The 5 M’s Of A Productive Home Office

When you work from home, you need to be on top of your game. Unlike traditional office environments, when you are sat at your home office desk you have to be in charge of everything, from admin to deadlines to filing. Having to wear so many hats on a regular basis can become a bit of a nightmare, especially when you have to flit between overly organised and superbly creative. That is why it is important to create a comfortable and inspiring workspace, be it a corner desk tucked away in the dining room or your very own office behind the closed door of bedroom number three.

Buying quality furniture and state of the art equipment is just the first step in the journey towards productivity. You have to class these things as “the basics” and be ready to pay attention to more abstract, but equally important aspects of your office; including things like layout, decoration and even how you go about your work.

Of course, everyone will be different and what inspires one individual is likely to drive another up the wall. Practical factors like time, space and budget constraints can also affect how you set up your office and what constitutes as productivity-friendly.

 

For now though, let’s start with the Five M’s of a Productive Home Office.

 

Music

Music is a powerful thing, but it doesn’t have to be restricted to the realms of leisure and partying. As a mood enhancer, the right music can have a great effect on an individual’s work and productivity. You can use different types of music to lift your mood, help you relax, aid your focus or just to have a little bit of fun after a stressful morning. Just be aware that music needs to be limited when you are undertaking cognitively-demanding tasks.

 

Mother Nature

When people are outdoors, they feel better almost instantly because fresh air and nature are good for the body and good for the soul and translating this to your home office is easy and effective. Live plants can add colour and a sense of freshness and freedom to the room, aiding productivity and boosting your mood. Nature-inspired colours can also help to create the perfect workspace; green helps productivity, blue is relaxing and ideal for rooms where you need to stay calm, level headed and focused and earthy tones can make your office inviting. Just remember to strike the right balance, opting for muted natural tones rather than Crayola Brights.

 

Mementos

It is widely accepted that thinking of loved ones can help ease an individual’s stress and reduce any negative thoughts they may be having. This is to do with all sorts of hormonal reactions and memory-triggers. So to give yourself a get-out-of-funk-free card, keep photographs of your nearest and dearest on your desk or keep trinkets from them nearby to give you an instant pick-me-up when you need it most.

 

Mess

Everyone wants an organised desk and office, but sometimes mess can be a good thing. Call it “organised chaos” or “creative sorting.” Whatever it is, studies have shown that mess can help you focus because it encourages a creative mind.

 

Mechanics

Keeping all of the mechanics of your home office up to scratch will help you to be more productive. You need to ensure that your desk, chair and screen are ergonomically correct so your posture doesn’t suffer, and you don’t have to worry about things like eye strain. By ensuring the mechanical side of working at a desk is the best it can be, you will take pressure off of your bones and muscles, leaving your mind free to focus on work instead of on tension and tenderness.

These are just the basic things you need to keep in mind when setting up your home office or when looking for ways to freshen up your workspace and mix up your daily inspiration. You will ultimately end up tailoring this advice and any other advice you find so that your office suits you, your needs and your working style.

 

Start with the basics, like a quality home office desk, chair and some storage furniture and work your way up to decorations and finishing touches. Once you are finished, you will have a pleasant, productive work oasis to escape to every day.

 

20th September 2014

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