no need to use your closet, here’s what I’ve learnt from making the most of the small spaces.
Firstly make use of your walls. If you are lucky enough to have a small room in the house to yourself, as opposed to building outwards, build upwards! Add shelves, hooks, anything to reduce space on the floor as your desk will require most of the floor space. If you are limited in terms of room, make sure that you use the space underneath your desk too. The average amount of files and paper can easily fit under a desk with enough room for your legs, and if you are in need of additional storage, there are many small filing cabinets and desk drawers that can double up as stands for items like your printer or scanner.
When it comes to creating a space to work in, make sure you don’t over clutter. If there is a lot of distractions, it will inevitably draw attention away from your work. It is very easy to make a home office space for relaxing, and it is incredibly tempting to add a comfy chair, but as your home office is just that, an office, make sure you stick to the bare essentials.
If you are building a home office, you may think that you don’t need to add any of your own personality to it, especially as most of us have been used to working in a beige and boring cubicle. But in fact, by not adding any personality, you are harming your productivity as you don’t enjoy the space as much as you would at home. And, sure, it can be an issue if you over decorate your space, but that doesn’t mean you should neglect your space, or at least have a little fun with it!
So, to enjoy somewhere that you need to work, add a touch of home design work based on your personality or your hobbies. For example, if you like music, maybe some nice canvas prints of album covers dotted on your wall. You do not have to spend much money either, you could find good high-resolution images by doing a search online, and then you can print them out on a poster size using a local print merchant. You could also make your own frames if you are a creative type, using rustic wooden bars, and using hot glue to fix them together, which you can get from any reputable bonding adhesive suppliers. Other options are to put objects on the walls for inspiration, or just because you like them. Or get cheap shelves and adding objects to them or by hanging some items it can give your office a unique style.
If you have the luxury of space, then you may want to consider some decent furniture that aids productivity rather than relaxation, but you don’t have to spend a fortune. Keep an eye out in thrift stores or charity shops for anything that suits your style.
A common problem of the home office is the amount of tech in a small space. It can be incredibly frustrating to sort out issues such as managing the cables, and although you may think it is pointless, it may help you to make changes to your home office further down the line. Especially when cable issues slows daily productivity massively! Remember when you were up against it in the office but the printer wasn’t working? This is exactly the same thing.
To make sure that your cables are managed well, you need to keep three things in your mind. The first one is to identify cables quickly. Knowing which ones are which, so you can connect them and disconnect them or loosen them without too much issue. You could identify those using tags, ribbons or labels, anything that tells you which cable is which. The second thing to keep in mind is to avoid tangles, so make sure that you route your cables so that they have a clear path from the input to the output. Otherwise, cables are getting mixed up and tangled too. Making sure they occupy their own unique space will make a lot of sense. The third point is to always overestimate how long the cable is. While you can always make a cable shorter, to lengthen a cable requires a lot more effort. If you need a 5-foot cable, it might be worth investing in an 8-foot one anyway. You can shorten the cable if you really need it using binder clips, or by wrapping the cable around into a hoop and securing it in place with some sticky tape.
Those are some general tips to get you a home office that will keep you productive while also feeling homely. Enjoy!