Feeling productive in your space is essential, but so is feeling relaxed. It is difficult to do your best at your job if you feel stressed out or anxious. Have you ever walked into a space that didn’t feel good to you? Maybe you couldn’t even determine why it felt negative, but you knew you did not want to stay in that space. Have you ever walked into a space that felt so good that you wanted to take a seat and stay for hours? This is precisely what you want your office space to feel like. Now, try to think of those same two spaces and take note of what you didn’t like and what you did like about both of them. Next, imagine how you would like your ideal home office to look.
Many people who work from home have not designed a meaningful space for themselves in which to work. Having a space that sparks delight in you when you are in it can make a big difference in your energy and creativity.
Even if you do not have a separate room for your office, at least clearing out a small corner somewhere that makes you feel good is important. Spaces that do not have any personalization can be dull and demotivating. I believe we all deserve to have office space that is clean, organized, beautiful, efficient, and makes you feel inspired to be in it.
Here are ten tips I have learned over the years to design a space that makes you want to level up and create.
1. Designate one room or area that is going to be yours only. If at all possible, an area with a window to let in some natural light.
2. Declutter the space. Remove things that do not belong to you, and that has nothing to do with the work you are doing. You can bring some items that speak to your heart, like a piece of art, back in later if you choose.
3. A clean space is a must. Do any cleaning that needs to take place, including wiping down shelving, baseboards, cleaning windows, shampooing carpets, etc.
4. A fresh coat of paint on the walls can make all the difference in the world. Choose a color that is soothing to you and brightens up the area. Paint the space yourself or hire someone to do it for you, whichever makes the most sense to you.
5. If needed, spend the money on a new desk and a comfortable chair. If you keep the ones you currently have, but they are stained and scratched up, try getting them recovered by sanding and painting them, so they look fresh and feel new.
6. Get organized by putting in shelving, storage baskets, desk organizers, etc. Think “everything in its place.” The end of your workday is the time to put all of your things away nicely so that when you reenter in the morning, it feels fresh and inviting.
7. Get a whiteboard, glass board, or bulletin board. Have something that you can brainstorm ideas on and keep your thoughts in front of you and organized.
8. Add a live plant or two to your space. Plants help in many ways. They increase humidity, purify the air, improve your health, and sharpen your focus. A couple of small plants can make a big difference.
9. Enriching your space with art that you love can increase your productivity. You don’t need to fill the space with things, but a couple of pieces of art on the walls and a few other items placed on your shelving or desk can allow you to expand your mind and boost your mood.
10. Make your space feel like a spa. Use music, a diffuser, incense, a candle, or whatever it is that enhances your senses and gets you in your zone. An everyday sensory experience can nourish your body both physically and mentally.
The goal is that you are creating a home office space that supports your focus and creativity. Your ideal space is the one that speaks to you and delights you when you are in it. Think of your home office as a portrait of you. Are you going to be smiling or frowning? Smile, my friend, smile!!