When you first settled in, chances are your home office décor and setup took a back seat to other parts of your home. Now it’s time to take a closer look at what you’re “working with.” Refreshing your home office space doesn’t have to be a time-consuming or expensive process. Here are some ideas to get you started:
Throw a Little Light on the Subject
Natural lighting can do wonders for your mood, so if you’ve been making do with a setup in a dark corner, perhaps it’s time to reorient your desk and chair to a more inviting, well-lit part of the room. If you have the space, try positioning your desk so that a window is behind it and you’re facing into the room. It’s less distracting and easier on the eyes.
While you’re at it, add a few low-maintenance plants to your space. Just be sure your computer’s at a safe distance, especially if there’s watering to be done. GQ magazine has a list of houseplants that do well indoors and don’t require a lot of upkeep. We also have a few tips to help turn your brown thumb green.
Re-visit Your Color Scheme
In terms of color psychology, beige greens and yellow greens are some of the most stress-reducing shades – ideal for walls in a home office. Lighter colors, even warm whites, are great if you want to stay alert and focused on the task at hand. You can also try adding a few vivid accent colors – or even an accent wall – to get your creative juices flowing.
Looking for ideas and inspiration? Pinterest is a wonderful resource for checking out how others are using color to set the right tone for their home offices. And while you’re browsing, check out this ongoing project that is searching for the world’s favorite color.
Organize Your Cords and Connections
Is the space under and around your desk a jungle of wires and extension cords? Are your electronics plugged directly into wall outlets? If so, it’s time to protect and detangle.
Start with your power supply. If your computer or other sensitive devices are plugged into wall outlets, they could be at risk if there’s a power surge. Extension cords and multi plugs have come a long way in a short time. It’s increasingly common now to find outlets, surge protectors and USB ports combined into a single unit. Amazon is a great place to find a solution that works for you.
Tangled cords and cables are not only unsightly but potentially unsafe. PC Magazine has a host of ideas for getting your cords and connections neatly organized.
Adjust the Ergonomics
“Slouch on the couch” should never be an option when you’re working remotely. If you’ve been making do with an ad hoc office set-up, it’s time to get your ergonomics in order.
When sitting in front of your monitor your eye line should be about level with the address bar on your web browser. Elbows should naturally fall flush with the table or desk height. No office chair? Put a firm cushion or tightly folded towel on the seat to raise your hips and increase the curve of your spine.
Think about switching to a standing desk. For many people, it reduces back strain and increases productivity. And you can always lower it again if you prefer a more traditional configuration.
Add a Personal Touch
At sites like Zazzle and Shutterfly, you can make customized versions of computer mice and mousepads which you can easily decorate however you want to. The same goes for a mug, wall calendar or even Post-it® notes. If your office only occupies part of a larger room, try defining the workspace with a small rug and wall art/photos you’ll enjoy looking at. You’ll be spending a lot of time here; make sure your surroundings reflect you!
Looking for tips, advice, and pointers for making your new house a home? Check out our other blogs for moving tips, packing advice, city guides and a wealth of other information to help you settle in.