By James Hale
Many individuals are faced with the potentially difficult chore of setting up a home office space as more of us work from home than ever before. When designing a workplace that is both functional and productive, the most important question to address is: ‘Where in my house should I set up my office?’
Even if you design and construct the ideal workplace, complete with all of the tools and equipment you’ll need, you risk limiting your productivity and output if it’s in the incorrect location. Because everyone’s living and working circumstances are unique, you’ll have to be flexible in your approach. Still, you should follow some fundamental rules when making this crucial initial selection.
Close to a Window
Research has repeatedly shown that being exposed to abundant natural light makes us more productive, efficient, and even happy. Having access to windows is critical when it comes to our workplaces – especially our home offices.
You’ll most likely be working at your workplace for long periods. As a result, you should place your desk or workstation someplace that allows enough light in, even if it means losing part of your available space. When choosing between a smaller workplace near a window (or preferably one in a glass extension or conservatory) and a bigger workspace with artificial lighting, the former is by far the better option.
Keeping Distractions at Bay
Several things might distract us when we’re working, especially in our increasingly linked society. Smartphones, social media, and modern house improvements (e.g., internet-connected speakers) distract us from our tasks. Furthermore, the extra discipline necessary to work from home effectively is only made more difficult by the existence of these distractions.
Unfortunately, things like social media are constantly accessible to us. When deciding where to put your home office, keep in mind how near it is to other sources of distraction. This can vary depending on the person, but if you know you have a habit of cleaning while working, it’s a good idea to set up your office away from regularly messy areas. Similarly, if you can’t resist the pull of coffee and snack breaks, consider a location away from the kitchen. Other potential sources of distraction, such as loud venues frequented by younger (or older) family members, should be avoided if at all feasible.
In an Inspiring Environment
Every one of us has a favourite spot in our house. Sometimes it’s a nook we’ve worked hard to decorate, other times it’s a whole room, and yet other times it’s an outdoor place. When deciding where to set up your home office, it’s critical to choose a location you like.
Stay away from rooms and settings that don’t inspire you. You can always decorate and customise your workstation later, but when deciding where to shop as your office, choose a spot that seems snug, motivating, or just plain enjoyable. Bright, open rooms and locations with views of gardens or other external environs are frequently wonderful places to start.
Within Walking Distance of Amenities
It may not seem evident at first, but placing your workplace near the toilet, kitchen, or other often visited areas of your house may be making your life more difficult than it has to be.
For example, if it takes you several minutes to go to and from the restroom daily, this might build up to days of missed work time over months or years. It may not seem like the most apparent choice, but consider finding a location in your house that will allow you to work more efficiently.
Somewhere with Plenty of Space
Depending on your profession, you may need a lot – or very little – space. Make cautious calculations and make sure you have enough space for all of the equipment you’ll need. Consider how much room you’ll need to move about and store more items if the need arises. Measure each space to ensure there’s enough room for a suitable-sized desk, an ergonomic chair, and any other equipment you’ll need.