One of the best things about working from home is that you have the freedom to set your own schedule and define your own working environment. You can work in bed, in a study, or even in your favourite local coffee shop. This freedom sounds great on paper, but many people fail to take advantage of it and simply work on their sofas, in an improvised “home office”. This is bad for your productivity in the short term, because you face a lot of distractions, and it’s also bad for your health. These tips will help you to put together a healthy home office that will let you feel good and finish your working day feeling fresh and full of energy.
Good lighting is perhaps the single most important part of any office design. Your lighting should be neutrally coloured, bright enough that you can see everything you need to read or work on, flicker free, and directed in such a way that it will not cause glare. LED lighting is a good choice, but you may also need some task-specific lighting or desk lamps for added comfort.
Good office furniture will make the difference between developing RSI or chronic back pain, and being able to spend a long time in front of the computer without destroying your body. A good office should be a dedicated working space that includes an adjustable office chair with good back support, a spacious desk, a comfortable mouse or track pad, and a monitor and keyboard that can be adjusted for easy use.
If you have filing cabinets, they should be positioned in such a way that you can use them easily without needing to bend or reach excessively.
Do not skimp on office furniture. High quality, comfortable furniture that is ergonomically designed will make a massive difference to the comfort you feel during the working day.
It is easy to get “in the zone” when you are working, and forget to stay hydrated. Invest in a small home water cooler or a mini fridge for your office so that you always have drinks within easy reach. Remember that if you go so long between drinks that you actually feel thirsty, then you are waiting too long and your energy levels and even the power of your immune system will suffer. Give yourself easy access to liquid refreshments.
Ventillation and Temperature Control
Good ventillation and temperature control is another important characteristic of a well-designed office. A working environment that is stuffy, too hot, or too cold will leave you feeling tired and could give you a headache. There are strict regulations about the temperatures that employees should and should not be working in, and there are good reasons for that.
Try to set up your office in a room that has a window that is open, and keep fans and heaters in the room so that you can keep the temperature steady throughout the year.
You will probably spend a lot of time in your home office, so it makes sense to set it up properly. If there’s one thing that it is worth spending money on, it is investing in your health, wellbeing and productivity.