Everyone who works knows how incredibly important the environment you are working is to both productivity and mental state. With a lot of us working from home as well as vastly reducing our ventures into the outside world in recent months, it has never been more crucial that we love the spaces that we are living and now working in as well. A huge part of this is successfully organizing, designing, and separating these spaces in a way that works specifically for you. There are a few general things that you can do to in order to help with the task of separating home and work when you work from home.
Decluttering is universally important. The majority of people work better in a well-organized space. The definition of well-organized may vary, but basic goal is to create a space that feels like an extension of your professional self, where you have (and can find) everything that you need in order to be successful and productive. While some find the process of organizing therapeutic, others find it tedious, but most will agree that after it is done, there is an overwhelming sense of satisfaction and relief. Everyone has their own process when it comes to organizing their space, but here are just a few tips pertaining to organization in the form of filing and space utilization that are applicable for both work and home spaces alike.
In a vastly more digital society than any generation before us, the need for paper filing has decreased dramatically. This is especially true for those of us working remotely. As many of us are aware, this does not necessarily mean that we have decreased the number of papers cluttering our work spaces or kitchen counters. Organizing files will most likely be a combination of digital and paper files, including paper files that need to be digitized for better remote working organization, as well as other aspects of life that have been digitized in order to allow socially distanced variations of everyday tasks and obligations.
The Importance of Utilizing Wall Space
A space that is often overlooked, but when utilized can completely change the way a space feels is the space on our walls. Utilizing wall space can free up room, streamline operations, and provide a different feel in almost every aspect of home and work life. Whether it means hanging kitchen utensils, beloved family photos, or the deadline calendar and sticky note reminders in your office, there are endless possibilities for the utilization of this space.
For many of us, organization goes hand in hand with design whether we realize it or not. The way that we organize our living and working spaces is a uniquely personal series of decisions that gives away more than we may think about us as people as well as our mental state and attitude about the space itself. Our design choices can also have an effect, positive or negative, on those things as well. The best decisions that we can make for the design of work or home spaces alike are the ones that make us feel comfortable and ready to face the day. There are many things that impact the designs of our spaces, just two being color and lighting.
Color is an underrated aspect of our everyday lives. You may not realize just how much it can affect the way that we perceive a space. Luckily, we live in an age where almost anything, including office supplies, can be personalized through the use of colors, textures, and patterns in a way that encourages a positive and productive mental state while retaining the correct degree of professionalism. A great way to add a bit of your own personality to your working environment is through the seemingly mundane items that you use to complete everyday tasks, such as pens, folders, notepads, or even paperweights and small desk decorations. Though it may seem counterintuitive, things that can allow for a colorful breakup of everyday monotony can help to give your eyes and your brain the break they need to function well during your work day.
Another commonly overlooked part of the way that we view a space is the lighting. Think about the way that certain lights make you feel. Florescent lighting may make you feel irritable or stressed. Warm, dim lighting may in turn make you feel tired and cozy. Think about the way that you light the spaces in your home. It can be as simple as moving that lamp out of your office or replacing the bulb with one that gives off a different kind of light. If you are going to be in a room for at least eight hors a day, it is better for your eyes and your mental state to make sure that it is lit in a way that does not distract from the work you are trying to accomplish.
Separation of Home and Work
Separating work from home life when the two share a space can be tricky for anyone to achieve, especially when you can tend to be a bit of a workaholic or when you have trouble focusing on work to begin with, but there are some things that can help you to achieve this. While the same things will not work for everyone, these are some that may help you.
Fake Your Commute
This suggestion may sound a little ridiculous at first, but when you really think about it, it makes so much sense. For a lot of people their commute to work is a transitional period of shaking off sleep, drinking their morning coffee, listening to music or catching up on the morning news. Whether consciously or subconsciously they are transitioning from their at home state to their working state. When working from home, you are no longer giving your brain that time to shift. A fake commute whether it is a short drive, a walk, a bike ride, or a run to get coffee, can help you to replicate that mental transition, and return to your home office ready to tackle the day. Repeating this at the end of your work day can also help you to transition back out of this state and help you to destress and enjoy the rest of your day.
Separate Your Spaces
This may seem like an obvious one but it is, nonetheless, incredibly important. Unless you are a master of compartmentalization, spending all day in bed in your PJs while trying to focus on work, will most likely cause a decrease in productivity. Dedicating a specific space to your work will help to mentally separate that place for you, making it easier to focus on work during the work day, as well as to leave your work in that space when the work day is over.
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